Alcohol unlocked so much in me as a young man. It gave me confidence to have that first kiss. It gave me the edge to push back on those who tried to force me to do the wrong thing. Alcohol was a wonderful addition to my life and seemingly everybody else around me. I mean, the wonderful woman I am married to was on a night club dance floor when we drunkenly kissed for the first time. Alcohol unlocked so much. Gave me wings.
But isn’t that abuse all over? We are lead into a false sense of security with wondrous outcomes at our disposal. The sad reality is that our joy, mistakes and occasional never agains develop into much darker and severe issues later down the road.
Let’s not beat around the bush. Alcohol is a drug. Alcohol is a depressant. Alcohol makes us do things that we wouldn’t normally do in a sober and rational state. Now that’s out the way let’s have a discussion about how beneficial this relationship that we have with the booze actually really is!
Before I start with my preaching let’s get one thing straight. I’m maybe not the ‘stereotype’ when it comes to an alcohol dependent bloke who gets sectioned. I was a beige kid who grew up with no trauma or life changing events. I wasn’t abused and had both parents present throughout my childhood. We always had food on the table and we always had holidays. We were a working class and hard working family who by no means we’re rich but it was more than comfortable. Yes I got bullied a little but so did most kids in my school because it wasn’t a very nice place – but I had plenty friends and generally got by ok. I know I didn’t appreciate it at the time but I certainly do now on reflection.
Why do I share this? Because the amount of people (who know me well) who have either said they were surprised or couldn’t understand how I ended up as bad as I did is quite worrying. Anybody can have a ‘normal’ and functioning life yet still come undone. I’m a prime example of that.
Life is tough at the moment and it would be a perfect opportunity to use drinking alcohol as an excuse but this is where Rational Recovery is a game changer for me. In the past I would have used the illness of a child in hospital and the temporary split of the family unit (one of us is always in hospital with one daughter / other at home with the youngest daughter) to have a few drinks. My anxiety levels are heightened and I’m in ‘survival’ mode each day with limited sleep, good food and the stress of the unknown. Alcohol would be used as a reward and to self-medicate.
My Addictive Voice (AV) has been chatty this week as you could imagine. The general theme has been along the lines of “you like the taste of beer anyways and still drink 0.0% beer so why don’t you just have a real beer or two. It’ll make you feel good”
Yeah, it probably would. I don’t disagree with my AV but what I also know is that this is just a tactical move to reopen the doors to much, much more.
Let me paint the picture of what will happen… (this is hypothetical but WOULD probably unfold if I let my guard down)
I’ll have a few bottles of beer. I’ll feel fine. Maybe I’ll drink them watching the footy or on a jaunt to a gig. A week will pass and because there was no negative my beast will bank that for the next time. The next time follows pretty quickly and this time my addictive voice uses the ammunition it now has to nudge me towards even more booze. The wife is away for the weekend so treat yourself – get a crate in.
Again, no consequence other than a little hangover and that is soon gone. Wait a minute, I’m coping ok with this drinking malarkey after all BUT let’s not go overboard here. People no longer trust you with alcohol and let’s be honest – you don’t really trust yourself so let’s keep it a secret between us.
Hmmm… the crate was nice but it was 20 bottles of beer and it didn’t touch the side. Not like the old days. Maybe a bottle of Gin would be ok. Just mix it with plenty tonic and measure it. It’ll be ok because I’m not going to smashing bottle after bottle down my neck like when my wife was on that work trip last weekend. I’ll have to drink it on the sly though and pretend it’s just tonic water.
Wow, first real hangover in a long time. I don’t miss that. Jesus, I can’t hide this from anybody. I’m meant to be having a family day too. Oh God, I need to shake this off. I know this isn’t the right thing to do but a mender sorted me out in the past. I’ll offer to get bacon and orange juice from the local shop for the family breakfast and no, I really shouldn’t but I’ll get some whisky. It’ll hit the spot and straighten me out.
That’s why I don’t moderate. Cos the above used to be me.
3 thoughts on “The Abuse”
Sorry to see your daughter is still ill. Stay Rational…looks like those around you need it more than ever.
Great to see your thoughts on why one is one to many….and having read your blog, think you are right.
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Thanks mate. Yeah, took some time away from work as living at the hospital pretty much but I’m in a good strong mental frame at the mo. There for my family
Sorry to see your daughter is still ill. Stay Rational…looks like those around you need it more than ever. Great to see your thoughts on why one is one to many.
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