Tuesday 10 March 2015

Secret Drinking & 'The Maintenance Drinker'

I was lying in bed last night reading the excellent book by Lucy Rocca: 'The Sober Revolution'.

Quick aside: how about that? Reading in bed rather than passing out on the sofa half way through a movie, leaving the long suffering husband to finish it on his own! Result.

Anyhow, I had a Eureka moment when I found a description of myself: The Maintenance Drinker.

Check this out: This is another form of very hazardous drinking defined by constant, and often secret, style of alcohol consumption (Tick! Me, me, me). Never totally sober but always topped up, these women often appear to drink little when out socially. Many pre-load (oh, yeah baby, half a bottle of Chablis as a quick 'sharpener') before leaving the house and become adept at managing their moods and outward signs of intoxication, as the thought of being ousted as an 'alkie' is, to the maintenance drinker, abhorrent (alkie? Moi?)....

.....Openness frequently does not come easily to the maintenance drinker and thus for many, it can be difficult to even acknowledge that a problem exists. Problem? What problem?

So, there you have it - me in a nutshell. And I wonder how many other perfectly turned out mothers on the school run at my oh-so-chi-chi private Chelsea prep school are in exactly the same boat. Was I the only one? Anyone else out there recognise themselves?

Apparently this blog has had more than 100 page views as of today, which I realise is a tiny little molecule in the giant ocean that is the world wide web, but it makes me happy to feel that I am not just talking to myself which is, after all, the first sign of madness.

To all you 'Maintenance Drinkers' out there - I raise a fresh lime and soda to you. Onwards and Upwards!


  1. I stumbled across your blog as I was google searching "how to stop my nightly drinking habit". As I read your posts I feel very familiar with your situation. I made the decision during my usual interrupted sleep last night that I have got to quit this. As another commenter mentioned, there always seems to be an occasion or excuse to have the "evil wine witch" (love that term by the way). I am going to follow your blog for encouragement, because I know I'm going to need it. My husband wants to go out to dinner tonight, and I'm already telling myself maybe tonight isn't a good night to start.....but then again will it ever be the perfect time? I will always find an excuse. Ugh

  2. Welcome, Jen, and thanks so much for commenting! Please do keep following and we can help each other. What helped me hugely - and I will do a post on this at some point - were two books with very similar philosophies: Jason Vale's Kick the Drink, Easily and Alan Carr's Easyway to stop drinking (or something like that). I'm sure that if you read either of these it'll give you huge confidence that you can do it. Good luck!

  3. Ive just found you......Thank you

  4. I am so grateful to have found your blog. I need to stop drinking but more importantly I want to. Reading your story is going to help me. Day 1.

    1. Hi Lia! Welcome! I'm so glad you found me! Congrats on Day 1. Great decision! Make sure you read Jason Vale 'Kick the Drink, Easily' - it'll really help, and stay in touch! Love SM x

  5. I SM, just wanted to let you know I've been holding strong since the new year; it took a while to get there, as back in Nov. I had just found your blog and tried to stop then. It's still a challenge for me, but I'm holding as strong as I can, thanks in large part to you!