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I have a drinking problem... please help

(30 Posts)
Iwantmylifeback Sun 21-Dec-14 13:55:42

I don't know where to begin. My hands are trembling as I write this, so I apologise in advance if I drip feed.

I've been drinking a lot lately; I've lost count how much.

I'm moody, depressed, suffering from panic attacks. My children deserve better than this. I'm a terrible mother, my children are so precious to me. I want to be a better mother, I need help to stop drinking. I haven't always drunk like this. I get so many compliments of how wonderful my children are. I must have done something right. To tell you the truth, I feel very lonely in life for many reasons.

Please don't judge me. I poured the left over wine in the sink. I never want to have another drop of alcohol pass my lips; I never want to walk down the booze aisle at the supermarket again. I want to make my life better, positive, brighter, especially for darling children.

Stealthpolarbear Sun 21-Dec-14 13:57:30

You sound brilliant. You know what needs to be done. I think you are being hard on yourself and your children are lucky to hve you.
What are your plans for Christmas and nye? Can you make plans to get through without a drink.

CiderwithBuda Sun 21-Dec-14 13:59:39

Would you go to your GP? There is a new drug available that is meant to help stop the cravings for alcohol. Might get you through the initial stages. At the very least your GP may be able to help.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 21-Dec-14 14:00:29

I won't judge you, Iwant, you know you have a problem and you've admitted it to yourself. That's the first step. The next one is to go to your GP for help and/or your local branch of Alcoholics Anonymous. You'll receive lots of support and you'll meet people who've been where you are or are still going through it. There are lots of people on MN with alcohol issues too so you really aren't on your own.

I'm sorry that you feel so rotten. Take comfort from the fact that you've done - and are continuing to do - a lovely job of bringing up your children.

Here's to your new life just around the corner. smilethanks

southeastastra Sun 21-Dec-14 14:06:14

there is a really good book, kick the drink easily by jason vale, also a website soberistas worth a look? there are some support threads on here too but i found the books really eye opening.

somewheresomehow Sun 21-Dec-14 14:06:25

I wont judge you at all. my son is an drug addict
You have realized that you have a problem and are making the first steps towards solving that problem. If/when you can go to your doc and ask for help, it is there. you will beat this because you want to beat it.
One step/day at a time smile

Iwantmylifeback Sun 21-Dec-14 14:14:52

Thank you for your very kind replies. I am considering attending an AA meeting. I'm not so sure about visiting the GP for fear of getting a black mark against my name or getting my children taken off me.

I've had a hot bath, nutritious breakfast and lunch, lots of water. My skin looks awful, but am feeling a bit better. I had a mini panic attack this morning. I had a humdinger of a panic attack a few weeks ago- it lasted a couple of days! I'm paranoid people are picking up there's something not quite right. I think I may also have SAD?

We're spending Christmas with family, luckily they're not big drinkers. I'm not sure what to tell them when they notice I'm not drinking any booze (wine!)

cashmerecardigans Sun 21-Dec-14 14:19:19

Look at the Brave Babes thread in Relationships. It's a fantastic supportive and non-judgemental environment with lots of help and advice.
You've made a massive step forward already - onwards and upwards!

BrowersBlues Sun 21-Dec-14 14:23:15

OP well done for admitting it to yourself and for wanting better for your children. Pretend you have a sore throat or a headache on Christmas day and can't face a drink.

You are probably self medicating and perhaps need to go on medication for depression/anxiety for a while. Try to be as honest as you can with your doctor. Some GPs are sympathetic and don't put everything on your record.

Don't be scared about going on medication. Anti depressants don't suit everyone. I went on them along with other medication for anxiety and it was the best thing I did. I came off the with no problem and will go back on them if I ever need to. It reassures me to know I have that safety net.

You will get a lot of support on the Mumsnet thread below. Sorry I don't know how to link. The advice and support is invaluable

Also google blogs and online sites for support. Good luck and best wishes.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 21-Dec-14 14:24:39

My best advice for your skin, Iwant, is lots of water. Get a water bottle and keep it filled up, rehydrate your skin. If you don't like plain water much, you could do a hell of a lot worse than chucking a Berocca tablet in it once a day, full of multi-vits and perfect for flu season!

