Willpower Doesn’t Keep Me Sober
03 May 2017
I’ve gotten a significant amount of side eye from acquaintances who hear I quit drinking the day after a binge. They think either I have immense willpower or didn’t actually have a problem with drinking. The truth is, I have awful willpower and had a huge drinking problem.
I knew I had a problem long before I got sober, but I was stubbornly against the notion that it was something I couldn’t control. I used to be able to have just one drink, then I would just have two, eventually I couldn’t control it. I would feel the buzz and didn’t want to lose it. I wanted—needed—to see how far that buzz could take me. I have blacked out more times than I can count because once I took a seat on the rollercoaster, I would refuse to get off the ride.
I read about different kinds of support for the struggling drinker. I was not going to follow a plan blindly without knowing the ins and outs. Maybe I could educate myself enough about alcohol misuse and find an intellectual loophole. I was annoyed by the suggestion that I should never drink again. I wanted to find a solution that would give me the ability to stop drinking after two drinks. Surely, self-control and moderate drinking were skills I could learn. If someone would just tell me the secret, I would be able to solve the puzzle and be cured. If I tried harder, if I was punished enough to learn discipline, if I went to enough therapy…if…if…
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