Overcoming Alcohol Addiction: How to Stop Drinking on Your Own

Deciding to Quit Drinking

Giving up alcohol is not easy, especially for someone who is a heavy drinker. The first step in the recovery from alcoholism is recognizing that there is a problem. The next step is figuring out how to overcome the dependence on alcoholic drinks. What is the best way to quit drinking? Many people with a drinking problem are not comfortable going to a support group such as Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). Not everyone can afford professional help at an expensive rehab clinic. But there are alternative ways of giving up alcohol. It is possible to quit drinking alcohol, quietly, in the dignity of your own home. Some simple strategies can help a recovering alcoholic beat the bottle without spending a lot of money.

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Social Drinking versus Alcoholism: How to Tell the Difference

group of people raising glasses with wineAccording to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Association, there are nearly 140 million people in the United States who consume alcoholic beverages. Of these, about 17 million are heavy drinkers and have a problem with abuse. Excessive intake of alcoholic drinks is associated with a number of serious medical problems, including liver and brain damage, heart disease, and complications with the fetus in pregnant women. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that there are approximately 88,000 alcohol-related deaths in America each year. Binge drinkers, underage drinkers, and heavy drinkers are at highest risk.

People who drink often do not know whether they are social drinkers or there is a need for alcohol cessation. Some of the warning signs of dependence on alcoholic drinks are when a person:

  • begins to skip exercising
  • neglects to eat a healthy diet
  • drinks more than anyone in their family or social circle
  • cannot have fun without alcohol
  • needs a progressively greater number of drinks to feel high
  • misses important deadlines at school or work
  • does not meet social obligations
  • feels uncomfortable at the thought of not having access to alcohol
  • often ends up drinking more than intended
  • starts drinking in the morning
  • starts drinking alone
  • relies on alcohol as a form of stress relief
  • needs more drinks to feel high
  • has escalated the number of drinks since first starting to drink
  • suffers blackouts after drinking sessions

Admitting the Problem: The First Step in Alcoholism Recovery

The hardest part of getting sober is not the actual quitting, or even the withdrawal symptoms during rehab, it’s admitting there is a problem and making an attempt to do something about it. For many people who are struggling with alcohol abuse, denial is a substantial part of the addiction. Breaking out of this self-deception is the key to recovery. Some people hit rock bottom and get into financial and legal difficulties before they accept they have a problem. Others are lucky enough to realize they have an addiction before they reach a low point.

Is it simply social drinking or is it a dependency on alcoholic beverages? If someone drinks one light beer every day, is it alcoholism? Or is someone who binge drinks a few times a year at greater risk of dependency? Unfortunately, there is no black and white answer to this question. There is a large gray area between being a full-blown alcoholic and being well on the way to becoming one. The National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism recommends limiting alcohol use to 7-14 drinks per week in men and women, respectively. Some of the signs that there is a serious problem with the abuse of alcoholic drinks include:

  • Constantly thinking about alcoholism and wondering if there is a problem
  • Сomparing one’s drinking patterns to others
  • Taking online tests to find out whether there is a dependency

The one important question everyone must ask themselves is: Can I imagine life without alcohol? If the answer is no, it signals a problem.

How to Quit Alcohol: Simple Habits to Stop Drinking

Multiracial group during aerobics classQuitting alcohol does not have to involve an inpatient stay at a private clinic or endless sessions with a support group. For the majority of moderate drinkers, some simple changes in habits and lifestyle can help cut down the use of alcoholic beverages.

  • Do not make alcohol a major part of social life
  • Tell family and friends of the intent to reduce or quit drinking
  • Avoid going to places where it is habitual to drink (for example, bars, restaurants)
  • Socialize without alcohol, such as at group exercise classes or team sports
  • Avoid hanging out with friends or colleagues who are heavy drinkers
  • Identify triggers for alcohol use and develop strategies to cope
  • Learn relaxation techniques to deal with stress
  • Stop stocking alcoholic drinks at home
  • Talk to a trusted friend or family member when there is an urge to drink

Simple Techniques to Quit Drinking Without AA

Alcoholism is a disease and overcoming it takes a steadfast determination. Heavy drinkers develop a chemical dependence on alcoholic drinks which have an effect on the neurotransmitters in the brain. When there is excessive use of alcoholic beverages, over time, the brain is falsely lead to believe that it is not possible to survive without alcohol.

There is no one best way to stop drinking. Different strategies work for different people. However, some simple techniques can help people to quit drinking without AA or professional help. The four-step technique described below is an easy way to stop drinking.

