Has anyone ever tried 'cutting down'

Posted , 10 users are following.

With me, it doesn't work, My alcohol consumption gradually increases agin, and before I know it, I am drinking as much as I was before

2 likes, 17 replies

17 Replies

  • Posted

    I have done this several times as well, but now I have someone in charge and in control of giving me my alcohol... It is measured and given to me on scheduled times...  I don't know if it will work and stay this time but I really need it too.

    i just keep telling myself life is better then a bottle of tequila and I want to remember the feeling before I needed the craving of the liquor, but it is a daily battle and that is what it is, a battle.

    we can do it 

  • Posted

    Hi neville

    it never worked for me either! Basically I'm an all or nothing kind of person. If I opened a bottle of wine, I could never just have two glasses and put the rest back in the fridge, once open it had to go.

    If you want to not drink, I'd thoroughly recommend taking it.

    i stopped drinking wine about 15 years ago and changed to lager or cider, with a soft drink In between. This went OK for a while and I started to have the odd cider, but it was the 8% cider and seemed to affect me more than wine. I also started off with vodka tonic  which was fine. Then I'd not drink for 3/4 months. Each time I stopped thinking about alcohol I was fine. 

    I actually gave up drinking for four years, then like a total prat, I decided I'd just drink sensibly, which lead to more drink.

    up until a month ago, I'd really cut down, and then bang I'm on a two day bender. and each time I relapsed it takes longer and longer to recover. Then I'd have another spell of not drinking then decided I'd just have a couple at a wedding. Just like you, I ended up drinking more than before.

    this last time I started taking campral, an anti craving drug. I'd had it before and it worked.

    • Posted

      vickylou, I dont understad how you can stop for so long and then it comes right back - it makes me think what is the flippin point?  I have never gone a day without in over 30 years, even if Monday to Thursday have been 2 small glasses of wine and a half guinness.  I would have thought if you can go 8 months (or some on other sites go like 8 years) you would have got it sorted.  It is so exasperating.  Are we ever ever to be free of this.  I think I am going to have to go the Campral route - would my doc give it to me?

      This is doing my head in!!!!!!!!!!!!


    • Posted

      Yeah, there's an unconscious part of the brain that remembers that alcohol=pleasure, even if your conscious mind says stop, stop! The two parts don't communicate well at all, so the unconscious part often gets to have it's way. That's why targeted Naltrexone works for so many, it stops that alcohol=pleasure association from being reinforced in the unconscious part of the brain and eventually that memory fades. If you start drinking without the Naltrexone though, that memory will rebuild and re-establish itself and you'll be back to square one. 

    • Posted

      Hi ADE - I have just spoken to my doc about Naltrexone and she has never heard of it and says she does not like the sound of it.  She wants me to go to the Smart Recovery she referred me to and says that if they thought I should, they would refer me to hospital for detox and they would use Librium.  Why don't docs know of Naltrexone and Campral also she had not heard of. 

      Who is it that precribes Naltrexone ?  I really think this is what I should have.

      I told her that I had cut down a lot and wanted to cut it right back even more and that I believed Diazepam would stop any shakes and she said it would but was not happy to give it me.  She did and the dose is 1 up to 4 times a day - the amount will last 7 days.  I have  no intention of taking 4 a day - I had more in mind 1 and only if I started shaking.  I don't want to get addicted.!!

      She said she was not happy doing this because I was not doing it in a controlled place.  So how would Naltrexone be administered and by whom (presumably not me at home).

      Hope this all makes sense as I am determined to get my drinking way down further.



    • Posted

      Gwen -

      Sadly, your doctor's response is fairly common. Detox and immediate abstinence is what's offered over 90% of the time, despite it's miserable success rate of about 10% (for all forms of it). 

      Are you in the US, UK or Oz? 

