By Diana Miller, Chief Development Officer | Intro By Kelsey Amos, Women’s Program Manager
I was recently having a conversation with an alcoholic woman whose non-alcoholic partner expressed concerns with the upcoming holidays. She explained that her partner was worried that others drinking around her would hinder her sobriety and make her want to drink. I immediately thought of this blog and how important it is to educate our friends and family about alcoholism.
This woman, and all recovered alcoholics, have personally experienced the freedom in being relieved of the mental obsession to drink. This is the ultimate promise we get from working the 12 steps- a spiritual awakening, freedom alcohol, not just for us, but for our family members and loved ones, too.
I encouraged my friend to share this blog and other resources to educate her partner on the disease of alcoholism. This is vital to understanding why we drink, and why, when we recover, your drinking doesn’t need to change for us.
– Kelsey Amos, Women’s Program Manager
Holidays. Celebration, family, and…booze. To all non-alcoholics out there celebrating the holidays with a friend or loved one who is no longer drinking because they are in recovery, I ask of you, do not change your drinking because of us. Do not hide the alcohol or feel like you cannot have your champagne, wine, or beverage of choice when we are around. You see, alcohol is my solution- not my problem.
Do not hide the alcohol or feel like you cannot have your champagne, wine, or beverage of choice when we are around. You see, alcohol is my solution- not my problem.
Meaning, the disease of my alcoholism centers around a spiritual malady which manifests as a mental obsession around alcohol; but because of the Big Book, I have a spiritual toolkit and a Higher Power which has removed the mental obsession and now I do not think about drinking, and I do not think about not drinking. Thus, being in proximity to alcohol or those who drink does not affect me as it did before I accepted my disease and worked on my recovery.
Most people who change their drinking habits around alcoholics mean well. They probably have heard that people drink due to “triggers,” and what greater trigger is there than the sight and smell of alcohol? I will let you in on a secret. I drink because I am an alcoholic, not because there is alcohol around.
I drink because I am an alcoholic, not because there is alcohol around.
And before I recovered, I made sure to procure my own alcohol prior to attending any celebrations or events. Alcohol was at the forefront of my mind; whether other people were drinking or not had no bearing on my mental obsession. There are no “triggers” when one is an alcoholic- it is a disease of the body and the mind. Those of us in recovery, who live out our 12-Step spiritual principles, have no problem with others’ drinking. There is no need to feel uncomfortable when drinking around us. When we recover, our mental obsession around alcohol is removed, contingent we continue to work on our spiritual recovery.
When we recover, our mental obsession around alcohol is removed, contingent we continue to work on our spiritual recovery.
But even those alcoholics who are not in recovery and are actively drinking are not “tempted” by your drinking. They will drink regardless because they are alcoholics– not because there is alcohol around.
Like the Big Book says, we are not a glum lot. And neither should you be just because there is an alcoholic around. So please, have that cocktail, and cheers to a wonderful holiday season.