Author Topic: Giving up the demon drink  (Read 2268 times)

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Offline KeithB

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Giving up the demon drink
« on: September 18, 2018, 08:41:19 AM »
I am 70 next birthday and come from several generations of dyed-in-the-wool alcoholics. Having seen my dad strapped down to a hospital bed delirious with the DT’s, I didn’t touch a drop of alcohol in the drunken days with engineers at uni and hardly ever throughout my late 20’s and early 30’s. But after a messy divorce in my mid 30’s I moved in with a couple of bachelor mates who were heavy drinkers and naturally followed suit.

I finally gave grog away for ten tears when I turned 50 and, two years later, copped a dose of bowel cancer. After all of that had gone away I somehow got back to the odd social drink which grew over 15 years into a serious daily habit.

I have decided that wine in general (booze rouge and plonk blonk) it isn’t doing me any good. I don’t like beer and hate the idea of spirits. Booze disturbs my sleep, upsets my innards and makes me lazy. It also makes me go off to sleep in front of TV.

So, for the last three weeks, I have been alcohol free and feeling a lot better for it. The big challenge ahead of me is the next time around the camp fire, where an adult beverage or seven is pretty much the order of the day. I guess I’ll have to deal with that when the time comes.

I am interested to hear if anyone else has had a success story or otherwise in giving up the demon drink.

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Offline paceman

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2018, 09:02:28 AM »
I am 70 next birthday and come from several generations of dyed-in-the-wool alcoholics. Having seen my dad strapped down to a hospital bed delirious with the DT’s, I didn’t touch a drop of alcohol in the drunken days with engineers at uni and hardly ever throughout my late 20’s and early 30’s. But after a messy divorce in my mid 30’s I moved in with a couple of bachelor mates who were heavy drinkers and naturally followed suit.

I finally gave grog away for ten tears when I turned 50 and, two years later, copped a dose of bowel cancer. After all of that had gone away I somehow got back to the odd social drink which grew over 15 years into a serious daily habit.

I have decided that wine in general (booze rouge and plonk blonk) it isn’t doing me any good. I don’t like beer and hate the idea of spirits. Booze disturbs my sleep, upsets my innards and makes me lazy. It also makes me go off to sleep in front of TV.

So, for the last three weeks, I have been alcohol free and feeling a lot better for it. The big challenge ahead of me is the next time around the camp fire, where an adult beverage or seven is pretty much the order of the day. I guess I’ll have to deal with that when the time comes.

I am interested to hear if anyone else has had a success story or otherwise in giving up the demon drink.

first of all, good on you for speaking up and recognising that you can change for the better...  :cup:

it's interesting that you mention that one of your big challenges is 'around the camp fire'...

i find it interesting because in posts in this (and other forums), plenty to do with the camper and camping is about 'keeping the beers cold' or 'getting the first drink in after setup'...  this in itself is not a crime, but it can bring up situations like you have described and perceive a challenge with...

my advice to you, which i have tried to follow myself, is that if you are around people that choose to belittle you because you are not drinking, then they are not the people you should be around.

true friends will support you in your choice.

good luck to you.


Offline KeithB

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2018, 09:21:36 AM »
Paceman I have never had the experience of people putting me down for not drinking. With folks my age, there is much less social pressure than for young people. But I do notice that there is a fairly big drinking culture among my 22 yo daughter's friends.

For me, a drink around the camp fire, on my own of with friends, has always been something of a ritual. Maybe I should only camp during total fire bans.

There's an old Scottish saying: "Everyone's talkin aboot ma drinkin. But nobody's talkin aboot ma thirst."

Thanks for your comments.
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Offline paceman

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2018, 09:31:04 AM »
Paceman I have never had the experience of people putting me down for not drinking. With folks my age, there is much less social pressure than for young people. But I do notice that there is a fairly big drinking culture among my 22 yo daughter's friends.

For me, a drink around the camp fire, on my own of with friends, has always been something of a ritual. Maybe I should only camp during total fire bans.

