Saturday, January 14, 2017

1/14/17 (Sun) Drinking autopilot

So last night I was going to bed and heard shouting from the neighbor's house.  They are super good friends of ours - great drinking buddies lol.  They had another couple over - really good friends of theirs.  I couldn't really hear very much and the other couple left pretty abruptly in an uber.  I am guessing, based on the tone of the voices, the few words I could hear and past experiences, our neighbor had too much to drink, got a little out of control, and someone got in an alcohol fueled argument.

This neighbor and I are a lot alike.  We both binge drink.  A difference is that he is recently retired and now drinks more days than not.  I usually only drink on the weekends.  He also smokes pot (legal in my state) while drinking while I do not.  He says it keeps him from drinking so much. His wife would disagree (her and I have talked about it).  I have shared with her my issues and how I can so relate to her husband.  I am not drinking daily, but neither was he when he was working.  I think him and I are on the same path, he is just further down the road.  Scary.

Anyway, I was telling my husband about it.  He said, "I just don't get it.  I don't understand why he keeps drinking when he has clearly had enough."

I said, "You are right. You don't get it. Neither does his wife. And neither does anyone else who doesn't have this disease.  I get it. I get telling myself that I am only going to have three and then after that 3rd, and my BAC getting high enough, I just can't/don't even think about it anymore.  It's not like I am thinking about it and knowing that I should stop and just tell myself - screw it - I'm going to keep drinking. Instead, those thoughts don't even enter my mind. It's so weird - I am just like on drinking autopilot. It took a long time, years, for me to realize that this is not something I can control, no matter how hard I try. And it's not my fault - my brain is wired differently. When my brain reaches a certain BAC level, I lose the ability to think rationally about how much I have drank and whether or not I should stop.  It is not in my control and no matter how hard I try, I can't do it because I am under the influence of a drug that it physically altering my brain - to the point that I couldn't have those rational thoughts even if I wanted to no matter how many promises I make to myself."

The second thing I get, that you don't, is the feeling that I can't get enough.  This happens when I am drunk.  It is kind of an end game feeling. Rational thought of how much I have drank and being on autopilot lead to this insatiable need to keep drinking once I am drunk.  This is a fairly new feeling I have developed. It is the "I know I have had too much, everyone else was done a long time ago, I know I am just going to bed right now, but I am going to go to the garage and guzzle one more beer or finish the wine in everyone else's glasses before I go to bed feeling."  This is absolute insanity. This one started scaring me. It doesn't happen very often (maybe once every few months), but more and more frequently - and used to be never.  I can't even explain this feeling - it is a need - it (I believe) - is part of the end of the road - the full on alcoholic (like my father who would go on week long bender where he would lose yet another teaching job and force me to go to yet another elementary school - I want to 8). This is why I can watch someone on the show Intervention holed up in a hotel room drinking all day and night with no one to judge them and almost, in a terrifying sort of a way, get it. Like I am watching someone destroy themselves, but can't look away because somewhere inside myself I know that could be me. I am not even close to that point, but the fact that I can even relate in some small way scares the shit out of me.  It is not rational thought.  It is irrational thought fueled by a disease and the presence of a mind altering drug. You are right, dear husband, you don't get it and never will bc you don't have this disease and don't judge him bc I do get it and I feel bad for him.

1 comment:

  1. I had more problems when I retired, too.
    I had all day to drink, nowhere to go, and so I did.
    Or I'd go to "lunch" by myself and then HH by myself.