    • Posted

      Thanks for that ADE - yes UK.  I am not sure about PCAT so I will look it up.  I have looked into help in my area and my local hospital has a unit I have noticed for Alcohol Abuse - I wonder if that would be PCAT?  Also there is a clinic that I have actually worked at years ago and I saw it online that they have a unit for Alcohol and Drug abuse.  If they do operate PCAT, I will be cross that my doc has not mentioned it.  She just seems to want to bin me off to the next town where the Smart Clinic is and this is a distance from me.  Not helpful.  I am even looking into doing it privately - don't care the cost.

      My  tapering is going very well - but I would like some back up.

      I will  look at that link you gave me - thank you very much for that - I really appreciate it.


    • Posted

      No problem, Gwen. If you check the CThreeFoundation website, there's a link called "Find a Physician". Under the "verified" section, then "International" you'll see some listings that might help. I've heard of another one in Scotland, I don't recall it at the moment.

  • Posted

    My way of cutting down is to go on a binge then not drink at all for a week or longer up to a month. Then I think my body can handle alcohol. I always feel like crap the next day and have no energy and my pancreas tells me I better stop or end up on really bad shape.
  • Posted

    I've been cutting down.......from Vodka to wine to cider...5%.

    I feel much better....going from detox, residential treatment and many many hospital visits...from seizures, pneumonia, and broken bones from falling.

    To being generally pretty productive....I am now working full time and recently moved into my own apartment.

    I do still drink though....granted it's a fraction of my former habit. I'm not sure if maintaining is okay? Is complete abstinence the only option....because I consistently fail at that. I'm doing really well right now in all other regards and feel happier than I have in a long time.

    Is completely abstaining the only option? I don't feel compelled to drink more than I have been...

    • Posted

      Complete abstinence isn't the only way, no, but it usually also quite often near impossible for someone with a problem to continue maintaining a level of drinking long term without it creeping upwards again.

      Have you done any research into The Sinclair Method?  It isn't for everyone, but it won't hurt to have a look.

      Here is a quick 5 minute read from an article on this Patient website about it.


    • Posted

      I do think that complete abstinence is the only way...unless you want to take Naltraxone....and keep the alcohol flowing throughout your body WITH the extra drug and damaging your organs....etc.

      I know I used a drug to quit smoking and that drug made me not want to smoke...made my cigs taste like crap...and finally I said NO to the drug..and kept smoking.  I eventually QUIT by being abstinent but of course when I drank again, I started smoking again.

      So...I see many taking Naltraxone and some it works (to reduce) and some it doesn't...but in my opinion and that of most Drs....abstinence is BEST.

    • Posted

      Misssy and Laura,

      I am not sure if naltrexone would be the right option for you Laura and you would really need a discussion with a medical professional to determine that, but I feel I must point out that this method is a medical treatment for Alcohol Use Disorder that will reduce your drinking down to abstinence within some months, if done correctly.

      There seems to be misunderstanding that naltrexone is a way to keep drinking but at reduced amounts.  Make no mistake about it, this method is not to control your drinking, but to completely eliminate it.  At that point, and not before, you can make a decision about whether to remain abstinent - as many people do - or to drink occasionally.  It will be your choice but only when the treatment has successfully worked.

      Also, when done correctly, this method often results in a reduction in drinking very quickly.  I took 13 weeks to bring my drinking down within safe limits (I was drinking way over the safe limits!).

      The medication, plus reduced drinking, is much, much less damaging to your organs than either continued drinking, or the constant sober/relapse/sober/relapse situation that many find themselves in when they try to go completely abstinent.  This is due to what is called the Alcohol Deprivation Effect - basically, the longer someone tries to abstain from alcohol, the more focus is put on it, the more the body and brain craves the drug.... until eventually the inevitable relapse.

      As I say, you should be see your doctor to discuss any medical treatments, but please don't get the misunderstanding that naltrexone enables someone only to reduce their drinking.

    • Posted

      I should also mention that it took me 8 months to get completely sober using naltrexone.

      But compare that 8 months of gently reducing alcohol levels with the 20+ years trying to resolve my drinking problem (including 10+ years of AA).

      If I had known about naltrexone when I first discovered I needed help with alcohol, and I would have had 8 months worth of reducing drinking levels and 19+ years of abstinence if that is what I chose to do at the end of the treatment.

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