To ask you to tell me all the positives about not drinking alcohol

(104 Posts)
Rachtoteach Sun 23-Jun-13 20:39:16

My mother is an alcoholic. I have only recently acknowledged this as she had been functioning ok but her health is now in such a bad state, her liver is failing and she has circulation problems which means she rarely leaves the house (but she will struggle to the shop to buy gin). Her sister is also an alcoholic. I am an only child and have three lovely kids and an amazing DH. My wine intake had been increasing and hangovers getting worse and I had a bit of an enlightening moment when I realised that I could choose life or alcohol (bit dramatic but am currently feeling my mum has chosen gin over us, by far). I am an all or nothing person and have taken the decision to give up the booze for good, rather than cut down. Alcohol no longer has a place in my life.

So... please help me think of all the fab things about not drinking! So far I've thought of - no hangovers, no memory loss, no embarrassment, saving money, weight loss.......

Inspire me please!!

Naebother Sun 23-Jun-13 21:21:58

What maddening said is spot on.

And you will like yourself so much more.

Do it.

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sun 23-Jun-13 21:26:51

Your risk of breast cancer is greatly reduced. BC risk increases significantly with a very small intake of alcohol (more than 7 units per week).

moonbells Sun 23-Jun-13 21:30:01

Nobody's yet mentioned the other major health benefits of not drinking. Several serious cancers are linked to alcohol consumption, such as oral cancers (especially if you smoke too) and cancer of the oesophagus (which killed John Thaw). Stomach cancer is also linked to alcohol (though more to smoking).

Read en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alcohol_and_cancer though not if you're squeamish or have just eaten! Gory picture alert.

Well done for stopping. That was a very hard thing you have done. I've never drunk much, can count two bad hangovers in my life and drink perhaps 2 units a year now, but that's mostly because I've never really liked alcoholic drinks. I am impressed with anyone who manages to break such an addiction. flowers

YoungBritishPissArtist Sun 23-Jun-13 21:30:16

I became teetotal about 3 years (for similar reasons to you OP) and never looked back.

When I'm out with people who are drinking, I have one orange juice and then switch to water.

With all the water, I wake up the next day feeling really refreshed, unlike my friends grin My skin is good, and young, because I drink a lot of water.

It helps keep weight under control. Not just avoiding the alcohol itself, but I think when you're under the influence you're more inclined to eat more, and more fatty foods at that, like picking up a KFC on the way home.

I save money due to the above.

The main thing though, is I was using alcohol as a crutch. I didn't think people would like me, or that I could have fun without having a drink. It made me do some work on myself and I prefer socialising and having fun being the real me, not an altered version.
Sorry if that sounds really therapy-speak, but it works for me!

I have beautiful, peaceful, lucid dreams when I don't drink.

Therefore I don't drink much anymore!

moonbells Sun 23-Jun-13 21:31:07

grin crosspost on cancer TondelayoSchwarzkopf

ItsNotUnusualToBe Sun 23-Jun-13 21:32:06

Your children won't feel the way you do about their mother.

YoungBritishPissArtist Sun 23-Jun-13 21:36:28

You won't be one of those boring people whose only topic of conversation seems to be; how much they drank last night, how much they're going to get smashed this weekend, etc.

I know people who have no hobbies or pastimes, they just go to the pub and get sloshed. That's it. How boring.

snooter Sun 23-Jun-13 21:37:06

You will argue less at home

ChipsNEggs Sun 23-Jun-13 21:43:51

When you wake up in the morning you never ever regret not drinking.

I've decided to knock it on the head for a good long while, maybe permanently as I had definitely slipped in to drinking more often and higher amounts than is healthy. I always feel better when not drinking, you look better, you have more energy, more money, you're slimmer and your skin looks better and anxiety and depression are greatly reduced.

You never have to worry about if you are over the limit the next day and I bet every person who drinks and has a car has unknowingly driven over the limit at some point. You don't need to worry if a child becomes ill and you need to get to the hospital. You're in charge, you can get yourself home, you don't wake up and panic over what you might have said or done.

What makes you miserable is if your relaxing time and social events are still centred around drinking. Start doing new things and enrich your life as well as improving your health. I've been crafting in the evening again and really enjoy it, I'm wondering why slumping in front of the telly with a glass of wine ever seemed preferable. I'm also getting my zest back and have done a list of 30 things to achieve this year, a couple of big things but also little things like learning to bake Macaroons, go climbing and taking time to write proper letters to friends and family.

I bought a posh tumbler from TK Maxx and like to settle down to my evening with some sparkling San Pellegrino with ice and lemon or a Sanbitter over ice. You could also add a couple of posh chocolates and still rack up fewer calories at a lower cost than a couple of glasses of wine wine but it still marks the beginning of your relaxing time.

Do it and I give it 5 days max before you physically feel the difference.

