25 July 2017

Worried about somebody else's drinking?

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Alcohol dependency is a condition that over a million people deal with in the UK. In fact, the NHS estimates that 9% of men and 4% of women in the UK are dependent on alcohol. However most don’t seek help.

It's usually a good piece of advice that if somebody's drinking is causing a problem with others, then it is a sure sign they are an alcoholic. Far too often the drinker is in denial. What? I don't have a problem with drinking. I can control what I drink. I know how much I can safely have before I stop. I can still hold a job down without any problems. I provide for my family etc etc etc. 

If truth be told, it is better to ask those around the drinker whether it is a problem. The wife/husband/partner,  the kids, the work colleagues will all tell a different story. Angry outbursts, fights, hangovers, sickness, poor work quality, struggling to cope with what little money is left once the rest has been spent on drinking - that's what they see. Sometimes the families prefer to remain in denial too, as to admit their loved one is an alcoholic comes at a huge cost - which can involve separation, divorce, moving house, coping on reduced finances, kids going into care - situations which are all traumatic in their own right. Sometimes it is better to pretend everything is fine, until it is not and more than likely until it is too late.

The Priory Group (one of the many useful contacts listed on the top of my blog) is a UK independent provider of alcohol rehabilitation and support services and is committed to helping people overcome their addiction to alcohol and start their journey towards recovery. Their consultants treat people from all walks of life – often it is those you least expect who are struggling. They have just launched a campaign based on helping people to spot the signs of alcohol addiction, should they be worried about a partner’s, friend’s or relative’s drinking. This is the link to start their interactive web page. If you are worried about somebody else's drinking (or even your own), don't leave it too late to seek help.  If the drinking continues unchecked, remind yourself in the PROGNOSIS tab at the top of my blog of the physical changes you can expect to happen. Your body is a temple, but there is only so much it can take, before irreversible damage sets in.

The Temple of Bel in the historical city of Palmyra, Syria on August 4, 2010. ─ Reuters/File

10 July 2017

The Lady of the Hydrangeas

I visited my friend in Brighton last week on a boiling hot day and for a while we sought shade in her garden. I thought I'd share a photo she took of me.... I'm calling this work "The Lady of the Hydrangeas".

Today would have been my 41st wedding anniversary. It was a scorching hot day then back in 1976. What with a veil over my head and long lined wedding dress, I positively melted down the aisle. Thank goodness we had an open-top vintage Rolls Royce to take us from the church to the reception so I could cool down in the breeze. Happy 41st  Anniversary, Greg, wherever you are.