A lot of people struggling with alcoholism make excuses for their drinking. They might say that they drink because they’re stressed out or because they’re depressed. But the truth is, alcohol is a powerful drug that can easily take over someone’s life. If you’re struggling with alcoholism, it’s time to face the facts and get help. There’s no shame in admitting that you need help, and plenty of resources are available.
The 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health found a whopping 85.6% of adults 18 years of age and older stated that they had taken a drink sometime in their lives. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but a trend has been emerging in the United States, and it is more disturbing.
The trend is for “high-intensity drinking.” High-intensity drinking is when a man or a woman drinks two times the threshold for binge drinking. For a woman, binge drinking is when she consumes four or more alcoholic beverages within two hours. For a man, it is when he drinks five or more alcoholic beverages within two hours, leading to several deleterious consequences.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is Alcoholism?
- 2 What are some excuses used by people with alcohol use disorder?
- 2.1 They claim that they do not drink spirits.
- 2.2 They state that they can’t sleep without drinking.
- 2.3 Alcohol eases my pain.
- 2.4 Depression, Stress, or Sadness makes me drink.
- 2.5 They state that their friends all drink.
- 2.6 Some people insist that they aren’t craving alcohol, so they can take it or leave it.
- 2.7 They state they cannot take time to enter a Treatment Program.
- 2.8 They claim that they need to go to work.
- 2.9 They state that they are not drinking in the morning.
- 3 What is a high-functioning substance use disorder?
- 4 What is Denial?
- 5 Treatment
What is Alcoholism?
Alcoholism is when a person has the physical need or a desire to consume alcohol even though it is causing negative consequences for them. The words “alcoholism” and “alcoholic” are seen as negative, so the medical community changed the name of this disease to “substance use or alcohol use disorder.”
What are some excuses used by people with alcohol use disorder?
Talking to people about their drinking can be very difficult because they tend to answer your observations about their behavior with excuses. In order for you to combat these excuses, you must first know what to expect. The following 10 excuses are the most common that people with substance use disorder use:
They claim that they do not drink spirits.
This doesn’t matter because the critical point that you want to make is that they are drinking too much. They may make this statement because spirits contain more alcohol than other beverages, but you are concerned about the amount of alcohol your loved one drinks in a day.
They state that they can’t sleep without drinking.
Alcohol is undoubtedly known as a “depressant,” but this doesn’t mean it is a sedative. In actuality, alcohol can keep people awake.
Alcohol eases my pain.
People often use alcohol to relieve physical or emotional pain, a form of “self-medication.” The excuse for abusing alcohol is that it makes them feel better, but it also causes them to experience physical and emotional pain. This also affects the people around them. Besides, drinking to dull the pain is only a temporary solution to a problem that needs a more effective remedy.
Depression, Stress, or Sadness makes me drink.
When someone uses this excuse, they admit that there is a problem. Even if you are drinking because it is ameliorating your sadness, easing your depression, and numbing your pain, you are still experiencing a substance use disorder.
They state that their friends all drink.
This excuse isn’t a good one at all. Your friend may be comfortable surrounded by other people with substance use disorders, but the behavior is still very destructive.
Some people insist that they aren’t craving alcohol, so they can take it or leave it.
Someone with a substance use disorder can stop drinking for one day or even a week, but this doesn’t last long. In addition, the lack of cravings does not mean someone does not have a problem. Many people haven’t stopped drinking long enough to have cravings, and if someone drinks when they need to dull his or her feelings, the addiction may be mental rather than physical.
They state they cannot take time to enter a Treatment Program.
If a person with a substance use disorder obtains treatment for it, they will gain time in terms of a longer life. Drinking without limits is what causes people to lose time.
They claim that they need to go to work.
This is one of the most popular excuses for not going into rehab. If someone with a substance use disorder is still working, they are functioning with a substance use disorder. They may not necessarily be as productive as they need to be in their jobs, and their choices may be very bad.
They state that they are not drinking in the morning.
This is a common excuse people use to inform you that they are not drinking throughout the day, but it doesn’t mean they don’t drink excessively. It’s important to remember that the amount of alcohol they drink is disturbing and not the time in which they are doing it.
What is a high-functioning substance use disorder?
You don’t necessarily know that someone is a high-functioning person with a substance use disorder if you only know them casually. These people can go to work every day and excel at their jobs. Their children are never late for school; they live up to all their obligations, never neglect any of their responsibilities, and are highly successful. Nothing looks out of the ordinary for a high-functioning person with substance use disorder. Everyone around them believes that they are functioning normally. Only their family members and close friends know the truth. They may be functioning well today, but one day, the consequences of their actions will catch up with them.
What is Denial?
A person often needs to be in denial to continue to go through addiction. If the person you love doesn’t think his drinking is problematic, he will have no reason to seek help. Denial means that your loved one refuses to admit the truth about his or her drinking, and when someone is addicted to a substance, denial can serve as a defense mechanism that can be very hard to break down. Your loved one is an expert at using denial to remain in the throes of an addiction.
It can be not easy to convince a loved one that they need treatment. Because of the addiction, your friend or loved one isn’t themself, and he uses denial to delay having to face the fact that there is a severe issue. This may be too difficult to tackle, so you may want to stage an intervention to convince your friend or loved one to enter a treatment program.
At Garden State Treatment Center, we have a medication-assisted treatment program in which your loved one will receive medication to treat his physical addiction and behavioral therapies to treat his psychological addiction. Past program attendees have seen great results after completing the program. Contact us today if you are interested in learning more about our medication-assisted treatment program.