Drinking in moderation

Old 10-14-2009, 04:50 PM
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Drinking in moderation

Nobody asked me for my opinion, so dismiss this if you want. But Iíve passed the age of 50, which I think is a milestone for throwing your opinion out and not giving a rip about what other people think about it. (And I suspect that hitting the age of 60 is the point at which a man can were black socks and sandals and walk around the beach with a metal detector and not give a rip). Anyway, one of the things Iím trying to do in my recovery is help others, and this post is meant to be helpful, not hurtful, please take it that way.

I have noticed in several threads lately, that some folks are trying to drink in moderation, and are feeling successful in that. Please understand, Iím not calling out anyone in particular (and frankly I donít remember the names, just a trend Iíve observed, and If I felt the need to call someone out I would do it in a private message). However, in my opinion, drinking in moderation does not work.

If anyone is able to drink in moderation, then good for you.

But you are on the wrong website, why are you here? I suggest that you do some introspection about why you felt inclined to register on a website called which, as the name implies, is about being sober. It seems like an oxymoron to me to post on and than try to drink in moderation (an alcoholic rationalization). Maybe there is a website called ďdrinking in moderation.comĒ or some such thing, but the people on this website (my generalization, I know) canít do that.

Personally, Iíve tried the moderation thing many times, along with countless other drinking-rationalization games, and it doesnít work. For me, itís pretty much all or nothing. I suspect many of you are the same. Those of you, who post about successfully drinking in moderation, may inadvertently be giving others the false hope that they can do it too. Bottom line, I donít think anyone whoís registered on this web site can drink in moderation, long term. If you have taken the time and effort to come out of the closet and register on, you have a drinking problem, Period. I think the only person you are fooling is yourself.
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:03 PM
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Drinking in moderation to me, means being able to have maybe 2 drinks socially with friends.

i've seen it lots over the years out with workmates or whatever, somebody has 1 drink, nurses it, then gets another.

Their face gets a little flushed and they leave and don't even finish the drink.

I've never, ever been able to understand how someone can do that.

It just seems totally foreign to my idea of drinking, I've never been able to just have a couple socially, the point has always been to get wasted.

If you can drink in 'moderation' you are not an alcoholic in my book.
I wish I was like that, but I never will be..ever.
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:11 PM
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You and I are on the same page in this book!
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:17 PM
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I get my hair cut in moderation.

Actually, age has slowed me down from doing the stupid crap I might have once considered.
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:22 PM
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As this is a community of support, and there is only one requirement for
membership (to confirm your email address), what does it really matter?

If i had come here when i was able to 'drink in moderation', then maybe the disease could have
been arrested earlier. If i had listened to the many people here who are working a program of
recovery, then maybe i would have stopped looking for the answears in a bag or a bottle.

We should not try to force recovery on anyone, anywhere, at any time. The people here
who are still using or drinking are reaching out to us. Regardless if they want to stop or not,
i will be here to accept them just as they are and try to help them however i can.
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:26 PM
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Good point. I understand.
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:30 PM
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Moderation never made any sense to me; therefore I know I should not try it for the forseable future... It was singularly about getting high and escaping. Flirted briefly with other drugs. Booz got me good. Still in some sort of mourning over loosing my best friend ( who ended up being pretty close to my only friend). It was a possessive jealous relationship with booz not realizing I needed to have a more balanced life. I know this and will reject all future offers to normalize a relationship. If you think you can moderate; go fo it. I am not one to judge... Just relating my experience...
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:35 PM
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I think some people come here looking to find a way to drink in moderation.

As they spend time here, and get to know us, they often change their opinion.

Each person has to find their own way, and someone who comes here hoping to drink in moderation may be positively affected by what he learns here.
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Old 10-14-2009, 05:39 PM
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When I first came here, I didn't know what I wanted to do. I still had thoughts of control and moderation.

Fortunately I made the right choice for me, and quit entirely.

I'm glad I met a warm and loving welcome that afforded me the opportunity to make up my own mind.

I'm here to offer my experience to others if they want it...beyond that...I'm not entirely sure that's my business

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Old 10-14-2009, 06:09 PM
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I know that Iím powerless over alcohol, and maybe thatís why I donít understand the ďdrinking in moderationĒ mantra. I have friends who have a beer with a nice steak in a restaurant and thatís it. I look at their fancy micro brew and order a diet coke. If I have a beer or two with a nice dinner, I would want to continue drinking when I get home, thatís the problem. Moderation is not skill I (or I suspect most) alcoholics have.
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Old 10-14-2009, 06:27 PM
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Arrest trips up 'moderate drinking' crusader's cause
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Old 10-14-2009, 06:56 PM
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A lot of people come to this site to learn how to drink in moderation. I couldn't begin to count the number who come through the doors of AA to learn how to "drink responsibly." These people realize that they have a drinking problem but are trying to find an easier, softer way to fix it. When you mention abstinence they freak out. Most will eventually be honest with themselves, but right now they're at the early stages of denial.

