Anyone dealing with someone else’s active alcoholism is often baffled by the seeming lack of awareness that seems to pervade the thought process and the actions of the alcoholic themselves.
It seems pretty obvious to everyone around the alcoholic that they have a drink problem, and the obvious solution is for them to stop.
Even if they are unable to stop it is expected of them that they will have an awareness of the fact that they are addicted to alcohol and cannot stop and seek help. For many people the reality of working with an active alcoholic is very different.
Not only will an alcoholic deny that they have a problem with alcohol, they will go to extraordinary lengths to prove that they do not have a problem with alcohol, that in fact alcohol is a minor if inconsequential part of their life.
This denial of the fact that they have a problem is a huge and frustrating element to the whole recovery process for the alcoholic themselves, and to anyone else trying to help them.
As with any illness, the notion of recovery means that you get better. For anyone who is an alcoholic this process of getting better does not necessarily mean that an individual stops drinking.
There are many anecdotal instances of an alcoholic who has stopped drinking, but does nothing else with their recovery, and their partner or family after a while urge them to start drinking again because they are so miserable without it.
This often laughable but tragic situation goes to the heart of an individual’s process of dealing with alcohol and their alcoholism.
Any individual who is an alcoholic is most likely some point to start believing that alcohol is their friend, is the solution to their problems, and is essentially the only thing that is really holding them together.
They will base their denial of the fact that they have a problem around this belief system, subconsciously.
The reason why awareness is such a major issue, is simply because once any individual becomes aware of anything in their life it is impossible to turn the clock back.
Once an alcoholic becomes aware that alcohol is in fact the root cause of their problems not the solution, they are placed in an almost intolerable position in terms of living with the reality of their alcoholism, whilst at the same time holding onto a belief system that is holding them together but essentially killing them at the same time.
This is a very scary prospect for an alcoholic, and one that will only deepen and get worse the more the alcoholic clings to the belief that they need to drink in order to survive and stay alive.