If you are doing this, congratulations! Dry January made me reflect on my use before recovery, so here are some questions which I use to be able to answer yes to nearly all of them--well, yes, I wrote this..
1. Did you STOP reading this post because you saw the image, you don’t want to deal with questions about alcohol and how they relate to you? SKIP TO THE BOTTOM THEN
2. Did you resolve to give up drinking or using for Dry January or as a New Year’s Resolution and already feel you have blown it?
3. Are you juggling or not paying bills/eating less/using fewer utilities (turning heat barely on)/ having worrisome debt, but your spending on alcohol remains untouched?
4. Is alcohol or drugs your coping mechanism, but somehow it’s still hard to cope?
5. Are you really, really, really looking forward to February 1 or have you considered dry January to be an impossible task?
6. Are you relieved when you drive past a police officer, who doesn’t pull you over, after a typical day/night of use?
7. Are you tired every morning or have a hangover because of your typical usage?
8. Are your best plans of productivity diminished after your first drink?
9. Do you have a medical condition which would be better if you didn’t drink or use but still drink and use?
10. Do you wait all day for work to end so you can drink asap?
11. Do you wait until the kids are in bed or your spouse/significant other/family is in bed or occupied with something to drink how you want?
12. Are you choosing new friends with one of the variables being whether they drink or not?
13. Are you choosing new romantic relationships with one of the variables being whether they drink or not?
14. Does your use make you dislike yourself?
15. Are you ending up in situations solely because your judgment has been changed?
16. Do you feel any strong emotion about running out or not having alcohol in your home?
17. Do you think people in recovery or either “under the bridge” type low-lifes or “just too damn happy”? aka-You are not “like” them?
There is no “if you answered yes to a number (usually 1 or more) of these in this you might be…..” It’s meant for folks to take a look at if what they do represents normal drinking. Thirty days of dryness can start any time, not just January 1, and if you want to and can’t there is help to get you there. If you go 30 days and you are finding it was difficult most days to do so, there is help as well. If you don’t feel better after 30 days, no problem…I’m not telling you what to do. If you’ve read this and think you can do better with your use, you deserve that----nearly everyone I know in recovery now has a better life---even if life is still difficult, the handling of it is not as much so. They are the best people I know, and they are or were just like you.