When I decided to take a year off alcohol I discovered there are basically two ways society relates to the subject of alcohol addiction:
1) You are an addict and therefore described as an Alcoholic
2) You are NOT addicted and so are considered a ‘Normal’
But this didn’t cut it for me.
I had a feeling I was somewhere in the middle, somewhere between having an ongoing habit of drinking most days (and definitely every week), and not getting tremors or other ‘cold turkey’ symptoms when I didn’t drink.
Even though I was the first to admit I probably drank more than was good for optimal health—physical, spiritual and mental—I did not (and still don’t) consider myself an Alcoholic. Thankfully I found another word which seemed to describe me perfectly: dipsomaniac.
A dipsomaniac is someone who loves drinking alcohol, maybe even craves it sometimes, but doesn’t HAVE to drink. I reckon there are more dipsomaniacs in the world than Alcoholics and ‘Normals’ combined.
But I’m only guessing.
So then I got thinking how, for myself and my fellow dipsomaniacs who wanted to cut down their booze intake, I could appropriate the 12 steps used by Alcoholics Anonymous to help alcoholics kick booze for good. Maybe there is a way for us Dipsos to manage our habits without having to re-define ourselves with the ‘Alcoholic’ label, a label I know I am not alone in feeling inappropriate, even if, pre my year of living sober, I was drinking a bottle of wine to myself most nights.
Anywho, on with the DD show. Today it’s time for the seventh in Year of Living Sober’s series of 12 Dipsomaniac Declarations.
Dipsomaniac Declaration Number Seven
As a Dipsomaniac I accept the dichotomy that nobody is perfect and everybody is.
The 7th corresponding Alcoholics Anonymous step is:
Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.
Why I prefer the DD#7 to AA step 7
As with AA step number 6—which involves admitting to one’s ‘defects of character’—step 7 continues down the “I’m not good enough without HIM’ route. This is a way I don’t wish to go.
Having said that, I accept many people need to bow before a judgemental ‘Him’ in order to absolve themselves of
sins shortcomings. Whatever works is cool. I just prefer to focus on da’ positive, man.
Besides, if I believed in a great Judge Creator who has the power to remove my shortcomings I’d probably also believe Judge Creator was the one who put them (the ‘shortcomings’ that is) there in the first place. So why should I be so hung up about them?
I’m not. Well, I try not to be.
Hey, nobody’s perfect. And everybody is.
Today is Day 333 of my year of living sober.
Little Booze Joke
A nose walks into a bar and asks for a drink. The bartender says, “Sorry, I can’t serve you. You’re already off your face.”