  • Committing to abstinence:  Once a person understands that alcohol is not needed to survive, they need to make a commitment to quit for good. It is not unusual to feel angry, depressed, panicky, or uneasy when this decision is first made. For the first few days of abstinence, rest and sleep may be difficult to come by. In habitual drinkers, the brain develops a chemical dependency and must be rewired to operate without alcohol. Repeating the words “I will not drink again” and “I do not need alcoholic drinks to survive” can be helpful.
  • Objectifying the cravings:  When there is a craving, instead of pouring out a drink, the person attempting recovery should objectify the feeling. This can be achieved by repeating the words “my booze brain wants a drink but my body doesn’t need it.” The neurons in the brain become used to receiving the buzz from alcoholic beverages. It takes some time for them to calm down and return to a normal state. During this timeframe, it is important for the recovering alcoholic to divert the mind when there is the urge to reach for a beer or a glass of wine.
  • Responding to urges:  When someone is trying to quit drinking without Alcoholics Anonymous or other help, it is critical to respond to urges with a firm no. The key is to gain control of the brain instead of giving in. When friends offer a drink, respond with “No thanks, I’ve stopped drinking.” Over time, the number of urges reduce as the brain stops seeking drinks. It is a good idea for the recovering alcoholic to stay away from heavy drinkers in the social circle during this time.
  • Enjoying recovery from dependence:  For a person trying to overcome alcoholism, learning to enjoy life without the chemical buzz can be a challenge. It is vital not to sit at home and focus on how to quit drinking alcohol. The human brain needs to remain occupied. It is a good idea to rediscover forgotten hobbies, reignite lost friendships, and reinvest in getting healthier.

How to Stop Drinking Alcohol Safely

adult daughter supports elderly mother When a person quits cold turkey, the first 72 hours of abstinence from alcohol are the toughest. This is the most difficult part of recovery as the body tries to reestablish a chemical balance. This period of acute withdrawal can be unpleasant. Some people, especially heavy drinkers and people who have been drinking for a long time, require professional help to get through this phase of rehab.

It is not unusual to feel anxious, restless, excited, or shaky when quitting. For severe symptoms, such as high blood pressure, tremors, seizures, and signs suggestive of delirium tremens, it is imperative to seek medical attention. To safely detox at home, it is a good idea to enlist the support of family and friends and consider taking some time off work. It is also important at this time to focus on a balanced healthy diet and stay well hydrated.

Find the Help You Need

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If you or someone you love is struggling with an addiction to alcohol, call our free helpline (888)-459-5511 for more information on quitting drinking. Advisors are available to answer your questions, provide information about how to quit alcoholism, and guide you towards the help you need to remain sober. Calls are always confidential, private, and secure.

Overcoming Alcohol Addiction: How to Stop Drinking on Your Own

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Comments 65

  • I’m 48, a female going through menopause and my body is changing and freaking me out. I’m also an alcoholic since my teen years. I lost my brother tragically 6 years ago and his alcoholism contributed to his death. I didn’t handle it well and ended up hospitalized for the 3rd time in my life. I have battled addiction and depression and severe anxiety since my teenage years. AA hasn’t worked for me due to my social anxiety and PTSD due to being raped at 16 and then an 11 year relationship with an abusive boyfriend. I’m so scared. My dad is 80 and mom turning 77 tomorrow and I lost my older brother so I will soon be alone with no money or credit or healthcare. I’m religious, the only thing that keeps me from tapping outbut im scared to death of ending up homeless and alone. I promised God I would never kill myself or try to again, I’ve been grooming dogs for 30 years now, I still love it, I love my dogs but it’s getting so hard with sciatica in my back plus arthritis and arthritis in my scissoring hand and carpal tunnel also in my right hand. I struggle to continue the job I love, it’s the one area of my life I can do with confidence and I see it slipping away. Now I drink to stop both my physical and mental pain and don’t know how to stop and wonder if I can even handle getting better. I also have hep c, I’m so scared. I’m a good person, very loving and giving. I probably gave too much in my life just to the wrong people. I need some hope. My precious dog Jelly Bean was diagnosed with bone cancer last year and given 4 to 6 months, I had her blessed at my church and she’s still here, I believe God is helping her and me but I know I will lose her in the near future which also scares me. Damn, I’m sorry, I don’t want to complain after so many blessings, I just want someone to tell me I can get over my disease of addiction without Aa or being comitted as that’s not an option and it didn’t cure me the last 4 times anyways!?

    • Hi Dee,

      I read your message tonight and I hope you’re ok. I’m praying for you and for your situation.

    • Hang in there I know the feeling I had to quit my job April 10th and I just don’t seem to be able to find work and I’ve got osteoarthritis fibromyalgia I’ve got severe panic attacks anxiety insomnia and I’ve already had two Social Security denials

    • HI Dee. I just read your message while seeking some insight for my own addiction issues. I can understand how scared you are and that your message is a cry for help. So, for what its worth, here is what I know is true for me. Everyone has their issues and no one is perfect and the most important thing in overcoming emotional and physical issues in our lives is to be able to truly love ourselves. Referring to your statement “I’m a good person, very loving and giving. I probably gave too much in my life just to the wrong people.” Learn how to give that love to yourself which is easy to say but requires work, part of which is forgiveness of yourself and others. Nobody beats ourselves up better than us. And a good place to start is with Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Your life. it is about the mind/body connection and how our thoughts impact on our bodies. It is a book that has really helped me. Be well.

