Tuesday, 2 January 2018

I'm sorry alcohol, but it's over

After having spent last October and most of November totally sober and having felt absolutely great as a result, I have made the decision to go alcohol free for 2018.  I know it's not going to be easy but I am planning to use my blog as therapy to help me get through the tougher times.  Any support you lot can give me will also be very gratefully received.



Today, I have written my goodbye letter to alcohol.

Dear alcohol

We’ve been together for many years now – 30 to be exact.  I instantly fell in love with you and from our first proper encounter in a field in Dorset swigging from a bottle of Cinzano with school friends, I have been completely devoted to you.  From day one you instantly put me at ease, gave me confidence and made me feel better about being me.  As a teenager you made me feel less awkward, less worthless and able to compete with my cooler, more attractive and wittier friends.  With you by my side I could stand out and be noticed too and be the person I wanted to be.  However, even in those early days of our relationship you always controlled me more than I could ever control you and a little bit of you was never enough.

By the time I left school, I was utterly obsessed with you. I couldn’t get enough of you.  You were constantly by my side.  We created some amazing memories together, particularly during my first taste of real freedom and independence at Art College in Canterbury, during my hedonistic summers spent in Greece and in my early days in London.  However, before long you also coerced me into making dangerous decisions like provoking fights, getting into dodgy minicabs on my own  and going home with strangers.  Your pervasiveness resulted in trips to A&E for x-rays and stitches and you also started to erase some of my memories leaving me feeling paranoid, ashamed and disgusted with myself.  However, I brushed this under the carpet and I stuck with you, pretending our relationship was fine.

During my difficult times, like family bereavements, the break-down of friendships, the break-up of relationships, my four miscarriages and the cancer scares, I’ve leant on you more heavily.  When my job felt crushingly stressful and my life felt unmanageable, I’ve relied on you as a crutch.  Nevertheless, the more I’ve needed you, the more you’ve let me down.  Rather than wrapping me in your comforting security blanket like you used to, you’ve increasingly left me feeling anxious, fearful, incapable and overwhelmed with self-loathing and shame.   Our relationship has started to feel toxic and I need out before I slip down a more self-destructive path.

So alcohol, we’ve had some wild times together and I am walking away from this relationship with many good memories as well as the bad.  However, recently the bad have outweighed the good and it’s time to move on. You have been with me for all of my adult life and I am scared of the future without you.  I’m scared my husband won’t want to be with a teetotal wife having married a lush, I’m scared friends will find me boring, I’m scared I’ll never have the confidence to dance on a table or belt out karaoke again, I’m scared no one will choose to hang out with me... the list goes on.  However, I am also hopeful of a future without hangovers, without waking up with limited memory of the night before and without the paralysing remorse.  I am hopeful that I can find ways to like myself more and develop coping strategies that don’t involve opening a bottle.  I am hopeful that I can navigate my way to finding a bit of peace and calm without your presence in my life.  So, thank you alcohol for the fun times but after 30 years, it’s finally time to move on.

Lots of love

Adrienne

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31 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Ilse! 😘 I can do this!!

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    2. I'm not there yet 🀣. Although I know it would be better.

      We surely had some in Paros and London 😁

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    3. Wow, you have managed to put into words exactly how I feel. I too have been best friends with booze for 30 years and we have had the best of times, and some not so great times, and times I cannot remember. And I have just embarked on 100 days sober, and I'm terrified of all the same things you are. Best of luck from a fellow ex party girl, now mum, in Australia.

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    4. Wow, you have managed to put into words exactly how I feel. I too have been best friends with booze for 30 years and we have had the best of times, and some not so great times, and times I cannot remember. And I have just embarked on 100 days sober, and I'm terrified of all the same things you are. Best of luck from a fellow ex party girl, now mum, in Australia.

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    5. This is absolutely brilliant! It summarises exactly how many of us ladies feel. Lke you, I have had "dry" months last year and whilst embarking on Dry January I came across Clare Pooley's book and am now aiming to go way beyond and be teetotal. I feel amazing at 18 days in but am also fully aware that it is only 18 days in!! Wishing you all the very best. I googled celebrity teetotallers the other day and we are part of a pretty cool group :) x

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    6. Thanks so much for your lovely words. I hope you’re still going strong. I definitely am and feel so confident that I’ve got this cracked this time round. We can do this. πŸ’ͺ🏼πŸ’ͺ🏼πŸ’ͺ🏼

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  2. Thank u Adrienne. Best of luck. Day 5 for me.

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    1. Thank you so much Carol and best of luck to you too. We’ve got this!

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  3. good stuff..read the book..feel the fear and do it anyway...u got this..

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  4. Well done you x what a great letter. Good luck x

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  5. I can resonate with a lot of what you have said. The paralysing remorse and the shitty guilt fairy are no more... 8 days sober... You're emerging from an alcoholic cocoon.. time to spread your wings and fly ��

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    1. Thank you 😊🧚🏻‍♀️

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  6. This! Just this! Good luck to you x

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  7. Well done. Inspirational. After reading Clare Pooley book I stopped drinking and it's day 11 and I feel great. Long way to go but am excited at the new challenges. GooD luck and best wishes. Hugs xxx

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    1. Thanks for your comment. Clare's book was definitely the catalyst to my decision to stop drinking. It's great to read that there is a life after stopping drinking and it's going to be better than the before stopping one!

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  8. Best of Luck, I celebrate 14 years sober this year & it was the best decision I ever made. If I can do it, so can you

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    1. Thanks so much Christine. I know I can do this. :-)

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  9. Hi Adrienne - well done on making the best and most important decision of your life. Please send your letter in a word document to me at worldwithoutwine@gmail.com for inclusion in our website www.goodbyetoletters.com - if you take a look on the homepage of www.worldwithoutwine.com you will find a link to our "Dry January Challenge" - sign up and we give you online support through those tough early days - check it out. Good luck and best wishes. Janet Gourand

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  10. Good luck.Your story is my story. Join Soberistas,I've stopped drinking by getting a daily dose of support from a great community of people all doing the same thing as me.

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    1. Thank you and thanks for the tip - I will investigate Soberistas. :-)

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  11. Congratulations. You are about to find out some truly amazing things about yourself. I did a dry month last March and life changed so drastically that I kept it up. Prepare for: less anxiety, great sleep, self confidence, late nights where you remember everything and don't feel bad the next day. By next New Year's you'll feel like a goddess on the dance floor, if you give it enough time. Gingerale in a champagne glass is ok by me. Rooting for you!

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    1. Thanks for your support Lacy! Bring on the dance floor at New Year's Eve ;-) !!

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  12. That is brilliant well done, I'm starting today after 5 rocky years of ups and downs with the disease called alcohol . I will share my story .

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    1. Thanks for your support Mary and best of luck with your journey. Stay strong. You can do it!

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  13. Brilliant well done thats so great to read, I'm starting today after 5 years of ups and downs with the disease called alcohol I will share my story. I already feel positive and more alive knowing there are so many women out there feeling the same.

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