Lavenderloves Sun 23-Jun-13 21:48:31

I did the drybjan challenge it was very good. I didn't mss it, looked better, slept better gad more energy.

I slipped back into drinking.

I think i'm going to have a dry july :-)

tupuedes Sun 23-Jun-13 22:33:46

Damn, YoungBritish took my one. You do realize though how tedious those "I went to x and got pissed and y fell in a bush" stories get though.

WorrySighWorrySigh Sun 23-Jun-13 22:38:04

DH and I did the dry jan then just really carried on. We arent teetotal but have cut back the drinking to the point where it is very much the exception and not the rule.

Something I read a long time ago is that it takes 3 weeks to make or break a habit. So, if you can stop drinking for July then you have a good chance of breaking the habit.

Possibly a slightly backhanded positive: if I feel poorly then I dont have to think that it is a hangover! DH now has high blood pressure and gets gout from time to time, both are just age related and started since we cut back on drinking. At least we know that drinking isnt contributing to these health problems.

twinklyfingers Sun 23-Jun-13 22:47:20

My dh gave up alcohol three years ago due to a series of incidents induced by heavy drinking. Looking back we also drank too much together in the evenings/weekends.

He too is an all or nothing person so the decision to stop completely suited him well, he would not have managed to simply cut down. It has made him a much happier person who is much more productive. It has driven him to build a social life with activities and hobbies. He has also begun a masters which i don't think he would have contempleted while he was still drinking. It is remarkable how much time and energy is wasted on being just a bit hung over!

I'm almost teetotal, have about 5 small drinks a year, if that. Used to drink plenty, socially.

I can eat loads of crap because I am not using up my calories on drink. Skin is in good nick for my age.
Don't make much of a twat of myself, don't bore people to death or have verbal diarrhoea/feel argumentative.
IBS was much worse when drinking.
Still hate mornings and night wakings with the children but always sober and not hungover to deal with them.
Can always leave if I am not enjoying myself as I am normally driving.

My dad is probably an alcoholic, my mum had severe MH problems and died young. I feel I am giving myself my best chance of a normal life by not being a drinker grin

BridgetBidet Sun 23-Jun-13 22:53:13

You get a lot more done. You don't lose days to being hungover or have the 'shame' or regrets about what you've done.

You get into doing different things that don't involve drinking and after a while you realize that it's far more constructive to do these things rather than just getting pissed.

KatoPotato Sun 23-Jun-13 22:57:01

I had my first ever tee-total night out last night and it was fantastic! Each time I went to loo I still looked as I did when I went out, I have no fear that I made a fool of myself, and I got to drive home!

I'm not looking back!

KatoPotato Sun 23-Jun-13 22:57:50

I'm a tad shocked that a soda and lime was £2 however!

merlincat Sun 23-Jun-13 23:00:57

For me it was a life or death thing, I chose life and that was nearly twenty years ago. I experienced it as a rebirth; mentally and spiritually (although I'm not a spiritual person at all). Everything was fresh and new, it was the most wonderful experience of my life.

Remotecontrolduck Sun 23-Jun-13 23:12:25

I don't drink, neither does DD, 19, very much. She's the same as me, doesn't like the taste.

I don't know what I'm 'missing' as I've never been more than a bit tipsy, but the thought of being really drunk then hungover the next day doesn't do much for me to be honest. People ask me why I don't drink, I always ask them why they do.

Fair play if you genuinely like the taste of the drinks and stuff but often I get the answer 'because that's what you do'. I'd rather have a fun night without the feeling sick.

I wouldn't count of saving too much money though, non alcoholic drinks are very pricey!

Cherriesarelovely Sun 23-Jun-13 23:29:08

All of the above. I've had to give it up due to a health problem and have really enjoyed the lack of hangovers (not that I drank alot but even a small amount made me feel grim afterwards) feeling clear headed and sleeping well. There are loads. Good luck.

Justfornowitwilldo Sun 23-Jun-13 23:35:04

Your liver can heal itself. If you stop drinking it will get stronger.

Alcohol is a depressant. You will feel better.

You will save money. Why not look at what you're spending a week on drinking and, when you stop, put that aside every week until you've got enough for something you really want.

Justfornowitwilldo Sun 23-Jun-13 23:37:13

Al Anon provide support for the families of alcoholics.

ChipsNEggs Sun 23-Jun-13 23:41:20

Whilst some non alcoholic drinks may be pricey you will save money cos you won't have anywhere near 10 J2O's on a night out. I'm shocked at £2 for a lime and soda though, it normally costs me around 30p and in busy bars of an evening they ask if I'm driving and then let me have it free.

StuntGirl Sun 23-Jun-13 23:52:45

I love not being drunk.

I love not doing or saying anything stupid.

I love not getting hangovers.

I love that I can go out and actually remember the night.

I love being the one who remembers everyone else's stupid/silly/embarrassing moments ;)

I DO NOT love that non alcoholic drinks are often two or three times the price of booze sad

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