    • I just pray for you that no matter what you choose the right choice in the end no matter how hard it is! I pray that you find a way out of this hard time and make ends meet! God is here for you and anything is possible! Make this next half of your life the best and give yourself a great and happy life you deserve!

    • You can will and are being healed. Please keep in mind f.e.a.r. is a venom. The words false evidence appearing real are in that word. Be thankful and know f.a.i.th. is the anti venom, full assurance in the heart. Surround yourself with gentle and pure people and this will protect your soft, big, heart as well. I am praying fervently for you my Sister!

  • I have tried many times to give up drinking.,even though over the years it has got me in some difficult situations.I am 63 years old and my drinking began after my parents split up.I was brought up by my dad bless him but he was not sure what to do with a rebellious teenage daughter.Luckily I never got into any sort of trouble but drinking has affected my life.I think nothing of it to drink a bottle of wine a night.I desperately want to stop but I do not feel comfortable going to AA as I live in a very small town.I have decided today’s the day to stop.Has anyone got any tips on how to succeed.Thankyou

  • AA has a lot to offer when it comes to having steps and structure to stop. Does that mean you have to go? No but read the big book and try putting the steps into your life that fits you. It’s scary but the alternative is worst. I know. I was in AA for years and started drinking again. Not that AA doesn’t work, it does. Just isn’t what I want. My body is done but the brain isn’t. I chose everyday, just that day, to tell the brain to take a freaking vacation from drinking so the body can recover? Sounds stupid but you find what works one day, one minute, or one second at a time for you. Even if you drink just keep trying every day.

  • Hello, my name is Ann and I
    Drink 2 bottles a night I tell
    Myself that it helps me sleep. And it does but if I don’t drink I can’t sleep.
    I know I should stop but I can’t. I can go a day without it. But the thought of not having it or having it in the house freaks me out if it’s here and I don’t want to drink I am ok because I know it in my house. My husband hates it and I told him I would try to quit but I can’t get it out of my mind. I am 49 and a mamaw of 2 and a new one on the way and I know my son hates it to. I just wish I could walk away from it .

    • I can relate to you. We are the same age and I am also a mother. It’s hard because many times I have decided to quit and then I see people drinking in a movie or show and think “See, it’s totally normal. What’s the issue?” I’m not at the stage where I skip workouts or miss appointments. I guess I’m a “high functioning alcoholic” but my kids hate the smell of wine and beer and I am ashamed of myself because I drink every night.

    • Dont do like that

  • You seem like a good person and you must be very stong to go through so many difficult times and yet remain positive. I am not one to say if alcoholism can be overcome, as i am struggling myself, but I do believe it is possible. I know God will be watching over you and helping you to find the right path for the rest of your life. Just remember you deserve good. God Bless you.

  • Alcohol is terrible. I wish someone warned me.

  • I think that what we have to do is taper down slowly in order to quit. Don’t want those nasty side effects when you quit cold turkey.

    • I got very sick when I was detoxing. The withdrawals were horrible. I almost went to the ER it was so bad. I ended up calling a mobile IV service to come pump me up with fluids and vitamins. It helped a lot but I couldn’t sleep at all that night and was hallucinating. It was horrible. I started drinking since then and want to stop so bad. I will have to go to a detox center the next time so I’m with a medical professional.

  • I suffer from anxiety and insomnia. I literally chug a full bottle of wine (no liquor, no beer) in 2 minutes…. personal best of 30 seconds…. this has only gone on for a few months or so. I’m not religious so AA turns me off. I just want to quit. It’s becoming a problem. Anyone else with this issue please reply to me. Maybe we can rely on each other.

    • I can relate. I can’t drink hard liquor of any kind but I seem to be able to drink a high volume of beer or wine. It’s horrible. I only drink at night, but life without being buzzed at the end of the day seems so BORING and HARSH. My life has been on the harsh side for many years now and I recognize that drinking gives me a kind of mini vacation each night.

      • Exactly how I am. I only drink at night and never leave home. I didn’t drink for a few days back in March and I felt so much better. Not groggy in the morning. Waking up on time. I’m a type 2 diabetic and my glucose readings were great those 4 days. But it only lasted 4 days (it was surprisingly easy too). I need to quit. I want to quit. I’m tired of it. There’s nothing good about alcohol. There’s a saying; “Go to one AA meeting and you’ll hear your story.” I went to AA meetings every day for a month straight several years ago. It did nothing for me and I never liked speaking. My family has a long line of alcoholics. I grew up around it. And unfortunately I have a very addictive personality.

        • Hi Steve, I have also gone without a drink for a week. I’ve done this twice. I had no withdrawals and felt so proud and happy. I don’t know why I start drinking again, but I do. I have a liver disease, and I still drink despite it. I lie to my doctor about how much I drink. I am ashamed. I have decided to take one day at a time and see how I do. Wish me luck.

