I am only 26 years old and have come to the conclusion I have a drinking problem. Alcoholism runs in my family; my Grandma was and alcoholic, my Mom is, my Aunt is and My Uncle is also an alcoholic but is now sober.
I have known for a while now that I have an alcohol problem, drinking every night. Red wine is my drink of choice and I had gotten up to 2 bottles a night, every night. One bottle just wasn't enough.
I finally made a pact to myself that I do not want to be like my mother. I am getting Married in June and plan on having children. I do not want to be that alcoholic wife and mother who is never there for her kids and would rather stay home with a bottle then go to her daughter's 8th grade choir concert when she had a solo.
I have been able to keep myself preoccupied with jigsaw puzzles, cooking and reading (things that I stopped enjoying when I started to drink heavily). This is working for now and I hope to pick up other hobbies since I did not have any during my hobby of drinking.
What I am most worried about is my wedding day. I am affraid that I will want to have that glass of champagne during the toast, or a glass of wine to calm my nerves with my bridesmaides (all my sisters) before going down the isle or just wanting to celebrate. The hardest thing I am dealing with I guess is that I am affraid I will never be able to drink again.
Am I an alcoholic? Would I be able to drink occationally then go back to not? I have been "drinking" on and off since I was about 16. I have had my months of sobriety and months of drinking. I drank at parties when I was 16 or 17 but never really "got into it" until about my Junior year of college. During that time, I was dating a guy who drank heavily. I was with him for 2 years. Shortly after I broke up with him and started dating my fiance, I pretty much stopped drinking for at least 6+ months. I don't know how it happened, but I just started drinking about 6 months ago or so and just haven't stopped until 4 days ago. I am not having any issues mentally stopping and I am actually feeling great physically except for two symptoms, drowsiness & night sweats.
I went to the doctor a month ago who said I had slightly high bloodpressure and bad levels of cholesteral (strange for a 26 year old female, I know). For the last couple of days, I can tell that my blood pressure has lowered, and suspsect that my cholestoral is doing the same. When I was drinking every day I would get hotflashes and my heartrate would be through the roof. Now it is calm and I am a freezebaby like I used to be.
When do night (cold) sweats stop? I wake up absolutely FREEZING and I feel like I cannot warm up for the rest of the day since my bloodpressure has gone down.
Hey No One,
I hope this post finds you well.
Because or despite your familys background with alcoholism, you are very aware of it and have a good perception of your own habits. That's an admirable characteristic and will be your biggest strength in leading an alcohol-free future.
Tbh, I wouldn't class you as a 'major' alcoholic or even an alcoholic. By what you have written, I'm assuming you've been functional during your recent time of excessive drinking and it hasn't had a big effect on relationships or work-life (?). As for physical effects- while you will certainly be healthier for not drinking so much, you will soon be able to get back to a former state of health. Additionally, your younger years- your partying years- sound normal for a teenager, especially one who has seen alcohol being used excessively in their everyday life. You have a high level of self-awareness of your own habit and its history, and that isn't usually characteristic of an alcoholic.
As your latest excessive drinking period was 6 months, you will have symptoms of withdrawal, but they shouldn't last too long. Take Thiamine suppliments (B1) or eat Thiamine rich foods (cereal grains, pork, sunflower seeds, eggs, oranges to name a few) to lessen symptoms. Thiamine is a vitamin that is usually deficient in alcoholics and in those who drink excessively. Alcohol consumption effects the brain in many ways and one part of the brain effected is the hypothalamus. This part of the brain is responsable for your temperture problems and cold sweats. For this issue, keep sipping room temperture water. Not only will it keep you hydrated (which can happen due to the cold sweats), but it will help maintain an inner body temperture. For the coldness, as corny as it sounds- have you tried doing an exercise for around 20 minutes a day? If not, it's a suggestion. It will get your blood moving around your body and as alcohol effects the circulation, what you are experiencing now is your body having to get used to it's new routine. It will go away, but doing an exercise for around 20 minutes a day helps lessen its transitional period.
Good luck and best wishes for you wedding and don't worry- from what you have written, your future children will have a mum that know's how to look at herself, reflect and grow as a person. And that will make them very lucky children.
Perhaps, ask yourself this- is your biggest issue the alcohol or your stress management skills? Was alcohol a way of dealing with stress? You've seen your mother use alcohol to deal with the stresses of life and for a long time, you may have assumed that that was the easiest way to deal with 'challenges'. Yet by the sounds of your post, you are the type of person who wants to grow and develop as a person and you know that there are other ways to deal with things. You know that alcohol is not the only way- this is evident in the fact that you can stay off it- yet it's a way that is easy to flow back to.
Would you consider contacting an alcohol support team? Group therapy and emotional coping skills can be beneficial to those who need support in staying off of alcohol. Whether you will be able to drink socially, in the future, is up to you. Some major alcoholics can't drink again, due to health reasons or susceptability to relapse. However, you have a good grasp on your weaknesses and the risks of your health being effected long-term are slim, so the future may afford you a social drink from time to time. During those times though, it might be an idea to set limits and rules, for ex, a maximum number of drinks, choose a drink that's low in alcohol and you don't love the taste of, drink a soft drink inbetween each alcoholic one and nominate someone you trust to keep a tally of your drinks. Furthermore, eat before drinking alcohol or eat while your drinking. It's been shown that those who only drink alcohol with or soon after food tend to drink slower and are less effected by it.