Am I an alcoholic? 20 years of drinking...is it time to admit?

Sooo, i think i know what alot of you will already say…i think im just looking for guidance on acceptance.

My hubby and I did dry January. We lasted exactly 30 days and then celebrated with drinks. Ironic i know. Moderation quickly became multiple bottles of vodka a week and drinking almost everyday. But hey i lost my job and was just bored. So that leads us to may 2022. Hubby and i agreed we are drinking too much so we’ll do another 30 days. That brings us to today, i landed a job and part of me wants to celebrate with drinks but a bigger part of me wants to see how long i can go sober. Im proud to see the ticker grow in numbers everyday. Im inspired by everyones dedication and support of others in sobriety. I want to hangout on this app more. Im going to finish out sober may strong but i cant help but think my life will be better without emptying bottles of poison into my body.

Am I an alcoholic? Ive proven i can go sober for 30 days. I dont have withdrawls. But then again i cant moderate. Alcohol has been such a big part of my life for the last 20 years…wow 20 years. Ive gone to a few in person aa meetings in the past, didnt stick. This year ive sat in on a few online aa meetings wondering if i will get the courage to share but i cant get passed saying “hey my name is cjp AND IM AN ALCOHOLIC”

A part of me knows that acceptance is the next step. But the thought of never drinking again is daunting. Any tips on how to get over this and come to acceptance? Because i think thats where i should be going.

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Don’t worry about never drinking again. It’s overwhelming to all of us.

Alcoholism is progressive.

I quit cold turkey when I was 25, it was no big deal. No support. A couple years later I started drinking casually again and it progressed to a drinking problem over a period of time.

I believed I wasn’t alcoholic because alcoholics need those meetings. I didn’t.

A few years later, I turned to a friend for help and I ended up at those meetings.

I did drugs too. I knew the drugs were a problem, and I quit drinking also, knowing I was alot more likely to do drugs if I drank.

Eventually drinking did lead me to some advanced stages of alcoholism. Physical dependence. I needed a couple of beers to get through the day long enough to be able to drink more beers in the evening.

The last time I drank, I lost control immediately.

Today I have no problem identifying myself as alcoholic.
Recovering alcoholic.

This is how I feel about myself.

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If drinking is affecting you negatively, that’s good enough reason to see if becoming sober is right for you, don’t worry too much about labelling yourself :slightly_smiling_face:

Also, it’s typically an AA programme way of saying “my name is__and I’m an alcoholic” they don’t always frame it like that in other programmes and in the medical community it’s now referred slightly differently so it’s less black and white. Called alcohol use disorder

But anyway AA is a great way to start. Don’t feel forced to say it at meetings, lots of people don’t for ages. Just listen to others experience and see if there’s anything you can relate to, and enjoy the fellowship :slightly_smiling_face:

PS if you find that AA is not for you there are plenty of other programmes that may be of interest so have a look around, I think some people on here don’t go to meetings they just use this app

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In many ways it doesn’t matter if you are an alcoholic or not….what really matters is if you want to stop drinking or not. Because an alcoholic that doesn’t want to stop won’t stop.

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I didn’t read other responses…so this may be repetitive. If you have to ask, my experience has been the answer is “yes”. Moderating and failing? Struggling through a spell of non-drinking only to celebrate with drinks, followed by increased consumption? Googling “alcoholism” or whatever you did to find us? All these things are painting a picture of problem drinking. “Alcoholic” is just a label…a word. Don’t focus on that as much as the underlying behavior.

But…great that husband wants to stop. That is huge. Having a drinking partner can make it a big challenge.

Congrats on the new job! Good idea to focus on that. Show up looking and feeling your best.

I wish you well and hope to see you around. :peace_symbol:

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For me, accepting I could never stop at 1 drink and the realisation I was self medicating with alcohol helped me come to terms with the fact I had a problem.
If you have to ask the question there’s already alarm bells going off, its upto you whether you listen and act.

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The only requirement for AA membership is a desire to stop drinking. You never have to call yourself an alcoholic at meetings. Introduce yourself by saying "my name is ____ and I have a desire to stop drinking "

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My goal is to not try to stop drinking for a length of time , my goal is to not drink just for TODAY!!

IM approaching 6 months sober , I did it one day at a time!

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Thank you all for your input. I’ll try not to worry about forever or the label and just see how long i can keep stacking up the days.

@JasonFisher my first time trying sobriety was january 2022 and i liked it and i missed this place and was feeling defeated. Maybe nows the time to nip this in the bud…

@HappyButtersStotch I can relate to some of the stories I hear in AA but find myself comparing lows and saying oh well i havent been that down and out. I tried the alcohol experiment in january and learned alot. Maybe AA isnt for me

@VSue im still debating with myself if i want to stop forever or not. Ive had negative consequences in the past, a dui 10 years ago. But like many say alcoholism is progressive so maybe i should explore sobriety longer and see what a sober life has to offer. Hell ive been drunk and hungover off and on for 20 years, maybe its time to try something new

@Mbwoman your response is exactly what i was expecting and what i fear. Im going to take your advice and not worry about the label and just do this thing one day at a time. 10days in and its like i can finally feel joy again.

