Is it possible for a recovering alcoholic to drink occasionally? The answer is no. Someone who is addicted to alcohol cannot return to casual drinking.
This raises an important question about your drinking. You might wonder, ‘am I an alcoholic, or do I just drink too much?’.
When it comes to giving up alcohol, some will do it to save money for a course or a holiday, or perhaps they don’t like how it makes them feel.
Some would take anything over quitting alcohol, which can bring dependency, leading to complications. So, when it comes to finally getting sober, they are at the point of necessity, of survival.
The possibility of casual drinking is a wonder valid for anyone who has managed to get their drinking under control. The question is, can alcoholics ever drink again in a way that doesn’t cause relapse and return to problem drinking?
Well, I would say it is possible, but how likely is it that you won’t have another drink after that and another and another?
It is hard to tell. Most of us who have recovered from alcoholism don’t have the motivation to return to having a pint or two now and again because the motivation lies in remaining sober. Most won’t take the risk of finding out.
The Difference Between Alcoholism and OverDrinking
Some maybe think that there is no difference between alcoholism and alcohol abuse, but there is, just like there is a difference between having a bottle of wine every night and two bottles of wine after work on a Friday.
Let us look closer at the differences between the two.
What is alcoholism?
In short, alcoholism is an alcohol addiction. You are dependent if you cannot go a day without drinking, and by having this dependency, you will develop a chronic disease throughout your bodily system.
If you feel that you have an alcohol addiction but have been sober for months or maybe even years, and you are wondering if you can have a casual drink again? Then perhaps it is time to seek support, as it may signify that you are wandering towards a relapse.
What is alcohol misuse?
Have you ever had a friend that pours drinks down their throat like there is no tomorrow? Alcohol abuse is common, especially in the UK. The UK has had a significant issue controlling how we consume alcohol for decades. Reports show that seven and a half million people in the UK suffer from alcohol dependence to some degree.
People who drink more than they should on a night out aren’t necessarily addicted to alcohol and can cut down their drinking or stop altogether if they want to.
Now that the difference between alcohol abuse and alcoholism has differentiated, what about moderation and abstinence? Is it worth giving up alcohol altogether, or is it healthy for us to have a drink now and again with friends?
Abstinence is when you don’t drink alcohol at all, through choice. It could be that alcohol isn’t for you, or you thought it was causing difficulties in your life, holding back your career prospects or straining the relationships you had or had at the time. There are many reasons why people give up alcohol other than necessity.
On the other hand, if you have been sober for a year and are thinking of going out for a drink to celebrate, this would be considered moderation.
What is Alcohol Moderation?
Moderation is when we attempt to control how much we drink when we are out for a meal or a night out, or perhaps we watch our intake during dinner at home.
Some feel that their alcohol intake is slowly rising, and they are spooked by how attractive it is becoming. Having this spell can put people off it altogether, but it is also common to try and cut back on our drinking.
Cutting back on our alcohol intake may be possible for those of us that don’t have an addiction, but that doesn’t mean that it will work or that you will be able to do what you plan to, especially when you aim to tackle alcohol diet when you are out on the town.
We have all said to ourselves, ‘I won’t be drinking much tonight; I’ve been overdoing it recently’. Then, a few hours later, it’s closing time, and you are full of regret the next day.
The best way to reduce your alcohol intake is to find another activity where one of the primary attractions is something other than alcohol.
Why going back to casual drinking doesn’t work.
For alcoholics, it is highly unlikely that you will be able to adapt to casual drinking. If you are thinking of dabbling with the prospect of being able to do so, we can only advise you to reconsider your options and continue your sobriety journey.
If you have always been a casual drinker and, through moments of escalation, you have taken long periods away from alcohol, and are on the cusp of going out on the town again to get drunk for the first time in ages, then we suggest taking it slow.
During your dry spell, your body will have reduced the enzymes needed to break down the alcohol in your system; in other words, you will get drunk fast. So please take it slow and have friends you trust to look out for you.
So, can alcoholics drink casually?
Alcoholism is a catch-22 situation. If alcohol has made your life so terrible and wreaked havoc on your relationships, then why would you risk it happening again? The only answer is that you are addicted and therefore cannot return to drinking safely. If you have any questions regarding anything covered in this article, don’t hesitate to contact our team for more information.