      • I feel the same way! I only drink at night. I feel it’s the only time I’m not stressed. Like you said mini vacation.

      • Exactly my situation, Heather. I’ve never been in any trouble, had an accident, missed work or other activities I enjoy and only drink at night, but it’s every night and I can pretty much drink an entire bottle of wine. I’m not happy in my marriage and it offers an escape.

      • Heather and others, it’s helpful to hear your stories to try to understand my own. Here goes.
        I’m over 50 and have 40 years of beer drinking which I have enjoyed and still do. It starts as social drinking each day but progresses to drinking maybe a 6’er alone at home later. I don’t really get drunk since it’s like 1 beer an hour. Yes it keeps me up late and is a mini-vacation, which I totally deserve. And it has begun to cut into my normal life lately, like missing exercise and sleeping late on gorgeous weekends. So I’m concerned enough to explore the issue on the internet today.
        I quit once for a few months and found it was easy for me (club soda with lime instead, save lots of $$), if properly motivated. I was motivated back then due to my failing relationship (didn’t work), but I’m not motivated anymore. Yet.
        AA was ok for me – I thought they were really nice folks – but I don’t want to go and share because I think I would be a bad influence on them. I like drinking and still do it, but I am getting concerned about the trend.
        I’m not one to post online (prefer to read others) but this seemed important. Take care of yourself, I guess. I’ll do the same. Cheers.

    • Hey Jay. I have similar issues. Would you like to fight this battle together?

    • Feeling the same, here if you still want a friend.

  • I have been an alcoholic for 10 years now. I’m finally starting to admit that it’s a problem. My son is 15 and has been complaining about my addiction lately. I have to quit for him. I’m just really scared of the side effects. I don’t want to go to AA, I want to quit on my own. Any tips?? Much appreciated

    • I have heard of Vivitrol, a medication used to help quit drinking, has been successful with alcoholism. I’m waiting to get my health insurance so I can get it. I hope this helps anyone else out there.

    • Life without alcohol is so much better:after a dry month my whole outlook
      has changed for the better and abstention is all I’ve done.Just try quitting for a month from now,Tanya.

      • Hi Colin,. My name is Peggy and I’m an alcoholic. This is the first time I have ever written this down. I am 61 and will be married 40 years this June. If a person saw me they would never think that I drink so much. I am a Personal Trainer and have a lot of clients. In the past few years I am slowly losing interest in fitness. I’ve gained weight and feel ashamed. When I’m home in the evening I always have a glass of wine or a beer in my hand. On weekends I sleep late. I still love to cook and feed people, but I’ve gotten lazy about my housework. I was diagnosed with a liver disease a few years ago. I lie to my doctor about how much alcohol I consume per week. Despite the fact that I have liver problems, my lab reports are now normal because of my meds. Because of that, I have continued to drink. For the last 3 weeks I’ve gone to work with a hangover. That’s a first. I had 2 glasses of whiskey last night and didn’t feel well this morning. Duh. I am so sick of this. I have gone without alcohol several times. I would stay off for about a week. I felt proud. I drank flavored water. It was easy and I felt proud. I don’t know why I start up again. I have a supportive husband and I have admitted to him about my battle., but I drink in front of him and he doesn’t say anything about it. He doesn’t drink a lot now, but has in the past and I think he feels like he has no right to judge me. I have decided to take one day at a time without alcohol. I will take one day at a time to work on my fitness. These hangover Monday’s are an eye opener.

  • I tried cutting back in 2018, did dry January in 2019 and promised myself I would stay within the safe drinking guidelines from then on. That didn’t quite work as I planned and I got back up to 3 or 4 a night and day drinking on weekends. I decided it was time to just quit for good yesterday. I have much better things to do with my time, my money and my life. Dry January was a great trial run so I know I can do it and I know I will feel better for it.

  • Mom of two here, I have severe anxiety and use alcohol to self medicate to sleep. In the last 7 years since my son has been born it’s been hard. I never drank in college or anything. As soon as my kids were born and I started to sooth myself at night and have a glass. When one turned to two and two to three or more I knew there was an issue. I’ve gained weight because it’s right at night before bed and my eating habits aren’t the greatest. I miss my life before I turned to alcohol for sleep / a relief of depression/anxiety. I’m trying to fix the problem before it becomes a “day thing” instead of just a “night thing”

  • AA is non religious. It helped support me. People will make suggestions to you but just follow your heart to what feels right. Just for one day, try not to drink and try a meeting, try different kinds of meetings.

  • I am an alcoholic. I have been drinking daily for 20 years. I am currently drinking 2 bottles of wine a day, sometimes a few beers after that. Starting today will make a concerted effort to taper off – doctor’s advice. Suggestions will be appreciated.

  • My child is starting to drink and she’s turning 13 this year…..what do I do with helping without her or me getting in trouble with the law?

