I didn’t quite have a full intervention, but recently I’ve been made aware of the shit I get up to when I’m blacked out and it turns out I’m not the person I thought I was.
I can handle barfing on or around people, being a liability for my friends at parties, playing guitar like I have never heard of music, those are things which healthy or not I have been able to reconcile or put aside.
What I can’t do is disrespect women’s boundaries. I’m comfortable being an asshole but putting my hands on someone without their permission is something I can’t really deal with. When I am conscious, I’m not that person. But when I’m drunk I am, and I feel horrible.
It hurts because I feel harmless. I should be harmless. I don’t want people to feel unsafe around me, I don’t want to alienate the women in my life, and I don’t want to lose control of my body and my boundaries. I can’t be that person any more.
But it’s hard, since I’ve been introduced to alcohol I’ve loved it. It’s no secret to the people who know me that I like to get hammered on a regular basis, and what they may not realize is that I drink a lot more when they aren’t around. Especially when I can’t deal with the stress in my life. Which is often.
I drink to celebrate and I drink away my sorrows, I drink before I perform on stage and I drink even more when I’m done. I drink because I can’t deal with my family and I drink because I can’t look someone in the eye and say “you’re pretty, please kiss me” without a chemical that deadens my inhibitions.
Alcohol is already killing my little brother and more family members than I’d like to admit have gotten DUI convictions. And oh yes, I’ve driven drunk before. I’ve had to search for my car after waking up with the taste of puke in my mouth. And the last time I blacked out, I was informed that I had been trying to drink out of the disgusting “king’s cup” that my friend had been using to gather all the half-drunk beers and cups of wine and liquor. It’s pathetic.
Years ago I felt my growing addiction to nicotine interfere with my life and decided to nip that vice in the bud. This is different. Drinking is entrenched in my social life, my family life, even my identity. And since past attempts to drink in moderation have been failures I need to take more drastic steps.
I ask that the people I know personally who read this not to make a big deal the next time I see them, but to discretely ask that I set down my drink if I have one in my hand. Even after all this I’m still not sure I can stay sober without help from the people around me. This Christmas I’m going to have my last drink with my family and kiss alcohol goodbye.