My husband quit drinking on the same day I did. He makes it look terribly easy. He is getting seriously in shape. He sleeps like a damn baby. I am envious. Yesterday, he posted ‘quit drinking’ as a life event on Facebook. I was floored. I wasn’t mad, I was just amazed. Here, I have been agonizing about how to tell my friends and co-workers and he just posts it on Facebook. No big deal, right? Fuck! When I asked him about it this morning, he said simply, “I am not ashamed. It was just getting in the way.”
Since his post yesterday, I have been thinking about how I might answer questions or discuss my choice to quit drinking with friends. In my mind, strangely, it always starts, “It was becoming a problem.” BULLSHIT. It WAS a problem. It had been a problem for a very long time. I might not have had to deal with legal repercussions or devastated relationships, but there are only so many times you can get away with driving terribly drunk or going to work terribly hungover before shit really falls apart. So where does this, “it was becoming a problem” come from? Am I hoping to sugar coat it for people who probably don’t want to hear the sordid details or am I ashamed? Maybe a little of both. I know there are friends who won’t want to talk about it because my ‘problem’ will reflect their ‘problem.’ But I think it is the feeling of failing somehow that really bothers me. Being an alcoholic means somewhere along the line, I lost control. I have a weakness. I can’t do what others can. I can’t have one or two. I can’t drink one or two nights. I am fucked up. This is the record that plays in my head. Alcoholic=fucked up failure. I know this is bullshit. I know I am doing the best possible thing for me and my family but sometimes it really sucks.
I am lucky to have a solid core of folks who understand and are very supportive. I am lucky I have a supportive partner who is on the same path with me. Maybe I should just thank my lucky damn stars and go the fuck to sleep?
BTW- I posted ‘quit drinking’ as a life event, too. Bandaid-ripped off. Voila! I am out as sober person.