How Do I Know if I'm an Alcoholic?
I’ve been drinking alcohol since the age of 13. I’m now 42. I’ve never thought of myself as having a problem with alcohol (even though I know I’ve often drunk too much) – but am now starting to wonder.
Alcohol has pretty much always been the main thing around which my social life revolves. Whether it be drinks after work, wine at dinner parties, beers to watch a game or big night outs with my male friends.
A couple of hangovers a week for me is pretty normal – but I always reckon I’ve coped okay with it. Have a good job and am good at what I do, am a decent husband and father – and so I’ve never really questioned my lifestyle.
But over the last year or so I’ve started noticing a shift. The hangovers are getting worse - sometimes I’m even blacking out now, I’m feeling more stressed at work so am drinking more at home in the evenings to unwind which is something I never really did before, my wife is starting to comment about my drinking and says I drink too much, I’m not nearly as productive as I used to be at work, and I think I may even be depressed.
I don’t know if my general lethargy and sense of depression is alcohol related or if I’m having some kind of mid-life crisis, but I think my drinking may becoming a real problem. How do I know if I’m an alcoholic and what should I do?
It certainly sounds like you’ve been a consistent alcohol abuser for many years, which in itself can cause a lot of long-term damage and I’m sure is a cause of your depression because remember that alcohol is a depressant. Whether it’s the only cause, I can’t tell you, but it might be worth speaking to a psychologist or therapist about.
Alcoholism is basically defined by dependence (mental and/or physical) and loss of control. There certainly seems to be an element of both in your situation. I suggest you take this test for alcoholism
and look at the signs of alcoholism
to get a more definitive answer for your situation.
As to what to do? It certainly seems like alcohol has become a problem in your life because it’s effecting your daily life so the worst thing you can do is nothing because things can very quickly escalate totally out of control. A form of treatment is definitely the way to go so I suggest you read about your alcoholism treatment
Remember the only person that can make the necessary changes in your life is you. The fact that you’re on here asking for advice is a good sign. Getting in touch with an Addictions Counselor in your area is also a good idea because they can do a more detailed assessment of your current situation and also talk to you about the help available in your vicinity.
Good Luck with everything and let us know how you get on.