@Littlemisschatterbox you are so right alarm bells are going off but im scared to lose my fun juice forever even though it causes me to suffer in the long run

@Lisa07 i like your idea. When i get the balls to speak up im gonna use that line

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Hi, I’m one of the ones that has never gone to AA or any type of meetings, and know I wouldn’t do it. Calling myself an Alcoholic is something I rarely do. I know I have a problem when I drink, the problem is, it’s never enough. It’s been going on for years, my health has been affected and I’ve missed a lot of life. The only thing that has got me to day 14 (today) is I truly want to quit for me and this app. I’d love to be someone that could have one or two drinks, and I’ve tried so many times. I also am/was a very heavy vodka drinker for over 10 years, prior was wine and beer. I’m taking it one day at a time and it’s been good, I’m trying not to worry about never drinking again. I wish you and your husband the best!

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It’s hard to envision life without alcohol. What worked for me was to not think about “forever”, just today. I felt at ease if I could just take it one day at a time.

Days turned to weeks, weeks in to months. Eventually, long term sobriety felt better.

Even now, more than 3 years later, I wonder if I will I be sober forever? I don’t know, I’d like to, but you never know. All I know is I’ll be sober today.

As far as being an alcoholic, that’s a personal journey to get to that decision. There’s textbook meaning, then there is what is in your heart of hearts. Don’t worry about it now, it’ll come.

For what it’s worth… here is What an Alcoholic Really Looks Like

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Wow. That was my story almost exactly. Thanks for sharing Jason. Progressive is a very key term with alcoholism. You can go years comparing yourself to other alcoholics telling yourself, I’m not as bad as them, right?

Being successful, paying the bills, raising a family, working hard, no trouble with the law, etc etc is enough to convince people that THEY couldn’t possibly be an alcoholic. It’s amazing now I’m sober how many people around me are real close if not total alcoholics. That is why we had fun for so long! I certainly drank the fun out of drinking and now I’m extremely grateful and happy to be sober today.

And a simple answer would be, “if you have to ask the question?”

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@Littlemisschatterbox Wow. You totally described me. Can’t stop at one drink and self medicating.
I’m so happy to be breaking that cycle. Congratulations on your sobriety.
Hugs

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Update: showed my post to my hubby. Idk why i was nervous to but he read it and all he said is “oh you want to keep this up? I’ll support you whatever you decide” i just started crying. I was relieved to reveal truly what a struggle it is for me not to drink and my desire to see where sobriety takes me. Maybe one step closer to acceptance? I feel relieved and loved and supported. A good response and to all a good night.

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I get you, i did that too at my first few meetings. Then I just used those experiences of other people though to serve as a warning of “that could happen to me too if I continue” type of thing.

Eventually I decided AA and other programmes were not for me either at the moment, but I did try a variety before I decided. I would just say keep researching, perhaps watching documentaries and checking out some books on sobriety.

The main thing I do now is just to figure out why I was using alcohol, and to tackle those reasons head on. Now if I get desperate to drink, I would check in here for support :+1:t2:

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I’ve accepted that my life is much more manageable sober. (I’m also an alcoholic :shushing_face:):wink:

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One day at a time. Ask yourself? Do you want to be stumbling around? Do you want to wake up with a hangover? Do you want to not remember what you did at any point in time bc of drinking?
Do you want to regret some of the things that you did do? Do you want to drive while you’re under the influence?
Some of these things may not apply to you at all.
Some of them didn’t apply to me at all. A lot of them did. I have been sober most of my “adult life, since I was 27. I can’t imagine it otherwise.
( I did drink on several occasions a few years ago so I can’t say that I’ve been sober the whole time since I was 27)
I made a concentrated effort to quit. I felt like you, I couldn’t imagine myself never drinking again.
Now I can’t imagine having drank all those years.
All the years that I drank, I drank at least every single evening. And drank pretty much as much as I could. I had a high capacity for drinking a lot without falling over.
Had I not quit I would’ve continued to for the rest of my life.
Lots of alcoholics in my family. Lots of people died from alcohol.
Just don’t drink for today. Hopefully you will begin to see how you prefer it in your life for you.

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The longer I go without alcohol the less I want it. I know that I will still have situations that make me crave and the random emotional days when drinking seems like an automatic impulse. I will use the tool box I’ve built to knock those cravings aside. As for the alcoholic question I have realized that my life is better lived without alcohol. Am I an alcoholic, yes, I know that I am. Do I have to explain that to everyone, no, not if they aren’t receptive to listening. Good luck, keep going. :heart:

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I don’t particularly like labels, not that there’s anything wrong with them. If I went to a meeting I would want to raise my hand and say “my name is such and such and I don’t want to drink”. I have nothing against meetings or AA. It’s just personal preference about labels. Maybe I need to erase this. It should be respected whatever you want to say.

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When i went to my first meeting i sat quite and it wasnt till i got used to the meetings i said my names Ray im a Alcoholic , id would have said im a Rangers supporter if i thought that would help me stay sober lol, so last week i shared at a meeting and i opened im Ray im a Alcoholic still saying it 35plus years later hasnt done me any harm keep on trucking

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