My Sobering Secret.

by Stefanie Wilder-Taylor

 

I talk about drinking a lot on my blog. I've talked about it a lot in my books. I really like to drink. I like the way wine softens the edges, smoothes out the line between "their time" and "my time," helps me to feel relaxed, helps me tune out. But I drink too much. I drink seven nights a week. Sometimes just a glass of wine but usually two or three or even more. I always seem to have some sort of excuse like, "Today was an exceptionally stressful day so I deserve an extra glass now that it's all done."

 

I drank often when Elby was a baby to help deal with the stress of a new infant. I found myself drinking more than I had before I became a parent and I drank with other moms to bond and unwind (yes, I'm the cocktail play date mom and I stand by it being a healthy thing to do in moderation, in walking distance, if you’re not me). Before I got pregnant with the twins I had pretty much stopped drinking because I felt it was becoming a habit so when I was pregnant, it was extremely easy not to drink. But when the twins were born and I was home and my milk was dried up and postpartum was setting in, the simplest thing to do seemed to be have a glass of wine.

 

It was only too darn easy to fall back into the pattern (especially once the babies started having a regular bedtime) of having my wine every night. For some people I'm sure this is a nice thing, a tribunal thing (a drink at the end of the day with their spouse or friends). For others it might be a once in awhile treat to go out and have a couple of cocktails. For me, it's become a nightly compulsion and I'm outing myself to you; all of you: I have a problem.

 

I quit on Friday, May 22nd.

 

I've wavered before on this issue thinking, "But lots of times I have one glass of wine." Well, unfortunately, especially lately, most times I don't just have one -sometimes I have four. And being compulsive, I can't be trusted to "just cut down" because lord knows I’ve tried it.

seuzibell
06.03.09

Congratulations on your first steps! It takes a great deal of self confidence and bravery to recognize the possibility that you may have a problem. I can't personally say whether or not your drinking is truly a problem, only you can make that determination. When I got pregnant I sometimes missed being able to have a drink with friends, but now that my son is here (almost 4 months old) I don't miss it at all. Thank you for sharing and reaching out for support. You've got one more mommy standing on your side.

rustyk
06.03.09

Wow. You are amazing and incredibly courageous. I think that you'll find that sobriety and the road of recovery can be pretty cool. Whatever path you choose, know that there are many moms out there just like you (and me) that have quit drinking and live fulfilling and fun lives.

I quit drinking over 4 years ago with the help of a pretty solid ongoing program (and a little spirituality thrown in for good measure). If I can do it, anyone can!

Rusty http://www.rustykeller.com/blog

BandGMom
06.03.09

The first year (or two) with twins is rough - it does get easier. They eventually do get themselves dressed, fed and off to college. Hang in there. I really enjoy your blog and wish you all the best. Fortunately, for all of us, your humor and wit doesn't go away when you stop drinking.

jasf
06.03.09

i drank heavily for 20 years. i have been sober for 7 years 4 mos +. it was the hardest thing i've ever done. but the most rewarding and uplifting thing i've ever done.

i think amanfred's comments are dangerous--if u are concerned (which u are), go with ur feelings. AA worked for me (although i am focusing on Zen buddhism now), but the support and basis of the program taught me how to LIVE sober. i never in my life imagined i could go 1 day without drinking. i now live 1 day at a time, sober.

will power does not work, admitting i had a problem and learning that it is a DISEASE that i can't control was the biggest step for me.

feel free to contact me via email! hugs.

ManicMommy
06.03.09

Well, now you have your next book locked -- the memoir of you getting sober! Good luck to you, and good news for your children.

the23rdelf
06.03.09

thank you for sharing this. my husband also had to quit drinking 100% because for him, there is no such thing as "just one." i am grateful every day that he realized this and had the strength to quit before he became a danger to himself, our son, and our marriage. and yes, he has slipped and yes, it's hard but that was the right choice for him. i believe you are making the right choice for YOU and wish you the very best in your efforts to be the best momma you can be.

nicolariestaggart
06.03.09

Thank you for being so honest and sharing this part of your journey with us. I know you are not alone--in your desire to drink and your desire to stop needing to drink. Please continue to be honest with us about this process and know that you've got a community here to help support you along the way.
Nicola

Writermom
06.03.09

Thank you all for your support. It's really overwhelming how kind people can be. I am getting assistance from others who "get it" and I agree with some of you that that makes a big difference. Luckily there are other awesome ways to unwind like watching The Bachelorette. Now that's a cup of crazy.

tiffanyinc
06.03.09

You have a grip. You know your limits. You are in control :o) Recently... I was having similar thoughts about my life and social agenda but found myself growing a baby bump (which made it really easy to quit). But a year from now, I will have a drink (or 4) again and try not to fall into the old bad habits all over again. It's all good in moderation!

tracy121574
06.03.09

congratulations! i too found that after my first son was born and the PPD set in i would "have" to have a beer/wine or two with dinner to be able to settle down at night. i'm now pregnant with my second and scared of that happening again. so i applaud your effort and wish you the best!