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9

August


Me and my friend alcohol. Sunday August 9, 2015

I have been 'off' alcoholic drinks due to a diet that I am proud to say I have mostly stuck to, and only allowed myself some alcohol during a weeks' all-inclusive holiday, in June. But, as a celebration of dear friends becoming grandparents, last week, we opened a bottle of champagne! They also provided us with more bottles of wine that evening...and that's where the problem lay...they wouldn't take the unused ones away with them. So, I knew they were there; it's like a box of chocolates or a packet of biscuits...if they are there they have to be eaten! I proceeded to drink, on my own, over the following three nights. I felt as guilty as a guilty thing on a guilty day...but still, each evening, I went back to find the other bottles...and surprise, surprise, after drinking, I was starving...you know, the craving 'I-need-to-eat-ANYTHING-I-could-get-my-mitts-on-hungry' then I'd feel quilty all over again, m'lud!

Each morning, I woke too early, thirsty and dizzy; I felt depressed - so flipping low that I could barely function properly. And was extremely ashamed of myself for getting in that situation.

A friend came back to visit last week.
She'd been gone a while - I wasn't so weak!
But she stayed three days, well evenings, really
And the very next mornings she'd made me feel guilty.

I sort of welcomed her - drank in her perfume,
Consumed her wholly, she made me bloom.
At first I told no one, I hid her from sight,
I knew she was wrong for me, my life she could blight.

It was so easy to love her, have her back here so soon,
(Enjoy her when others are not in the room.)
I was being rather selfish, I didn't want to share -
The luscious colours that she's able to bare.

Early in the mornings I awoke with a thirst,
And a head that was pounding, it wouldn't be the first
Of many hours,
to wake, to lie there, ashamed,
Cos I knew who had done this - it was me who's to blame.

And the guilt that I felt the very next day,
Made me realise what I was doing - it wouldn't go away,
Unless I stopped now, stopped letting her win,
Stop drinking the wine, champagne or the gin.

I'd thought she had helped me, when feeling so low,
I felt more relaxed, she always cheered me so!
I didn't understand, how much she could hurt me,
As I relied on her daily - I just didn't want to see.

It had been quite a while since I let her back home
In the evenings with my husband,
...or here on my own.
But, you made me depressed, dear, you made me so low.
I am sorry to say, dear, you just had to go.

The last bottle's gone, I'm back on top form,
My depression is better, my weight is the 'norm'!
The dieting helped, it's made me feel better...
Wine will depress you - but only if you let her!

It FINALLY dawned on me that me and my friend Alcohol, don't really get on! It has been said, it's not the second or even the third glass that causes the problems.....it's the first. So I have spoken to myself - quite severely and had words too...and resolved not to go mad again!

Love
Karen (bearofliddlebrain.com) x

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.


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Comments

Hopeful One Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 7:32am

Hi Karen- brilliant blog and verse. . I feel what you have said could apply to anything that is addictive in our thoughts behaviours and feelings. The key here it seems is to accept that is the case and it is this vital step that one has to take for healing to set in. If done in a non judgemental mind frame the chance of success are pretty high I would bet.

Grace Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 7:46am

Hi Karen,
Great verse and I couldn't have put it better myself. I used to be a two bottles of wine a night girl until i started taking meds' for bi polar. That certainly cured me and, except on special occasions, I don't touch the stuff. It's the cause of so much misery and wrecks lives. More lethal imo than cigarettes.
Well done and keep up the good work. ??????????

Zareen Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 7:54am

I love your poem Karen and the honesty that it embodies. Thanks for posting it!

Oli Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 8:57am

Yep, alcohol is a funny one. I wasn't even sure why I was so fond of it for ages until I realised I used it as a comfort for loneliness. The slippery slope between being a very light drinker and a way-too-much drinker is, for me, massively steep. Living an alcohol-free lifestyle is often much easier to manage (once you get going).
Good post Karen.

Mary Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 10:22am

Bang on Karen. You're right; it's that first glass. This a friendship I need to beak off too. Oh, but she's uh a comforting friend...

Norman Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 11:07am

Like Oli I find this a funny one. Alcohol in the house is to me a major luxury, being able to offer visitors a drink, or to curl up with a good book and glass of malt whisky, or to have wine with a meal, is to have "made it."

My issue is the pub, it has been a source of solace and refreshment my whole life, probably due to my dad telling me it was the working man's main luxury, and finding the truth in that many times in my life. At the moment I am unhappy at work and sharing a house with four youngsters to save money, so the pub is a refuge between two unhappy places. It is my reward for working hard and paying my bills.

I know it doesn't help my depression, but also going without doesn't help me feel rewarded. It is a strange one indeed.

Karen Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 11:39am

Thank you everyone...and to Caroline for posting my blog at all. I found that the first few days on the diet and not having alcohol, the most challenging, as it had all become so normal to have two or three glasses of wine each evening. And as has been noted above, it was, at first, quite a luxury to have wine in the house, let alone all the time. But that slippery slope was there, we had created it ourselves and I worried I wasn't going to be able to cope without. But yay! Cope I did...until last week, of course! But the real and most amazing thing I found was that, if I filled the fridge with sparkling water, kept it as a treat for the evenings and poured it into a nice glass with a slice of lemon or a dash of low calorie lime cordial...I pretended it was a gin and tonic!! Ok, ok, I know it wasn't, believe me...but it did help!
Benefits have been weight loss; waking up having had a better nights sleep, no, headaches, no waking up at stupid o'clock with a raging thirst; being able to remember what happened in conversations or in programmes the night before!!
What hasn't been easy is watching others continue...with beer not wine. (I couldn't have them drinking wine in front of me at home!) and going out for meals or a 'drink' - er no boring! Because it's been a diet as well as giving up the alcohol, sparkling water it had to be...no diet drinks allowed because they make you more hungry!! So it has just been a bit boring.

