Anybody could decide to quit drinking, but not all can go the full distance of remaining sober for the rest of their lives.
It appears the urge for a glass or a bottle never truly wanes. The same kinda pressure you feel the day after you chose sobriety maybe the same you’d feel a year, or two or three (or more) later. It’s natural to feel that with time the desire to be bacchanal dies down, maybe but most times it doesn’t, for each time you come across for instance a particular brand you once enjoyed your throat suddenly feels dry.
It’s even worse if drinking was your only hobby, pastime, indiscretion and all, or at most the major. Your life will appear like it has ended, as you will then find every other activity you indulge in, regardless of whether it’s work or play, feeling like a chore. It’ll feel like you’ve denied yourself of play and life becomes dull.
A lot of friendships are struck at pubs, most of these simply evaporate when you go sober as you become all of a sudden cocooned in your own world, and for lack of a milder word ostracized as it were from the rest of the world. Nobody would like to have you on their table as you’d be the spoiler, then you’d remember the days you treated sobering people back in the day when you were at the height of your bacchanality.
People hardly go to pubs just to drink, it’s the atmosphere with alcohol that refreshes. Music sounds different there, and commentaries and reactions to football matches by the sozzled ones (especially when the referree makes a controversial call) are conversations in lingua you’d hardly hear or find anywhere else, the comments from the groggy are priceless, you could never get that kinda comic relief for free, especially when even you are in some glazed state.
The beer ads on TV remind you of the life you once had, and the association with success as depicted on the screen for those few seconds could make you feel less successful. If your decision to go sober wasn’t predicated on solid ground, you’d find yourself angling for a sip even before the ad runs it’s full course.
The pains of been clear-headed can be too heavy to handle. Truly, alcohol doesn’t take problems away, it sometimes even compounds it, but the time it buys one of “no worries” is invaluable. Most people don’t mind coming back to their problems and challenges, as long as they can bask in the few moments of alcohol-induced euphoria. When you’re sober you get to feel all of the sadness and anger of disappointments and failures, and as for happy times and situations, the joy and happiness is measured, compared to the reckless abandon that inebriation affords, followed by that thin line between been funny and being “the joke”.
Besides the health reasons (the World Health Organization, WHO currently estimates that about 3 million people worldwide die from alcohol abuse related deaths) for which quitting is a plus, the effects on the abuser socially is huge. The same people who benefit from your generosity in bars will be first to write you off as unserious if they find it to be a fact that alcohol drives you. You know it’s time to quit when memory loss, especially of events at the time you were drinking becomes so frequent as to be termed norm, or people intentionally invite you to parties, looking forward with so much anticipation to seeing you make a fool of yourself, or when it feels like a side of your lower lip sags like those found with facial nerve palsy.
Economically, you’ll find that there’s always change in your pocket and things you couldn’t find spare change for suddenly become affordable either immediately or in the long run eventually, especially when you make an effort to save the same amount you’d have spent on booze.
The fact that one could be responsible for all of one’s actions is also a plus, including the restraint sobriety avails which in turn eliminates to the barest minimum the embarrassment of apologising for indiscretions one may commit without full consciousness while under the influence.
It is pertinent to mention these non-health factors, as not everyone would necessarily give a hoot about the harmful effects of alcohol abuse on health, even when they aren’t suicidal, though they are a myriad and literature on the subject is quite extensive and exhaustive.
If you’re on the path of sobriety, know that you’re not alone, even when there’s no AA close to you. Whatever demons you’re fighting now, have been fought and defeated by many before you, as well as presently by yet many others. If however you are considering towing the path, then JUST DO IT, as there’s no better time than now.
SOBRIETY IS KEY!