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"My Life As A Functional Alcoholic"

by michelle

I don't really think functional alcoholics exist, but it is one way I can think of to describe my drinking habit. I drink every day. Sometimes I have 3 drinks and go to bed (rarely), sometimes I have 10.

On average I drink about 5 drinks a day. I start between 8 and 9pm, by 10 I'm usually pretty buzzed and usually keep drinking until midnight or 1am. I actually don't like drinking. My mother was a full blown alcoholic and it took her life 2 years ago.

The pathologist said she had one of the worst cases of liver cirrhosis he'd ever seen. Her death shook the core of me. I was 7 months pregnant with my 2nd son when I went to her trailer after my dad called and said she'd collapsed. She was dead when I arrived.

It was the worst day of my life, but I still drink. My brother is also a "functional alcoholic" and we both wish we could stop drinking. Alcohol ruined our childhoods.

Because my mother could not function, we were left with people that molested and abused us for years. After we finally got away from there, it was just one disaster after another.

We had to take care of ourselves, and sometimes I had to take care of my mother. She was always throwing up, in the morning, when we went out to lunch, in the car, sometimes all night long. I'm amazed she lived as long as she did.

We would make her pull over because she couldn't stay in the lanes while driving, and then have to wait for someone to pick us up while she sobbed and drank more.

My father is another "functional alcoholic" and I'm glad to say he has drastically cut back. He did not protect me and my brother. He worked constantly, probably to get away from it, and left me and my brother to barely survive on our own.

I started drinking around age 13, although, my mother used to let me and my brother drink with her when I was as young as 5. Luckily 5 year olds don't have much of a taste for booze.

My drinking and drug abuse intensified throughout highschool. By the time I was 18 I was a meth user, took ecstasy on weekends, drank almost every day, and smoked marijuana almost every day.

I had some very scary nights where I would black out and wake up on the floor of my bathroom. Thank God when I was 19 I got pregnant and had my first son, which was the best thing that ever happened to me.

For a few years I had my drinking more or less under control. I usually drank only with friends a couple times a week. It started to get worse and worse over the years, though.

By 2005 I drank about 4 to 5 drinks a night. Then I left my son's father in 2007 for a mutual friend. There was a lot of backlash from friends and it made me terribly depressed. My new relationship was tumultuous, and we fought constantly.

I ended up gaining ten pounds which made me even more depressed. I started to drink heavily. I was either drunk or hungover all the time. Then I got a DUI in 2008. It was also one of the worst days of my life.

I was fairly drunk and extremely depressed, and I ended up 'flipping out' so to speak and was battered by the cops. I was peeing blood for days afterwards. Still I drank.

I never got another DUI, not because I stopped drinking and driving, I'm just much more careful and rarely do it. I just stay home and drink.

Me and my boyfriend ended up getting married in 2009. The relationship was rocky, but we loved each other and wanted to be together. The fights just got worse, though. Especially after our son was born.

My mother was dead, my husband was always screaming at me, we were all living with my father and brother, which resulted in constant fights among all of us.

I felt like my head was constantly spinning. I started drinking heavily and cutting myself. I am now covered in scars. I don't wear shorts because the scars are so bad. I am looking at my wrists now, covered in band-aids.

I lost 20 pounds and was put on anti depressants. In late 2011, me and my husband separated. My brother moved out and for awhile things in the house were quiet. I started to drink less and threw everything I had into school.

Then me and my husband found out I was pregnant with my 3rd son. I cut back on my drinking, but I did not stop. Me and my husband agreed that I could have 2 beers a night so I could get to sleep. I stuck to it.

1/3 of the nights I didn't drink at all, thankfully, but I still was not proud of it. My son was born this past Nov. and is very healthy, thank God. My husband got a very good job, and we now are living together again.

Things are better, but I feel like I haven't moved on. The world seems dark to me now, and I am exhausted all the time. I had a horrible panic attack a few weeks ago, and have not been right since.

I still take anti-depressants, and xanax some days that are particularly bad. I have a genetic anxiety problem that I've suffered with my whole life. I hate going to bed, it scares me for unknown reasons. So I get drunk so I can fall asleep.

I also drink to release from the horrible depression I feel every day. I feel very isolated and alone. My husband tries very hard to make me happy, and he helps out with the kids a lot. The boys are the one thing that makes me so happy.

I never drink to deal with them. They are what is pushing me to get help and get better. I go to the local mental health clinic, but I need to do more for my mental health. I wanted to share my story just to reach out. Addiction has destroyed my family, and I don't want it to destroy my life anymore.

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