I think that so many people now drink lightly - or not at all - that people won't question your drinking and, if they're not big drinkers they will probably be quietly relieved that you've stopped - and hugely supportive of you, so don't worry about that. Just say you've lost the taste for it... that does happen. Or that wine makes you thirsty yet not satisfying for your thirst so you'll stick with water/soft drinks this year.

Everything one day at a time. Tomorrow will be better than today and when you get to tomorrow, the next day will be better... and so on.

cabbageandgravy Sun 21-Dec-14 14:40:06

Oh well done OP there are so many people who won't face up to what's best for them and their families - and you have.

A lot of people find they can't drink so much as they get older so if you don't want to explain straight away and someone asks say it doesn't really agree with you anymore, it saps your energy/stops you sleeping well. These are all true for me so valid I'd say!

Very very very best of luck and your kids have a GREAT example in you.

merlincat Sun 21-Dec-14 14:56:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CiderwithBuda Sun 21-Dec-14 15:02:34

If you don't want to face questions from family be clever. Be as clever about drinking less as you can be about drinking more!

I often have my first drink as a big glass of water or a soft drink - I just say I'm really thirsty so will have that first. Nobody has ever commented. Always have a glass of water on the go. If you drink white wine dilute it with soda. And keep diluting.

As well as the Brave Babes threads on here there is also DRY threads. I'm sure they will be equally as supportive.

I've starts to find that if I drink too much I wake up around 2am and can't get back to sleep. It's horrible and has really made me more restrained in how much I drink. I've switched to slightly lower alcohol wine which helps me a bit.

xmascrackered Sun 21-Dec-14 15:14:48

Well done OP and good luck.

I have issues with alcohol myself. I would definitely say I'm alcohol dependent and I self medicate. All my family drink quite a lot and both my granddads were alcoholics, one much worse than the other. I only have one or two dry days a week and I'd say most nights I'm nearing half a bottle of wine. More if we have company. It's not an insane amount, but I know it's too much and it definitely effects my sleep. I know I should stop, but as of yet I haven't built up the courage, so huge admiration for you OP.

Anyway, don't want to hijack your thread, but I'll come watching with interest.

xmascrackered Sun 21-Dec-14 15:16:59

*I'll be watching with interest

LittleDonkeyLeftie Sun 21-Dec-14 15:20:04

Also try the "Dry" thread here on MN.

The Jason Vale book is brilliant. Alcohol is the only drug where if you don't use it people think there is something "wrong" with you. If you give up nicotine or heroin everyone pats you on the back. Quit alcohol and it's all a bit suspicious, you must have had "A problem."

I now view alcohol the way I used to view cigarettes - can't imagine why I ever used to do it - complete waste of time and money.

Good luck OP.

EhricJinglingHisBallsOnHigh Sun 21-Dec-14 15:39:23

There is no black mark and no suggestion that your children will be removed. Please don't discount the GP.

wideboy26 Sun 21-Dec-14 16:59:42

Please give serious consideration to contacting AA. I have a good friend for whom AA has been his saviour and he is now 12 years dry. Nevertheless he still attends AA meetings for reinforcement and for helping newer members. If he goes to stay at a different town, the first thing he does is seek out the local AA branch. He has a network of friends through AA and his best man at his recent wedding was his AA sponsor. I'd love to think AA could help you too. It certainly will if you are serious about giving up alcohol.

