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.

seattlemama88
06.03.09

I am so impressed at what you wrote. Not only did you share something very personal, but you wrote about it in your blog. Many times people are concerned with having their words held against them in a judgmental way so they never admit to changing their minds, for good or bad. I have always thought that was lame! You have just shown that people can change over time and you are deciding to change for the better. Wine is not inherently bad. Wine is just not good for you now. Thank you Stephenie for being so honest!

elisajo
06.03.09

Stefanie - I too enjoy a glass of an adult beverage every now and then, but one glass is pretty much all I can stand without feeling tipsy. I work for a spirits company and we do a lot of research as to how, when and why people drink. What I'm trying to say is that you're definitely not alone. One interesting finding from a beer company was that they sold more beer when the cases were placed in the aisle next to the diapers than when they were placed in the liquor section alongside their competitors. Interesting, huh?

sthielen
06.03.09

Tough call. I like your style. I really enjoyed your references to alcohol while being an awesome Mom, and I'm sure you are. I don't see what's the issue with being a Mom, and enjoying the odd cocktail. I do understand if it's getting out of hand, and moderation can be a tough call.

Congrats on your decision, and good luck!

jgowan
06.03.09

To AManfred...Seriously....seriously. A woman just bared her soul and reached out with a problem and that is what encouragement you give her? Shame on you.

jgowan
06.03.09

You are an amazing, strong woman/mommy to share your story with all of us. I know it must be a hard realization and from experience I know that it is a frightening and difficult change. At 42 my mother was close to and my father was at the point you were at. My father was not able to take control of his problem with alcohol and ultimately died from it at the age of 63. Hopefully you will get alot of support from sharing your story. Hopefully over time you will find that you enjoy your alcohol free evenings more than you ever did those before!

cgoff
06.03.09

cgoff
Giving up drinking was one of the hardest but best things I have ever done both for myself and those I love. It has been ten years and with the help of a program I continue to take it one day at a time. I can't tell you it isn't hard at times- most especially at the end of a overwhelming day juggling work and children. I don't think I will ever forget the release the alcohol brought me. However, I can't forget the fact that I no longer found relief with alcohol -I created more problems for myself, felt guilt and shame, and ultimately lost myself. I cannot forget that I can't drink like my friends - it was never just one and there was never enough. I hope you have friends and family to support your decision. I hope sobriety brings you all the joy and freedom I have found! Blessings to you -

PJsMom
06.03.09

Great, honest blog! I hope you can connect with other sober moms as it really helps to have support from people who get it. good luck and keep counting up those days.

landminesgirl
06.03.09

I see myself in your story. I've tried to quit entirely, but have been unsuccessful so far. You've inspired me. . . thank you!

Singleworkingmama
06.03.09

I commend you for sharing your story. You should be incredibly proud of yourself.

Heidi
http://www.singleworkingmama.com

ecn
06.03.09

I was JUST having a conversation about this with my fun/sassy/awesome sister-in-law who confided in me that she was having a problem stopping at one glass and was contemplating quitting. But that she was worried about how this would change her life. I told her what I'll tell you...the people who have a problem with your decision to quit are the people who need to question their own sad life to understand why they wouldn't want what's best for their friend/sister/mother. You deserve nothing but support. And the people in your life worth sticking with are the people who will not only stand by you, they will applaud you.