  • I am a mom of 2. Started drinking in my teens. to fit in. to rebel. when pregnant with my kids i had no problem with not drinking. but otherwise i know i drink an unhealthy amount for a long time. Started out with just beer. When a 12 pack became not enough i started doing shots of anything, whiskey, rum and drinking beer to get a buzz. it’s made me lose jobs, relationships with family, and now that my kids are older they’re expressing how much they hate my drinking. If not for myself I need to quit for them. The only days I don’t drink is if I’m too hungover to consider it. As ready as I am to quit I am scared of withdrawal symptoms. My anxiety is very bad. It’s not an option for any inpatient treatment. And I dont feel comfortable going to a meeting or support group. Has anyone ever successfully quit on their own? And how did you handle the withdrawls?

  • kate, quitting doesn’t necessarily mean withdrawals. I had a friend who was a heavy drinker for years and he quit without symptoms. my doctor told me to taper off by 1 drink a day until I get to 2. then stay at 2 for a week, go to 1 for a week then stop. he said this will avoid any symptoms.

  • Hi my name is Louis I been drinking alcohol and abusing substances since I’m 15. Through out the years it lead me to party hard and do all sorts of drugs that later lead to depression, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. I can go a week without drinking and all the sudden one day I get extremely wasted and violent. Yesterday afternoon after happy hour with my girlfriend and partner I got mad (don’t remember why) I went off and screamed and verbally abused her. I went home destroyed the tv her phone our surfboards. This is the second tv I break and 4 th time I black out and destroy everything around. I have decided to stop drinking today I’m 35 yrs old I have hurt the person I love the most in my life and I don’t think she will ever want to fix things and work things out. We had big plans my 2 toodlers spend a lot of time with her since they stay over she’s an amazing step mother and amazing person that deserves the best.

  • I started drinking heavily about 2 years ago and now although I I can’t seem to stop no matter how hard I try. It started with a nasty riding accident. Tore ligament in my ankle and cracked 3 ribs.. Bedridden for two weeks. Had to crawl across the floor to get to the bathroom and had no food in the house. Had moved to a new town and didn’t know anyone had started making friends. I told them what happened and the condition I was in. I asked for help. No one came to see me or bring me food etc. I became pretty depressed and after that I lost interest in making so called “friends”. After 2 months I was able to hobble around to go the grocery market and started picking up wine. After 6 months I finally started getting better and could start working out again. Then I pulled my achilles tendon and groin. Was alone and back in bed again. Once I was able to get myself to the store I began buying more wine than food. I didn’t drink to get high. It kept the lonelyness at bay. Alcohol became a close friend. Yes Ive tried getting out and meeting people but they are too busy with work and family. A job would help but my injuries took me out for nearly a year. I haven’t been able to get a job even though I’ve been trying to get one. Anything. I’ll stock shelves I don’t care. I’ll be a cashier. I keep getting told Im over qualified.
    I live alone. I wish I had a dog. Horses and dogs have always been in my life. When I was looking at apartments none of them allowed dogs, iIve offered to volunteer at animal but no one calls me back. I tried living in a shared houses but people either robbed me blind or would into their bedrooms and shut the door. I’ve tried to get back to riding but the stables that offer lessons don’t have school horses.

    I need to stop drinking so much. I know I need to stop or things will only get worse. Like liver failure or some kind of cancer.

    But still It feels like Im cursed and have given up trying. It doesn’t seem to do any good. So now I just drink more and more. Im up to a bottle of wine a day. I started about 4 pm because night will be coming soon and I will be by myself in an empty house. Now days it seems like people don’t know how to have real friendships means. They know how to keep their noses buried in their cell phones though. And they know now to live on facebook with their 275 “friends”.

    I decided to finish my degree in psychology through an online university. I was getting straight A’s. But the lonelyness is crushing. Im losing my motivation and stopped caring. Drinking isn’t ruining my life. Life is ruining my life. This isn’t a pity party. I don’t feel sorry for myself. I keep telling myself things will get better. They don’t. You know the saying “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and getting the same result”. I must be insane. The only reason I want to stop is because I’d like to look in the mirror and not think “Your pathetic” Has anyone been where I am? Do people at do more than just meet at AA meetings? Do they know how to build and maintain real friend relationships? Has anyone out there there made true friendships through AA? Im reaching out to know how one gets through this from someone who has actually been where I am now.

    • Aa is a good community where you can make real friends. I think it’s worth a shot. All kinds go and if you are open they most likely will be too.

  • I’m glad to be able to read everyone’s comments(though I’m sorry other people are going through this). I feel less alone now at least. I have been drinking a lot more lately to help with stress…however I end up just getting more upset about things in my life when I drink, so it is not helping. I’m going to do my best to quit today. I’ve tried so many times so it seems impossible. I’ve hit my rock bottom though, so am hoping that’ll be the push I need. Also, I’m so tired of having a hangover on a daily basis.

