I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve heard that you have to hit rock bottom to stop drinking.
Or that if you didn’t hit rock bottom, your problems weren’t really all that bad to begin with.
I think that’s ludicrous.
Based on my experience and that of so many others who have shared their stories with me—it’s also far from the truth.
It didn’t take hitting rock bottom for me to realize I needed to stop drinking.
I wasn’t arrested for a DUI. There’s no mugshot of my tear-and-mascara streaked face that I need to live down. My husband didn’t threaten to leave me. My job wasn’t in jeopardy.
The experience that led me to say this is enough was embarrassing, but far from rock bottom.
So while I hadn’t experienced a rock bottom, there was enough going on in my life for me to take a long hard look at alcohol and determine if it really deserved a place in my life at all. The question was—how to do it? I didn’t want to go to a meeting when I didn’t really identify as an alcoholic. I didn’t have a tragic story to tell. Instead, it was a culmination of little misfortunes and an ever-increasing unease with where my life and my drinking were going.
Being the book nerd that I am, I dove into researching and discovering why alcohol had become such a force in my life. Did I need to stop drinking? Would I feel deprived if I didn’t drink? If I wasn’t an alcoholic, what was I? Could I be successful in my career if I didn’t drink? Why was moderation so hard anyhow? My list of questions kept growing.
Over a year of research led me to my decision.
I wasn’t white-knuckling it. No longer was my mind at war with itself. Quite the opposite was true! I actually came out of my office almost euphoric and excitedly announced to my husband that if he wanted to drink with me, tonight was the night as I was finished after that.
No rock bottom to stop drinking.
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