Drinking in Moderation: A Case Study

UFOSometimes I get it into my head that if I stay busy doing stuff, that will keep me on the straight and narrow vis my addiction issues – primarily around eating.  But I know that is really not a solution at all.  I played those games for a long time with alcohol and drugs.  In fact, one of my last drunks occurred by following exactly that logic.  I had been working on a writing project for about two weeks.  I had amazed myself (and others) by my enforced abstinence from drinking during the entire period.  I told myself, and rightfully so, if I had one drink, I would be shot for at least the rest of the day, and perhaps longer.  The project I was working on was critically important for me to complete.

I reached the final day of my enforced sobriety.  I knew that if I worked about five hours that day, the project would be complete and I could drink all I wanted, having proven to myself that I could in fact abstain if need be.  Therefore, surely I could not be an alcoholic, went my logic.

So that final day, I got up, drank a pot of coffee during the first couple hours of work, comfortable that I was nearing the successful completion.  I had just a few hours more work to go.  I decided that the pot of coffee had put me a bit too much on edge.  I had three bottles of beer in the refrig, certainly not enough to be too much of a distraction from my work.  I reasoned I was entitled to a small celebration.  I quickly drank the three beers, and all thoughts fo the project were gone.  So . . . you can guess the rest of the story.  The last thing I remember was walking down the street to the liquor store.  I woke up the next day about 8:00 AM with my head throbbing, and realizing that once again I had blown it.  So much for another attempt at demonstrating to myself that I was somehow different, and not an alcoholic.  I never did finish the project.

I continued drinking for another 4 or 5 months after that event.  I made no attempts to limit or control my drinking during that time period.  I knew what I was, I just had to make a decision what I was going to do about it.  When I made that final decision, not drinking was the easiest thing in the world – the living life on life’s terms was the hard part I had to learn.

Moderation has never worked for me with alcohol or drugs.

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