All we can do here is suggest they look at the possibility they're alcoholics, but very few do that. Some will eventually get it and accept the fact that they suffer from alcoholism, but it takes time. Many more won't get it and alcohol will either institutionalize or kill them. I've never come across anyone on this site who calims they can drink moderately. I've seen a whole bunch who've tried and failed, however.

You're right about taking that one drink. For us serious drunks that would be suicide. It's something that everyone here realizes. Everyone except the newcomer. But don't get too wrapped up about this. I think a vast majority of people will eventually come to the realization that they have a serious problem. It's our job to be around when that happens.
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Old 10-14-2009, 07:54 PM
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It's not a new trend, it's a reoccurring pattern here on SR, as is people who think they are too smart for AA, people who question if they are true alcoholics, and so many other common struggles. It is the sameness of our struggles that bond us, and help us realize we are all in this together.
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Old 10-14-2009, 08:20 PM
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Personally, Iíve tried the moderation thing many times, along with countless other drinking-rationalization games, and it doesnít work.
And you've said it yourself, NOT trying to point a finger at you. However, everyone has their own path. Part of mine was also trying to moderate. I had to learn.

Thanks for your share. I feel your point is certainly valid.......for me.
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Old 10-14-2009, 08:22 PM
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I think, for an alcoholic, "trying to moderate one's drinking" is an important step towards realizing that one is powerless over alcohol. For many people, it is helpful to let them create a moderation goal for themselves and then see if they can achieve it. If they can, great (and yes, perhaps they aren't alcoholic), but if they can't - and they are willing to be honest with themselves - then this is powerful evidence of alcoholism.

Some people just need this step (which I think of as Step 0).

So, to all of you out there moderating right now ... set a specific moderate drinking goal for yourself and then be honest about how you do. We are here for you if you want to talk.
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Old 10-15-2009, 01:19 AM
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There are a few guys i know that try drinking in moderation, they do quite well for a while then they are back worse than ever drinking more than ever, then they come to a couple of meetings and then they have a sudden realisation that they may not be an alcoholic then they are off again on NA beer...and so the cycle continues. They serve a useful purpose as a lesson to others...without them more people would waste many years of their lives more trying to control their drinking. I'm glad they are around to see.
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Old 10-15-2009, 01:31 AM
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I don't think I have ever experienced moderation even though I have tried on many occasions. Most alcoholics like to think they can/will drink in moderation one day until they prove to themselves they cant.
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Old 10-15-2009, 01:38 AM
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i guess that if you truely can drink/use in wouldn't be on a forum trying to found out would just do it and completely not be thinking about it...
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Old 10-15-2009, 01:40 AM
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i love the fact that we are here to help others when they realise that they cant moderate.
i also realize that we are here to give our experience of our own journeys and that people dont always get to come back after trying to moderate.

so if you think you can moderate, go ahead. just know that this is a killer illness and you might not come back.

frightning isnt it? but it is the truth.

so although i agree with most of whats been said here, lets make sure that we are not here to help them learn to moderate.
lets keep it to the truth.

peace and fellowship to you all.
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Old 10-15-2009, 04:40 AM
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This quote from the Big Book sums it up pretty well:

Most of us have been unwilling to admit we were real alcoholics. No person likes to think he is bodily and mentally different from his fellows. Therefore, it is not surprising that our drinking careers have been characterized by countless vain attempts to prove we could drink like other people. The idea that somehow, someday he will control his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistance of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursie it into the gates of insanity or death. We learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics. This is the first step in recovery.
If we are to be fair when some one speaks of moderation, we need to take a step back before we say or type a single word.......... Were we not right in thier shoes?

Were we not already knowing we had a problem, but simply not fully able to pull our selfs out of a state of denial?

I recall saying to numerous friends and family after an extra embarassing drunken show I had put on for the world "Well I will never do that again, I will just watch myself and control my drinking in the future." All the while I was saying crap like that to others in the back of my head......... I KNEW!!!! I could not admit it to yself nor to anyone else.... but I KNEW!!!!

Even after I came out and said "I am an alcoholic, but I am a maintenance drinker and functional, I just need to be careful with my drinking." I still was that little boy whistling in the dark saying to myself "I still got control, I can still drink safely and control it."

You know if just one single person who shows up here saying they plan on moderating finally quits all together before they hit a really savage bottom because they remember what some of us said here that is awesome!!! We could actually save one persons life, or possibly even more.

Let them come, let them continue with that grand illusion we all had the great obsession of every abnormal drinker, the thing is they may not need to reach the points of insanity some of us had to reach before we stopped. Sadly though as so many of us do, we continue to march forward through those gates of insanity and onward to death!
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