You’ve heard about the stereotypical alcoholic. This person lost a job, family, and home. In contrast, what is a functioning alcoholic? Do you recognize yourself as the individual who’s keeping a job, home, and family while struggling with chemical dependency and doesn’t even know they need an addiction treatment program?
Alcohol Abuse is an Addiction with a Diverse Appearance
For some people with a dependency on alcohol, it’s impossible to maintain any semblance of a normal life. They may already be homeless or in danger of losing their housing. Others are in living situations where co-dependency enables their alcohol abuse. What is a functioning alcoholic but someone living on shaky ground?
The functional alcoholic isn’t there yet. They’re able to juggle life, work, family obligations, a social life, and chemical dependency. Many are in denial that their condition is out of the ordinary. Because it’s impossible to maintain this status quo forever, they eventually slip up.
A Day in the Life of a Functional Alcoholic
What is a functioning alcoholic? It may be a man or a woman. Alcohol abuse doesn’t limit itself to one gender. You might be abusing the drug to deal with stress or anxiety. In this context, what is a functioning alcoholic but a person with a co-occurring mental health condition? Next, consider the time and place of your alcohol consumption. In the past, you only drank on weekends or after work. Now, you drink whenever you feel like it or whenever you have to.
Some people sneak alcohol into work by pouring it into nondescript containers. You might also bring it to your kids’ recital or game. It doesn’t matter if you drink alone. You no longer wait for company to knock back a few drinks.
You might be drinking more than seven drinks a week – if you’re a woman. For a man, this number currently sits at 14 alcoholic beverages in a seven-day span. The good news is that there’s a way out. If you haven’t suffered losses yet, get help before you do.
Functional Alcoholism is a House of Cards That Eventually Topples
Maybe the effects of alcohol addiction haven’t hit home–yet. There’s the possibility of a DUI, arrest, and loss of your driving privileges. If you have a professional license, you may lose it. Your friends and family members will catch on. Some may distance themselves from you.Your spouse sets an ultimatum or leaves with the kids. Don’t let this happen to you. Besides that, the alcohol isn’t providing you with any solutions. Most importantly, it can’t fix what’s bothering you.
Rehab is the way out. Opt for a facility that offers a broad range of treatments. Indeed, good-quality alcohol addiction treatment centers customize a care protocol to meet your needs. Examples of modalities include:
- Dual Diagnosis Treatment of co-occurring mental health problems
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that empowers you to make changes in patterns of dysfunction
- Acceptance and Commitment Therapy that frees you from the weight of having to control situations
- Family counseling, which benefits program participants who’re dealing with co-dependency
- Medication-Assisted Treatment as a way to deal with cravings
If you know what is a functioning alcoholic because you are one, you can make a change. Do it now before it’s too late. Therapists at the Gateway Foundation routinely work with people just like you. Call 877.379.8117 today.