To ask 'do you think you drink too much, and what is 'too' much?'

(58 Posts)
DillyDallyDee Thu 10-Jul-14 20:39:05

We've been through a really stressful period of time with extended family stuff, family deaths, disputes and financial worries, and I have just realised that I don't remember the last time I didn't have one or two glasses of wine in the evening. We only ever used to drink one or two nights a week. Worse part is I feel like I need a glass of wine in the evening. I'm drinking too much aren't I? Does anyone else drink too much - should I just go cold turkey!?

The problem seems to me often times is that drink signifies adult time. Kids to bed, problems shelved for a few hours, dinner eaten, tv on, relaaaaaax.....

Which works for a bit. Then well it doesn't. Can take ages to notice....

bette06 Thu 10-Jul-14 20:53:48

Sorry you've been having a rough time.

I was concerned that I might be drinking too much so started using the drink diary at www.drinkaware.co.uk/ where you can input how much you drink and it tells you whether you are within the recommended guidelines. I think for some people just monitoring what they drink can work and for others cutting it out altogether works best (and is better for you!).

If you drink to deal with stress I think it's also important to find other ways to relax/de-stress.

Youoryou Thu 10-Jul-14 20:56:01

Have you noticed about a glass of wine seems to be the answer to virtually everything? It never solves any problems. At the end of the day, it is a destructive drug sad

FloozeyLoozey Thu 10-Jul-14 20:58:16

How many bottles a week does "one or two" glasses a night usually equate to?

MrsMcColl Thu 10-Jul-14 21:03:29

Yeah I drink too much. Every night. Probably averages a bottle a day. Should probably cut down. Probably won't.

DillyDallyDee Thu 10-Jul-14 21:04:14

That's exactly what I do, I've had a stressful day, I feel pent up and think I'll have a glass of wine. We have two young children, one that doesn't sleep very well so I'm constantly tired DH is absolutely wonderful but often out late in the evenings with work and I'm on my own. I can't get on with anything too useful as DC2 is bound to wake up at some point (every 30 minutes!) so I just sit down, put on tv and have a glass of wine. It is pretty sad for someone who used have a 101 hobbies and never sat still for a moment!

DillyDallyDee Thu 10-Jul-14 21:06:20

I usually buy one of the small boxes which has 3 bottles in it and will go through one a week-ish - DH has the odd glass but he is more of a beer man. Gosh I sound pathetic!!

Janethegirl Thu 10-Jul-14 21:10:44

That's around 5 units a day which is above the government guidelines, however I think they were plucked out of thin air without any real evidence.

revealall Thu 10-Jul-14 21:13:48

Yes too much here but it's wine's fault.

I absolutely don't feel like I need a G&T or a cold beer every night but a glass of chilled white...

justcallmethefixer Thu 10-Jul-14 21:16:38

Mmm yeah wine is my go to if I'm happy, if I'm sad or it's the weekend. Just started a drink counselling course to help me address this.
Councillor said it is all to do with the reward receptors in the brain and I need to retrain them. Only had 2 sessions so far, but we will see how it goes

ohmygodimginger Thu 10-Jul-14 21:17:36

I think the recommended drinking guidelines are one of the biggest barriers to healthy drinking promotion. So many people struggle to get on board with them because they seem so stingy unscientific. 14 units for women and 21 units for men - as though all women are the same and all men are the same. I am roughly the same height and weight as my husband and I am hugely resentful of the fact that he get 7 more units a week than me! envy

ScarlettDragon Thu 10-Jul-14 21:28:32

I had a period about 4 years ago where I was going through a bad time and started drinking more and more. It got to the point were I couldn't get to sleep unless I'd had a glass of wine and I was drinking around a bottle a night. So 7 bottles a week (!).

It came to a head at new year 2011 where I drank so much I physically couldn't get out of bed the next day unless it was to crawl to the toilet to vomit. It took me 3 days to recover from that hangover. I felt utterly ashamed of myself.

It really scared me as there are quite a few alcoholics in my family and I know it can be genetic to be predisposed to it. My uncle died of erosion of the liver (or something like that) 2 years ago. I didn't want to go down that path so I gave up alcohol completely for a few months. I gradually started drinking again, but not half as much as I was.

Now I won't drink more than 3 glasses of anything (whether it's beer, wine or spirits). And no more than 2 bottles of wine a week, I usually stick to drinking only at weekends now (although sometimes that includes Thursday nights like tonight blush).

I'm sorry you're going through a rough time. If you think you're drinking to much then you probably are TBH. Do you feel like you can cut down at all? Try and keep it to weekends as a treat? If not maybe speak to your GP?

DillyDallyDee Thu 10-Jul-14 21:29:01

well here is a typical eve, dc2 just woke up screaming, woke dc1 so i'm sitting here on dc1s floor rocking dc2 whilst dc1 goes back to sleep, it'll take me an hour to get these 2 down again, then i'll need a glass of wine!!

