Am I An Alcoholic?
If you’ve made it to this page, it’s likely because you are concerned that you (or someone you love) has a problem with alcohol.
Where is the line the gets crossed between having a healthy relationship with alcohol and having a disordered relationship with alcohol?
It’s really hard to say.
The boxes to be ticked to indicate a problem are not necessarily what many people think of. It’s not necessarily about when, how much or what you drink that determine whether you have a problem or not.
The things that determine whether you have a problem with how much alcohol you are drinking is whether you have a problem with it. If alcohol is having an adverse effect on your health, relationships, work or social life, then it’s time to make some changes, or give up alcohol altogether.
What is Alcohol Use Disorder?
AUD has replaced the word Alcoholic/Alcoholism in the medical field now. It’s a very key distinction in the change of the language.
When you say “I am an alcoholic” you are defining yourself by it, it becomes part of your core identity and that can make it very difficult to separate yourself from it.
Alcohol Use Disorder – the act of using alcohol in a disordered way – is a behaviour pattern that is being adopted rather than an inherent part of the person. You are so much more than this issue.
For most people who use alcohol in a disordered way, drinking began as the solution to the problem before it became a problem. Alcohol is a very effective tool to make you feel confident, like you fit in or to forget about aspects of your past you’d rather not think about.
It’s key to recognize that this tool is now doing you more harm than good. Perhaps you’ve had a health or personal scare that’s brought you to the realization that something needs to change.
But it’s also a well-practiced response for your brain to turn to when these things creep in again. Your brain rewards you with dopamine when you have a drink, that’s why it takes more than just will power to change the behaviour.
There are many programs such as AA out there that alongside your GP can support you for free – please do check them out, they work well for many people.
At the other end of the scale there are residential rehab centres, where you can go and focus entirely on recovery.
Somewhere between the 2 are people, like myself, who support you while you stay in your day to day life, help you uncover and work on the under lying causes and give you suggestions and accountability to get on track.
Working With Me
If you choose to work with me, I will work with you on 2 main areas. Firstly, changing your routines, habits and putting plans into place to reduce and eliminate alcohol from your life, one day at a time.
Alongside that we will work on the underlying issues that the alcohol was the solution for, whatever that may be for you.
I’m not going to lie; it takes hard work and commitment on your part. But as long as you are committed, I am committed.
I am flexible in my approach, so get in touch and we will work together to find the right solution for you.
(Please note I cannot support you with a medical detox, you will need to see your GP for this. I recommend all clients involve their GP if they are drinking to extremes as withdrawal can have serious side effects if not managed correctly.)
It’s not me with the issue
If you are here because someone else in your life has an issue with alcohol, I urge you to pass this page to them directly. Action really does need to come from the individual themselves.
But there are some things I can suggest to you too.
Firstly, you need to know that their issue is not a reflection on you or how much they love or value you.
You also need to know that you cannot solve this issue for them, and it is not your responsibility to try. This person is an adult and is responsible for their own choices and actions. As hard as this can be to accept, ultimately if they decide to drink themselves to death, that is their own decision.
If you would like support yourself, please get in touch and I will support you – but I cannot help you to fix someone else, that request needs to come from them.