How Queerness Influences My Alcohol Addiction — My Latest for Ravishly

CN: Suicidal behavior, alcoholism

Alcohol was the antidepressant I felt I always wanted. There was no need to step back, breathe, count to ten, or do any of the other self-soothing techniques I picked up from 17 years worth of therapy. All I had to do was fill up my 12 oz. tumbler to the brim with bourbon, and I was set.

All the pain, anguish, fear, anxiety, anger, shame, and sensory overload just disappeared in a fog of inebriation. I didn’t care about any possible permanent liver damage or adverse reactions to my psychiatric medication; all I cared about was getting drunk every night. My therapist kept bringing up my drinking during our sessions together, but I didn’t want to talk about it. I finally found something that was working for me. Why screw up a good thing, right?

Unfortunately alcohol was starting to affect my life negatively.

I recorded episodes of my podcast drunk. I had trouble sleeping. I even switched from binge drinking just at night to binge drinking all day.

I knew I had to stop, so I started going to a weekly local SMART Recovery support group in December. Unlike Alcoholics Anonymous, SMART Recovery uses cognitive behavioral therapy techniques instead of a list of 12 steps and does not require belief in a higher power. At first, everything was going well; they were teaching me how to confront the negative thoughts and irrational beliefs that led me to drink. A few weeks ago, however, I got tired of staying sober and tried to drink myself to death.

Read the rest here.

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