in Other Resources / Psychology

Fri, 02 Jan 2004, 03:54

Technically, I am not quitting. I quit on New Years Day 2000, and haven't had as much as a sip of alcohol since then. Not-so-technically, I am quitting, of course. Not to drink is a very active decision, and a good one, at that. Just for example, here are some things, that will happen if you quit:

  • Your sleeping habits will return to pre-drinking days. Think you're sleeping great, today? Try to remember your deep and very satisfying slumbers, when you were a child. That's what's in store for you.
  • The bacterial layer in your mouth, esophagus, and stomach will regenerate, helping you to faster process food, and indirectly in weight-loss.
  • Speaking about weight-loss - not drinking alcohol is a great way to lose some pounds and keep 'em off.
  • Your brain will quickly (within six to ten weeks) readapt. Quicker thinking is an immediate benefit, but you will also be less prone to mood changes, anger, and your memory will improve. Not to mention, you will be more alert, less irritable, and always that notch above the competition when you need it.
  • Your organs will recover from a state of (in-)frequent intoxication. Your biggest organ, your skin, will look healthier in no time flat. Makes for great compliments, when you add the lost pounds.

And that's just a few of the gazillions of benefits, not drinking has on you, and your body. I could go for hours, without even mentioning the toll, alcoholic beverages take on your liver, kidneys, and heart.

Of course, sometimes we need a little help quitting. Keeping a diary is one of the things, that can help. So can talking to others, seeking and finding support, and making sure everyone knows, you're now an ex-drinker. And, if there has ever been a great way to do this, it's the modern world of micro-content publishing. There are lots of professional help groups and offers, if you want the additional advantage. Have a look at AlcoholMD, which - despite its less than convincing HTML design job (Any freelancers out there? Maybe you should make them an offer...?) - has a great collection of Alcohol related resources for both professionals and individuals. There is a free registration required, if you want to see the "professionals" section, and I am happy to report that since I signed up on the site quite some time ago, they never abused or even used my email address or other data.

Welcome to you new, improved, alcohol free life. You'll like it over here, I promise.

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Jan 2, 2004 1:14:49 PM
1 - don

I stopped drinking alcohol the first week of May '03. I've lost a TON of weight in the mean time - and my mind *feels* tons sharper than before!

You've got a real interesting blog going here!

Jan 3, 2004 7:00:07 AM

I stopped drinking (the last time) the first week of May also, but in 1979.

I lost tons of weight, I put tons of weight back on, I lost it again, etc. Currently I am in healthy and fit condition but it took a few years to get it right so i could sustain it.

I've had the same, or similar, experiences with sleeping, clarity of mind, relationships, working, LIFE. Once I stopped drinking and getting high I could experience LIFE firsthand and even make some changes in it, BUT I wasn't immune to it.

Depending upon how much damage alcohol has done to your body the mood swings can go away immediately or last for many years. There are lots of ways to deal with the severest of mood swings over long periods of time. That is one of the reasons it is important to live within a 24 hour period.

Jan 8, 2004 9:34:57 PM

I've stopped getting high but I still drink some. Still, you make it sound enticing. One thing I AM actively stopping is smoking cigarettes. Currently, I haven't had a smoke in five days... which is not saying much, and saying everything all at once.

Jan 20, 2004 9:52:55 AM
4 - Tim Mahoney

I am at home writing this because I was too hungover to go to work. My wife and I are drinking buddies. Someday very soon we will be able to say we quit drinking. It has to be very soon. We love each other too much to do this to each other.

Feb 24, 2004 5:17:06 PM
5 - Missdoofas

I have been a drinking for about24+ years. When you try to stop cold turkey can it cause seizures. I have had a couple experiences like this in a few years past and just recently. What can be done?

Feb 24, 2004 7:44:37 PM

Hi, Missdoofas, you should really go and see a doctor. You are right, quitting drinking after this many years can result in severe physical problems. Check in with your primary care physician, or if you don't have one, send me an email ([email protected]) and I will see what I can do for you in your neighborhood.

Mar 2, 2004 8:39:35 PM
7 - kyle

I've been sober for over 4 months now and I feel better about myself than I have in years. I'm realizing that my biggest problem is MYSELF. Alcohol allowed me to escape that reality. When I decided to drink, all bets were off... I no longer had control. For the past 4 months it's been a totally different story, I am forced to deal with myself on a daily basis without the security of knowing that in a few hours or days I would be on the next escape from myself.