  • I’m a 30 year old Alcoholic female. It started 2 years ago after my first and only pregnancy ended in a septic miscarriage at 16 weeks. Up until the last week, my pregnancy was going great. During my 15th week of pregnancy I sustained an infection which had quickly spread throughout my whole body. My blood had become contaminated with bacteria and my water had broke. The hospital I went to for help denied I was miscarrying and sent me home. They assured me that I was going to be ok and I was just being a nervous first time mother. I ended up passing my baby 2 days later into the toilet. the hospital knew I was septic during that time but didn’t seem to care. I had a D&C done a few days later to remove placental remains which caused me to go into septic shock and respiratory failure. I had severe hemorrhaging and my blood wouldn’t coagulate. I lost 80% of my blood before the doctors could stop the bleeding. I needed a blood transfusion and woke up on a ventilator because I couldn’t breath on my own. A couple weeks later I began bleeding out again and needed an emergency hysterectomy. This was my only experience of being pregnant and the closest experience I’ll ever have of being a mother. I had contacted several lawyers who said that there was no malpractice. My 2 year statute of limitations ended in January and I’ve been spiraling out of control since then. I don’t have access to mental treatment so been using vodka to self medicate. It’s gotten bad, I drink up to a liter of vodka a day and my body goes through severe withdraw within a few hours of not consuming alcohol. I’m very scared and don’t know where to turn. I fear I’m going to end up dying if I don’t get help soon. I’ve recently quit my job due to depression and anxiety and end up sleeping all day with a bottle of vodka on my side. I finally reached out to a good friend of mine who is going to help me get the help I need. Wish me luck! I’m right there with all of y’all <3

  • Hi I’m Jon. I am struggling to stay sober. I am a binge drinker- the hard stuff. I go a week sometimes two without drinking, but will find a reason to drink a pint a night for 2-3 days- feel like manure and swear drinking off again. It is having negative impact on my marriage. My wife has not drunk anything in a couple of years. I have wrecked 2 vehicles in the past 1.5 years getting a DWI.09- in first wreck. I am reaching out in hopes of finding an outlet. AA is great, but live in rural unpopulated area with few meetings. I hope this will help me and others will come here agsin

  • After waking up hungover and not remembering much of what happened last night, I want more than anything to stop drinking. It’s been going on for years. I hide it from absolutely everyone, including my husband who has no idea how much I drink. I’m ashamed, I’m embarrassed, I’m so mad at myself. I drink every night and although I don’t start until “happy hour”, I think about alcohol constantly. I hate the hold it has on me. I have survived the loss of my daughter – I am strong. Why can’t I beat this dam addiction???

  • I started drinking every night 4 years ago. I used to only drink socially on weekends. I moved to a small town for work, just myself and my daughter. No other family around. After my girl goes to bed I pull out a bottle. Whiskey is my choice. I drink to help me sleep and out of boredom. I like the buzz I get. I can drink a 40 in 2 days. I’m getting tired of it, I am drinking more and more just to get that buzz. Withdrawal freaks me out. I’m a high functioning alcoholic, I dont want to stop drinking, I just want to be able to restrict my drinking to the weekends because I’m worried about my health. I’m finding that marijuana helps, but it hasn’t curbed my drinking. Reading all of these comments helped. Good luck to all of you.

  • Hi. I found this page after another morning of waking up hungover. I am soon to be 51, and am tired of saying to myself only I’m an alcoholic and I need to stop drinking. If there is a day I don’t have a beer, I feel wonderful the next day, and keep asking myself why I don’t like to feel good? Maybe I don’t know how to? When I grab a beer, I swear it’ll be just one, that turns into 2, 4 or 6…or more. I’m tired of feeling crappy, I’m tired of the laziness and overweight it causes. I’m tired of being a disappointment to my family, none of whom drink. I’m hoping I can quit once and for all, before I’m quitting by dying due to disease brought on by this addiction. Please pray for me if anyone reading this believes in prayer. I don’t have time for AA, and I don’t have the money for other treatments.

    • Hi Nadia. This is so similar to what I was going to write that I thought it better to reply to your post. The only difference is that almost everyone around me drinks. Monday I was not going to drink anything. Then my husband had a beer so I had one while we were gardening. Then many drinks later, well I think I lost about an hour before bed. Then had trouble sleeping. I haven’t had a drink since then. Last night, Friday, was not as difficult as I expected it to be. But now I have to get through the rest of the holiday weekend including a neighborhood party tomorrow. My tricks so far – don’t have it in the house, keep a drink with me always such as sparkling flavored water, brush my teeth right after dinner. I need to add to this list because these things don’t always work! Will keep everyone in my thoughts as we all work through this.

      • I made it through the weekend! Got through a party without drinking any of the adult beverages available. I made sure to always have my drink with me so every time something was offered I could just say that I already had a drink. Weekdays are usually easier for me so I don’t have to much temptation until the weekend.

