I have a drinking problem. Now what?
December 3, 2007 3:48 PM Subscribe
My girlfriend says that she's going to leave me at the end of the week if I don't attempt to seek help for my drinking problem. Now what?
posted by anonymous to health & fitness (120 answers total) 30 users marked this as a favorite
To put it in perspective, I don't know if she'll actually leave me, but she's obviously doing a good job at expressing the fact that she's at her wits end.
I guess I do have a drinking problem, yeah. However, I'm totally in the stage where I'd rather just ignore it and carry on with my life. Is that what's best for me? Probably not, and I know that.
I'm successful in my career, and alcohol isn't interfering with that. My finances are a little bit messed up, but they're getting better and booze isn't the direct cause.
I'm a 28 year old male. I started binge drinking when I was in college. Now that I've been out of college, I still continue to binge (with my friends) about once/week. Sometimes a little bit less. I go out to the bar, and I'm not having a good time until I've had about 4 beers. From there, I'm incapable of stopping. I drink and drink and drink until the sun comes up or we run out of booze. As the years go by, it's getting worse and worse.
My girlfriend is worried about me (understandably so) because of risks that I take when I'm drunk. I get rides from strangers, I end up in strange places with people that I don't know. A few months ago, no one could find me for a few hours because I'd passed out in a neighbor's yard on my walk home. The latest incident, this past Saturday night, I ended up ditching friends to hang out with a stranger. My phone was off so no one could find me, but my girlfriend got in touch with my friends who told her that I'd left the party more than an hour ago. Essentially, I was missing. This is not uncommon.
So, yeah, I have a problem. I know it. I don't really want to stop drinking. Scratch that. I can't bear the thought of having to quit drinking. I keep thinking that if I can just learn to ride the buzz after a few drinks then I'll be fine. So far, that hasn't been possible. As soon as I start drinking I have no off switch.
Another thing to keep in mind is that I just get it into my head that I'm going to binge, and then I do so. At work and family functions, I'm always totally ok to go out and just have a drink or two. It's when I'm with my friends, where binging is acceptable, that I lose control.
These aren't just drinking buddies. They are my dearest friends from way back, and not hanging out with them anymore isn't an option. And it's not just their fault. If there's a band playing in town on a Saturday night, and friends don't want to come with me, I'll go out and binge by myself and end up hanging out with strangers. They're not as bad as me, by the way. They tell me that I drink too much too.
I'm very busy with work during the week, and taking a few hours off to go to a therapist is extraordinarily inconvenient. I might be able to find someone in the evening, but I dunno. This whole thing is a serious blow to my ego. I pride myself of being able to "work hard and play hard." That sounds lame, I know, but I guess what I'm saying is that I hope that moderation is somehow an option.
Where do I start? What do I do? Has anyone had success with learning how to drink in moderation? I don't feel AT ALL ready to just walk into an AA meeting ... that sounds like hell.