There's an old Scottish saying: "Everyone's talkin aboot ma drinkin. But nobody's talkin aboot ma thirst."

Thanks for your comments.

totally agree...  :cup:

Offline Bigfish

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2018, 09:52:09 AM »
The missus and me were always big drinkers.  Missus does not drink now (70 years and hasn't done so for about 8 years).  I still give it a real nudge when camping. Normally the first night is a big one. After that I take it easy, pace myself and enjoy the camping experience more.  I drink bugger all at home now.  When I lived in the top end  2 x 30packs a week plus spirits was the usual weekly thing.  Fishing trips was always a 30 pack a day affair.  If you can give the grog up totally you will feel so much better.  I still enjoy the occasional drink and would not be classed as an alcoholic now!  Definitely the last 30+ plus years would have seen me wear that label.  We have survived and often wonder how our life would be today if we had not drunk.  We are happy now and comfortable.  Every one is different and my wife's family are still big drinkers.  I enjoy a coldie around a camp fire or a nice spirit .  So long as you control your drinking and it doesn't control you then have one by all means.  We all have various reasons for drinking and although it has brought me undone a few times it has also enriched my experiences sometimes.  Whatever you feel is right for you...go for it.  World is too full of nay sayers, fun police and judgemental people who are more often than not jealous.  I drink low or midstrength now as well.

Offline edz

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2018, 10:02:15 AM »
Havent given up but now dramaticaly reduced .
Vodka and coke was my go too drink..  Every night after work was a 500ml +  tankard or three, generaly three and also on my RDO's  ..
One can of coke and the rest of the tankard to the top band with vodka =  four Nips, Sometimes upped that  to = six Nips .. Depending on the night shift  stress at work.. 20 years of that .. The need for surgery arose after a workplace injury, so everything I ate / drank got  reviewed and somethings junked, by me .
Coming up on four years now and havent had a Vodka n coke, The work stress is still there to a degree, though a change in work duties has reduced it a lot ..
I do mostly limit myself to  two afternoon Mid strength beers occasionally on my RDO's  or when socializing [ Yeah right when doing night shifts every week end ]  or  camping [ couple times  a year ] ..
I dont have a need to have a drink, just enjoy the odd ones taste more than anything now.
« Last Edit: September 18, 2018, 10:07:13 AM by edz »
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Offline KeithB

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2018, 11:07:35 AM »
Everyone has a personal story about their drinking and I get a lot out of reading them. Thanks guys for your wise words.

Some people are addictive, where one drink is too many and ten isn't enough. With my family history, I sometimes suspect I might be one of those. Others can go out on a big night and not think about drinking again. Good luck to them.

Just hearing from Edz and Bigfish, it seems that a real alcohol habit takes quite a few years to form and, for many, it is very hard to un-form (if that's a word). I did with me. And too many people who drink a lot sneer at people who drink a little more.

As WC Fields once said: "An alcoholic is someone you hate who drinks as much as you do."
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Offline Pottsy

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2018, 11:14:57 AM »
Interesting how our health seems to be the major indicator for change, I used to home brew and was a heavy drinker, not everyday but Friday through Sunday would give it a real nudge. Camping trips were always a based on the old carton per day per man. Well a serious heart issue at age 46 from an infection slowed me right up. Medication and the booze didn't mix to well and I no longer take the meds but I also no longer drink to excess. Lucky to get through a carton in six months now. Happy to have the occasional port around a camp fire.
Seriously don't miss the hangovers, bad sleeping and crook guts.
Good luck to you Keith B
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Offline paceman

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2018, 11:46:12 AM »
Happy to have the occasional port around a camp fire.

