Friday, April 23

You don't what?

I thought I'd follow up yesterday's post on a similar note. The follow on.

Edit: Now I've posted it, it's really long.. so grab a cuppa first LOL

But first I'd really like to say a huge thank you to everyone who read and left a comment yesterday. I am so grateful for your kind words, you really have no idea.

So my hubby made the decision to stop drinking, and he stopped there and then. He didn't go on one last bender, that was it. He was done. Just because he only drank at the weekend, didn't make him any less an alcoholic (by his own admission), because an alcoholic is someone who can't control their alcohol intake. He lived for the weekends, and that was the only way he'd get through the week, knowing he could drink at the weekend. He has quite a high powered job and decisions made, if made wrongly, could cause huge problems, so he needed a clear head for that. But if he was on holiday from work, he'd drink every night. But as I said, he made the decision to stop.

The first 'clean' weekend was the worst. It was awful for him. He was antsy and couldn't settle. We talked and I think he ended up going to bed at about 9.30pm because he just had to escape the drink demons yelling at him. I felt guilty, really guilty, because I was putting him through this. I'd made him choose, drink and oblivion, or his family. I know he'd made the decision, but it was me that forced him to do so.  He decided to do something constructive and started to work out with the weights at home that had been sat dormant for months and months. He also decided to stop smoking, and that included the hash smoking (which brought on a whole new set of problems when he smoked dope.. especially alongside alcohol), so he was going totally clean. The one thing I envy about my hubby is his will power and determination. He's a very strong willed and opinionated person, but I don't have that strength, I'm quite weak and will avoid situations if I can. But once he'd made his decisions, that was it. He stuck to them. I was his support system. (that I CAN do). He decided to start running. He'd never done any exercise before in his life.. and he half killed himself running for the first time, but it gave him something to channel into. 4 years on, he has completed the Manchester 10K (his first proper run), a half marathon, The Hellrun (it was hell btw) and on the 31st of May this year he is doing his first organised marathon and is running 20 miles regularly each weekend in preparation as well as the weekday evening (shorter) runs. 

But I've drifted away from my orignial point for this post.

It seems that it is so hard for anyone to understand 'I don't drink'. You can't go to a BBQ without having a drink. You can go to a work's night out without having a drink. People look at you as if you're crazy.. what do you mean you don't drink? It appears to be socially unacceptable. Not so much for me, because when I stopped drinking due to hubby's increased drinking, I find it hard to have a drink now. It scares me. It brings back too many nightmares and emotions that I can't deal with. I never really liked drinking THAT much to start with, so it was no great loss to me. Although I do have the option to have a drink if I really feel like it, but that's a very rare occasion. It seems acceptable to other people when I order a diet coke and say, no I don't drink thanks. Oh, ok, comes the reply, it may come with a shrug of the shoulders, but it's accepted. But when a man orders a diet coke he gets bizarre looks as if his head has fallen off, and if he says no thanks, I don't drink, the whole world stops around him, and everyone looks and says "WHAT??" The time that hubby's not drinking seemed to be the end of the world (not for him though) was at New Year when we went to visit his parents. He'd not had a drink for just over 9 months and was completely over thinking about drinking. But his parents are hard drinkers. I have never known anyone drink so many tins of beer like his mum does.. not even hubby. She is a tiny woman and can't weigh more than 8stone and a bit (seriously!) yet she can drink like a navvy. 

On our loooong drive up to Scotland for Hogmanay we talked about how drink being around the house so freely would affect him. He wasn't bothered in the slightest. I asked about what if his mum pressured him. (I know what she's like) and he said he'd deal with it, even if he had to sit with a glass of beer at the side of him, just to appease her. I was very nervous! I was right though, she didn't understand. She just couldn't get her head around it. What do you mean you don't drink anymore? Why? He told her it was causing too many problems, he was loosing days on end, and he didn't like the loss of control in his life. But sadly, she just didn't get it. She brought him a tin of beer anyway, telling him, you can't not drink, that's stupid. I just looked at him. He shook his head in a 'I'm not going to drink it' way to me and he didn't. I am so proud of him for getting through that 5 day visit, including New Year's Eve when his mum poured him a Jack Daniels to see the bells in, which he didn't drink either. 

It just amazes me that people can react the way they do about someone saying they don't drink alcohol. Why are we seen as freaks? They look at you as if you have three heads or something and they just don't seem to be able to comprehend that you've made this decision. I mean, why on earth would we not want to drink? Why would we not want to drink so much that we are no longer in control of what we do and say. Why would we not want to get up in the morning (or afternoon come to that) feeling like utter and complete shite? and then spend the rest of the day recovering.

I don't have a problem with anyone drinking alcohol (except my hubby of course), it's their decision and I'm fine with that. In fact, they're pretty damn entertaining to watch as they drink more and more LOL and this is one of the things my hubby commented on when he had a works night out.. he couldn't believe how stupid people get when they drink. He'd obviously never seen it before. He asked if he was like that... I just answered, yes, and didn't elaborate LOL, I just had a twinkle in my eye and he laughed.

So if you are a drinker... cheers ... and enjoy it. But I'll have a diet coke please, and so will my other half.