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Where do you draw the line?

Discussion in 'Alcohol' started by DancingLady, Jun 8, 2015.

  1. DancingLady

    DancingLady Community Champion

    Where do you draw the line between regular drinking and being an alcoholic?

    If a person drinks some alcohol every night for many years, their body is going to be accustomed to the rhythm of having alcohol every night and expect it. Does that make them an alcoholic? Alcohol dependent? Or just a regular drinker?

    For the purpose of this discussion, we are talking about someone who only drinks at the end of the day and is having more than one glass of wine, but not really getting drunk.
  2. Corzhens

    Corzhens Active Contributor

    In my family, alcoholism is not an alien thing since the boys in the house were drinkers although it is not correct to say that they are all alcoholics. There will be drinkers and there will be alcoholics. The only difference is the craving. A drinker drinks with a purpose like bonding with friends or enjoying an occasion while an alcoholic drinks because of necessity in satisfying the craving.
  3. bsthebenster

    bsthebenster Community Champion

    I think if you exhibit withdrawal symptoms you're an alcoholic. Or if you drink despite knowing full well that, in your situation, the cons of alcohol consumption far outweigh the pros yet you are unable to stop.
  4. Damien Lee

    Damien Lee Community Champion

    There are many folks who enjoy alcohol and drink it on a regular basis. Some people will drink just enough to get a buzz but won't push further. Nevertheless, I know of two people that one wouldn't define as alcoholics but both have suffered severe health problems due to regular drinking. One has extensive liver damage which is now irreversible and he wasn't the kind of guy that would come home drunk in the evenings. Unfortunately when he tells people about his ailment, they automatically assume he is an alcoholic.
  5. JoshPosh

    JoshPosh Community Champion

    I really don't think that one or two glasses at the end of the day is a serious problem. Lots of people do that just to unwind. They don't get drunk but for the next hour or so it's all about then relaxing and taking a load off.
  6. delishius

    delishius Member

    I agree with some others here that having a few glasses of something at the end of the day probably isn't going to cause major problems. But, if you're dependent on having a few drinks at the end of every day I don't think that it's very healthy at all. Their liver probably doesn't like that habit very much. I wouldn't describe that person as an alcoholic, but definitely dependent on it. I think it would help to know how that person feels when they don't get their wine at the end of the day. If it causes them a lot of stress and anxiety to not have it, then maybe they are an alcoholic.
  7. DancingLady

    DancingLady Community Champion

    Thanks for your opinions. I have definitely put some thought into this subject myself because a relative of mine has been described to me by another relative as an alcoholic, but this relative does not drink during the day to anyone's knowledge, it's only at the end of the day, such as with or after dinner, and I've never seen her drunk, or heard about her getting drunk. She has at times had a little more than is acceptable for driving, and her husband drove, he only had one glass. I tend to think she does have a dependency of some kind, though how serious, I do no know as I don't even live near her anymore.
  8. delishius

    delishius Member

    It's very possible that she does have a problem and she just doesn't let it show. There have been times in my life where I had a drink every day for a long period of time. I just didn't let people see how much I was drinking, and I wasn't drunk when I talked to them so they didn't think that there was a problem. If you know that your drinking is a problem, sometimes you'll do anything you can to hide it from others.
  9. JohnBeaulieu

    JohnBeaulieu Community Champion

    If you can't do without it you are an alcoholic. Plain and simple.
  10. kjonesm1

    kjonesm1 Community Champion

    From what I understand, if a person drinks every night,whether they get drunk or not their bodies are dependant. I have a girlfriend who drinks two or three every night and last week she decided to stop. She told me the first three nights she could not sleep and spent hours tossing and turning restlessly. That sounds like alcohol dependency to me.
  11. pwarbi

    pwarbi Community Champion

    Personally I think that if a person has a couple of beers or a couple of glasses of wine at the end of the day to relax, I don't think it's much of a problem to be honest. Sometimes people just like to have a drink with their evening meal, if they do that every night, does that make them an alcoholic? Course it doesn't.
  12. kassie1234

    kassie1234 Community Champion

    For me, it was thinking "how am I going to function without this?"

    I worried how I'd socialize without alcohol...would I be as fun, as outgoing? Would the words come to me as confidently as they did when I'd been drinking?

    It was also about how sick I would get when I'd go past happy drunk and into regular vomiting sessions because my body just couldn't handle the amount of alcohol I was going through. For me, that's how I knew it wasn't normal.
    kjonesm1 likes this.
  13. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    IMHO drinking every day does make someone an addict whether they get drunk or not. An addict is someone who can't do without a substance for a longish period of time. Can someone get along fine without drinking their glass of wine in the evening? If s/he can't then that person even though all they ever consumed was a glass of wine per day is an addict/alcoholic.
  14. vegito12

    vegito12 Community Champion

    It occurs when a person drinks to the point of being drunk and not being aware of their surroundings and having, hangovers every day which is a sign of not having control. It can also occur when a person is spending more money on alcohol and it affects them on a daily basis, which is not a good thing as it can ruin them. When a person can't live without alcohol, then it can be seen as a problem and the person needs to change themselves.
  15. amethyst

    amethyst Community Champion

    I think that drinking on a daily basis isn't exactly recommendable. But then, my great grandmother drank half a glass of red wine every day of her life, and she lived to be nearly a hundred. She firmly believed that it was good for her heart and circulation. Half a glass of wine isn't much, but personally I think that there are many other ways in which you can increase your circulation and overall health. I don't like the thought of forever having a certain residue of alcohol in my blood stream. To be perfectly honest, I have a zero alcohol tolerance in my home.
  16. Missfortune81

    Missfortune81 Member

    I agree that if you are experiencing withdrawal symptoms and the drinking is causing rerious problems in your life (health, legal, and relationship problems), then you have a problem. In my opinion, not everyone who drinks everyday has a drinking problem and not everyone who drinks in large quantities has a problem. I think it is a problem when it becomes a problem.
  17. Aescopri

    Aescopri Active Contributor

    Regular drinkers tend to be much more lenient when someone insults the habit of drinking alchohol, and will usually only take sips at a time or every night. To me, another thing that distinguishes an alcoholic from a regular is someone who has hurt someone when they are intoxicated.
    Also, if regular drinkers are ever intoxicated, they will not be intoxicated for as long as alcoholics because they are not as much addicted to alcohol as alcoholics.
    Alcoholism is only alcoholism to me if it gets in the way significantly in someone's life, like doing something while intoxicated for a long period of time that they regretted later when they are sober (if they are).
    My father regularly drinks some wine or beer every night, and drink a lot in business meetings. I wouldn't call him an alcoholic because he is not abusive at all and alcoholism has not gotten in the way of our lives.
  18. tasha

    tasha Community Listener Community Listener

    I think with everything you have to do it in moderation but there are some of us that just cant have one drink at night after work as it turns into one bottle and then two and then it becomes part of our daily necessity. At some stage you would make sure that you have money for booze before you pay a bill or put food on the table and it just escalates into something that you just cant control. There are people that can say no or have a small tot of something at night to relax but with everything in moderation there must be a stop button.
  19. rightct

    rightct Community Champion

    I drink alcohol, and there's no shame in it, but I just keep it at a minimal rate of around 2 glasses of wine per day and that's pretty much everything about it. In the past, I would drink the equivalent of 2 bottles of wine per day (my liver had to suffer a lot because of this, but no long-term consequences), until it started interfering with others aspects of my life and I simply quit. Luckily enough...
  20. artkat96

    artkat96 Member

    I think the line involves the word "dependence". If you can't live without it, or feel at a loss (maybe withdrawal symptoms), you could be an alcoholic.