Great things start to happen when you quit.

Apr 17, 2004 4:29:38 AM
8 - chris

I am ready to quit drinking but now im scared i will have a seizure is this true?

Apr 17, 2004 4:30:45 AM
9 - chris

I am ready to quit drinking but now im scared i will have a seizure is this true?

Apr 28, 2004 12:25:43 PM
10 - Tonie

I quit drinking a week ago and already feel the differnce when I'm at work and home I'm more patient with the children and I don't have to live with the guilt of my children seeing me in a differnt negitive way. So not only for the people that I love but my self and my life I glad to say that I'm happy to make this big decision to quit. I know that the only way to escape is to take a healthy vacation with yourself and the people you love.

May 6, 2004 6:00:47 AM
11 - Ernie

I am 46 and drank 6-12 beers nearly every night for 20 years. I quit drinking on 3/7/04. Sometimes I was a happy drunk, sometimes a very unpleasant drunk--especially toward my 10th beer. I quit because my wonderful wife decided I had insulted her for the last time and moved out. Yes, I initially quit to try and save my marriage, but now I see I have also quit for me. Waking up without a hangover is a wonderful experience in itself. But now I also sleep more soundly in the first place, I'm becoming much less moody, I look better, am more productive, and generally feel more alert and happy. I'm also seeing my wife almost daily and we're making steady progress. I still occasionally get "high", but by all accounts (and contrary to a school of AA thought) this experience appears to suit me. I recommend anyone who thinks they might have a drinking problem quit drinking and examine the difference for themselves. Unfortunately as with me, many quit drinking only AFTER their lives have become a mess. It takes different reasons for different people and you will know if and when it's time for you to put down your drink. If and when you're ready to quit, there's plenty of help waiting for your call.

May 6, 2004 9:53:24 AM
12 - Drew

Congrats, dude. Maybe you were just a heavy drinker and can still smoke pot. Alcoholism is a self-diagnosed disease for the most part, and I think that we should all do what we feel is best for ourselves - see what works and what doesn't. As someone who considers themselves an alcoholic, I know from experience that I can't smoke pot, because I do it alcoholically - all the time or not at all. Its just the way that I'm wired, and what convinced me that I'm an alcoholic in the first place - I can't do anything that affects me from the neck up in moderation. Period.

Anyway, it's inspiring to hear that you quit drinking, did it for yourself, and that its working out for you. Congrats, and thanks for sharing your story.

May 7, 2004 6:31:42 AM
13 - Ras

I am 55 years old and have been drinking for more than 30 years. I drink 6 to 10 beers per night. I never drink during the day but I start every evening around 5 to 6pm and drink steady until bedtime around 10pm. I tell myself that I'm not an alcoholic but just a heavy drinker. I just wish I could cut down on the amount I drink. I think that eventually it could harm my health. Anybody got any ideas?

May 7, 2004 7:04:29 AM
14 - Ernie

Thanks Drew. I forgot to mention a couple important things. My wife left once before, about three years ago. This was also because I'd get drunk and occasionally "pissy" with her long about my 10th beer. I thought "excessive" drinking was the problem. We patched things up, and she moved back in. I thought I could control my drinking--not drink so often and so much. Wrong. I was back to the same routine in short time. I simply cannot have a couple beers on the weekend--it's dry or swimming (and trouble) for me. I envy people who can actually "control" their drinking. Unfortunately and as is decided by some, alcohol doesn't "agree with me"--that's a simple statement which which pretty much says it all.

About smoking herb--I've always smoked in combination with drinking. I've just drank; but until recently, I've never just smoked. I must say I've found smoking minus the alcohol to be quite an uplifting experience for me--nothing like drinking--exactly the opposite in terms of mood and overall outcome. But that's just me--I am not pushing herb. I have spoken with others who like you have decided they cannot injest any "substance" whatsoever, period. The choice of what to consume or not is entirely different for everyone depending upon biology, psychology, etc. The only thing for sure is the great thumbs-up and respect due anybody who has a substance abuse problem and also the courage and determination to look it in the face. Bravo to anyone who is working to become a better person in general, no matter the hurdle's name.

