One of the things when I got sober & quit smoking was I had a lot of free time on my hands and boredom is a huge trigger. I would wonder what to do instead of drinking tonight.
I would Google What to Do Instead of Drinking and I found a lot of suggestions. Many of the suggestions are have a bubble bath, write in your journal, which is great and by all means go ahead and do that. I needed more than that.
The other suggestions I found, didn’t have specific recommendations, which I have included. The other issue it wasn’t things I could do right now, it wasn’t practical! Go bungee jumping, or go bowling, great ideas. I did not have a desire to jump off a bridge (I had already been in that state hungover and was trying to crawl out from that level of depression) or didn’t have friends you could go bowing with it was hard.
I have put together The Ultimate FREE Guide, What to Do Instead of Drinking Tonight. These are practical Suggestions. With recommendations, you can add refer back to it or use it as inspiration and add on to it.
How to know if you have a drinking problem. This subject came up the other day, in our book club, we all said that we had gone online and taken a test or googled the symptoms, everyone of us had done this, to see if we had a drinking problem. Some of the women identify as an alcoholic, some like myself identify with alcohol abuse disorder, each and everyone of us identify that alcohol intrerefered with our lives
One woman even said she lied on the test, so it came out NO. I justified on the test (it asked if you drank alone) I was a single mom, who did you want me to drink with my 5 year old? So how do you know?
You are googling it, is one of the first clues, though it might be years before that clue comes to light
My other clue & everyone else agreed it was the hangovers/wasted days of being incapacitated after.
The whole in my life
The anxiety from drinking
The guilt from drinking
The feeling in the morning of wishing I hadn’t drank the day before
And the fact it interfered with our jobs (missed days or just not being present) and or parenting (short tempered, missing parenting meetings, or not attending events).
Interesting fact was none of us said it was because we drank alone or because someone was concerned, or if it had negatively affected friendships or if we embarrassed ourselves ever or the fact that we had spent too much money drinking as we could rationalize these things. Or some of the questions didn’t even apply like do you get the shakes if you don’t drink, or do you crave alcohol daily (nope) it went deeper than just the surface questions.
You see having a drinking problem doesn’t look the same for everyone. You might see a person rummaging through a garbage can swigging booze out of a bottle (think Frank from Shameless) and think yeah he has a problem, but when you look at that well dressed woman with her son, who’s a single mom in her 30’s, goes out on weekends, rides her bike, is at the soccer field every saturday morning, has a nanny part time, has a corporate job, lives by the beach you may not look and guess she has a problem. There are so many definitions of does someone have a problem with alcohol and not one is right or wrong if they have a problem. Its if you are happy with our life.
Really only you can decide when you have had enough, that point has been made over and over by court ordered rehabs, detoxes, psychiatry holds, or when that mom cries on her couch every Sunday wishing she’d never drank again this weekend.
There is no defining point it’s just you and your life. The great thing is you can always try out not drinking and go back to it if it’s not for you or you can decide like I did that life is so much easier without alcohol/ hangovers you may never go back.
Well let’s just say this, If you didn’t read my blog How to host a dinner party sober yesterday, I’ll give you a recap. It was my husbands birthday, and he chose instead of us going out for a nice dinner a Football watching dinner with his buddy. With Appies, great steaks and seafood, and of course booze, so I wrote a post that included a list of How to host a party sober with 8 great tips here .
Now the tips were great and I followed all of my own advice and yes stayed sober, but here’s the reality.
Dinner was to be at 7pm, the game started around 5pm. So his friend got here around 430 and the booze started flowing by 6pm they were flying high. I came downstairs I had been kicked out for trying to talk this is where my husbands nasty remarks set in (you see the difference between my drinking and his I loved being happy so I just wanted to be happier, I was a fun loud obnoxious drunk, he’s a very unhappy one where his hatred for the world comes out) ,
630ish which was half time and I suggested he put on the steaks and I would start on the seafood, but nooooo they weren’t hungry. Of course not, they were drinking you see how do I know this because this used to be me (insert cringe) I remember this selfishness display “just one more drink” I would tell my son ugh.
7pm rolls around and we have a shit ton of food, so I decided not to serve appies (thinking a late night snack might be better and my husband and I had a snack around 4pm) we had a serious amounts of seafood that are rich and big steaks and I didn’t want it to go to waste. My husband gets angry they are watching the game and fine, my son leaves he decides he’s not sticking around for this shit show and goes for dinner with his friends.
I’m miserably hangry by 745 ish, and the guys then say they want to watch the rest of the game, which they figure should be over by 815 ish, well I decide to put my steak and my sons away, as it had been resting on the counter as I don’t like eating a huge steak at 830 at night, tell my husband this I’ll just have seafood. I go back upstairs.
I come down around 9pm and my husband is seriously angry and decided not to tell me they cooked their steaks and ate the seafood. In his drunken stupor he didn’t hear me say I will just eat some seafood, so I ended up with a bowl of leftover soup from Friday night, a husband that just got nasty and me trying to be nice. So the reality check should have been for this party just order in chinese or pizza or thai at 6pm.
I slept in the spare bed away from the noise and about 1030 the stench of cigars fills the house again, cringe, I know when I would drink too much and it was cold out at times I would start smoking in the house and the shame I have today for putting my son through this, he was little when I would do this, and the house would reek of cigarettes. He hated the smell. The anguish that last night brought me, was not for my husband the ruined birthday or his behaviour. The anguish today is my own selfish awful ways when I was drinking and my son was younger. The heartbreak I am feeling and the apology I owe my son when he gets home today, this weighs heavily on me and my behaviour makes me physically nauseous.
If you are a mom or dad out there, it’s never too late start today, quit drinking even if you just try. If I could have a do over with my child’s childhood, I would have been a much more present parent. I have a FREE DRY JANUARY group if you are at all looking to try.
There are two things that came out of this, a) hosting a party when you are sober it may not go the way as you planned, b) completely unrelated things could come up.