To ask you to tell me all the positives about not drinking alcohol

(104 Posts)
Rachtoteach Sun 23-Jun-13 20:39:16

My mother is an alcoholic. I have only recently acknowledged this as she had been functioning ok but her health is now in such a bad state, her liver is failing and she has circulation problems which means she rarely leaves the house (but she will struggle to the shop to buy gin). Her sister is also an alcoholic. I am an only child and have three lovely kids and an amazing DH. My wine intake had been increasing and hangovers getting worse and I had a bit of an enlightening moment when I realised that I could choose life or alcohol (bit dramatic but am currently feeling my mum has chosen gin over us, by far). I am an all or nothing person and have taken the decision to give up the booze for good, rather than cut down. Alcohol no longer has a place in my life.

So... please help me think of all the fab things about not drinking! So far I've thought of - no hangovers, no memory loss, no embarrassment, saving money, weight loss.......

Inspire me please!!

tigerdriverII Fri 06-Jun-14 08:39:11

What an interesting thread and interesting to see it revived, too. I don't know if I saw it last year, if I had done I would have dismissed it as not for me. At the time I was getting through about 5 bottles of wine a week (possibly some denial there). Now, and for the last five months, I drink nothing - I love it and all of the benefits above are absolutely true. blueskies there are a couple of threads on here you might like - the Brave Babes and DRY. I lurk on them.

I had a similar epiphany at New Year after I had a drink related accident and sustained a serious head injury after falling over drunk. My dad is also an alcoholic and I realised I was drinking far too regularly and far too much. I haven't touched a drop since, and I genuinely don't want to. I'm petrified that next time I stumble and fall, it'll kill me.

I feel so much healthier for it! My skin has improved, my hair looks better, I'm sleeping far better than I was (when I get to sleep, as the head injury has left me with insomnia!), and the real biggy for me is the amount of money I've saved. I still get invited to, and go to, social events, but I drink lime and soda nowadays and get to laugh at my friends when they are slurring and staggering around! But I'm also compus mentus enough to ensure they get home safely.

I wouldn't recommend a brain haemmorrage and a stay in hospital as a cure for drinking, but I would definitely recommend stopping. Now I just need to have a chocolate related accident and my weight problem would be solved... grin

Blueskiesandcherrypies Fri 06-Jun-14 08:18:07

Thanks for your responses smile.

Little, that's our pattern too though recently we open that dreaded second bottle of wine on a week night far too often......

We are going on holiday in 2 weeks and I would love not to drink. I might have one with an evening meal and stop at that, it wouldn't feel like holiday otherwise and DH would think I'm a party pooper - is that bad?!

littlewhitebag Fri 06-Jun-14 07:58:48

Hi Blueskies I have been thinking exactly the same. My DH and i are not ones for big boozy nights out but it is more normal than not for a bottle of wine to be opened (and finished) of an evening. On a Friday we might drink a bottle each.

I find myself very tired and sluggish in the mornings even though i am not hungover. I would like to spring out of bed after a great sleep ready to face the day.

I think i am going to cut down in June, perhaps just wine at weekends, then have dry July and see how i go.

dawndonnaagain Fri 06-Jun-14 07:42:05

Good luck Blueskies. It really isn't that hard. I cut down about four years ago due to wanting to lose a bit of weight. All of a sudden it was six months since I'd bought a bottle of wine (dh doesn't drink due to heavy medication). Now I do birthday and Christmas and that's about it. I'll have one glass and don't usually fancy another.

Blueskiesandcherrypies Fri 06-Jun-14 07:19:36

Hi all, this thread is coming up to be a year old, but I hope you don't mind me commenting. I've been laying in bed this morning reading the whole thread and it's really boosted my decision to either drastically cut down, or completely cut out, alcohol. Dry nights in our house are becoming very rare and I so want that to change. Fed up of feeling crap due to too much wine. I want to return to being able to seek enjoyment from the small things in life, alcohol not required!

HardlyMotherTheresa Wed 26-Jun-13 11:13:25

Much lower risk of breast cancer. The figures are astonishing. I think your base lifetime risk is 1%. Every unit of alcohol per day increases that by 1% So if you have 2 units of alcohol every day, your risk goes from 1% to 3% I have no idea why so few people know that.

Crowler Wed 26-Jun-13 11:08:20

I gave up drinking at home about 4 months ago, which means I now drink about 5 units of alcohol a week. I am very pleased with this.

Here is a really good thing: You can easily get by with 1 or 2 less hours of sleep a night when you're not drinking. You don't need as much. So, you pull free time out of the sky!

My eye whites are much whiter.

Good luck!

happyyonisleepyyoni Wed 26-Jun-13 11:07:09

more money for chocolate!

EstelleGetty Wed 26-Jun-13 11:02:13

I really feel for you, Rach. I suffer from generalised anxiety disorder and have often sought solace in alcohol. I'm doing OK at staying away from it now. I can have a glass or 2 with dinner on a special occasion, but don't get smashed anymore. My parents, who are fantastic, were both heavy drinkers (but only on Friday and Saturday nights) when I was a child. They would get absolutely wasted and, because I went to bed before I saw the worst of it, I thought it all looked like great fun. Now that I'm older, I can see there were problems.