I'm glad I found this blog. By writing initially, I not only wanted to share my experience but was thinking there might be somebody reading who has identified drinking as a problem for them but who for whatever reason has not taken the next obvious next step and made the decision to quit. I want to tell them it's not easy to give up those beers or margaritas or whatever, but YOU CAN DO IT IF YOU REALLY WANT. I am not a terribly religious person in the conventional sense at least, but I do know for sure we are all powerful creators. You and the God (or spirit force or whatever you want to call it) inside you have conspired, for better or worse, to create exactly who you are right now--be careful what you ask for, you WILL get it! If you wish to quit drinking, you can create that, too. Yes there will be times when you'll make yourself believe you can control your drinking "this time". Yes there will be times when you'll think you're in some kind of bind and the way out of it is to grab a 30 pack or whatever. But when you've really quit drinking you're going to feel wonderful--not only because you will be free from the physical and emotional effects of the actual drinking plus the seemingly inevitable negative aftermath of sadness and regrets; but you'll also feel great about yourself for being in control of your life again, instead of handing your steering wheel to alcohol. But whatever it takes for you to make that leap is going to be whatever it takes--some people don't have to lose much except some time, while others lose everything including families, homes and jobs. One big mistake is looking at a drunk who's obviously losing and thinking "No, that's not me!" when the reality is if you're an alcoholic it could very well already be or someday be you.

I hope I have been of use to someone. The very best to you all.

Jun 3, 2004 8:23:21 AM
15 - Dale

I quit drinking two days ago, someone please tell me when the DT's stop; it's driving me NUTS!

Jun 6, 2004 10:06:40 PM

I quit drinking 24 months ago as of next week. I wasn't a heavy drinker. I drank about 3 beers a night on average with dinner and maybe 5 or six on fridays or saturdays.

I quit as an attempt to save my marriage. It helped, but it wasn't enough. I filed for divorce and have been divorced now for 14 months.

If I can quit drinking while going through the most stressful time of my life. You can quit too.

jeffd

Jun 7, 2004 10:34:12 AM
17 - Steve T

Hey there, this is a great blog, i've been hunting around for testimonials all day after a 3 day bender, of which today wasn't included, and I didn't go to work because of my hangover. I've been doing that a lot lately.. It's fair to say that the booze has taken hold of me bigstyle. I'm in my early 20's, have been on the constant piss for about 4 years now, and although I no longer drink every day, when i do get on it at the weekends, I really damage myself and get into trouble. I feel the regret so much, and my lovely girlfriend has to be subjected to me just disappearing for days on end while i'm lost in the vortex of alcohol abuse. I'm surprised she's still with me to be honest, and it's a big part of the reasons that I want quit too.

I *really* want to quit drinking, but like lots of you have admitted, I too cannot moderate it - it has to be 100% over.

The problem that I think I will face, is that my social life almost requires me to be a drinker. No, it *does* require it, which is sad, but as I live in London and work in a very "drinky" part of I.T, I think making the choice to quit drinking will be a life-changing event socially. How has your decision to quit affected your social lives? Can you go into a pub on a friday night with all your friends, while they drink mega amounts, and you stick to the lemonade? Sounds tricky. I'd really like to hear how you managed with keeping busy when you have spare time - or does the fact that your mind heals, you have a sudden influx of creativity and you just come up with cool activities? "Normal" stuff I think it could be referred to :)

It's very interesting to read all the benefits that you are all obviously reaping, and they will serve as a good target for me.

Anyway, sounds like you are all sorted out! Well done.

Jun 8, 2004 5:47:31 AM
18 - gaspipe

34,M,
i have been a heavy drinker for the past 16 years..i quit 2 days ago. here is what im experiencing:

1. sweating...i wake up and my t shirt is soaked
2. hard to sleep..im restless in bed, takes ahile to get to sleep.
3. visions....a very wierd feeling..i guess it would be called a siezure...they last only seconds, but i have had them in my sleep as well as when im awake...so far i have had 5 today.

