I used to love to drink alcohol – until I didn’t.
Alcohol had become my jailer, trapping me in a mindless habit I thought I needed to hold on to.
I truly believed I needed alcohol to get through the ups and downs of my life.
At the end of my drinking career alcohol was destroying my physical health. I’m still not sure how much was visible to others – but I could see it. Darkness under my eyes, puffy skin and the hidden bruises of unknown origin.
Alcohol sometimes irritated my digestive system, making my stomach produce more acid and giving me stomach ache. So that in turn could affect my appetite.
Alcohol was controlling my thoughts by making me think of it every day.
I’d wake up saying that I wouldn’t drink it today and then think about drinking it again as the day wore on.
It made me feel sad, it made me feel alone, it made me feel frightened and lost.
The after effects were now far outweighing the benefits I believed I got from drinking it.
At times I suffer from anxiety – and I thought that alcohol helped me through these times.
I didn’t realise that by now alcohol was causing much of my anxiety in the first place……
Media and advertising – with amazing success – make us believe that alcohol is a ‘normal’ drug. A drug that you need in your life.
The manufacturers of alcohol sell their products with a ‘dream.’
That alcohol is such a great drug, one that is essential to have a good life. Without it your life will be ‘boring’ and ‘normal.’ Without it your life will not be all it should be.
To not drink alcohol means that you’re missing out, because alcohol and having a good time go together.
The manufacturers make a lot of money by selling the ‘dream’ to us.
I had to dig deep to break away from the myth.
Because the true facts are that alcohol is a mind changing drug.
Alcohol is societies number one drug and it causes more health problems and deaths than tobacco, cocaine or any other drug.
Negative aspects of alcohol are never highlighted when it’s being advertised by the manufactures of alcohol.
If it was a new drug being introduced to the market today would it be classed as a class A drug?
It can be hard to admit to yourself you have a problem.
Acceptance is made even harder to face when we know that society tends to put the blame on the person who is struggling with alcohol.
That if you can’t control alcohol then that’s your own personal problem.
Because of this is it any wonder that we struggle to admit alcohol is causing us problems when the negative side to alcohol is looked down on by so many as our own fault – our own weakness?
At the very core of anyone’s alcohol intake there are so many false beliefs.
The belief that alcohol is an acceptable, essential prop for adult life’s ups and downs.
The belief that to live a life without any alcohol would be a half life.
The belief that to not be able to participate in drinking alcohol will mean living a life of torment.
I now believe that alcohol destroys too many lives for that to be true.
I used to believe that alcohol was the magic carpet that could whisk me away and make my life better.
Like a fairy tale I suppose.
In reality alcohol had turned my life into a horror story.
IT WAS TIME TO STOP.
I WAS TIRED OF BEING TIRED ALL THE TIME.
Once I found this site it planted new seeds of hope in my mind.
The ground I planted them in was full of rocks, it was difficult to know how or even if my seeds would be able to grow.
Could I learn to grow now that I wasn’t using alcohol?
Could I learn to be happier now that I wasn’t using alcohol?
The only way to find that out was to take alcohol out of my life.
Step forwards slowly instead of backwards – no matter how hard it seemed at times to haul myself up. To allow myself to grow.
Some people now find me puzzling.
Puzzled that now I don’t drink any alcohol at all and how on earth I can be happy about that.
Puzzled because they believe – just like I used to believe – that to live life without any alcohol in it at all is not enjoyable. That it can’t be possible to be so joyful that I don’t have it in my life anymore. That I must be in torment at my loss…..
That I must be lying.
That people like me don’t exist.
Like a unicorn.
It was hard for me at first to love being a unicorn.
It took a long time to become comfortable in my choice and see the lies behind the advertising of alcohol.
The lies behind what alcohol promises.
But now I do.
Be a unicorn……
If you’re “sober curious” … If you are drinking too much too often and want to stop or take a break…or if you have stopped drinking and are trying to stick to sober! Talk to Us. Start with 30 days. Try a Dry July, Sober October, or New Year’s Dry January Challenge.
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Don’t let the shame of the stigma keep you from saying
“I think I have a problem with drinking”
This post was written by Zoo. You’ll find more of her writing on Boozemusings here :