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Alcoholism is Suicide On The Installment Plan

Old 07-29-2016, 10:42 AM
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Alcoholism is Suicide On The Installment Plan

Heard it described that way today and sure thought it fit.
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Old 07-29-2016, 11:01 AM
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My wife said that in the past she was trying to kill herself by drinking - yet said she was NOT an alcoholic. Also said she wasn't depressed! A true poster child for denial!

But yes, I agree with that statement
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Old 07-29-2016, 11:30 AM
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I don't know that I agree with that--at least not in all cases. Most alcoholics DO have a desire to live--they just want to be able to live and drink.

In terms of alcoholism being devastating to one's health, and likely to result in an early death unless it is arrested, yeah--very dangerous. But "suicide" implies a wish to die, which isn't WHY alcoholics drink (though they may get to the point where they want to die).
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Old 07-29-2016, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by LexieCat View Post
I don't know that I agree with that--at least not in all cases. Most alcoholics DO have a desire to live--they just want to be able to live and drink.

In terms of alcoholism being devastating to one's health, and likely to result in an early death unless it is arrested, yeah--very dangerous. But "suicide" implies a wish to die, which isn't WHY alcoholics drink (though they may get to the point where they want to die).
Thanks, Lexie, for this extra layer of thought. Addiction has so many layers, sometimes I forget to go deeper.

I am a recovering alcoholic and I never wanted to die from drinking. My husband is an active alcoholic, but in deep denial, not with a suicide wish.

Thank you

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Old 07-29-2016, 03:31 PM
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I dunno - my smoking was in a sense a slow suicide. I certainly didn't want to die from them, but I knew all too well I was killing myself with them. XABF told me at the end he knew he was killing himself with vodka.
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Old 07-29-2016, 06:42 PM
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I'd be the last person to defend addiction, but let's face it--lots of people do engage in extremely risky behavior, for all kinds of reasons. You ride motorcycles, if I remember right. Some people sky-dive, deep-sea dive, fight fires, fight crime. I wouldn't suggest anyone who does any of those things has a death-wish. But nobody thinks they will be one of the people who dies from it. Still, plenty of people do die from sports or other healthy or beneficial pursuits.

I just don't like to analogize it to committing suicide. If someone really DOES want to die, there are far more efficient ways to go about it.
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Old 07-29-2016, 06:53 PM
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The same could be said of excessive weightlifting (vastly increased heart attack risk).
Working in commercial construction (silicosis).
Excessive time spent in the sun (cancer).

It will lead to death, but suicide depends on intent, not on the eventual outcome. More often than not, drinkers drink not because they want to die, but because they want to live, and they can't imagine enjoying life without the drink.
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Old 07-29-2016, 07:02 PM
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There are alcoholics who have gotten to the end stage and have been warned that they will die if they keep drinking, but cannot see a way out of their addiction. They know they will die, but as long as it's not happening there and then the addiction takes preference.

I lived in the same apartment block as 2 A brothers who had been told they had almost no liver function left, but they kept drinking and died a day apart. In cases like that they chose death over stopping and it was a deliberate choice, even through it was driven by addiction.

OTOH, I stopped drinking in part because of the effect on my health long term, as have many others, so As are capable of choosing life, even if they relapse often.
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Old 07-29-2016, 08:18 PM
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Originally Posted by FeelingGreat View Post
In cases like that they chose death over stopping and it was a deliberate choice, even through it was driven by addiction.
The defining factor here for me is "what was their goal?" Was their goal death? No. Death was a byproduct of their desire to continue drinking. Yes, it's a choice that they made - keep drinking despite the consequences - but the reason makes all the difference in the world. It would only be suicide if they were doing it *specifically* for the purpose of dying.
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Old 07-30-2016, 03:29 PM
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As a recovering alcoholic (24 years) I think the essence of the disease is self-destructiveness. Just my take on myself.
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Old 07-30-2016, 03:58 PM
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My ex drank because he wanted to die. He couldn't face life the way he was, he hated himself. He killed himself by actively committing suicide a month ago. His body was found last week with his passport laid next to him so he could be identified. So yes, I know for some people it is because death or oblivion is preferable to life.
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Old 08-02-2016, 11:00 PM
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Sorry, Shil, that is truly awful.

I think that many alcoholics are self-hating and self-destructive and are on one level trying to kill or at least hurt themselves. Of course, they are usually ambivalent and part of them wants to live, otherwise they would just kill themselves in a more direct manner. This song by Ozzy Osbourne pretty much sums up the mentality of self-destructive drinking for me, written by a guy who was drinking himself to death at the time. Afraid I couldn't find it with English subtitles.

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Old 08-03-2016, 04:17 AM
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I'm so sorry for your loss, Shil. I know you cared very much for him.

I'm not suggesting there aren't suicidal people who are alcoholics, nor that there aren't alcoholics who become suicidal as a result of the mess their lives have become. All I'm saying is that alcoholic drinking--however personally destructive--does not necessarily represent a wish to die.
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Old 08-03-2016, 04:27 AM
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Alcoholism is progressive it only gets worse. What other end is there other than recovery? Play the tape all the way through to end and death is grinning at us
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Old 08-03-2016, 06:27 AM
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I have mixed thoughts on this- when I read the first sentence, I thought yep! So true. Then I started thinking about it more as I read others' posts.

There was a fine line for me- I didn't actively think about suicide (ie, planning) but I definitely toyed with the idea of "just being dead." I once asked my dr if she thought I was trying to kill myself- she said, no, but my behaviors were taking me down that road. I don't think I ever would have done it- a big reason being I believe I would go to hell- but I do think I reached a point where I might've been relieved, right before I died, that it was over even with my contributing to it if not actively causing my death.

But the bottom line is- sober me can't imagine taking my own life. No matter what happens in it now. And that is the best news. I don't have to worry about this question anymore.
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Old 08-05-2016, 03:23 AM
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Alcohol served as an escape hatch for me, and a big reason why I chose sobriety is because thoughts of suicide (fantasizing about it, possible methods, etc) started to become a theme in drunkenness. The impulsiveness while drunk coupled with suicidal thoughts can lead to a grim and final bad decision - an old friend of mine killed himself while very drunk this past year - he had two beautiful kids - very very sad.
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