Am I an Alcoholic?

Am I an Alcoholic?


Every struggling drunk will at some point ask themselves: “Am I an alcoholic?”  Now here is the key: it will be extremely rare for the opposite of this to happen, for a “normal person” (someone who is not an alcoholic) to ask themselves if they are an alcoholic.

In other words, if you are questioning yourself, then that is a very strong red flag in itself.  Chances are good that you have already diagnosed yourself.

But of course some people just have a “drinking problem,” and they are not really a true alcoholic.  They might just go overboard when they drink, but have no real problem turning the alcohol down on a consistent basis.

There are a couple of tests for people to figure out if they are an alcoholic or not.   You can take various quizzes online that will attempt to help you determine this for yourself.  You can also do the experiment in the AA Big Book that suggests that you go to a bar and do some controlled drinking.  You are supposed to go to a bar with plenty of cash and limit yourself to 2 drinks.  If you can do this consistently without any problems, then according to AA, you are probably not an alcoholic.

I would suggest as well that any problem drinker could take this a step further and do a 30 day trial where they do not drink any alcohol at all.  What is important in these experiments is to really watch your own reaction to not drinking.  Are you resentful of the fact that you are limiting yourself?  If so, then that is a strong indicator.

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The question about whether or not you are an alcoholic becomes a bit less important when viewed in light of making changes in your life.  Why?  Because when an alcoholic is actually ready to surrender, they are long past denial about their condition.  They will have known for a long time that they are an alcoholic.

See, denial follows a progression.  At first, the alcoholic suspects they have a problem.

Then they know deep down that they have a serious problem.

Then they accept that they are a true alcoholic and agree to do anything to get help, such as attending a private alcohol rehab or getting counseling.

But notice the two steps before they get help.  They already know they are alcoholic, or at least suspect it if they are very early in the process.

People can stay stuck in that second level of denial for years and years.

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