Give Me One (More) Reason
You have probably heard the Tracy Chapman song “Give Me One Reason.”
The lyrics start like this:
Give me one reason to stay here
And I’ll turn right back around.
Ms. Chapman is making a pretty generous offer when you think about it. She doesn’t ask the person to whom she is singing to give her ten reasons or five reasons or even two reasons. She just needs one reason to stay and she will…well, she’ll turn right back around.
But if you are reluctant to admit that you may be developing a drinking problem, you might decide that you need more than one reason to give up alcohol.
We are happy to oblige. Here are four reasons to give up drinking now—and to get help doing so if you need it.
Reason Number One: Drinking Is Hard on Your Body
Listen, hangovers can be tough enough. A night of excessive drinking can leave you feeling truly awful in the morning. But hangovers are just the beginning when it comes to the ways in which drinking can affect your body.
For example, alcohol irritates the lining of the stomach and can lead to cirrhosis (scarring) of your liver. Excessive drinking can also lead to various heart problems including high blood pressure, irregular heart rhythms (known as arrhythmias), and cardiomyopathy (a chronic disease of the heart muscle).
Putting your heart and liver at risk means putting your quality of life—and possibly your life itself—at risk.
Reason Number Two to Give Up Alcohol: Drinking Is Hard on Your Ability to Function
Drinking can upend your sleep hygiene and cause uneasy, fragmented sleep that does not lead to feelings of energy and refreshment. As a result, you may experience significant fatigue and feel less able to focus on tasks.
An inability to concentrate and an ongoing sense of exhaustion can, of course, have a serious impact on the quality of your work at your job or in school. And if your work begins to suffer, you may lose out on key opportunities—like promotions at work or advanced coursework at school—that could help you get ahead and reach your goals.
Reason Number Three: Drinking Is Hard on Your Family
When you develop a substance use disorder centered on alcohol, you are not the only person who suffers. Those closest to you, including your family and those friends who are akin to family, also experience negative impacts. The result can be broken relationships that can be extremely difficult to repair.
And if you have children, it is essential to remember that a proclivity to develop a substance use disorder can run in families. Modeling responsible behavior when it comes to alcohol—even if that means giving it up entirely—can be a powerful way to ensure your kids know and avoid the dangers related to alcohol.
Reason Number Four to Give Up Alcohol: It Is Hard to Recover from Death
If you are in the grip of a substance use disorder, you are at greater risk of death from an overdose or from an accident caused by your impairment. But you are not the only one in danger of meeting an untimely end.
If you drink and drive—a decision all too many people make when their judgment is impaired—you put other people at tremendous risk. Think of how hard it will be to live with the knowledge that you injured or killed an innocent person as a result of your drinking. Any time you let alcohol rob you of your judgment and self-control you put yourself and others at risk, and the consequences can be truly catastrophic.
Be Reasonable: Get the Help You Need
Tracy Chapman only needed one reason to turn right back around. We have offered you four reasons to give up problematic drinking that is leading you toward (or has already developed into) a substance use disorder. We hope those reasons turn out to be enough to convince you to get the help you need.
We offer the kind of help you need at The Aviary Recovery Center. Here, you will find compassionate care that is offered free of judgment and is grounded in expertise and experience. We will see you through medically supervised detoxification and a robust rehabilitation program that includes both group and individual therapy. And we will continue to support you as your recovery journey gets underway via our commitment to a continuum of care.