Last night, my dad opened two bottles of wine. I randomly decided not to have a drop. All night. I was sick of feeling gross. So I just had some Mexican dip and 2 cupcakes, book-ending my healthy swordfish dinner. But no alcohol.
Then, this morning I read the most amazing article in the April Vogue (it’s not online yet, or I would link to it). The story is called “The Sipping Point.” Look it up if you get the chance. Author Rebecca Johnson writes, “I am not an alcoholic,” and you think, Yeah, right.
But she really isn’t. Like me, she just drinks when she needs to relax, is bored, is having fun, or is irritated.
She explains that she has one or two (or more) glasses of wine a night. Seems pretty normal. But she’s not sleeping because it wakes her up at 3:00 a.m. (me, too! I hate that).
Here’s the part that I really identified with:
A decade ago, it was considered heresy for anyone in the alcohol-treatment business to entertain the idea of helping heavy drinkers reduce rather than abstain. It was a shortsighted policy when you think about it, because people like me are a lot more common than the stereotypical alcoholic who needs a shot of tequila first thing in the morning. According to the NIAAA, about 16 percent of the adult population meets the criterion for “nondependent problem drinker” (we can take it or leave it, but we’d rather take it), with only 5 percent meeting the criterion for alcoholism (they can’t leave it).
There’s a name for those of us who lie in the middle-ish of the spectrum! I always knew this—if eating disorders and sexuality have spectrums, then so would drinking. Yay.
And I think I’m going to try abstaining for a few days. Just for my health.