When it comes to drinking

(143 Posts)
ThePerfectFather Fri 05-Jul-13 07:36:30

I look after the kids while my wife works, and by the end of the day I need a fucking drink.

I don't know if that counts as alcohol abuse or alcoholism, but my wife certainly seems to think so. She thinks I drink too much and says that since I drink every day, I "can't" go a day without drinking. The way I see it is that during the week I indeed "can't" go a day without drinking because I look after the kids and after 12 hours with them I want to drink to relax and unwind. Yes I am blaming the children for my rampant booze addiction that is tearing my life apart (hint, it's not).

On average I tend to drink around 4 or 5 cans of beer or cider between 5pm and midnight during the week. I get a nice little buzz, but definitely in no way am I drunk. I'm 37 and 6ft and weight 13 stone so my capacity for booze is...you know...adult. And that's 5 cans over 7 hours. I tend to stop drinking about an hour or an hour and a half before I go to bed at midnight to avoid needing to get up for a piss.

If I drank that amount in the space of a couple of hours as I might on a night out, then yes I would be well on the way. This is more like maintaining that slightly fuzzy level you get after one, maybe two, drinks.

The recommended daily maximum is 4 units a day, and so I probably drink more like 10 units. At the weekend I might drink more and actually get drunk. Some days I will drink more, some days I will drink less. I honestly assumed that since the booze aisles in supermarkets and off licences are so well stocked that a lot of people drink this way.

I don't get drunk often. I don't wake up every day with a throbbing head barely able to function. I don't drink and drive - EVER - I never even have a half if I am driving. If I need to get up early, I won't drink more than a couple. I rarely get stumbling-around drunk and reserve that for nights out with my mates and even then very, very rarely.

I also realise that drinking is bad for you. I know I am drinking well over the recommended daily limit, but that limit is pretty bloody low. Also, what is "too much" for a person? The idea that all men and women are the same when it comes to how much they can and should drink doesn't ring true to me at all. It's like saying there is a fixed number of calories you should consume - but that's dependent on lifestyle and body mass.

I'm not overweight, I have no health problems at all, in no way do I consider myself to be suffering mentally or physically because of the amount I drink. My wife is worried but she worries about pretty much everything 24/7, but I want to find out what other people think. Am I drinking too much? Am I an alcoholic?

Numberlock Fri 05-Jul-13 07:38:46

The answer is yes to both questions.

MalcolmTuckersMum Fri 05-Jul-13 07:39:16

<<<fetches popcorn>>>

Early start today....... grin

KatyTheCleaningLady Fri 05-Jul-13 07:41:03

To be honest, you sound like you are rationalising your drinking. I've known heavy drinkers to do that because there's always someone worse to point to.

I like a drink once in a while and I agree that it helps to unwind after a stressful day.

But, no. It's not normal or healthy to get buzzed every day and drunk on weekends.

I suspect you are not able to do other things when you are drinking. It's not like coffee in that way.

If you can't imagine going without booze for a few days, then you have a problem.

Yes and yes.

This sounds a bit like a reverse to me

And that is quite a lot to be drinking daily

Euphemia Fri 05-Jul-13 07:44:26

You are drinking far too much if you're on ten units a day, and more at weekends. The maximum per week is 21 units for men.

Where do you get the idea it's the same for women? It's 14 units maximum for women.

You're drinking yourself to an early grave, or at best some serious health problems. Is that the future you want for your kids?

You need a new way to unwind.

mumofweeboys Fri 05-Jul-13 07:44:36

Sorry I think you are drinking way too much. I could understand one can to unwind after the kids are in bed but 5+ is mad. There is a reason there are daily alcohol limits and you will be doing yourself damage drinking so much every day - there are different limits for men and women. There is such a thing as a functioning alcoholic - the need to have a fuzzy feeling each night would worry me.

I would try cutting down to a couple of cans a night to start with and aim to have one alcohol free day a week.

NewAtThisMalarky Fri 05-Jul-13 07:45:49

You sound addicted to me.

why not try going one evening with no alcohol, and see how you get on?

if its no problem, keep your wife happy by doing that a bit more.
if it is a problem - well, you have a problem.

MintyChops Fri 05-Jul-13 07:52:17

I love my wine but that sounds like too much.