Jun 10, 2004 8:46:58 AM
19 - Gordon

I have been attempting to quit drinking for the last two months. Thats when my girlfriend left me. At the time I was glad, I didn't think we had a very good relationship and really couldn't stand the nagging, quit smoking, quit drinking so much etc. A month ago I was pulled over and recieved a DWAI. I am a huge proponet of not driving after drinking so this was way out of character for me, but it really drove in the point. I have always liked to imbibe, but it wasn't until I quit smoking pot for a year ( I now smoke again) that I became a real drinker. I typically drink a half a quart of whiskey every night and have been doing that for about four years straight. Maybe less than a week sober in that whole time. To drink that much is horrible, but it is easy to forget when that drinking time rolls around again (aprxmtly 5pm every night). My drinks, if they were poured from a shot glass, which they never were, were probably 3-4 shots per drink. Needless to say I would be smashed within an hour of starting to consume. I like to drink but hate how it has taken control of my life. I have days of feeling completely hopeless and now that my girlfriend is gone I also feel very lonely and depressed. I feel like I am in the bottom of a well with no light or sound of any prospective savior to throw me a rope. The last two months I have drank less than anytime in the last four years, but I still find trigers that drive me back to the bottle. I so much want to be better. I so much want comfort from a loved one. The only way I will ever achieve any of this is by dropping the habit and changing my lifestyle. Problem is I have been using one drug or another for the last 26 years almost daily. Besides the drinking I have weened myself off of everything else, but the drinking has scared me the most. Im glad I found this site. Im glad that I can write about what is happening to me in a forum where there are others like myself. I could really use the support and will visit this site regularly. Thank you everyone.

Jun 10, 2004 9:08:40 AM

I'm 23 years old and I am trying to quit drinking, but I always find some reason to drink another beer. I noticed I am gaining weight. I used to be 125. Now I am 150. I drink about 6 beers on average if not every night then every other. I also noticed my drinking is becoming more and more known by others around me. I think I drink do to stress. Being on my own and taking care of everything myself, well, it causes so much stress and I get pissed off from having to do it all by myself. I actually get jealous of those who have it easier then I do. The one good thing I have going for me is my girlfriend. But, for some reason she does not rid my problems away. Every night, after work, I drink. I actually find ways to rush back to my apartment to sit and drink. Smoke my cigarettes and play my playstation all by myself. I actually crave the relaxed feeling that it brings to me. Then the next day I do it all over again. Sometimes 6 sometimes 8, it just all depends how pissed off or upset I was that day. Anyways, its been on my mind to quit. I wish for it, but I think I may just never stop because its my only known way to get out of stress. Its interesting to read all of these stories. Mood swings and stuff. I really feel that I am beginning to become that 20 year drinker. All and all, I can say that reading these stories has inspired me a little. BUT the stress is still here, and I know of only one way to relax. That is to drink. Any body have any other ways to de-stress???? Thanks for sharing your stories.

Jun 10, 2004 11:13:13 AM
21 - Gordon

To J squared:
I used to blame my drinking on stress and maybe there was something to that, but the fact is that drinking causes more stress than it relieves. Im 37 and still play my playstation. I don't have any desire to play unless I am drunk but you can see that drinking and drugging is like being on a treadmill. You think your moving but you actually stay in the same place as long as your using. As for your girlfriend, if you keep it up she won't be there forever. I have lost more than one girlfriend to what I called partying and if you find one that drinks as much as you, look out. That is a powder keg thats going to explode before you know it. Its probably easier to quit drinking now than it will be when your my age. I say go for it, stick with it and beat it now. Good luck

Jun 10, 2004 11:14:07 AM
22 - Gordon

To J squared:
I used to blame my drinking on stress and maybe there was something to that, but the fact is that drinking causes more stress than it relieves. Im 37 and still play my playstation. I don't have any desire to play unless I am drunk but you can see that drinking and drugging is like being on a treadmill. You think your moving but you actually stay in the same place as long as your using. As for your girlfriend, if you keep it up she won't be there forever. I have lost more than one girlfriend to what I called partying and if you find one that drinks as much as you, look out. That is a powder keg thats going to explode before you know it. Its probably easier to quit drinking now than it will be when your my age. I say go for it, stick with it and beat it now. Good luck

Jun 10, 2004 12:17:10 PM

Just quit, you guys. It will save your lives. Try AA even if the God thing totally turns you off. You go there to hear stories and someone's story will be just like yours but they'll be there to tell you the unhappy ending you can actually keep from happening. Do it. You deserve better.

Jun 14, 2004 9:02:23 AM
24 - gaspipe

ok so i started drinking again. im going to try to stop M-F...and just drink on weekends...

Jun 14, 2004 9:02:26 AM
25 - gaspipe

ok so i started drinking again. im going to try to stop M-F...and just drink on weekends...