Sometimes I think I write a bit more about women’s topics than I do about men’s and the some of the issues around drinking are different.
For example, women tend to to be more solitary drinkers while men tend to be more out and about drinkers. Women drive less while drunk (though that’s mainly because they get men to drive for them more often than vice versa).
But when it comes to giving up the alcohol abuse, the process is different:
- women need to quit talking about the problem and actually do something;
- men need to quit running around doing stuff that makes no damn sense and sit down long enough to talk through what does!
So! During the five day portion of your work with us we’re spending the time helping women come up with a short list of what to do instead of drink.
And we’re helping men pare down the list of activities they’re pursuing to the few that make sense.
The activities themselves may not be much different.
- Exercise for depression;
- Diet for blood sugar management;
- Assertiveness training for managing personal relationships;
- CBT for mood management;
- Social and recreational activities that aren’t just excuses to drink;
The list could go on, but we think you get the points:
WOMEN! — stop talking and start doing;
MEN! — stop doing, start talking, then go back to doing.
It can be surprising how much it helps to pay attention to what you’re actually doing and adjusting that to make drinking unnecessary and undesirable. But that’s how you actually fix the problem.
So, you men reading this, do something that makes sense:
(Probably wouldn’t hurt you woman to do that too.)
It probably comes as no surprise that sex is a frequent undiscussed, elephant in the living room, topic among couples with alcohol abuse problems.
But as we have noted in the past, it’s not always about stereotypical gender issues, i.e., it isn’t all about men wanting more and women wanting less, or affection vs sex, or intimacy vs isolation.
A lot of the time it’s about definitions. Women tell Mary Ellen that “we’re rarely having sex, only about three times a week,” while men complain to me that “she always wanting sex, sometimes even three times a week!”
Yes, we hear the exact same complaints with the genders reversed, too.
Mostly, though, what we hear is that there isn’t any sex life at all. That alcohol has become the intimate partner of choice; or resulted in “equipment failure” in both women and men; that alcohol and sex have both become passive aggressive weapons spouses use against each other; that…..
Cut out the alcohol, schedule the sex, negotiate.
Recognize that different people have different wants and needs, that these are not gender related, and stop ruining fun — and a great reward for giving up drinking — by using sex as a weapon.
There will always be differences. People who think once a week is “too much” and those who think once a day “isn’t enough” but instead of fighting over who’s “right” or what’s “normal” you might want to invest in some personal research.
Yes, it’s one of the many topics we’ll help you sort out. Another reason to call, isn’t it?