All the suggestions about benefits for your physical health, finances, etc are very wise. But for me the most important one is that I know I have more control over my emotions when I don't drink. The fear and low mood I get after a night's drinking is unbearable. Alcohol brings all my bad emotions up to the surface and lowers my defences so it's harder to rationalise what's going on in my head. You sound like you have a lot on your plate with your DM and I wish you both happiness. But you're so much more able to cope with the crap life throws at you without the depressant/anxiety-causing effects of drink.

Apologies if this has already been mentioned upthread, but Allen Carr's book The Easy Way to Control Alcohol might be worth a look.

Stay strong, OP, you're worth more than the booze.

YoungBritishPissArtist Wed 26-Jun-13 00:54:08

Thanks, maddening. I didn't know that. Will be sharing these facts you've mentioned with a few people!

maddening Tue 25-Jun-13 20:42:40

Also - if you don't drink for 6 weeks - barring any permanent scarring - your liver will be back to normal - and each time you binge you scar your liver - so a couple of good reasons to stop and if you don't do so permanently a good reason to keep the drinking in check - binge drinking and heavy long term drinking can do permanent liver damage.

DarceyBissell Tue 25-Jun-13 18:20:34

Penny - well said.

babyjane1 Tue 25-Jun-13 18:17:06

Hi to all, been recommended this thread by a fellow brave babe on the brave babes on the bus thread (the bus being sobriety) there is lot of fun posts but also a serious common link in that we are all trying to cut down/cut out alcohol. I am 42 with 2DD's 2 and 14, after my surprise baby at 40 I suffered horrendous post natal depression, I sought solace in wine, soon a bottle a night was the norm. I've gained weight and my depression fed on my wine habit!!! After my doc informed me that my anti depressants were totally counteracts by the wine, I decided to cut right back, I feel totally different and much more hopeful about my anxiety and depression lifting as it is already. This is a brilliant thread encouraging me to continue my abstinence but I also want to lose weight and create a whole new me, only downside so far, I'm eating chocolate in vast quantities for the first time in my life, I'm ready to embark on a healthy eating and exercise regime and have joined slimming world so I'm hoping thus thread will give me r encouragement and support and hope I can do the same for as anyone here hoping to discover a slimmer, healthier lifestyle too x x

dufflefluffle Tue 25-Jun-13 18:11:27

Not staying up later than you need to. Not eating more than you need to. being able to run/exercise better and first thing in the morning.

FoundAChopinLizt Tue 25-Jun-13 18:07:29

Great thread, thanks OP, I hope it helps you.

I drink only moderately but aim to drink less, maybe half a bottle of wine over the weekend instead of one bottle. Mainly because I'm trying to get fit and I can feel how it affects my running the day after even a glass or two. I also avoid sugar in food so it makes no sense to drink wine.

Also saving £5-6 a week would be nice, I could a book or two on my kindle for that.

Pigsmummy Tue 25-Jun-13 17:59:29

Some has recommended hyno therapy to help cut down drinking, you might give that a go too?

Anyone have any experience of that?

Pigsmummy Tue 25-Jun-13 17:50:43

Great thread, I looked and felt fantastic after not drinking in pregnancy and when bf'ing,sadly slipped back to having a couple of glasses of wine in the evening, now overweight and tired looking, so seriously cutting back. Allowing myself a drink as a treat only rather than the norm. Can't wait to get into my slim clothes again and get the zest for life back!

Turniptwirl Tue 25-Jun-13 17:45:14

No hangovers and wasted weekends while you recover!

Being the sober one with the camera who remembers what their drunk friends got up to

All that money saved can be spent on something else

Smoke less if you're a smoker, as all the smokers I know smoke far more if they're drinking at the same time

Paying less tax

Pennyacrossthehall Tue 25-Jun-13 17:35:23

MoaningMingeWhingesAgain Tweed? Victim blaming much?

Scenario: You are a deer. Most of the other animals in the forest have no interest in eating you, but a small number do. If you blindfold yourself and tie your feet together, are you more vulnerable?

Important note: the question is not whether it is fair.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Tue 25-Jun-13 17:31:26

I'm sorry about your mum, OP, it must be very hard to watch. I have no experience of alcoholism, am teetotal myself and have been since going bananas in early teens until 17 when I just stopped. Because of that I'm not sure that anything I post is going to be relevant but will post it just in case.

I'm wondering what it feels like to be alcohol dependent. I just don't know what it's like and I wonder whether the 'benefits' as posted above really would register at all to somebody who has such a severe problem with alcohol.

Everybody's come up with good and useful suggestions but I wonder if they'll be 'white noise' to your mum. Have you ever asked her how it feels? How she feels when she drinks? When she can't drink? What her worries are for the future? Her responses might give you some insight that would help you to think of the best suggestions to tackle the problem and actually make it meaningful and 'fit' with your mum's thoughts too.

babyjane1 Tue 25-Jun-13 17:22:38

Hi guys been searching for this thread for ages, just marking my place and will post later x x

BrokenBanana Mon 24-Jun-13 17:39:36

I'm in much the same position as you OP, except my mum has been an obvious alcoholic for a long long time. I've noticed myself needing alcohol more, sometimes a few times a week. I'd be up for joining a dry July thread, I'm desperate not to turn in to my mother!

CHJR Mon 24-Jun-13 17:39:35

Feeling proud of my self-control! Really, showing love for yourself.
Convenience of being able to hop in the car without thinking twice.

Downside of not drinking: having to notice how dumb the people around you become after just a few. Amazingly dumb!

CHJR Mon 24-Jun-13 17:32:21

More time! Amazing how much time drinking seems to suck in...

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