        • Good to hear. I’m waking up with a hangover and I’m missing work because of it. It’s happening more and more often and it’s scaring the s**t out of me. I need to stop drinking. My boyfriend does too but I can’t make him. So I need to do it on my own. Today’s day one for me

  • What is the best way to taper down? How long should it take?

  • I’m sorry to hear so many folks out there are suffering so damn much. Why do these companies keep making more and more of their toxin? $$$ over human lives it seems. I’m also going through a tough addiction to alcohol. I wish every person who left comments the best. I wish and pray for your deliverance. I will be ok.

  • Hello,
    Caught in the same trap.
    Drinking way too much, making a spectacle of myself, embarrassing my family etc. etc.
    Keep saying never again on Mondays, but by midweek, start rationalizing about it.
    Pretty sure something bad is going to happen as a result.

  • Ok, like all of you, I am on here because I WANT TO STOP. I am hoping that by posting this that it will give me the strength to quit. Wish me luck, tonight is going to be my first night of my journey to no more alcohol as my security blanket to sleep.

  • I think AA would be a good thing to try, Cristal. It is a warm, welcoming fellowship of people all walking down their own difficult paths in life.

  • I am 43 I quit drinking coz it has taken toll on me and my family l lost social connections with even people we share a lot since childhood I felt I isolated but my wife always told me I decided to Isolate myself I now seen sense in that . I lied to my doctors and even counselor. I have been prayed for several times took. This time I decided on my own I am going to meet my counselor tomorrow and my doctors on 11th and I will just tell them that. My priest the am active member of our parish council . What am asking is that can I have daily monitoring form that can help me record my progres I would like to be doing this for at least one year. My wife will help me do this as I journey on. I ask if available please send me this form. I will send my wife e mail for her to be contacted want win my life and health back. Please let me know you can copy your reply to my e mail so I can send my wife mail.
    I was just going through the internet which I now do daily for at least an hour to find where to get strength this time. And that’s when I got your site read most of the people here and your comments. Help me in this journey when I get the forms I will ask my wife to send feedback every month for your comments and advice. Am living in Canada.

    THANKS

  • Yes this is me exactly. I’ve been drinking for years. I am 54 years old and work for NYS. Lost my partner of 28 years last April and only went three to five days since without a drink. I am lonely and have great friends and family but drink to forget everything. We never had children and both drank. He had hep C and beat it but continued to have health issues. He passed at 63 which is way too young. I feel exactly like all of you do. I want to quit drinking and stop for a day and then I go right back. I go to work and pay my bills but on the weekends, there are days I wake up and drink. I know that it is wrong, but I just can’t face being alone anymore. Please say a prayer for me as well. I know I need help.

  • It’s so difficult to read so many stories that sound so similar to mine- but I feel so much less alone. I’m a 42 and have drank heavily for at least 15 years. Only time I’ve stopped was during my 2 pregnancies. I drink almost daily. I rush through my obligations (work-housework- dinner- homework help) so that I can drink without guilt. I “chug” whatever I’m drinking so I feel it right away…there is no “sipping wine”.I often wake to find my husband angry with me and I have no idea what happened the night before to cause it. I’m sick of worrying about my health. A few weeks ago I drove myself to the E.R. with immense abdominal pain. Tests were run. While waiting for results a woman was placed next to me. She was in her 60s or 70s and I heard her story. She was in liver failure from daily drinking. Had jaundice and goes to the ER weekly to just be told that there is nothing they can do for her. I don’t want to become her! Strange thing was…all my results came back “normal” except for a fatty liver on the CT scan. I feel this was no coincidence that I was placed next to this woman. I need to stop drinking for myself and my babies. I’ve been without a drink for 6 days now and it’s all I can think about. Good luck to you all. Dig deep- you’re worth it.

  • I am 46 and have been drinking daily for the last 25 years give and take. I was able to stop while pregnant with my child but started again when stopped nursing. I feel like I still have some control since I was able to stop drinking 2 or 3 times for a couple of months, but then it starts again. My husband also relieves the stress with a drink or two, or three…I cannot say that something, in particular, leads me there. I have a wonderful, loving, supportive partner, a good job, nothing to complain about, and this is the scary part. I.just.need.to.drink. No excuse, just a pure thirst for more and more beer, no heavy stuff for the time being. But the hangover almost every morning makes me feel like crap. I am still capable of hiding it from my colleagues, but it is not the point. My son will remember me with a beer can or a glass of wine in my hand. He already made some comments about my not so healthy habits. I feel trapped.

