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Tigereyes Offline
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Drinking Alone and Coping - November 7th 2016, 01:35 PM

This thread has been labeled as triggering, particularly on the subject of self harm, by the original poster or by a Moderator. The contents of this thread might therefore not be suitable for certain sensitive users. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

Drinking as a method of coping is new to me--I've only done that a couple of times--but self-destructive coping mechanisms are not new. Basically I've replaced one addiction with another. I used to struggle regularly with self harm, but since I had surgery that mostly went away because I wanted the painkillers the doctors prescribed to me way more than I wanted that. Luckily I managed to stay away from those, which I only took as prescribed, but I went through withdrawal anyway and my parents wouldn't let me get rid of the rest. I'm not usually living at my parent's house anymore so I don't have easy access to them but the thought is still there when I'm in a bad place.

So things progressed downward from there. I lost everything before and desperation is constantly nagging at me again. I've already ruined everything and lost everything so what does it matter anymore. I was getting better for quite a while before, despite the cravings, but then I turned to something that is really easy to access in college: alcohol.

I drank with a friend once many months before this and there was no problem. I told myself that I would only drink if I was with friends I could trust and was currently in a good place mentally and had been for a long time. Because I was afraid of developing an addiction. Now it's been a long time and I didn't want alcohol, but I wanted something and self harm didn't help when I resorted back to that. So I went with what I had.

The first time I drank alone was awful. I just felt dizzy and more miserable (duh). That was about 50 days ago and so much shit has been happening day after day and i was so exhausted I couldn't take it anymore. Exhaustion makes it so much harder to resist. Then last night I decided to make myself start to feel somewhat better as I was drinking so that "starting to feel better" would be amplified. I just played guitar because that usually helps but lately nothing was enough and now I feel guilty for what I did. Even more so, I'm afraid of where this will lead. Because I know. I've already been down this road and lost everything I had then. I have more things to lose now, yet I'm running back down the same road, knowing I'm going to hit the wall sooner or later. It makes matters worse that I turn 21 and can buy alcohol for myself in just a few weeks. I have no one to turn to.

"Just open your eyes and see that life is beautiful..." ~Sixx:A.M.

Last edited by Tigereyes; November 8th 2016 at 01:57 PM.
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MsNobleEleanor Offline
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Re: Drinking Alone and Coping - November 13th 2016, 10:19 AM

One of the first steps you did was talking about it here at TeenHelp. It shows that you really are struggling and want change. I have a few things you could try and some thing to look into as well.

It may feel that drinking is helping and numbing the pain. It doesn't always work like that, like you mentioned this sentence, "The first time I drank alone was awful. I just felt dizzy and more miserable (duh)." where drinking makes you feel much worse. It sounds like it does the opposite for you. Have you tried anything when you felt the need to drink, for instance, you want to feel something you could take a cold or hot shower/bath, so you are able to feel something. This could help. (I will list a few things you could try)

I want to share a resource link here which is found on our Resources page. It might be helpful:

What are addictive behaviours?
This page discusses the definition of addiction and attempts to draw a thin line between good habits and addictive traits. If you worry about yourself or someone else, this web site can help determine early warning signs of addiction and give you a general idea of how the process begins.

Some things you could try instead of drinking to numb how you are feeling:
  • Take a cold/hot shower or bath
  • Go for a walk
  • Grab ice and hold it or use it on parts of your body
  • Call a friend and talk about positive things (you don't need to tell them the real reason why you are calling)
  • Colour in therapy books, paint, draw, write
  • Watch TV or a movie
  • Use TeenHelps Chat Room
Do you see a counselor? Talking to someone can be helpful, it seems you are dealing with a lot of stress, talking to someone about the way you are feeling can really help the urge to drink to reduce where you won't need to drink to numb what is going on.

I do understand when you turn 21 and are legally able to purchase your own alcohol it can become more difficult. When you drink, know the signs from your body to slow down. These can include, feeling dizzy, really mellow/laid back, slurred speech. In most cases you can feel it in your head, where it's like a head rush. Once you understand how you're body reacts to alcohol you can know what your cut off time and limit is. This will help prevent feeling awful.

The important thing is for you to be able to express how you are feeling, talking to someone about what is going on, getting to the bottom of the stress you are facing. I am not sure if your school has a counselor, you can talk them. You can discuss your course load if it's too much for you to handle right now, if you have other things you would like to talk to them about.

Take baby steps. Start somewhere small maybe looking to make an appointment with a counselor or with your family doctor.

Take care and if you need anything feel free to write back or send me a PM.

Have questions or would like to chat send me a PM
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