I have been with my therapist, a psychologist, for almost 11 years.
She specializes in mood disorders. She has been with me thru the very worst times and now during good times. I know that she doesn't approve of my alcohol consumption b/c I went a week w/o drinking b/c I wanted to lose a little weight and she said that she was very happy about it. My wine glass is 10 oz and I always fill it full and drink 3-4 glasses in the evening. She says that 4 oz is the normal size of a wine glass and that I am exceeding the limit. My father died of cirhossis of the liver and my sister is an alcoholic (not drinking now)but on a lifetime of methodone b/c of her percocet addiction and she has no plans to d/c the methodone. She says it's the only "anti-depressant" that really works for her.
Because my therapist knows all of this, I don't think she is objective about my drinking. This is why I am asking a stranger for his opinion.
I am confused and not sure that your advice is good for me. I am not French or Italian where they learn to drink responsibly at meal times from the time they are children.
I am not drinking to regulate my mood state as you seem to think from what you have said. My mood is fine b/c of the meds I take. I drink b/c I like the taste and it is relaxing. I don't like to exercise or do meditation, so pls. don't suggest that as an option.
I took about 3 different alcohol assessment tests online, including the MAST and all 3 said that I had a high probability of alcohol abuse or dependency, and that does scare me!! I've gone to AA in the past but never really felt that "I fit in" b/c I have a long list of
"NOT YETS" such as no DUI's, lost job or family. jail time, black outs, etc. It's been almost 2 years since my last AA mttg. and I am now wondering if I should go back.
Are you familiar with the book "UNDER THE INFLUENCE"? I fit the criteria for an early alcoholic b/c of my increased tolerance level and craving for alcohol.
I have to go to work but will respond later this afternoon or evening.
I will try and see if I can cut back on my alcohol consumption. I am not sure what you mean by "withdrawal." I always try and make sure that I am not out of wine (my favorite) but if I am, I will drink a Rum and Coke, Bloody Mary or other alcoholic beverage. I don't get physically sick when I don't drink--if that is what you mean by withdrawal. If I am going to someone's house where alcohol is not served (like my daughter's house) I might have a glass or two of wine before going, unless it is too early in the day---like before 12 Noon.
I did try and cut back drinking for a short while when I was trying to lose weight (and I did lose a few pounds) but I returned to my wine.
I am trying to be as honest as I can with you and want your professional opinion, even if its not what I want to hear.
PS Some of the alcohol quizzes as about trouble sleeping. What does that mean and how does it relate to alcoholism? I have started having trouble sleeping about 3 weeks ago and even if I take a 0.5mg of xanax (which used to knock me out w/in 2-3 minutes!) it doesn't always work. I also have a restless sleep where I dream a lot about stuff going on in my life.