+1...  :cheers:

Offline scott8888

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2018, 11:52:07 AM »
to address the around the campfire scenario, i typically go with a can of ginger beer or ginger ale as a replacement for a beer.  my mates and i all have young families so we always limit drinking these days so that you are alert and always able to drive if you have an emergency
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Offline jwb

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2018, 11:55:25 AM »
After being diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes (  & not changing any habits)
It finally hit me like a mack truck about 2 years later on.
I stopped drinking ( Bundy), ate more of what I should and way less of what I shouldn't. I did about 7 months of not drinking.
Due to working / driving on the graveyard shift meant drink consumption was a fri, sat thing only.
 I too had felt the the camping scenario will change for the worse due to not drinking, but to my surprise it went well without issues for that period.
I have since started to drink again but way less volumes, same with food/meal portions. Although I wondered about giving up finally when getting crook coming home  from a recent CSR nth/sth traverse. Food poisoning culprit that was.
I can't remember getting any flack for my actions.
I applaude your decision!
Cheers

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Cheers

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Offline Foo

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2018, 12:02:50 PM »
Good on you for deciding it's not for you. Some people can have a couple and be happy but others can't stop till it's all gone.

Foo



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Offline KeithB

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2018, 12:40:20 PM »
Some people can have a couple and be happy but others can't stop till it's all gone.
Foo

And Foo, some people send out for more after it's gone. The two mates I lived with in my 30's would often order a cab to pick up two slabs and a couple of packs of Winfield Blue. I drew the line at that.
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Offline Bunyip

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2018, 12:51:16 PM »
Hey KeithB,

Good luck with your endeavours, great that you are speaking up.

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Offline McGirr

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #14 on: September 18, 2018, 01:24:46 PM »
What no more home brewed spirits.

Well done mate. After drinking like a fish on the Kimberely trip, I have not had a drop since. It helps living in a dry community.

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Offline MuruCycles

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #15 on: September 18, 2018, 02:47:45 PM »
Everyone has a personal story about their drinking and I get a lot out of reading them. Thanks guys for your wise words.

Some people are addictive, where one drink is too many and ten isn't enough. With my family history, I sometimes suspect I might be one of those.
Keith:
I stopped drinking 4 years and 9 months ago. (5 years this XMAS)

I wasn't a social drinker. I drank to self medicate. (though I didn't realise it at the time) Did it from age 15 to age 49. (I'm 53 now)

I didn't drink every day, nor even every week. I'd have a binge every 4-6 weeks (on average) and spend the whole day with a bottle of spirits. Usually a Saturday. So I'd be ok for work on Monday. See... I came to understand that I was what's known as a "functioning alcoholic".

But after 34 years I stopped it dead. I don't really do things half way. It tends to be all or nothing. That's just me.

I then discovered that not drinking, meant that I no longer had that "emotional vent release" every 4-6 weeks. And so depression started to creep in.

I've been seeing a psychologist going on two years now.  Basically dealing with things that took place when i was 10yo.

My use of alcohol was just hiding the past.

Now that I know that... I won't drink again.

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Offline Beachman

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2018, 03:06:47 PM »
Good on you Keith and good on you for sharing. In my Twenties and Thirties  I was your typical binge drinker as never drank at home, but I was going out 2 or 3 nights per week and getting smashed (But 99% of the time I knew when to stop before throwing up)

Then got married and had kids and promised myself I would never get drunk in front on the kids. My Father was a big drinker and it was sad seeing him that drunk he struggled to sit at the dining room table at night or unable to drive us anywhere because he was always over the limit.

I do have a glass of wine with dinner each night and at home a carton of beer will last 3-4 months. I now find that if I have any more than 2 drinks at night I need to go to the toilet during the night and on those rare occasions I do over indulge, I have an extremely poor sleep due to the alcohol. 

