~Define An Alcoholic~

Kooshdakhaa

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Let's add a pinch of perspective, eh.

In Northern Europe heavy drinking is an ancient tradition, and beer is generally stronger than its American counterpart. Without boasting, it takes about ten cans of 5% lager to get me totally spasticated.

In a typically male, Anglo-Saxon environment, it's not unusual to see copious amounts of alcohol consumed. Take, for instance, when me and my men are working out of town. We finish for the week in our temporary digs, get washed and fed, then we'll head-out to a few pubs. We'll usually return to the digs with 50+ cans of strong beer, some cannabis and (on occasion) some cocaine. We then plot down and get violently drunk whilst bragging and talking bullshit over a game of cards.

However, I know for a fact that neither myself or anyone I employ is an alcoholic, functioning or otherwise. Seriously, I remember watching an episode of that ghastly Gerry Springer show where some woman was publically accused by a friend of child neglect because she'd have a bottle of beer followed by 3 or 4 shots. Do me a bleedin' favour! It's all about perspective. Honestly, you should see what goes on in some of the digs occupied by Russian contractors I've worked with. By the sounds of it, it would make the hairs on your comparatively lily-livered American backs stand on end.

Anyway, my answer.

A dependent alcoholic, in my opinion, thinks about where their first drink of the day will come from upon waking.And no, I don't speak from experience.
Rationalization. That's called rationalization.

I'm NOT accusing you of being an alcoholic, that's not where I'm coming from. But as an alcoholic, I used to think those kind of thoughts all the time....

Everybody is stopping for drinks after work (every night), it's not just me.

Everybody gets good and drunk on Friday and Saturday nights, it's not just me.

Everybody wants to drink beer at picnics, not just me! It's just not a picnic without beer!

Everybody I know has had a DWI, it's not just me!

Etc. You see people around you drinking, and think it's just a social norm, and there's nothing wrong with you. Until one day you realize you're worse than eveyone else. :eek:
 

Foxfyre

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Who knows, it hurts my head to try to figure it out. I tend to think if you can't have a drink when you want one for fear of what you'll do, you're probably an alcoholic. If you drink enough that someone in your life is asking you, "have you been drinking?" on a regular basis, and you have arguments based upon it, you're probably an alcoholic.

As for the rest, who knows. I think I drank too much and probably could have qualified as an alcholic...except I pretty much quit. Not cold turkey, kind of slowly over time, it just became less and less a part of what I do. And I still have a drink once in a while, and it's not a problem at all.

I guess it doesn't matter! At least not for me...
Most people who think they were alcoholic probably are or are what I dub 'pre-alcoholic' which is the stage before the invisible line. The invisible line is the point in which the person will begin spiraling out of control and will start to try to 'manage' their drinking without success. I was at the pre-alcoholic stage when I stopped. It is rampant in my family and I knew I was dangerously close to the invisible line at the time I stopped. If I started drinking again, I suspect I would cross the line very quickly; maybe immediately. It is a progressive disease whether one is still drinking or not but the hold it has on us can be broken. An alcoholic never stops being an alcoholic--there is no cure. But the addiction can be broken and the alcoholic can lead a productive happy life free from the addiction.

That's why the savvy alcholic never claims to be cured, but will say he or she is recovering. Recovery becomes the new way of life. The earlier into progression of the disease that it is arrested, the easier it is to arrest and the less physical, moral, social, mental, and spiritual damage will be done. But recovery can begin at virtually any phase.
 
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del

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In your eyes only, your opinion, what do you consider an alcoholic??
Someone who drinks every day??
Someone who drinks more than twice a week?? Someone who when they first wake up, they grab a beer??
Or is an alcoholic someone who maybe only drinks a couple of times per week, but they get so wasted, they pass out, forget where they are, miss work and end up sick for 2 days??
Just what is an alcoholic??
In your eyes? What the hell difference does that make? It's a medically defined illness... what any individual thinks is of no relevance.

You ask really stupid questions sometimes.
and you give really stupid answers sometimes
 

Kooshdakhaa

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Another thing...about missing a cold beer or glass of wine once in a while...

Now that I have my alcoholism under control, and have replaced the booze in my life with many other interests and activities (which is what you have to do), I realize that the last beverage I would choose is a beer or glass of wine.

I wasn't drinking for the taste! I was drinking for the buzz. Give me a Coke or some nice cold water any day.

It's like that nonalcoholic beer. When I was actively drinking, I thought that was the greatest thing and would be a way for me to get my drinking under control.

Not. I couldn't stand drinking those nonalcoholic beers...the lack of an associated "buzz" was a huge disappointment. That's when I realized it wasn't really the taste of the beer I loved so much.

I think a beer would gag me now. Yet I used to easily put away 6-12 of them a day. Or more.
 

Swagger

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All joking aside, I reckon I could drink every single one of you under the table. But you'd all probably wuss-out after you saw the size of my glass.

