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Thread: Overcoming potent potables

  1. #1

    Default Overcoming potent potables

    might be a little early to be posting in the mature topics, but as welcoming and open minded as our community is, think it's worth an attempt.

    So, here it goes. As many do, I enjoy a drink as much as the next person, I enjoy high quality beverages in moderation (think expensive scotches my boss and I have, or wines and gins, etc) but others I tend to nearly replace water with. Its been an on and off thing for me beginning my senior year of high school as a way to numb my regrets of choosing academia as a career path versus anything that seems to be fulfilling, or as a way to keep company on lonely nights. Anyways, I find myself in my last year of undergrad appreciating my little niche in some spots of chemistry, physics and biology, but resenting not going into topics where grades are easier to obtain, or into sports or arts which would have been much more pleasurable. That's one end of the spectra the other is probably human interaction, nearing 22 late this November I have yet to receive a kiss from the opposite sex, let alone a relationship or anything intimate. I can't even begin to think about how I would go about telling a girl that. So, been watching my parents house for the past week, and as I hide the may empty beer cans and a few bottle in the neighbors recycling, I think I have a problem and just use alcohol as an escape from the real world. I was curious as to if anyone else has had similar issues, and how they went about quitting the potent potables.

    Thank you.

  2. #2

    Default Overcoming potent potables

    I don't think I've ever had a problem IMO, but I use to "party" so to speak. From freshman year of high school up to about a couple years ago I use to smoke marijuana daily. And from senior year to about a couple years ago I would drink nearly as much I smoked. I use to use cocaine, Molly, and acid as well when I was in college. I never used the "hard" stuff daily but when I was using the most it was a weekly thing, usually when I'd go to a show or a party.

    Even now, every now and then I enjoy the occasional excess drink or may have a "mind altering experience" 4-6 times a year.

    Anyway, I've never gotten addicted to stuff and would usually do those thing's to expand or alter an already planned experience (such as going to a party or show) so I've never really drinken alone too often. I haven't had an addiction/abuse problem nor have I completely quit, so hopefully I'll still have something worth sharing.

    One thing that REALLY made a difference in my life was, well, growing up. When I started taking more financial responsibility/independence and had less free time, I was pretty much forced to cut back on all that stuff. I can't afford to be messed up all day, waking up the next day hungover if I do wake up on time, or spending days coming down off of something and recovering from a long night. Let alone affording the materials to maintain such a lifestyle.

    Originally, I was studying bioengineering. I'm good at math and love science. But after realizing I hated doing math on the regular and the general work required to study bioengineering and that I'd usually turn to music and/or TV to take a break and recharge, it was obvious that if I could get paid to do these things instead, that'd be awesome so now I spend my time getting money to lower my debts and buy some goodies here and there (such as a nice piece of software or hardware) and crating my skills at animating or composing beats.

    Overall I'd say you're still young and figuring shit out. I'm 23 myself and am still figuring stuff out too. Maybe you have a problem, maybe you don't. You can and probably should seek professional help. Talk with your doctor and he or she can refer to someone or if you know of a therapist or shrink or anyone you feel comfortable talking with, you should talk with them. Finding (or choosing) something you REALLY dig and want to work towards and you can give yourself too would be helpful IMO. It could be a fun hobby or your studies (or ideally both). You also mentioned you find sports and the arts pleasurable, find a way to get more involved with these. You also said there were some things in the various fields of science that have been interesting you. See if there's something there you find interesting and worthy enough that you'll want to spend your free time doing.

    It's late and I'm writing this novel on my phone so I'll probably have to go over this post at some point but pretty much most people go through and/or have gone through bouts of despair, depression, or feeling lost or scared about what's happening, what's happened, and what's going to happen. Just realize we're still young and while feeling these feelings can happen at any point in someone's life, they're usually more prevalent when you're younger and trying to figure out exactly how you fit into the world. Don't sweat it and with more time and life experience things will probably get better or at the very least change for better and worse.
    Last edited by TheCaptain; 18-Sep-2015 at 09:50.

  3. #3


    I don't think it was till I was 22 or 23 when I had my first kiss. virgin lips aren't all that uncommon in a world that has become increasingly online based. It is hard to find interesting situations to meet people at, so It just kinda goes that way.

    There is nothing wrong with using alcohol as a means of escape, as long as it isn't interfering with your normal life. I would suggest though not to make too much of a dependency on it, since alcoholism isn't a good thing to develop, and it is nice to have the drink available when you are feeling the need for some fun. I usually limit my drinking to social situations, but not always, and I'm a fairly new drinker anyway.

    For me, my ABDL activities are kind of what keep me company when I get lonely. So I guess, in a way, I kind of have built a dependency on that.

