I think (know) I have a serious problem with alcohol. It freaks me out; it even wakes me up in my sleep because I am terrified of this tunnel I keep going further into. No one has ever said anything to me about it, because I’ve always been professional, calm, laid-back and in control. I don’t think I have control anymore, and it seriously scares me. I drink before work, when I wake up, drinking during lunch, and drink as soon as I get home to fall asleep, when no on can see me doing it.
But I also drink out socially, with my friends, and they are impossible NOT to drink around, and they actually prefer to see me “on”, which is the only state I seem to be comfortable with now. I don’t think I can give up drinking out socially, because without my friends, I would probably just end up drinking more at home alone.
I know you are not a psychologist, but I would like to get some unbiased advice about this. I have tried to approach some people about this before (including therapy), but it has proved fruitless, and also really embarrassing. I guess I am hoping you have the magic, easy solution to this, and I am going to assume there probably isn’t one.
My unbiased advice is that you know you’re addicted to alcohol and you need help. You’re right that there is no “magic easy solution” to this, sweet pea, but there is a solution. It’s that you stop using alcohol. Privately. Socially. Morning. Noon. Night. And probably forever.
You will need to do this when you’re ready to do this. To be ready you need only the desire to change your life. To succeed, most people need a community of support. Alcoholics Anonymous is a good place to begin. There, you will find those who struggle in the same ways you do; people who once told themselves the same lies about what was “impossible.”
Addiction is a tunnel that wakes you up in the middle of the night. Everything else happens out here in the light.
Taken from Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed.