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  • Do I have a problem?

    Alcohol is the most commonly used substance in Australia. Join this forum to discuss issues and find support relating to alcohol use and recovery.
    Junior Member
    Posts: 2
    Joined: Tue Oct 12, 2021 12:56 am

    Do I have a problem?

    Tue Oct 12, 2021 1:02 am

    Hi guys. 26 Years old. Always loved drinking.
    Recently things have got tough, with covid and received a hand injury that put me out of work. I can't seem to go a day sober. I get panicky and can't stop thinking about my next drink. Alcohol just gives me that mind numb. That chill and relax. I can't get it without. I drink probably 4 or 5 days of the week. The days I don't drink are out of trying to ease myself away. Do I have a problem? Am I an alcoholic? I can't do without the buzz. Where do I get it elsewhere? Btw I'm bipolar disorder. I take antidepressants. Im told antidepressants don't mix well with alcohol. I seem ok.
    1 x
    Community Builder
    Posts: 750
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Do I have a problem?

    Tue Oct 12, 2021 8:41 am

    heya @DreamcatcherInAField I just want to start off by saying welcome to the forums, and thank you for sharing your story. It takes courage to tell others what's going on, good on you.

    It sounds like you've been having a really difficult time lately, and that alcohol has become a way to help numb those negative experiences. We aren't medically trained, and I can't tell you whether or not you have an issue with drinking, but it does sound like you are concerned about the amount you're consuming. I would strongly recommend speaking to a trusted GP, especially if you want to cut down the amount you're drinking, and in regards to mixing it with your anti-depressants. There are negative side effects that can accompany alcohol withdrawals, you can read more about them here.

    It might be worthwhile having a look at how to manage some of your cravings, there are some really great techniques here. This might help when you feel like all you can focus on is getting that next drink in.

    Do you have other ways that would typically help you relax?

    I'm going to tag our peer workers @PnorkelPW and @ScorpionPW as well as some other members who might have some words of advice right now @WildeReformed @BonsaiBeginner @Tiiu @initae89

    Let us know how you've travelling today, we're sitting with you :)
    1 x
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 930
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Do I have a problem?

    Mon Jan 17, 2022 10:22 pm

    Hi @DreamcatcherInAField...........I'm not sure what happened but I never saw that I was tagged in this and missed your post. I hope you're still checking into the forums and might see this.

    I think it's great that you're questioning your relationship with alcohol. I questioned mine for waaaaaay too long and never did anything about it. The longer I didn't do anything the worse things got and my denial of the problem increased too. Fair to say the end result wasn't great.

    I'll touch on the anti-depressants quickly and I'm no doctor but one of the things I always hear is that the alcohol prevents the anti-depressants from their full effectiveness so by drinking and taking them at the same time you're never going to get the benefits. My experience of drinking and depression was that the more I drank the worse my depression got yet the only thing that gave me any relief was the drinking. I remember writing at one time in rehab that I didn't know if my drinking was an excuse for my depression or my depression was an excuse for my drinking. All I know is that it wasn't until I stopped drinking that my mental health gained some traction and got back on track.

    As for whether you're an alcoholic the only person that can answer that question is you. If you get on the Alcoholics Anonymous website you'll find a list of questions that might help you decide.

    My drinking was always different to other people's and once I started I couldn't stop. Some people can have a big night and go home...........I'm going home to keep drinking or just staying out until I can't drink any more. Some people can go to the pub and have two drinks and go home. I used to fit in as many as I could and then go home for more. One of the things that sets me apart from others as well is that when I wasn't drinking, I was thinking about my next drink. The only thing that got me through the day was the fact that I knew there was a beer at the end of it. I didn't have alcohol free days..........I always drank. When I was in school I used to get through the week thinking about drinking on the weekends. My entire life from 15 onwards was spent drinking or thinking about drinking.

    There is a difference between a heavy drinker and an alcoholic.............I'm an alcoholic. I'm not sure where you sit. It sounds like a change in circumstances has resulted in you relying more heavily on alcohol than you used to. It might be worth a chat with your GP and seeing where tings land. I think there's a lot to be said for finding new ways to calm yourself rather than drinking. A sport or hobby for after work can really help. Catching up with friends to kick the footy, have a hit of tennis, go for a walk, gym, swim or something. There's nothing wrong with a few beers during the week but when it's every night then I think it's time to ask the questions you're asking and seeing if changes are needed.

    I's love to hear how things are going for you now if you happen to check back into the forums again and if you do i hope this has helped. I'm happy to continue a conversation, answer any questions or share my experiences if you think it might help.
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