ThePerfectFather Fri 05-Jul-13 07:54:14

I have to say I am extremely surprised by these responses. I don't feel in any way addicted to drinking. I don't drink until I am incapable, I get up at 6:30 everyday, I have no issues concentrating, I never start drinking in the middle of the day, I don't drink if it's inappropriate or if I feel ill or whatever. In short, I choose how much I drink and when, rather than the other way around.

Yes. Too much.

It's still bad for your health to drink that much. Even if you could stop tomorrow.

soontobeburns Fri 05-Jul-13 07:56:40

This reads like a reverse to me.

Im never harsh bon aibu but here goes.

Yes you fucking are. You are a functioning alcoholic. If you need a drink after just looking after your kids you have a problem let alone 5 ffs.

Wise up man think of the money and your family.

Dare you to go 5 days without drink mon-fri. You will see you can't and are addicted.

Get help.

soontobeburns Fri 05-Jul-13 07:57:35

Abd just to clarify "functioning alcoholic" look it up.

NewAtThisMalarky Fri 05-Jul-13 07:57:46

Well, if you don't think its a problem, have a few nights off. It is recommended for liver health to have i think 2 or 3 days with no alcohol. That would be a good plan.

The very simple way to tell if you're starting to struggle with addiction is if you're consumed with the thoughts of alcohol (not the doing, anyone can stop for a while, even hardened alcoholics - am addiction counsellor so have seen that happen a lot - people stop for 2 weeks and think that proves they're not drinking alcoholically) - so don't drink for a couple of weeks, find other things to do and see what you're brain is doing. Is your brain constantly thinking about alcohol - are you ratty? grumpy? feel that others are controlling you? (when in reality you're making a choice to go without for a short period)

More importantly - what is going on sounds really shit for you - are you sure you're suited to being a sah parent? You need other hobbies/interests that aren't just drink. If you're choosing to be a stay at home parent then you're going to have to find other things to do in the evenings sometimes.

You're using drink to cope with being a parent and unwind -if that's just short term then maybe it's ok for you - but be honest, how long's it been ? How long do you think you can imagine doing this?

Torrorosso Fri 05-Jul-13 07:59:11

Everyone here says it's too much.

It is too much.

You're associating alcohol with relaxation and what you really need is a healthy way of winding down - a walk, sport, doing the crossword with a cuppa, yoga, meditation. Can you try any of those and see what happens?

doublecakeplease Fri 05-Jul-13 07:59:15

I don't think it sounds too bad. My Dad and my little brother (he's 33, lol) would not be able tp function drinking that much but DH and my older brother would be fine. Yes, its over the recommended limit but tbh how many of us eat under recommended calorie limits or eat 5 a day every single day?

Btw - i used to be a real party girl, out every night etc. Now I probably have 5 units a week if I'm lucky. Sometimes we drink more than others, i don't think its necessarily a problem for everyone.

Hercy Fri 05-Jul-13 07:59:26

It sounds like you're reasonably controlled in your drinking, leaving gaps between drinks and before bed. But 4-5 cans per weeknight and more at weekends is a lot, more that could ever be described as within the 'healthy' parameters.

It may not have developed into a dependency (although your 'need' to unwind with it suggests it may have), but at best it's a habit, and embedded habits can be hard to break and lead to full blown addictions.

I've read that experts say you should have a two (consecutive) day break from drinking to allow your liver to recover. Why not try this every week and see how you get on?

Buzzardbird Fri 05-Jul-13 08:01:15

Not all alcoholics pour gin on their cornflakes. If your drinking is affecting your marriage it is a problem. Yours is, so it is.
This is a reverse judging by your name?

nancerama Fri 05-Jul-13 08:02:03

You sound like my friend's mum. She said the same things you are saying this time last year. She is dead now.

You have no idea about the damage you are doing to your internal organs. If you care about your wife and kids, you'll cut back now.

MintyChops Fri 05-Jul-13 08:03:30

Well then if you think you're not drinking to much, carry on. Oh, and don't post in AIBU if you don't want honest answers.....

titzup Fri 05-Jul-13 08:03:54

If you were my husband, I'd be accusing you of being an alcoholic too I'm afraid - sounds like a classic case! Really hope you can get help with it before it starts to affect your family too much sad

Buzzardbird Fri 05-Jul-13 08:04:20

Not all alcoholics pour gin on their cornflakes. If your drinking is affecting your marriage it is a problem. Yours is, so it is.
This is a reverse judging by your name?

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