  • The alcohol problem is a universal one, not personal, which is the God’s honest truth. We are facing a crisis of spirit. Alcohol needs to go the way of cigarettes. This is a battle that we can win, together. Alcohol is just as unnecessary as tobacco for human life. It is an extremely addictive substance and does not discriminate against who it destroys. We need to be strong and fight together, and never doubt our strength. I believe we are at a turning point in our evolution, and booze should be left behind, there’s no room for it in the future. In other words, there is nothing to miss. Except poisoning yourself. The majority of our society is addicted to this poison, and it is a mass insanity. Alcohol is the only drug that you have to explain why you DON’T take it. If you said you quit shooting up heroine, or snorting cocaine, the whole world would rejoice for you. But if you stop drinking you are immediately stigmatized. Why? Because most people drink, and deep down they know they don’t need to. So if someone quits, it holds up a mirror to their own insane behavior. It’s crazy to me hearing people that want to cut back. You want to cut back on poisoning yourself? You only want to poison yourself just a little? Booze is an addictive substance and can drown anyone. Just like anyone can get hooked on cigarettes. We need to stop beating ourselves up and realize the strength we have as humans is far greater than methanol, which is identical to what’s in your drink. That’s right, the same stuff you put in your car is the same stuff people are drinking to compliment their dinner. Basically, what I’m saying is that none of us are weak for becoming addicted. It happens with TV, internet, cigarettes, sugar, sex, etc. . . I am in the midst of another attempt at sobriety and I feel great. I may make it, I may not. But I know I will not stop trying, and that being sober isn’t weird, drinking poison is. I was drinking every night and passing out so hard I would wet the bed, wake up soaking wet, with a throbbing headache, curse myself all day, and then start over again at night. I might go back to that, and if I do, I’m not going to beat myself up over it, because my Dad gave me a beer when I was 13, and THAT’S what started all of this! Not me being weak or stupid, just the simple consumption of an addictive substance, initiating the spiral of addiction. I quit cigarettes cold turkey after being a chain smoker for 12 years. Why has it been so easy for people to quit smoking in recent years? Because society finally recognized that it was poison and so made it increasingly inconvenient to be a smoker. In fact, smoking is considered anti-social now. We haven’t gotten there with alcohol yet, but we better, because no one needs it. We need each other. We need to put our phones and bottles down, and look at each other, and remember what’s really good about being alive.

    • Hey Clark! Well stated. My story is way too long to post. I wholeheartedly agree with the stigmatization that alcohol addiction garners, versus other drugs. I hate relying on any drug (including alcohol). It’s not easy dealing with this disease. Sympathy is not easy to come by. Individuals without this infliction simply say stop drinking or cut back. As I’m sure you already know, it changes your brain chemistry and functioning. It is awful! The cigarette analogy is spot on. Unfortunately, the the industry has seriously deep pockets. Big tobacco did as well, so we can only hope for change in the future. I wish you you, and everyone struggling great success!

  • I’m an alcoholic, too, and have been trying to quit. I started drinking in high school and continued to drink A LOT throughout college to self-medicate for social phobia. After a while, I found that I couldn’t have a good time without drinking. Until my husband died suddenly at 49 a few years ago, though, I just considered myself a social drinker who drank more than most people at parties. Now, I start drinking as soon as work ends and occasionally even sneak a mini-bottle or two at work. My (adult) children have confronted me about the problem, and I feel like a horrible role model, but I still can’t seem to stop. I went to a few AA meetings, and they helped, but then I got too busy (or that’s what I told myself), but I plan to go back.

    What I’ve noticed in the posts here is that a lot of people self-medicate for psychological problems. I’ve been on antidepressants (SSRIs) for years, and they help a lot with anxiety and helped me cut way down on my drinking for years (until my husband died). Some of you may want to talk to a doctor about antidepressants; they’re not addictive.

  • Look at us!! Why? How?
    It’s a slippery slope! I want to go back to the way I was before alcohol!

  • I am a 37 year old male and trying to deal with alcohol abuse and drugs for many years has been a struggle. It’s been hard on me and my husband for years. I’ve put him through so much heartbreak for many years dealing with my alcohol abuse and drug addiction that I wish I could take back. I’m so thankful he’s still here by my side because I don’t know where I would be without him. Too many years has gone by to realize I have a problem and I am an addict and it’s way past time to finally do something about it and seek help. I just can’t keep going through life like this. Today Im admitting I am an addict and it’s time to change my life for good. I know it’s going to be a long road and a struggle ahead and I’m ready to accept this challenge in my life to make it better for me and my husband. Prayers and support for me as of today will be my first day to live an alcohol and drug free life.

  • Hi there. , I need help I am 62 and i binge drink then have black outs , I can never remember what I have done .The most awful thing is I verbally and physically abuse my husband . He is a good kind man who has always looked after me and our family but now if I don’t stop drinking I will lose him and our family . Please help .

  • I’m 25 years old and just came to terms that I’m an alcoholic the other night. My husband had tried to say things but of course I ignored them. I have been binge drinking everyday for the last at least 5-6 months. Like fifths in a couple of days as well as beer. I also suffer from anxiety and have been trying to slow it down the past two days. I’ve had bad insomnia and am afraid of anything bad happening to me. I wish it was easy to just stop and go back to normal, that’s all I want. Anyone else dealt with this?

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