DEAR DEIDRE: I DON’T want to be branded an alcoholic but I have a binge-drinking problem.
I’m a 22 year-old guy. I only drink at weekends but it always lasts at least 12 hours at a time. I do things I later regret. I don’t remember large parts of nights out and end up feeling depressed afterwards.
I’ve tried alternating alcoholic and soft drinks but it didn’t work. I went teetotal for a while but friends and family kept asking why. I started to miss it too. I just want to be happy and still be one of the boys on a social level.
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DEIDRE SAYS: Don’t worry about labels. The reality is that if you binge-drink like that you need to give up entirely, at least for a few months. Alcohol is a gateway drug for some.
Just tell family and friends you’re taking a break. Many probably know deep down that they should too.
My e-leaflet on Drink Problems explains self-help tactics and sources of support.
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