I think I have identified a common thread for most alcoholics. I’ve been observing my “bar-buddy’s” lately for this, then this morning it hit me. Many, if not most, alcoholics suffer supreme loneliness and profound despair towards life. The despair is a shared sentiment and feeling of, “There is nothing that I can do to improve my lot in life, so I might as well just drink. At least it gives me some relief”. The loneliness drives them to the pub’s and bar’s for at least some semblance of a social life and freedom from the “four walls” for the single ones, or from the horror at home for the rest.
Do I include myself in this morose description? To some extent, yes. And well, we often have to really know something, experience it ourselves, before we can recognize it in others. I live alone. Many nights I can’t bear to be at home along and so go to the pub for relief from the loneliness and boredom. At least my pub friends understand me, accept me, even care about me and visa versa. My despair towards life comes from feeling that I have little or no control over changing the things that bother me, in many cases for years and years living with a profound sense of loss of myself. Approaching 60, I often feel that life has passed me by, that I have spent most of my time and energy just barely surviving. Not achieving, like so many others I see around me. I’m just surviving, barely surviving. That’s discouraging, extremely discouraging.
And yet, I think that what makes a bit of a difference for me is that for some blessed reason I awaken each day with a small glimmer of hope. Hope that one day, perhaps even today, I will be free from the need for alcohol. Hope, that I will yet be able to become fully me, before it’s too late.
I hope that I can somehow pass that glimmer of hope on to my friends. Too many seem so lost in their loneliness, so lost in their despair. God, guide me.