Someone who’s struggled with an alcohol use disorder knows that isolation and alcoholism tend to go hand-in-hand. Loneliness and a sense of disassociation are often triggers for addiction, but the abuse of alcohol also causes them. If you feel isolated and you’re at risk of relapse, or you’re worried about how much you’ve been drinking, there is help available to you.
It might take an extraordinary amount of effort on your behalf, but you need to be brave enough to reach out and seek the medical care you need.
Isolation and Alcoholism Go Hand-In-Hand
Often, when we’re left entirely to our own devices, our internal voice becomes more and more critical. Without anyone else around to talk to about our thoughts and feelings, they gain more authority in our minds. When you share these kinds of ideas, the people you speak to can give you a different perspective, and science has shown that the simple act of saying something aloud is therapeutic.
Are You Feeling Isolated?
People who suffer from alcoholism tend to have difficulty recognizing they have a problem, and this extends to denying feelings of isolation, anxiety or depression. If you’re worried that you’ve been drinking too much, try to be honest with yourself about whether loneliness is a factor in your current situation. Some of the signs include:
- Feeling hopeless
- Feeling left out
- Feeling that no one wants to be close to you
- Feeling a sense of abandonment
- Feeling disconnected from people you used to be close with
- Feeling like no one wants to connect with you
If you can relate to any of the above, you might be feeling lonely, and this could negatively impact you if you suffer from alcoholism. Don’t worry; there are plenty of ways you can help yourself when you’re feeling this way.
Tips for Coping With Isolation
When you’re stuck in a rut of loneliness, it’s up to you to find the support you need — although it can feel incredibly challenging. If you can’t leave the house, make use of technology and the internet to chat with people online, sign up for a virtual meet-up or play games online.
A fantastic way to express yourself and work through your feelings is by being creative. Start a journal, write a book, develop a podcast or paint a picture. All of these activities can build your self-esteem and provide a starting point for social activity.
Regulate Your Social Media Use
Social media is a lot of fun, and there’s no harm in posting pictures to chronicle your days. However, be careful not to use it in a way that’s damaging. Try not to scroll through news feeds full of negative sentiment or obsess over accounts that belong to people who make you feel envious or sad.
Look After Yourself
More than anything, it’s imperative that you take proper care of yourself. Have a routine: Wake up and go to bed at the same time, take regular exercise and eat a diet that includes lots of fresh foods. By looking after your body and mind, you give yourself the best chance of being in a position to cope with difficult emotions in a healthy way.