Kooshdakhaa, I know where you're coming from. I used to drink heavily when I was in the army, along with everyone else. I'd say I get drunk, on average, about once or twice a fortnight. You see, my wife's one of you lot and her frowns come as a welcome catalyst to an otherwise potentially negligent attitude towards alcohol. I guess heavy drinking is just one of those traditions that didn't survive the journey to the New World. Unless you're Irish-American, that is.
 

del

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All joking aside, I reckon I could drink every single one of you under the table. But you'd all probably wuss-out after you saw the size of my glass.

Kooshdakhaa, I know where you're coming from. I used to drink heavily when I was in the army, along with everyone else. I'd say I get drunk, on average, about once or twice a fortnight. You see, my wife's one of you lot and her frowns come as a welcome catalyst to an otherwise potentially negligent attitude towards alcohol. I guess heavy drinking is just one of those traditions that didn't survive the journey to the New World. Unless you're Irish-American, that is.
i spilled more than you've drunk.
 

Sunshine

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In your eyes only, your opinion, what do you consider an alcoholic??
Someone who drinks every day??
Someone who drinks more than twice a week?? Someone who when they first wake up, they grab a beer??
Or is an alcoholic someone who maybe only drinks a couple of times per week, but they get so wasted, they pass out, forget where they are, miss work and end up sick for 2 days??
Just what is an alcoholic??
In your eyes? What the hell difference does that make? It's a medically defined illness... what any individual thinks is of no relevance.

You ask really stupid questions sometimes.
Actually you are correct. There are several Alcohol Use Disorders in the DSM-IV-TR. None of them use the nomenclature 'Alcoholic or Alchoholism.' But they are medical disorders considered serious and treatable. I think the disease model has become fairly well accepted.
 

Foxfyre

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Another thing...about missing a cold beer or glass of wine once in a while...

Now that I have my alcoholism under control, and have replaced the booze in my life with many other interests and activities (which is what you have to do), I realize that the last beverage I would choose is a beer or glass of wine.

I wasn't drinking for the taste! I was drinking for the buzz. Give me a Coke or some nice cold water any day.

It's like that nonalcoholic beer. When I was actively drinking, I thought that was the greatest thing and would be a way for me to get my drinking under control.

Not. I couldn't stand drinking those nonalcoholic beers...the lack of an associated "buzz" was a huge disappointment. That's when I realized it wasn't really the taste of the beer I loved so much.

I think a beer would gag me now. Yet I used to easily put away 6-12 of them a day. Or more.
Actually I love the taste of beer. And if out having dinner with friends who are enjoying a beer or wine with their bar-b-que or steak, I will order and enjoy an O'douls. Okay compared to a real beer, it isn't as good but it's good enough. I don't buy them to keep at home though. Don't want to return to the old patterns and rituals. Most often like you I am happier with a cola or lemonade or iced tea or water or an exotic coffee or whatever.

The toughest thing for many breaking the addiction is to stay away from old haunts where drinking was the norm and giving up old drinking buddies who are not going to be happy or supportive that the alcoholic is working on quitting. Friends will be supportive and sometimes will be what get the alcoholic through the difficult process of breaking the addiction.
 

Swagger

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Who d'ya think you're fooling, Derek? We all know you took another look. You'd be a fag otherwise.
 

Si modo

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if you think you have to control it, it's controlling you.
That about sums it up. Trajan posted the first step earlier and that nails it as well: Admitted that you are powerless over alcohol and that your life had become unmanageable.

I'd also say if it gives someone the willies to think about giving up ever having a drink again, it's probably a problem for them.
 

Kooshdakhaa

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if you think you have to control it, it's controlling you.
That about sums it up. Trajan posted the first step earlier and that nails it as well: Admitted that you are powerless over alcohol and that your life had become unmanageable.

I'd also say if it gives someone the willies to think about giving up ever having a drink again, it's probably a problem for them.
I'm really glad I as able to quit without AA and the 12-step program. I didn't hav to admit I was powerless and turn myself over to a higher power. I just got sick of wrecking my life, so I quit. My husband was my support, because he had already quit a few years before...without AA. My husband believes they trade addiction to alcohol for addiction to AA. He wants none of it.

One summer a couple of years ago, though, my husband was going on a trip. I had a thought in the back of my mind that I might get the idea to have a few drinks while he was gone! I scoped out the nearest AA meetings and was prepared to go there as last resort if I found myself wanting to drink.

But hallelujah! Once he had left I didn't want to drink! I simply didn't want to!!!! I never felt so free in all my life! :eusa_pray:
 
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IndependntLogic

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In your eyes only, your opinion, what do you consider an alcoholic??
Someone who drinks every day??
Someone who drinks more than twice a week?? Someone who when they first wake up, they grab a beer??
Or is an alcoholic someone who maybe only drinks a couple of times per week, but they get so wasted, they pass out, forget where they are, miss work and end up sick for 2 days??
Just what is an alcoholic??
Someone who asks themselves whether or not they might be an alcoholic. It wouldn't even occur to anyone else.
 

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