    Just remember that being discouraged and not having a lot of time to spend with friends, or making friends, is kind of just what happens when you are going through school. It is a busy, and difficult thing to go through. I can't say whether or not you would have been more happy in art, or sports, but I know the feeling of wishing. I too am going into a difficult field, Computer Science(programming). In all reality, I would have preferred to be a ceramics art major, but I was discouraged from my parents in doing that. There are two positive things that I can think of that comes from that, maybe three. First, It will be easier for me to find work. Second, It makes it so my favorite hobby of ceramics won't become something tedious that I have to do to make money, rather than do to make art. Third, well, I guess it is technically healthy to challenge yourself to do hard things every once in a while, and I am constantly challenged to become effective in using tools that I don't know anything about. Sometimes it makes me really angry, and really frustrated, and I'm actually going to go back to a therapist and this might be one of the things that comes up, but in the end, I really think it will be better for me.

    I suspect that a science major is still something that you have some interests in, and find enjoyment, but the moments when it gets difficult, it just feels like it would be so nice to go into one of your comfort careers. The problem is, that in the end, neither of those other career paths have a big guarantee to provide you with a comfortable life afterwards. Sports is competitive to get into, and Art is often not given much attention because people can just go buy their decorations from Walmart or wherever.

    If it is right for you though, then maybe one of those other career paths is the right way to go, I wouldn't want to discourage you from not following your dreams, although I also wouldn't want to hear about how you had to spend the rest of your life homeless or working at McDonalds the rest of your life either. Usually a good route to go, is to get your degree in something useful, or a skill/trade in something useful, and then when you have a career in that, spend your free time trying to make something for yourself out of the skills that you have on the side. As for sports, have you tried going into the sport programs at your school?

  4. #4


    The old saying applies. If you think you have a problem, you probably do.

    I was probably close to that when I was around your age, but sort of lost interest, fortunately before anything bad happened. Marriage certainly had an impact, although that can make you want to drink more sometimes.

    I think the biggest factor was taking up endurance sports. When you've got to hit the pool or the running path at 5am, or ride your bike to work, you think twice about staying up late and/or indulging too much. In midseason when you're at peak mileage, staying awake past 9pm is tough, so drinking is kinda limited that way.

    It had some other odd dietary effects. I found that barbecue sauce the night before would have me dizzy and lightheaded during early swim workouts, so that was out some nights. Lots of red meat would make me really sluggish on morning runs. A normal 2 mile warmup might stretch to 4 miles before I could actually go fast.

    Now, I stick to a couple beers here and there, preferrably good craft beers. As far as the metabolism is concerned, that's not much different than any other fuel.

    Note that the above can work with almost any career choice.... Academia is not special in being time-intensive. With almost any responsible position or vocation, time management skills are critical.

  5. #5


    There are a variety of paths one can take for help here. One of the more obvious is a 12-Step program (e.g., AA), but depending on your resources one on one with a therapist might also be viable. You say you think you're using inebriation as a way to avoid reality, it would follow that any resolution is going to involve getting other aspects of your lift straightened out also. Seek help, you can do it on your own but it is so much easier when you have others to support you when you stumble.

  6. #6


    Wow, first off, thank you everyone for the very in depth responses! Glad this is isn't an uncommon thing to going through in the early 20's, in fact when I first landed my lab tech job the graduating doctoral student warned me about the upcoming "quarter life crisis" for the early 20's.

    Anyways, at least my drinking doesn't interfere with my everyday life, but that's not to say on some level it isn't a problem; thankfully I do have some school resources that can be a great help if seeking professional treatment, and there are also some people that are easy to talk to and they'll give suggestions. I did just start back in school, so it could also be do to having all that free time in summer.

    Not familiar with the multi quote, so this will be a long message with individual responses.

    The Captain:
    Bioengineering, good God that's a beast of a subject, my school has a small engineering school and the overload on course, I don't know how people find the time to manage it. I am going to graduate as a biochemistry major, I was more or less attracted to it for the prospects of med school, which by far will not happen with my GPA, but also the versatility of it. I like how it nearly covers the full spectrum of any field one can imagine, but narrowing it down could be the tricky part, whereas when people just go to med school their path is pretty much clear. Thanks for the optimism, and the experience, the last part of your post where you mention that many bouts of depression and feeling low happen early because one doesn't have much life experience under their belt makes a lot of sense.

    Computer science, another heavy subject! Nice spin on the comfort majors/career paths. I was also dissuaded from sports and arts (always enjoyed instruments) and pushed into academia more or less because that was the only thing that was made promising for a job. And STEM degrees are very promising for careers, which will be nice to have under our belts. Science definitely is my calling, I imagine I could have majored in the humanities and gone to law school, but after high school I found those subjects very dry and tedious. Why analyze Plato when you have some chemicals that, when mixed around, produce fire and purple smoke.
    Promising to hear the virgin lips aren't uncommon in this day and age, I've always felt ashamed of still holding my V-card, but now it doesn't seem like it's much of a big deal.
    For sports at school, since I didn't play in high school, I didn't look into them in college. However, there is something like a backcountry/ski club open to everyone and everyone, I think I will try them out when they meet. They're not competitive, but they do have many activities I have either read a lot about or have done in the past and have enjoyed.

