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'Facing The Realities of Alcohol Addiction' By Lee Davy

About Lee #SundayGuestBlogs

Lee Davy is the founder of 1000 Days Sober, The Strive Community, The Truth About Alcohol Philosophy, And The Alcohol & Addiction Podcast.

He is not an alcoholic, and he refuses to be anonymous.

I’ve had the flu three times.

All coincided with Saint Nick’s annual visit. The most recent attack came in December. I had bedridden aches running from my wrist to my head and back down to my gut, head pounding, my energy fucking off to join the French Foreign Legion. The only thing missing was puke.

Ah, good old puking into a bucket.

I could easily click the safety off and blow the head off that piece of nostalgia.

Here’s the thing.

While sinking deeper into my flu-ridden pit, I realised the last time I felt that shitty was not the last time I had flu.

It was the last time I had a hangover.

Another realisation.

My hangovers were worse than the flu.

So, I have a reflection.

Why do we cross our flu-free fingers while spending our meagre earnings on a poison that generates the same booby prize?

This leads nicely to the first point I want to address in this address.

ChatGPT is all the rage lately.

If you were to ask Mr (or Mrs) Robot to describe the perfect alcohol addiction recovery plan, the first recommendation it spits out is this:

Understand the physical and psychological effects of alcohol addiction and the importance of detoxification


Let’s Get Physical

I feel at war because alcohol is a giant in a world of pygmies, and I fit snugly into the pygmy role. While I prefer the death-by-a-thousand-cuts approach to alcohol recovery, in my experience, education on the physical harm of alcohol is like a pinprick. Now, if your Quack says you’ll drop dead if you have another swig of the elixir of life, maybe you’ll order a glass of Corporation Pop. But this is rarely the case. As Allen Carr impressed in his Easyway books, the human body is a remarkable machine. You can poison it for decades, and it still chugs away thinking it’s a Mercedes (if you’ve only ever experienced first gear, you likely don’t know there are other grooves to shift into).

I’m not saying the pain v pleasure paradigm puzzle is not princely because it is. But it doesn’t pack the punch of a Muhammed Bruce Lee.

Forget the other ills that alcohol addiction-dependency-whatever the vogue word is these days thrusts into your life; creating, enduring and repeating your hangover experience is more than enough evidence that turning to the physical pain that alcohol produces in your life is not going to be the supreme fighter you want standing in this ring.

There’s another angle to this ‘physical side of alcohol addiction’ thing that I want to explore, and I want to preface what I am about to write next with the caveat that I am not a medical professional (basically, please don’t believe a word that fires out of my fingertips). I am merely sharing my personal experience and a decade of helping others to become people who don’t drink alcohol and live more consciously.

Ok, that other side.

I have never met anyone physically addicted to alcohol.


Of course, these people exist, but they’re not making snow angels inside my globe, and focusing on this group as our panacea is not the intelligent thing to do because the root cause issues of alcohol addiction drive you headlong into the cultural and societal issues that are too slippery for the world’s governing bodies to handle with any confidence.

Here are a few examples.

Recently, a STRIVER struggling to string some alcohol-free (AF) days together joined a juice retreat for a week, and lo and behold, they didn’t touch a drop of the bad stuff.

I have a friend who couldn’t stop daily drinking until he secured a consultancy position in Saudi and didn’t drink for the 6-months duration (it’s illegal to drink alcohol in Saudi). He shared that being sober was easy, peasy, lemon squeezy, and he suffered no physical withdrawals.

The Mind

Let me get straight to the point because Liza always tells me I waste too much air beating around the bush.