AWholeLottaNosy Sun 21-Dec-14 17:37:12

Hi I've felt exactly the same as you but I now haven't had a drink for 4 days. I started reading the Brave Babes thread right from the very beginning and it was such an inspiration to me I've managed to stop ( for now). I've also posted on the new alcohol support section, you may want to check it out. It's a horrible addiction, you feel like you're getting something from it but it is in fact stealing your health, your time, your money and your sanity. I've also been to a few AA meetings, still not sure about it but willing to give it a go. At the moment I'm reading everything I can to help me stop, eating well and drinking sugary soft drinks and eating chocolate ( your body is craving the sugar as well as the alcohol). You can do it so come join me!

dirtybadger Sun 21-Dec-14 18:25:02

If you drink every day please see seek medical help in stopping. Alcohol withdrawal is more dangerous than most drugs and you may need medication.
Good luck. flowers

Exboozer Sun 21-Dec-14 18:47:39

I gave up drinking in June. I was similar to you but my kids had 3 years of me drinking to excess every night followed by a couple of years where I battled myself to drink moderately but ended up binge drinking regularly instead blush
I couldn't go to my gp or AA due to anxiety. I realised that even if I did get help, ultimately it would be me that had to decide to not take that drink each time so I just made the decision and so far I have stuck to it.
It hasn't been easy because I still share a house with my ex and he is a big drinker as are all my friends and family. I have avoided alcohol where possible. Ordering shopping online is a godsend if you are tempted by the alcohol aisles.
Other people are an issue, my dm is an alcoholic and is always badgering me to have "just one". Friends also try to get me to "relax". I think of it like they are offering me a syringe full of drugs. I'm an addict, addicted to alcohol and I cannot have just the one. I offer to drive now or say I'm detoxing or on a diet, cutting out sugar, alcohol has started bringing on migraines....whatever shuts people up. I'm not ashamed to say that I can't have a drink, so won't be partaking but I find people are embarrassed or take it as a personal slight (more people have an issue with drinking than any of us realise).
I have realised why I was self medicating so much, my life is pretty shit but alcohol wasn't making that any better. I am able to make the changes I have needed to make for years because I can see clearly now where the problems lie. Stopping drinking doesn't make all your problems go away and life instantly perfect but it gives you the clarity to deal with issues and take back control.
I will always beat myself up for the years I drank. But my own childhood was blighted terribly by an alcoholic parent and it's hard to know that I inflicted some of that on my own dc's.
However you deal with this iwant whether it's support from AA, the GP or you go it alone, I promise you that 6 months down the line you will feel like your own best friend. It is the best gift I have ever given myself.
I'm not looking forward to the boozy Christmas that everyone around me will be having but I have bought some nice adult soft drinks for me and ds2 and I will get through it. I know there are thousands of people who will be going through the same thing, this addiction is rife and you are not alone.
I like to think I will be able to enjoy a drink again in the distant future but for now, no way, I've got my life back.
Good luck and if you want any support feel free to pm me.

Apologies for the mammoth essay!

xmascrackered Sun 21-Dec-14 19:20:48

Exboozer, lovely post. Really glad you've managed to do this and that you feel you've got your life back. I really hope it continues.

Iwantmylifeback Sun 21-Dec-14 21:48:33

I'm one of those people who can't ever stop at one. The negative implications to my health and close relationships, due to drinking excessively scare me immensely. I'm constantly tired and wake in the middle of the night worrying, trying to calm myself down at the same time. I'm going to have a good look at the Brave Babes and DRY threads.

Alcohol dependency is a much bigger problem than we think. Alcohol is a drug, as Littledonkey put it. Well done Exboozer for staying dry. Do you think you could ever be that person who can stop at one drink? Is it possible to train yourself?

This thread alone has given me some hope I can do this- I have taken in something from each and every one of your posts- so thank you for taking the time to give your advice and support and share your wisdom.

AWholeLottaNosy Sun 21-Dec-14 22:01:20

OP I've been reading a lot lately about why some people are alcoholics and some not. When I read the following, it was like a lightbulb went on in my head...

