*** Submitted by Rosie, who blogs at My Rosie Journey
I have finally admitted to myself that my drinking may be a bigger problem than I had originally thought. I have always enjoyed drinking, I grew up around alcohol - my parents always had a drink (or 5) to 'unwind' after work so I always knew I'd drink too.
I guess sometime around the age of 15 I started binge drinking but thought nothing of it because everyone else did it too. This carried on through University but I think even then I realised that I drank differently to others. I always drank to get drunk, as much as I could, every weekend. As I became a young professional I noticed I'd get a bit sad on a Sunday night because it meant I had to wait 4 more days til I could drink again.
Then I started hanging out with other professionals and found it was 'okay' to have a drink or two mid-week. This turned in to me drinking every night... but it was OK for the most part, most of my friends did too. Well that's what I told myself anyway. As they slowly got married off and stopped coming out, the drinking continued for me. Often on my own, often more than a bottle of wine.
I moved away, met a guy (now my husband) and he liked to social drink. It was easy for me to mask my drinking with him because I'd always say that I preferred to have a glass of wine every night rather than binge drink on the weekends. The problem was, it wasn't just one glass. I would just binge drink every night.
I didn't drink at all during both my pregnancies, though I looked forward to them being over so I could drink again. I suffered postpartum depression/ postnatal depression and even though I take anti-depressants, I still self medicate with alcohol - my drug of choice. I've been to an alcohol counsellor who has told me I'm not an alcoholic, I am what is called a 'dangerous drinker'. This lulled me in to a false sense of security and as we worked on me moderating my drinking and being OK with drinking moderately. I thought life would be good and I could control it. But then she suggested I go on a holiday from alcohol... 2 weeks without a drink. I was outta there and I haven't been back.
Now I'm at the point where again, I'm drinking a bottle of wine a night. I can't remember things when I wake up - like if I've eaten or where I fell asleep. I watched a TV show the other day and vaguely realised I must've watched it one night after (during) drinking because I could recall bits and pieces of it but didn't realise I had already watched it.
I know this isn't normal. I know I drink too much. Regardless of what my drinking is called, I can see now that I'm addicted to alcohol. EVERY morning I wake up and swear I won't drink tonight. By 4:00 the pull is too strong and I start to drink. And the cycle continues. I wish I could just moderate my drinking but I'm starting to realise that probably won't be possible. A life without alcohol completely terrifies me but at the same time is strangely appealing. I won't have to waste all this time and energy on drinking/ hiding / planning it etc. I can free up that time in the evenings to do all the things I dream of doing.
But still... how will life without alcohol be?
What will happen when there's no Friday night drinks with my husband?
Will I go to parties and just... not drink?? How does that even look?
I can't even picture it. Is it possible that I can do it?