Maybe it would have been easier to give up alcohol if I wasn't on the diet as I would have a greater choice of 'diet' drinks available!! But in the end, I am getting there...you can too!
Thank you all,
Karen (lighterbearofliddlebrain.com!)

susan Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 12:23pm

Hi Karen, i love how you talk about alcohol as your friend who isn't a friend at all. I've struggled with this friend, too -- and after ignoring her for a while i give in and think that maybe she's changed. But always she betrays me. So slowly i'm learnng how to handle her. It's not easy and i admire you for taking her on. Thanks for your blog. susan xx

Susannah Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 12:36pm

Excellent blog, Karen. Norman: I really understand your difficult situation, but maybe you could reward yourself in a different way? Perhaps go to the movies? It probably costs about the same, and you can sit in a comfy chair being entertained for a couple of hours.

Karen Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 1:44pm

Cheers! Susan!!! (Lol!) I thought that giving alcohol a persona would help me have someone else to blame!!! No, joking!!!

I just think alcohol has been turned to by so many people who also think of it as a friend: the friend who won't judge; who won't answer back; who is there...so long as you can afford to keep her with you! (Healthier to get a dog/cat!). But in the end...like any bad relationship, you have to look at what that friendsip is doing to you. If it doesn't tick the right boxes anymore, then maybe it's time to end that friendship? Oops, sorry, I feel another blog coming on!

Thank you, susannah, especially for your idea to Norman...a great idea with equal expense, and maybe some of the youngsters from the house, or someone else Norman knows could go too..a film club possé?
Karen (bearofliddlebrain.com)

Victoria Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 6:04pm

Well done Karen.

Norman, I think of you proudly, working hard and paying your bills. I am lucky in London with the amount of places that are open later at night and not expensive, like a museum or bookshop. Is there a hobby club you are interested in? Model trains, cookery, yoga, badminton, bowls. Maybe take a copy of the paper to a coffee shop or milk bar, rather than pub. I'm trying to think of non-alcoholic and inexpensive 'rewards'. From my own experience of living in a room in a shared house, getting out of it was invaluable!

Anonymous Sun, Aug 9th 2015 @ 9:08pm

Great post Karen... Alcohol can certainly live up to it's name of being a depressant.

Paul Mon, Aug 10th 2015 @ 8:15am

Hi Karen, your post resonated with me.

I have come close to death twice in my life due to my abuse of alcohol. I am currently (nearly) 4 years sober and life is good.

In fact, while in the initial stage of recovery support 4 years ago, one of the counsellors recommended this site as an additional tool in my recovery regimen.

It is posts like yours and others that have inspired me to continue on my recovery journey.

Karen Mon, Aug 10th 2015 @ 10:39am

Dear Paul, I've just seen your post in response to the blog. I'm so tearful to think that abuse of alcohol nearly killed you. It's such a terrible, terrible state that we get ourselves into. I am just so relieved you are here, four years later, to tell us you survived....you are still here and sober.
I hope I didn't seem to be too flippant in my poem - I wanted it to be light but serious, if you know what I mean. I suppose I am lucky that I had noticed I wasn't coping so well with alcohol and definitely noticed the difference having given it up, whilst on the diet. I just hope others, in a similar situation to mine, where drinking in the evenings becomes a habit, are able to just do it - stop today, stop now before it takes them in deeper.
I am so pleased your counsellor recommended Moodscope too...it's been of great benefit to so many, even and perhaps especially to those peeps who are here every day, but don't necessarily respond in writing. Thanks, Paul. Good luck! Karen x ( bearofliddlebrain.com)

Anonymous Mon, Aug 10th 2015 @ 2:56pm

I hit the "Wimp" button and posted anonymously. Imagine that the bar is a ship in the centre of the pub. It is sinking. If you cling on to it, you will drown. If you sit at a table, you will sink alone. If this mental image seems too stark, why is it that groups of us drinking together don't sink?

Karen Wed, Aug 12th 2015 @ 7:13am

Harro Wimp buttonpresser! Groups drinking together will stop together?

Susannah Mon, Aug 17th 2015 @ 9:16am

As a result of this blog I stopped my pretty much daily alcoholic drink with my evening meal. I had a beer last night to celebrate an event, but I have escaped the cycle of the 'default' glass of wine. Thank you, Karen.

Caroline Sat, Aug 22nd 2015 @ 12:50pm

Having had three alcohol free days this week, I went out last night and had too much. Ruined my evening and my friends' evening and today I am lethargic and ashamed.

It really is that first glass....

Bearofliddlebrain Wed, Aug 26th 2015 @ 7:23am

Omg...it is so flipping hard to stop isn't it, but Susannah, well done. I'm really happy that you have made a fabulous start! Wow!

I'm so dischuffed with myself because Friday we went out with family and I got carried away again! Felt disgusting all day Saturday and thought never again! But duly had a beer on Sunday at a music festival and a huge glass of wine last night....what the heck is wrong with me? Am so annoyed with myself this morning.
Caroline, you probably didn't ruin your friends' evening....(unless you said things you shouldn't have??). It's probably today's guilt - what can we do? How can we make alcohol taste so bad in our minds and our mouths that we don't drink any more? I've been wondering about this - is it just full-on will power or going to a hypnotherapist?

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