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Binge drinking

(28 Posts)
BobbyPlayNice Sat 23-May-20 15:27:42

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been a ‘problem drinker’. I’m a classic binger. Once I start drinking I can’t stop. I used to drink 3/4 nights a week but made sure I only had a limited amount of booze in so I couldn’t get drunk. If I ever went out drinking with friends, I’d be the hammered one and have blackouts pretty much every time. This led to anxiety that lasted for days after a night out (not to mention shame/guilt etc).

I sometimes went weeks/months without drinking to prove to myself that I could but then I’d go back to it.

Anyhow, early last year I gave up for about 4 months but then decided to try again. I started drinking just one night a week. I’d phone my friend and we’d chat on the phone for a couple of hours, both having a bottle of wine. Inevitably I would polish off the whole bottle and, if I had more in (I made sure I only had one bottle in the house), I would have started on that.

We now meet up with other friends on Zoom every Saturday night. Get pissed and talk rubbish. It’s a fixed weekly event and I enjoy it. I still get a bit of beer fear the next day but I’ve learned to manage that.

I was talking to a colleague in work and she said I shouldn’t be doing this as it will inevitably lead to full blown alcoholism. She’s a recovering alcoholic (11 years sober) Is she right? I’ve been doing the ‘Allow myself to get drunk once a week’ thing for over a year now so I think it’s sustainable. I really wish I could drink like a normal person but I can’t. My mum is an alcoholic and I don’t want to end up like her.

My partner is tee total due to severe migraines and he has said that, although he isn’t keen on me drinking, he’s okay with one night a week providing I don’t wake him up/talk nonsense at him.

Any thoughts from people in the know?

OP’s posts: |
BobbyPlayNice Sat 23-May-20 17:47:13

I just want to add...if anyone’s out there, that I still make sure I don’t have excess booze in the house. So, for tonight I’ve got one bottle of wine and four small G&T cans. I know that’s way too much but is it so bad if I only do it weekly. I suppose I just have this nagging doubt that I shouldn’t be drinking at all but by doing this, I am ‘controlling’ the problem. Am I deluding myself? Not sure anyone’s going to reply but I’m sure there are other people in a similar situation. Anyone?

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PotteringAlong Sat 23-May-20 17:55:07

I think, for me, the problem is that even in your posts you are minimising. So, when you told us about it you said you had the quiz, polish off a bottle of wine and all is good. But, by your last post it’s not just a bottle of wine, it’s a bottle of wine and 4 G&T’s.

I think, if you’re doing that, then it’s not hard for that to get out of control. And, if you know that it’s an addiction that’s in the family then, for me, it wouldn’t be worth the risk.

BobbyPlayNice Sat 23-May-20 18:10:53

Thanks for your reply. There are lots of alcoholics on both sides of my family so I do think I need to be careful.

Yep, I do buy the G&Ts because I know in advance it will be a long night and a bottle of wine just wouldn’t be enough.

The other women on Zoom are pretty big drinkers too so I justify it to myself that I’m not doing anything wrong. Two of them drink everyday.

I have convinced myself that by having this ‘one night a week’ I am less likely to fuck up and go back to my old ways because I know I can drink but not everyday. Throughout my twenties I’d be trollied most nights.

If I could drink sensibly, I’d happily drink as and when I pleased but I can’t. Once I’ve had a couple I neck everything in sight.

OP’s posts: |
LovingLola Sat 23-May-20 18:16:03

I think you would be better to stop completely.

BobbyPlayNice Sat 23-May-20 18:27:25

Deep down I Think I agree but I think giving up would have to wait until the lockdown is over. I’m not sure I’m ready just yet. My Saturday nights are the one time I get to let my hair down and there’s little else to look forward to at the moment!

I think when if/when I take the plunge, I’ll avoid the Zoom nights for a while otherwise I won’t see it through.

Thanks for validating what I know is probably the truth. Denial is a powerful thing.

