Wednesday, 6 June 2012

ASPERGERS & Alcohol


I’m writing this slightly tipsy.  I have had half a standard glass of wine, why? Well I’ve been having trouble sleeping an alcohol has the great effect of making me sleep especially as I don’t tend to drink. In fact I tend to avoid alcoholic drinks and even when I do drink I have one or two before swapping to soft drinks.. After all, no one notices when you go from drinking vodka and coke to straight coke…   


Anyway I googled Asperger’s syndrome and Alcohol founding that there is a known association with Asperger’s syndrome and alcoholism.  Like I’ve just said, I choice not to drink! Why?  My mum is an Alcoholic.   So I know what it’s like to live with it, and I know what affect it can have on others, and I don’t want to end up like that, I don’t want anyone to feel how I felt! [She’s been dry about 4 years,]

But I understand how it may be so easy for a person with Asperger’s syndrome to become an alcoholic, when I drink. It makes me feel ‘normal’ so to think. I no longer find social situations difficult, I no longer fear scared or frightened at things, I can go into new places and change my routines without second thoughts, I can make and maintain social conversations,  I can forget all my worries  and find myself in a happy, content frame of mind.  And I feel ‘Normal’.  And for these reasons I can see why this can become addictive,  as per previous post ‘Iwish I didn’t have Asperger’s syndrome’, if I could pick whether I had the condition or not, it’s hard to say either way, I don’t wish I didn’t have the condition, I just wish I didn’t have some of the negative aspects of of the condition.  And alcohol if one of the ways I can get rid of these negative aspects. 

I also think that because it is part of Asperger’s nature, to become addicted or obsessed  with something [ie Mr B for me] it is therefore more easy to become dependent on alcohol as becoming dependant, like on any drug, by taking enough of it regularly enough because you like the feeling or sensation then the body physically withdraws from the substance when you stop taking it so have to continue and your body gets tolerant to the drugs you require to intake more to have the same effect, this is true both for things we take for personal reasons such as alcohol and cigarettes to those taken for medical reasons.

I’m sure that trying to treat addiction is  a known problem in Asperger’s syndrome. My mum tried to do it several times by going cold turkey, eventually getting there and [as far as we know] as been dry for around 4 years.   Something that is generally not recommended due to the body withdrawal which is a nasty side effect from absence and withdrawal in itself can make you so ill you can die from it.   But I suppose that the usual methods on none autistic people would also work on autistic people, may just take a little bit more time and more effort and a bit more understanding.

I make an active choice not to drink, an sometimes stand out because of it, but I’ve learnt not to care,  I’ve learnt from being bullied most of my life to shrug and think so what, its my life I can do with it what I ever I wish and don’t have to fit in to any ‘norms’ of society,  I chose not to drink because I have seen the effects of drinks, if you had seen your mum pass out on the kitchen floor when you were ten or  hit you for touching her mug, I doubt very much you would wish to drink that much either.





If you’ve enjoyed this post, please check out the other pages around my blog on a variety of subjects including, stimming, obsessions sensory impact, bullying and depression, via either the a – z Above and the labels to the right side.  All comments are always welcome. thankyou

2 comments:

  1. Very interesting post. Given that alcohol is a legal drug and is "socially acceptable" in most Western societies, I'm not surprised that a significant proportion of ASD adults would try alcohol and find its "tipsy"/"drunk" effects rather relaxing and comfortable.

    I always had to drink alcohol at parties to reduce the sensory overload (loud music), otherwise I'd be very uncomfortable and leave the place within an hour.

    I don't drink anymore though because when "tipsy" or "drunk", it can impair judgments, and binge drinking isn't good for the liver anyway. But yes it can be tempting...

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  2. I think the point I was trying to make was because of the affects I find it has on myself, I avoid it as I don’t want to get to the stage of relying on it in order to feel normal, which is what my mum did. Alcohol does get rid of the sensory overload aspects of party’s, but I can understand how this can develop into using alcohol for the same affect in other situations and I suspect this would be a very tempting thing to do. But yes it is socially acceptable which makes it in my eyes more important to be aware of it as it’s a thin line that can easily be crossed.

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