Alcohol is not the problem, we are! 

This is the controversial post;the one that could alienate. But what the hell. I have read so many posts from sober bloggers, demonising alcohol and although I know I have a problem, it’s not alcohol’s fault. Alcohol in its myriad magical forms is merely a drug. It lacks consciousness; it doesn’t target, it doesn’t manipulate. It just is. It’s how we use or abuse that is the issue. I’ve heard the same thing said about so many things; Facebook, the internet, junk food, pornography. They are not the problem. We are the problem. We have choices, we can choose to destroy ourselves with alcohol or equally with cocaine, motorcycles, climbing mountains. I have seen friends die from alcohol abuse yet I never once blamed alcohol. Alcohol was merely their chosen suicide vehicle.

I never want to spend my life counting days since my last drink, floating in some no man’s land of denial, shame and desire. If I give up alcohol I have failed. I’ve lost control and I have lost something I love. No way. Alcohol is not the problem; it’s our shame, anxiety, excess, whatever. It’s rooted in the person not some neutral substance. Sure the way it’s so available, so acceptable doesn’t help but at the end of the day it’s a  choice. I can’t control my food intake, is food to blame? Clearly not.

If I do end up giving up alcohol then for me it means I have failed. Failed to control my intake of a substance I enjoy but which I allowed to dominate. If it’s harmful then I have a choice. But abstinence that’s a failure. It’s saying I can’t control an aspect of my life. It means a miserable future of counting bloody days like some sad endgame. Not for me. If I drink too much then I have to work on me. I’m the problem. I need to sort that. Giving up alcohol will not only deny me a pleasure but also signify a failure of will. For me alcohol is a drug, sure, but it is also something that I have allowed to be associated with times and events that mean it has taken on the appearance of being in control. Nonsense. I am the cognisant one. With thought, planning and resolve I can be in control. if I can’t succeed then I am at fault, not alcohol.

Someone needs to put the other point of view.



About dealingwithalcoholdependency

Semi retired professional working in education and social work. Exploring how I became alcohol dependent and hoping I can find a way to moderate rather than abstain. It may be a losing battle but reluctant at this stage to lose this constant companion.
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4 Responses to Alcohol is not the problem, we are! 

  1. habitdone says:

    I think its kind of a glass is half full or glass is half empty thing. You can approach this from either direction. If you view alcohol as a pleasure, that there is something good about it for you, if drunk in moderation, then not being able to moderate would definitely seem like a failure. Likewise, having to give it up completely because you can’t moderate would also seem like a failure. In other words, it’s something you want in your life if you can handle it. I think I can present the opposite view at this point. I have done so much research, so much lurking through these blogs, blogging myself, that I really believe I don’t like alcohol anymore. I don’t like that I feel dependent upon it to unwind, relax, to be social, etc. I hate that I am having a mother of all cravings right now and would desperately like some Chardonnay to tune out. And instead here I am blogging through it. I don’t like what it can do to my body nor to my brain. To me alcohol is bad. Therefore, I want to quit it or at least only be weak enough to have it in moderation. Therefore my failure is in not being able to abstain permanently, so every time I take a drink I feel like I am failing myself. Not drinking feels like success. I’m just not sure I’ll be able to maintain that all the time……just depends upon your perspective I suppose.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi and I read your blog entry from last night where you were dealing with those cravings and glad you came through OK.To be honest I’d had quite a bit to drink when I wrote this blog post (and nicely and strangely suprised that it isn’t a mess of words!). I was feeling angry with myself for drinking so much on a night where I was meant to be abstaining prior to a wedding today where I know I will overindulge. I was being a bit of an areshole last night but the one thing that alcohol does give me is it allows some deep seated feelings to show themselves. I just need to find a different way to that. Well done for last night.
      Jim x


  2. Hi Jim!
    The strange thing about a drug is that some people get addicted and others don’t. I didn’t choose to get addicted to alcohol when I first started to drink. The drug slowly changed my brain and now, it is hooked on it. As much as I tried, I simply couldn’t drink a moderate amount.


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