You and Drinking
Do you think alcohol is a problem in your marriage or family? Has it caused legal, health or money problems? Are you living with an alcoholic or are you the one with the problem?
You are definitely not alone. Recently actor Ben Affleck announced publicly he had completed rebab treatment for his long time drinking problem. Also, celebrities Bradley Cooper, Lindsay Lohan, Mel Gibson, Anthony Hopkins, Elton John, Steven Tyler, Eminem and Stephen King have publicly shared their battle with alcohol. Some have relapsed but all are honest about the damage done to their lives, families and careers.
Drinking is a common factor in many clients I see for counseling. Interestingly, most people come in to see me complaining mainly of other problems. Drinking is not usually mentioned until I ask about it. Then it is disclosed, but often minimized or dismissed. I believe many people are in denial of the effects of drinking on their personal lives. But it must be addressed and made a priority.
Communication issues are frequently mentioned along with alcohol. Texting inappropriate messages while drunk is a common occurrence and unfortunately these texts can’t be “unsent”; someone ends up being hurt. Someone may be arrested or get a DUI. Drinking too much may cause friends to become alienated. Family members are afraid to bring it up. Couples find it very hard to talk about, so they deal with it in silence.
Other negative impacts on relationships include becoming socially withdrawn, abnormal behavior, anger and violent outbursts, sexual problems or health issues. Drinking can be an expensive and time wasting habit. Sex lives suffer in many cases. Health can become a major problem over time and alcoholism often times progressively becomes a debilitating and devastating disease.
The hardest part for the drinker or the one living with the drinker is a feeling of helplessness. Maybe you can’t control your own or someone else’s drinking, which in turn exacerbates the feelings of loneliness and isolation. The first step is getting help and not feeling ashamed or embarrassed to ask for help.
No one can get better until they personally decide to do it themselves; you can’t force someone to get help, but you can start by communicating with them and expressing your concerns. Sometimes when a drinker hits “rock bottom”, they have an epiphany and realize that they are hurting themselves and everyone around them. It is important that everyone involved has hope and knows there is always a way to recovery.
If you or someone close to you needs help, please call us today and let us help find a way to get healthy, sober and live a fuller life. Call us today at 732.406.4422