TucsonGirl Thu 10-Jul-14 21:32:34

i think that supermarkets should not be allowed to sell wine. Only dedicated off licences. Alcohol should not be a regular grocery item. If you want to buy booze, go to the shop that sells it. This is how it works in most of Canada, Australia, and many US states.

Janethegirl Thu 10-Jul-14 21:46:23

Tucson girl I get mine delivered by a wine company smile

McFlickle Thu 10-Jul-14 22:18:02

In Australia the 'bottle shops' are attached to the supermarket. Separate shop but right next door with internal door. You can take your trolley in so still quite easy to buy booze!
I agree with a PP, if you are thinking it might be too much (for you) it probably is.

edwinbear Thu 10-Jul-14 22:24:45

I was a binge drinker for many, many years. When I say binge, I mean a gin and tonic and a bottle of wine to myself on a Friday and Saturday night. I didn't drink at all during the week. It doesn't sound a huge amount, but drinking that amount over the course of a night, is, of course a binge. I had a liver function test in Feb as part of a routine work medical and it was abnormal, my enzymes were slightly raised. It took two months of complete abstinence to get them back within normal limits. My GP now says I can start to have an occasional drink again, by which he means one, max two units once or twice a week. Luckily for me, the whole episode has really put me off drinking, I can't really enjoy a glass of wine anymore as I'm so worried about what it's doing to my liver. With a Dad who died from alcohol induced liver cancer I am so glad I had that medical and that abnormal liver test as I could so easily have gone the same way otherwise.

Gennz Thu 10-Jul-14 22:29:37

Since I've been pregnant I've really been aware of how much I used to drink. Sunday, Monday & Tuesday might have been dry days but it would bit be unusual for me to drink a bottle of wine to myself on the Wednesday or Thursday (usually not both as I'm terrible at backing up the next day, luckily), and more on Fridays or Saturdays. One thing I've noticed is how much better I sleep now - perhaps attributable to pregnancy hormones(?? am 20 weeks) but I think it has a lot to do with not falling asleep in a semi-alcoholic haze and then waking up with mind racing at 3am. Now I fall asleep naturally within 5 - 10 minutes of going to bed and sleep though til 7. (Great, sleeping well for the first time in my life, just in time for a newborn to come along and ruin it). I do miss getting stuck into a lovely bottle of rose though blush

Another thing I noticed is how personally people take it if you refuse a drink - it seems they take it as a slight on their character if you don't want to join in.

D0oinMeCleanin Thu 10-Jul-14 22:31:01

I binge drink. I don't drink often but when I do drink I drink.

It's not clever I know but I'm not worried about it.

Gennz Thu 10-Jul-14 22:31:48

I've always been a binge drinker too edwin Am finding not drinking in pregnancy quite easy because I was never one to just have a glass or two every evening - it was always a bottle (or more) 2 - 3 times a week.

edwinbear Thu 10-Jul-14 22:36:15

The better quality sleep has also been a noticeable benefit, not waking up in the night at all, my head hits the pillow, I fall asleep easily and wake up again when the alarm goes off.

ThatBloodyWoman Thu 10-Jul-14 22:42:23

Op, just give yourself a rest one night a week.
Then make it two.
Then cut back the amount.

Do it gradually, and hope things improve soon if they haven't already.

Can you find another way to relax too? Maybe not completely instead of a drink, but instead if sometimes?

BreadForBrains Thu 10-Jul-14 22:59:31

I'm a classic binge drinker. Don't touch alcohol through the week, have a few on Friday and Saturday nights. I don't drink wine, I drink vodka mainly, so between 1-4 of those of a weekend evening In with Dp.
I often don't have any, though if we have people round, or if we go out, I will always drink more.
If I go on a night out though, I sometimes offer to drive and I always end up having a great night.
I'm not worried about it though as I don't feel dependant on it.

BoyFromTheBigBadCity Thu 10-Jul-14 23:03:11

OP, I know how you feel (a bit). My solution has been be gradual and don't be too harsh on yourself. If wine is your tipple, switch to a spritzer with soda - especially now it's warmer weather and you add ice (or those whiskey stones, or kids soup coolers). You can drink the same amount of glasses but less booze overall. OR get the low alcohol white wine (Blossom Hill do one, First Cape do a range called cafe collection, or certainly used to), again particularly fine in a spritzer, but you could drink a whole bottle for the same booze hit as a large glass (don't get low alcohol red, it's disgusting). Or Becks Blue, if you also like beer. Another suggestion is to get some very small glasses. My parents workhorse wine glasses are tiny - they hold just about 1 unit, if that. So you drink two glasses, but have still had less than if you'd had 1 large glass.
Can you get yourself some posh(ish) snacks that are 'grown-up'? So maybe those nice cheese sticks that have goat cheese and cracked pepper or something? so you know you're having a little treat but doesn't involve booze?
Yes, some of these seem a bit of a cop out but part of this is about being pragmatic and finding solutions that work FOR YOU.

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