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4 Self-Sabotaging Emotional Effects of Alcohol


Sober Recovery Expert Author

isolated man

Alcohol wreaks havoc on the emotional state of any individual. Whether you’re a one-time user, substance abuser or have crossed the line into chemical dependency, alcohol has noticeable negative effects. And, all too often, that impact shows up in the form of self-sabotage.

Sure, alcohol might temporarily impose a state of relaxation; it might even lighten the mood. For some, it seemingly creates a state of joy, typically referred to as a “happy drunk.” Still, for these populations of drinkers, there are occasional, potentially life-altering negative effects.

The odds of self-sabotaging events taking place increases with heavy alcohol consumption.

1. Anger/Rage

Though not everyone experiences anger or rage when consuming alcohol, the substance can certainly have that effect on some. In fact, there are multiple accounts from survivors of abuse who state that their abusers were drunk/drinking during abusive events.

2. Sadness/Depression

Anyone who drinks alcohol experiences sadness and/or depression at some point. The reason for this is plain and simple: alcohol is a depressant. As such, it depresses the central nervous system. This can throw a well-balanced brain out of balance and result in a depressed emotional state.

Still, alcohol is typically the go-to for breakups, grief or loss of any kind (loss of employment, relationship, life, etc.). Unfortunately, it only serves to worsen the pain and advance any pre-existing state of depression, both circumstantial or clinical.

3. Careless/Reckless

Though alcohol can have a euphoric effect on some, that euphoric state is often met with a sense of recklessness. This includes “happy drunks” who believe they are capable of driving until they are either arrested or cause an accident.

So, though an individual seems to be in a joyous and fun-loving mood as a result of alcohol consumption, the degree to which that individual becomes uninhibited can present its own set of self-sabotaging possibilities.

4. Invincibility/Bulletproof

Along with a lack of inhibition, most individuals who consume alcohol in excessive amounts experience a feeling of invincibility.

Certainly, this particular emotional effect can have devastating and even tragic consequences for more than just the alcohol-consuming individual.

Though every individual’s experience with alcohol is unique, the fact remains that some degree of emotional impact will be experienced with its consumption. Regardless of whether that impact is considered negative or positive, the odds of self-sabotaging events taking place increases with alcohol.

If you or someone you know is seeking help from addiction, please visit our directory of treatment centers or call 800-772-8219 to speak to a treatment specialist.

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