OP’s posts: |
iloveeverykindofcat Tue 26-May-20 14:34:08

OP your habits sound very similar to mine, which is why I recently made the decision to stop altogether. I've tried moderating and it doesn't work for me. Must it necessarily lead to full blown alcoholism? I don't know, but I do know that the anxiety/headaches/stomachaches afterwards mean its no longer worth it. I too can go long periods without drinking, but if I start, it always ends badly.

ilovemydogandMrObama Tue 26-May-20 14:41:33

It's great that you are able to look at your own behaviour and habits.

Not sure how much is too much, as only you can decide this, but the fact that you are speaking with your partner about it is brilliant.

BobbyPlayNice Tue 26-May-20 15:39:36

My colleague used the term ‘playing with fire’. I can see where she’s coming from. I have contained the problem well over the last year and I know I would really miss my little binges. It’s horrible not having an off switch isn’t it? I admire your decision to stop. How have you found it?

My partner would much rather I stopped completely but he’s glad I just limit to Saturdays. He had bad habits too but we muddle through.

I hope I don’t seem like I’m trivialising alcohol. I have seen it destroy relationships and lives so I would never be flippant about it. I have read some threads on here from people with really serious issues and I must admit I do think ‘there but for the grace of God go I’.

OP’s posts: |
iloveeverykindofcat Tue 26-May-20 18:37:13

I've found it hard at times and great at others. I did slip up a couple of times in the beginning but that consolidated my resolve that it has to stop entirely because I just don't do moderation, in any aspect of my life. I have a tendency to extremes in all things, which can be great when I channel it to something productive but also it can be dangerous. The best thing about it is probably the improvement to my sleep schedule - I've never been a great sleep but drinking makes it 10x worse. The hardest part is I find it very very difficult to relax - especially in these times - but that's been a problem my whole life. One thing I would recommend is pick up a new hobby that you don't associate with drinking at all and when you think of drinking, focus on that. I think associations are really powerful to our subconscious minds. Personally I took up a new musical instrument (well semi-new. I already played a related one).

BobbyPlayNice Wed 27-May-20 09:49:24

It all sounds really positive for you. I suspect I will do the same. I not willing to start yet though. It has to be the right time.

I don’t go out drinking anymore, it always ends up in trouble for me. I have looked at myself in the mirror countless times before a night out and vowed to myself that I will pace myself and ‘just have a few’, only to wake up the next morning with a throbbing head trying to piece together the events of the night before.

It sounds like you’re a lot more sensible and resolved than me. Thank you for sharing your advice with me and well done for eradicating the problem. It must be a relief x

OP’s posts: |
iloveeverykindofcat Thu 28-May-20 06:22:08

Thank you. Don't get me wrong I have my moments when I feel like going back to it but they pass. Post again when you're ready to stop, there is a good support thread for people who have quit x

SparklingLime Thu 28-May-20 19:41:17

You could look at the Annie Grace 30 Day Alcohol Experiment. It’s free.

BobbyPlayNice Fri 29-May-20 12:59:06

Thank you both. I’m starting to actually get excited about the idea of giving up at the moment, which in itself speaks volumes. I think that when people say that the gains outweigh the losses, it makes sense.

I’ve just been on alcohol experiment website ...looks fab! I really like the 30 day thing than a review thing. It makes it seem more realistic and much less daunting than Saying ‘never drinking ever again’.

I’m going to.get through this lockdown malarkey and then make some changes. I will post on this thread again....thank you x

OP’s posts: |
SparklingLime Fri 29-May-20 13:41:17

👍🏽 smile

BobbyPlayNice Sun 07-Jun-20 11:33:07

Okay. I’m done. Woke up this morning on the floor in the conservatory with the door wide open, covered in dried vomit. I’d managed to find a bottle of wine in the Christmas present cupboard and had already drank one and some gin.

Feel like death today. In bed, anxiety sky high. Don’t remember much about the night.

I’m heading to the abstinence thread. Full of shame and self loathing.

I can’t drink normally so won’t drink again.

OP’s posts: |
BobbyPlayNice Sun 07-Jun-20 13:18:43

I think the fact I started this thread was because I knew things were getting out of hand. I would spend the whole week looking forward to Saturdays and then neck the first few glasses like it was a race.

You were right PP, I was minimising. I was trying to justify it to myself and was seeking validation on here.

Even if nobody is reading this, writing it is helping. I am going to stop. I’m back at work next week so will be kept busy and that should help. Bring it on!

