When you think about what an alcoholic is, you more than likely paint a harsh picture. In your mind, an alcoholic’s life is falling apart, and they may be living on the margins of society. While there are people who fit that profile, there are people who struggle with alcohol abuse yet can live a normal life and can perform their work, school, and family duties with seemingly no issues. People that fall into this category are known as functioning alcoholics.
This article will further explore the high-functioning alcoholic and the signs of a functioning alcoholic. Do you feel that you are sliding further down the slippery slope of alcohol abuse? If the answer is yes, the Last House can help you. Our network of evidence-based sober living homes provides the clinical and peer support you need to stop drinking once and for all. Call us today to learn more about our Los Angeles sober living program.
What is a Functioning Alcoholic?
Also commonly known as high-functioning alcoholics, a functioning alcoholic can maintain a “normal life” by continuing to perform and succeed at their job and home. For the most part, the functioning alcoholic can maintain close family relationships and friendships. Additionally, the functioning alcoholic has avoided legal consequences. When compared to the classic definition of the alcoholic, the highly functioning alcoholic may not experience blackouts, display personality changes, or experience wide emotional swings.
What Are the Signs of a Functioning Alcoholic?
If you have read previous blogs, you know that the signs of addiction can be difficult to detect. Many addicts can hide their substance use from loved ones and can deflect concern from loved ones when questioned about their abuse of substances. With a highly functioning alcoholic, spotting trouble is even more difficult. Since a functioning alcoholic can perform at work and home and not get into trouble, it is seen they can “handle their cups”.
As we know, addiction is a slippery slope. While a functioning alcoholic can “keep it together”, it may only take an event or series of events to send them down the proverbial rabbit hole and into a full-blown addiction. Also, the amount of alcohol they consume can cause significant health issues down the road. The following are common functional alcoholic symptoms:
Can’t Have “Just One Drink”
One of the most common signs of a functioning alcoholic is they can’t have “just one drink”. Despite what they may say, they are unable to limit their alcohol intake. They may finish a drink at one bar and head to another, or they may finish other people’s drinks.
They Drink Rather Than Eat
Functioning alcoholics may replace a meal with a few drinks. While they may eat something during a meal, it may be just enough to have a “base” for the alcohol they will consume.
Having “The Hair of the Dog”
Other telltale signs of a functioning alcoholic are having a drink or two in the morning to take the sting out of a hangover. If someone needs to have a drink in the morning or at unusual times, this may be a sign of a functioning alcoholic.
Engaging in Risky Behavior
Alcohol is often called “liquid courage”, and people who consume alcohol may be prone to acting out and engaging in high-risk behavior. People who are normally quiet and mild-mannered may start engaging in drunk driving and having unprotected sex.
Unable to Curb Drinking
Functioning alcoholics may be able to go about their daily activities while drinking heavily, but they are unable to curb their intake or quit altogether. They may say they can stop whenever they want, but they are unable to follow through.
Need Help With Your Drinking? Call The Last House Today
Do you find yourself drinking more and more? Are you feeling that you are slipping away from loved ones? Do you fear that you are losing your battle against alcohol? Today is the day that you find the help you need. The Last House is Southern California’s premier sober living network. Our sober living homes feature experienced staff as well as top-notch clinical and peer support. Our sober living programs are personalized to meet your specific needs, and we will give you the tools to bring forth the transformation you desire.
Call the Last House toll-free today and begin that change.