Hello and welcome to our Geeks Vs Loneliness spot, where we natter about things that may be affecting you, or people around you. We never claim to have the answers to everything, or miracle cures, or anything like that. Just that we want to try and show as many people as possible that they’re not alone, and that we’re all on each other’s side more than it may sometimes look.
We’re talking about drinking this week, and in particular, the signs that you, or someone you know, may be over-reliant on alcohol. This isn’t a judgemental piece or anything like that. More a show that genuine help is out there, and people do want to help.
There’s no official definition to what constitutes an out-and-out drinking problem, but there are recognised tell-tale signs. Do any of these resonate?
• A need to drink to get through the day, or relax, or simply feel better• Hiding or lying about drinking• Regularly seeming to drink too much, getting drunk• Blacking out, and drinking so much that you forget just what you were doing, or have done• Withdrawal symptoms if you don’t drink• You think about drinking a lot when you’re not drinking• Drinking a lot when you’re by yourself
Again, these symptoms may apply to you, to someone you know. But if you’re recognising them, then please: get some support, or try and find support for your friend. Alcoholism is a brutal disease, but thankfully, it is one that many people beat. Whether it’s a slight drinking problem, or an utter dependance on alcohol, there is a lot of support out there.
Organisations such as Alcoholics Anonymous, for example, need not be a last resort. In fact, as with many organisations we talk about in this series, they recognise that talking to someone early is very welcome. But crucially, their door is open, no matter how severe the problem is. Their website is http://www.alcoholics-anonymous.org.uk/. Note that word ‘anonymous’ in the title. You can talk to them in confidence. They help thousands of people a year battle through alcohol abuse.
Drinkaware, too, has information and advice on cutting down. You can find its resources here, again be it for you, or for someone you want to help: https://www.drinkaware.co.uk/
And then the NHS has a host of resources, thoughts and ideas here: www.nhs.uk/Livewell/alcohol/
Most of all, and it’s not the easiest conversation, talk to someone. Make someone aware that you’ve got a problem, or talk to your friend and offer support. It’s the smallest gestures in life that can sometimes turn things around.
One more option: why not drop a line in the comments below? As anonymous as the internet may feel sometimes, it’s human beings that type comments, and in our experience, lots of human beings want to help, are available to chat, and will respond in the comments.
You stay awesome. Thanks, as always, for reading. Warm hugs to you all.