OP’s posts: |
GalwayGrowl Sun 07-Jun-20 13:34:03

I'm with you OP. Several times during lockdown I've woken up having no idea what happened. No recollection of doing things.

Drinking a litre of vodka in an hour, posting absolute bollocks on social media, ordering multiple take aways in 1 might.

It's not every day, maybe once a fortnight. But I'm done. I'm knackered, it's exhausting.

BobbyPlayNice Sun 07-Jun-20 13:45:12

It is exhausting... and depressing. The ordering multiple take always is something I’ve never done...sounds expensive!!

I can definitely relate to the bollocks on social media!! Deleted many a post in the morning after a binge.

Shall we do this together Galway? We sound like we’re both in the same shitty boat.

OP’s posts: |
Bluegirl19 Sun 07-Jun-20 22:29:53

May I join you both, please
My sorry tale is on a thread called Relapse/Slip/Tumble/Landslide. 12 days without a drink at the moment, since bungee jumping off 16 years of sobriety!
I find posting here and listening to sobriety podcasts is helping.
Hope you are doing OK this evening

sosooveritnow Sun 07-Jun-20 23:40:56

Can I join please -this is just my style of boozing- can't stop when I start- it's mainly with wine , and maybe G&T, beer just leads to harder drinks. But still suffering from Friday night where I reached a new low. Humiliating. Lockdown really not good for this pattern. To worsen it all I have young kids at home who think it's hilarious to see mummy drunk sad
Happily give up,and know I can , just can't pinpoint why I always go back!

BobbyPlayNice Mon 08-Jun-20 09:08:58

Yes! Please join. I think we could all benefit from each other’s support.

BG, 16 years is bloody impressive. It’s weird that we keep going back to it when we know it causes so much anguish. If you did 16 years, you can do another 16. You must be strong willed to have gone that long. I’m looking forward to hearing how you managed it. Let’s do this!

Soso, we’ve both had a Shitty weekend so this is a great place to start. I think kids can be a good motivating factor. My kids have always found it amusing too but they don’t realise it’s such a problem for me. I’ve internalised this for a very long time. I’m sure your kids will quickly forget drunk mummy when they don’t see it again x

So, so far I have:

Told my Zoom buddies I’m giving the quiz a miss this Saturday. I fibbed and said I’d have a lot of work on. Can’t be arsed explaining myself right now. I’ll do that when I’m ready.

Told my (older teenage) kids That I’m giving up so they won’t have to see me being a tit anymore on a Saturday night. They laughed and gave me a hug. I’m pretty sure they don’t believe me. But, I’ve never said this to them before because I was scared I didn’t mean it. This time I do.

How are you getting on today?

OP’s posts: |
GalwayGrowl Mon 08-Jun-20 09:29:21

I'm in! My body and mind feel so fucked with lockdown, and the drinking is making me feel like a total zombie.

I'm supposed to be going to a socially distanced outdoor thing next weekend and i'm not sure whether to cancel. I just cant see myself doing it without drinking.

BobbyPlayNice Tue 09-Jun-20 09:32:34

Do you want to go to the event? Is it something you’re looking forward to? I find that in the lead up to events that involve booze, I feel a mixture of excitement and dread in equal measures.

If you go and manage not to drink, you might actually enjoy it. Think how good you’ll feel the next day.

I don’t know, it’s so difficult. Could you picture yourself in zombie state the day after and think about how miserable you’ll feel with a head full of shame, guilt and regret? It’s such a liberating feeling when you wake up the next day and congratulate yourself for not drinking (from my very limited experience of actually achieving this).

OP’s posts: |
sosooveritnow Mon 22-Jun-20 22:01:42

Was doing so well but fell of the wagon bad last night!! Was kidding myself all day that I actually didn't have that much and the severe hangover wasn't warranted - but just checked the bottle - qtr of a litre bottle of vodka gone ( or perhaps a bit more) that's 10 pub portions - a good night out in anyone's book! -I am definitely not able to take "just the one"!! I need to totally abstain! Trigger yesterday was someone gave me a glass of champers as we were celebrating good news !! How do I stop this !!shock

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