Attempting to Control Drinking Might Only Work for Some Drinkers

Alcohol Addiction |

There are some people who might notice their relationship with alcohol is beginning to get destructive. Perhaps they are drinking too much and going to work with a hangover. Perhaps they are fighting more with their spouse. Or maybe they notice that their desire to go out drinking is more pronounced than the desire to spend time with their children. In these cases, a person might want to limit their drinking in order to prevent any damages to their career, marriage, or family life. However, some men and women might find that in fact limiting the drinking the way they would like isn’t working.

Signs of Addiction

When a person cannot limit their drinking or stop drinking, it might be a good indication that an alcohol addiction is developing. One of the hallmark signs of addiction is that a person cannot stop drinking or using drugs even if they wanted to. When this happens, it is best to get outside help, such as from a therapist, medical doctor, or drug treatment center, to address the addiction.

Yet, if you’re able to stop or limit your drinking, then you might want to consider ahead of time the amount and days you’ll allow yourself to drink. Having a specific quantity and specific days, such as only on weekends and holidays can facilitate your limited alcohol intake. According to the Center for Disease Control, moderate alcohol consumption is defined as having up to 1 drink per day for women and up to 2 drinks per day for men. This definition is referring to the amount consumed on any single day and is not intended as an average over several days.

Assistance with a Path to Sobriety

Furthermore, if you wanted assistance with limiting your drinking, you might also refer to the group Moderation Management (MM). They provide a path to sobriety that is secular and based upon relationships with others who are struggling with addiction, similar to the method of Alcoholics Anonymous (AA).  It provides support groups to the public that are peer run and are for anyone who would like to reduce their alcohol consumption. However, unlike the AA and 12-step method whose goal is abstinence from alcohol and drug use, MM allows members to set their own drinking goals as they feel appropriate. They recognize that someone might want to achieve limited or controlled drinking.

MM was founded in 1994 to create an alternative to the AA path to sobriety. They are for those who are not dependent upon alcohol but who want to limit their drinking, not necessarily stop. The goal for members is to moderate their drinking in order to reduce any negative consequences. To do this, MM encourages members to follow particular drinking guidelines, limits, goal setting techniques, and a nine-step program for change.

However, as discussed above, a person might find that they are not able to stop drinking. Even if they follow the nine-step path MM provides, the changes in the brain that come with addiction can make someone believe that they need alcohol in order to survive. When this happens, it’s essential that a person contact a mental health provider and/or a alcohol addiction treatment center.


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