    The ending of your part on marriage brought me a tremendous laugh, thank you! Endurance sports sound very interesting, I myself don't run, but I just had a bike trainer stand delivered for winter time, and have a few sets of dumbbells to add to my small weight gym in the basement. About a year and a half ago, I was near 260 pounds and started having chest pains walking through a parking lot to class one day, and I took that as a sign to do something. By the next school year following that incident I dropped 80 pounds from working out, and then when I was hit with a few bouts of walking pneumonia, about another 30 by the beginning of 2015. But during that time I rarely touched a bottle at all, perhaps it's time to get back to it. How do you manage your endurance workouts around education/work/family time?

    Thank you, I think that, I will seek some sort of help, I have some great advisors at school that I can confide in, so I will probably start with them. I also think that just getting daily life straightened out will help as well.

    Thanks again everybody

  7. #7


    I had a lot of mental demons when I was growing up. They followed me after college, and I drank way to much. It actually cured me of drinking, when it bored a hole through my stomach. I had a bleeding ulcer and thought I had the flu as I couldn't get up out of bed without feeling like I had to throw up. Eventually my wife took me to our doctor and he immediately diagnosed me with a bleeding ulcer. When I was being wheelchaired out to our car, headed for the hospital, I passed out and went through the tunnel of light. I saw my parents and some other deceased relatives waiting for me. There was so much light and a rushing sound. As I began to approach them, I suddenly reversed direction and I was conscious in the wheelchair, my doctor looking very concerned.

    After 5 units of blood and two endoscopies later, I went home a very changed person. I never had alcohol again for years. Even now, I never have more than one beer in a 24 hour period, and I might have one or two beers in a week. I found out something, that life was a lot better not being drunk at night.

  8. #8


    If you think you have a problem with alcohol, that's a pretty big sign that you do, though you haven't mentioned exactly how much you're drinking. If you feel the need to hide how much you drink, especially in college where people tend to flaunt how much they drink, then I assume you're drinking a lot.

    If you can't easily cut back yourself, that's another good sign that you have a problem. If so, you should tap into the support resources you have as a student while you still have access to them.

    I wouldn't worry about being a virgin in your early 20s. I first found love around the time I was finishing undergrad and it was completely unexpected when it happened. If you haven't found the right person, then you just haven't found the right person and there's plenty of time.

    A quibble - you haven't "chosen academia" as a career path if you're still in undergrad. Academia becomes a career path somewhere in or around grad school when you (1) are actually doing research as work rather than studying and (2) decide that you're going to try to make a career out of continuing to do research specifically in academia rather than the private sector. You can go in a lot of directions with a STEM degree other than academia, most of which pay better than the directions you could have gone with a humanities degree. This is pretty much the time of year to make decisions about which of those paths to pursue.

  9. #9


    Quote Originally Posted by FudgedInLuvs View Post
    How do you manage your endurance workouts around education/work/family time?
    Time management. Priorities. There's always a way to make time for things that are important to you. Drinking and recovery take time. If that time is spent on the bike trainer instead.... Even today (well past my competitive prime), if I'm going to watch a football game, its most often from the saddle of the bike trainer. Crank up the resistance and sprint the commercial breaks. Turn it back down and spin for the game action. A couple hours of that will get your attention. Its funny how the rpm's go way up during dramatic parts of the game like kickoffs.

    Given rush hour traffic, cycling to work doesn't take much longer than driving. Sometimes its faster. More important, that time then serves two functions. I won't start the car for anything less than a 5 mile trip unless weather or cargo capacity makes it necessary. I'll go on foot rather than take the bike out for anything less than 2.

    For a number of years, I worked at a place where the CEO, and thus management generally, was understanding and supportive of lunch time runs. Locker room and shower out in the shop helped. A word in the ear of the HR VP resulted in a bike rack in full view of the security office for those of us who preferred bike to motor vehicle. For me, it was a 35 mile round trip. Weather and business meant I couldn't do it every day, but even a few days a week put a big dent in my target mileage. Not to mention the cost savings.

    Today, semi-retired, I go to Junior's to walk his dog on days when they're both working (she gets anxious and chews things if she's left alone too long). Of course I take the bike. The dog certainly has no objection to lengthy walks.

    Friends and family get used to you showing up places on two wheels instead of four. I took crap not long ago at a family reunion/picnic (60 miles away) when I showed up in the car with the family instead of on the bike.

    To be fair, Mrs. Maxx gets a lot of credit for being patient in the early days, even though I didn't start getting really serious until the kids were well along in school and didn't require as much of my attention. She even got a job with the school district so her hours were the same as theirs. Didn't pay all that much, but when you don't have to subtract child care....

    On the other hand, I don't think she minded that I maintained a six pack instead of a beer belly, or that shovelling a foot of snow doesn't get my heartrate high enough to be counted as exercise. (I checked once with my heart rate monitor, just to see.... sex doesn't count either in case you were wondering)

    P.S. If it sounds like I'm kinda obsessive, yes, I am. A man's got to know his limitations. Isn't it better to steer your OCD to something positive if you can?

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