"By way of a review, let me describe what the Big Book says about Step One and what differentiates an alcoholic physically, mentally, and spiritually, from a non-alcoholic. Physically, the alcoholic has an allergy, or an abnormal reaction, to alcohol. This abnormal reaction to alcohol is a craving for more alcohol once we take a few drinks. This craving NEVER happens to a non-alcoholic. Because of this, a non-alcoholic can ALWAYS predict how much they are going to drink, but an alcoholic CANNOT. Besides the craving, alcohol DOES something for an alcoholic that it does NOT do for a non-alcoholic. When an alcoholic drinks, they get a feeling of ease and comfort; an "IN control, get up and go into town, I like this" kind of a feeling. When a NON-alcoholic drinks, they get an "OUT of control, beginning of a nauseating, slightly tipsy, I don't like this so I don't want any more" kind of a feeling. That's why they stop after one or two, and make statements like, "I don't want another drink because I am feeling that first one." Spiritually, because of the selfish and self-centered way the alcoholic views and deals with other people, their emotions, and life; they are filled with inner turmoil, discomfort, and anxiety. Since alcohol is the ONLY thing that we have experienced, which brings relief from this inner unmanageability, we turn to alcohol again and again, even though it has caused problems for us in the past. We don't see what alcohol is doing TO us, we ONLY think about what it is going to do FOR us, which describes the alcoholic's mental obsession. A NON-alcoholic's relationship with alcohol is a "take it or leave it" kind of relationship, but an ALCOHOLIC'S relationship with alcohol is a "I need it to deal with life" kind of relationship. Please ask yourself if you can relate to the experience of an alcoholic.

The following is an explanation of what happens when alcoholics put alcohol into their bodies, and how it is a completely different experience compared to non-alcoholics. No wonder why non-alcoholics can't relate, and make statements like, "Can't you just stop after one or two drinks?" It shows why alcoholics can use their willpower against everything EXCEPT alcohol.

Alcoholics make up about 12% of the population. The body of the alcoholic is physically different than the body of someone who is not an alcoholic. The liver and pancreas of the alcoholic process alcohol at one-third to one-tenth the rate of a normal pancreas and liver. As alcohol enters the body, it breaks down into its various components, one of which is acetate. We know now that acetate triggers a craving for more acetate. In a normal drinker, the acetate moves quickly through the system and exits. But that doesn't happen in an alcoholic. In alcoholics, the acetate of the first drink is barely processed out, so by staying in their body, it triggers a craving for more acetate. The alcoholic then has a second drink, now adding to most of the acetate of the first drink, and that makes them want a drink twice as much as the normal drinker. So they have another. Then, having almost three times the craving as a normal drinker, they have another. You can see from that point how alcoholics have no control over how much they drink. The craving cycle has begun and they have no choice but to keep drinking. Once the acetate accumulates in their body, and that begins to happen with only ONE drink, they will crave another. And how many times does an alcoholic think it would be nice to have JUST ONE drink to relax, but has many more? Now you see why. AND THIS CAN NEVER CHANGE!

On top of THAT (like it's not bad enough already), alcohol is a poison because it destroys human tissue. The two organs that alcohol damages the most are the liver and the pancreas. So the more the alcoholic drinks as time passes (or doesn't drink, because the liver and pancreas also deteriorate naturally as we age), the less their body is able to processes the acetate. THAT is why alcoholism is a progressive, fatal illness. The Big Book says on page 30, "We are convinced to a man that alcoholics of our type are in the grip of a progressive illness. Over any considerable period we get worse, NEVER better." Pretty revealing, huh. It explains many things I never before understood"

Hope this makes sense to you too. You're not weak, but the combination of having the type of physiology that processes alcohol a certain way, plus other psychological/ circumstantial factors means that you ( we) are at greater risk of developing the condition and can't moderate alcohol.

Exboozer Sun 21-Dec-14 22:15:09

Thanks xmas you can do it too.

iwant I don't know if I will ever be able to drink again really. It's just a similar mind set to the one day at a time approach. I don't tell myself this is forever because it becomes huge in my head. It is for now, and long may now continue smile. I have heard frank skinner say something similar and he has been dry 20 years! I certainly don't think I could drink responsibly whilst I'm in this toxic situation but when my life is sorted I probably won't drink in reality because being alcohol free is not actually so bad and I know myself too well. Maybe I will have the odd tipple when I'm 80 and I have less to lose....grin

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