But have to be honest it’s when I go camping is when I drink the most and by that I drink much more than that I do at home. Not to get drunk, but I really do enjoy relaxing with a beer in my hand when in the outdoors.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2018, 08:33:16 AM by Beachman »
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Offline Bird

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #17 on: September 18, 2018, 03:18:15 PM »
Quote from: Beachman
. In my Twenties and Thirties  I was your typical binge drinker as never drank at home, but I was going out 2 or 3 nights per week and getting smashed (But 99% of the time I knew when to stop before throwing up)
I was similar and sort of remember those days... mostly it was due to peer pressure where I grew up... small town 1000 odd people, thursday night - strippers at pub, friday night - workers club and a band, saturday leagues club, sunday arvo to night at the pub again... and we did this for YEARS...
roll on 30+ yrs, me and an old mate tried to be 18 again, and it didnt end well for either of us, and took a week to get over :(
So I only have an occasional drink these days... maybe few drinks a month now.. must say I dont miss it.
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Offline JCOJ

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #18 on: September 18, 2018, 05:04:21 PM »
Good on you for sharing your story Keith!!

I am a non drinker and always have been - I don't even drink tea or coffee.  At the campfire of course people are on the beers, I have a hot chocolate.  If it's your mates around the campfire then they should respect your decision not to drink, and you could implement a strategy to recognise the 'triggers' for you wanting to have a drink and then 'responses' for those triggers.
By predetermining these it will make it alot easier when it does come to temptation.

 

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Offline archer63

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #19 on: September 18, 2018, 07:11:01 PM »
Agree...good on you Keith for sharing your story.
I reckon sometimes having a good honest look in the mirror at ourselves can be very beneficial.

I also reckon the previous campfire drinking habit could be changed by supplementing it for maybe a cuppa tea instead ?

Enjoying your van build very much....keep the pics and info coming.
Cheers
Rob

Offline KeithB

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #20 on: September 18, 2018, 07:55:04 PM »
Thanks Archer.

This thread is not so much for me to solicit encouragement, although I appreciate all the positive words. It is firstly so that I can learn from other drinkers' experiences and secondly so that anyone with a bit of a booze issue can maybe take a bit of heart and realise that there are plenty of others in the same boat.

Thanks for your kind words on my build. Since stopping drinking I have actually got a bit more of a wriggle on and am doing a little bit every day. I have lost some weight and my blood pressure has gone down. I am hoping to have my build at least registered by the end of January, an announcement which had my better half raising her eyebrows. We live in hope.

Keith
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Offline D4D

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #21 on: September 19, 2018, 06:32:29 AM »
I stopped drinking Christmas 2016. I was drinking Fri, Sat, Sun, typically a bottle or 2 of JD and lots of coke to go with it. I stopped because I wasn't getting anything out of it and was sick of wasting weekends feeling crap. Dropped 10kg in the first year without really trying, I think this was from not drinking coke. Now I am back on the bike and weigh less and am fitter than when I was married 10+ years ago. Doctor says my blood work is perfect and great for my age group. I do get times, especially winter when I preferred a cognac, I'd love to have a drink, however I think I am too far into not drinking now I don't want to break the dry spell.
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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #22 on: September 19, 2018, 10:17:15 AM »
Speewa is quiet, I think he dropped dead reading the title...
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Offline MDS69

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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #23 on: September 19, 2018, 07:24:05 PM »
Some inspirational experiences here.
In my late teens and through my twenties it was a badge of honour to do the trifecta, that is Thur, Fri and Sat night at the local night club drinking to excess.

I don’t drink at home by myself or with the wife, just not interested. When I buy beer or RTD cans it is by the six pack and not the carton. I have had beer go off because it expired.
At work we use to go the the club or pub for lunch on Fridays and everyone would have 2, 3 or 4 schooners in 45 minutes but I would have a soft drink or 2 max.
I am not a wowser and will enjoy a drink or 10 on a special occasion but it is rare these days. I knocked back an invite to a local Oktoberfest recently because I couldn’t be bothered.
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Re: Giving up the demon drink
« Reply #24 on: September 19, 2018, 09:26:00 PM »
Going camping this weekend and this post reminded me to check the beer fridge ..  Only got 17 beers.....may not be enough for 2 nights seeing as the missus sometimes has 1 or 2 of my beers ( she usually has a few wines )


Approaching the big 6 0....but I still enjoy a few ales...especially around a campfire !!   :cheers:
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