A sobriety blogger friend, Veronica Valli, recently published the background of her battle with alcohol. Everything she has written on the topic has always stricken a million chords inside of me. She writes…
I never became physically dependent on alcohol. I could always go for a period of time without it…I’ve never been arrested, bankrupt, or fired, or many of the terrible things that have happened to alcoholics. At first I thought I couldn’t be an alcoholic because I wasn’t ‘qualified’, however I learnt that it isn’t the drinking and consequences that make you an alcoholic; it’s the thoughts and feelings that drive alcoholism. It was then that I finally understood what my problem really was.
So much of my own struggle with drinking mirrors Veronica’s. When she offered me a copy of her book, Why You Drink and How to Stop: Journey to Freedom, I jumped at the opportunity. If the book was going to be anything like her sobriety blog, I knew it would hit home. One of the things that drew me to Veronica in the first place was her no-nonsense approach about getting into (and staying in) recovery from addiction. Unlike so many others in long-term recovery, she doesn’t enforce the idea that religion or AA is the only way to stay dry. I have the utmost respect for sober people who acknowledge that not everyone’s path to getting and staying clean looks the same. These are not hard and fast rules and everyone’s struggle is uniquely theirs.
The book is broken into several specific sections. My favorites were:
- Defining alcoholism and the different forms it takes
- Behavioral symptoms and issues
- What getting to the point of alcoholism means and looks like
- The history, nature and nurture reasons we drink to numb ourselves
- How booze affects young women specifically
If you or a loved one struggles with alcohol, I couldn’t recommend this book more. If it’s your own problem, Veronica’s words will be like a glimpse inside of older, more mature self. If it’s a loved one you’re worried about, this will absolutely help you understand where they’re coming from and how little control they have over it. Veronica helped me understand that I was headed toward severe alcoholism. Thankfully, I never made it past binge drinking before giving it all up.
Buy your copy of the book here.