I'm in my late 20's and remember being allowed to have my first drinks of alcohol before the age of 9 years old. Yet it was strictly controlled by my parents.
When i hit 18, suddenly i had the freedom to drink whatever and whenever i wanted, and with my friends i drank pretty heavily... i'm ashamed to say that i was stupid enough to get in such a state that i had to be carried home.
However, i stopped getting drunk by the age of 21 years old, by choice. Thats not something i've regretted: i don't enjoy getting drunk. However, i've continued to drink. In truth, i drink every day. Every evening.
I'll have 2 doubles of whisky or rum every evening (i regulate myself in that regard; even if i want more i won't go over that). I find that it helps me sleep. I've had chronic sleeping problems all my life (which my doctors will do absolutely nothing to help me with despite my many requests over the years because they fear me becoming reliant on any meds they prescribe). Furthermore, i just enjoy it. I look forward to my evening drink. Its one of the few times of the day where my anxiety disorder, and depression, disappear and i'm actually happy. It gets me so content that i'm able to sit down and watch movies, read books, even play games like monopoly til 2am in the morning with family members when they too are having periodic sleeping troubles of their own!
If i don't drink anything in the evening, my evenings can be a deeply depressing place of tears, deep sadness with no hope of ever being happy in this life, and zero sleep. Sometimes even s--dal thoughts (not something i admit to anybody). Don't get me wrong, occasionally i have to take antibiotics for periodic infections and then i really do quit the drink as the doctor orders... i can go a week or two without touching a drop, if i have to. I'm not addicted. My life merely goes on in the same cycle without the evening boost.
During the day, i'm a quiet polite person. Not a very cheery one though. People see me as dour, speaking when spoken to but avoiding social interaction (which i do... i'm not scared of socialising, i just don't enjoy meeting people very much). My outlook on life as a whole could be described as rather cynical.
Experiences in life from childhood haven't led me to form a very high opinion of trust or faith in people or friendships in general. Yet after a couple of drinks i become someone who can be witty enough to make people laugh, make myself laugh, become boosted enough to actually take an interest in other people and the world. People actually WANT to be around me. Rather than anxiety holding me back or depression sucking the joy out of everything in my life, alcohol really seems to shoo all that away better than any antidepressant. Even at university, which i did very well in, i confess that before exams or presentations i would sometimes have a drink in the morning to loosen me up. My grades stayed exceptionally high, and nobody noticed. Honestly, if it hadn't been for the help it gave my nerves i don't believe my grades would have been as high as they were.
My family background with alcohol isn't great... my grandfather, a lovely man, was an alcoholic; every night i can remember him as a child, he drank (lightly, like me). Two of his 4 children became alcoholics. My mother came from a family with an alcoholic mother so she forbade my father from drinking except at New Year. And like my paternal family, no matter how much i drink i don't suffer from hangovers... nobody would know during the day that i had drunk anything the night before. I suffer from no post-anxiety or depression aftereffects.
Perhaps it affects me physically in one way... i look older than my years. Everybody places me in my 30's when they see me, or a pic of me. Occasionally i come across the odd grey hair, and i'm not yet 30. Whether its related or not i don't know. I put that down to the stresses of life, lol.
So, i'd like to honestly ask an impartial outside observer, based on what i've written, if i do have an issue with alcohol? Opinions, please.