Everyone seems to drink alcohol in our culture. Many seem to drink too much on occasion. But how much drinking is too much?
Many of our clients say – “Why can’t I be like other people? They seem to be able to drink without getting drunk all the time.”
Regular drinking is not necessarily a problem – in Mediterranean cultures families will usually have wine with dinner on most days. But they just have a glass or two. Few people in those countries see any problem with drinking like that.
The truth is, it varies from person to person – there’s no absolute level of alcohol consumption at which you have a problem.
Most people know if they’re drinking too much
… even before other people tell them. Basically if the negative consequences are more than the positive ones. But there are many signs to look out for –
- if you’re looking forward to a drink more than the other things in your life,
- if you’re often feeling depressed or guilty – like you need to hide how much you’re drinking from others, or even having a ‘secret’ drink when you can get away with it,
- if you’ve ever noticed a pile of your empties and thought ‘wow, that’s getting big’,
- if the following day, you can’t concentrate on what you need to, because you ‘just can’t face it today’ – (you’re too hungover),
- if you’re finding it difficult to look people in the eye, because you think they might be judging you,
- if you’re buying a bottle during the day, do you buy lots of groceries with it to hide the fact that you’re buying alcohol before lunchtime?
- but one of the surest signs is this – if you’re hungover, and you start thinking ‘just one drink will take this hangover away’, then you’ve definitely got a problem.