When someone you care about doesn’t reciprocate those feelings and, in turn, rejects you, it’s heart-breaking and the future can look bleak and daunting. Like most people, you’re likely to experience a rollercoaster of emotions. Some days you may feel hopeful and maybe even relieved if your relationship had been difficult for a long time. On other days you may feel sad, angry, confused and anxious. And for some, alcohol is an easy alternative.
Drinking to forget or drinking out of frustration can be the result of going through a traumatic experience. When people exhibit this kind of behaviour, it means they’re not able to properly deal with their emotions. Alcohol can be all too easy to turn to when you’re feeling down, and it certainly doesn’t come without its risks. It’s used as a quick fix — a temporary way to feel better.
Drinking after a breakup can increase your chances of doing things you might not want to do, whether it’s calling your ex, engaging in risky sexual behaviours or getting into a fight. Even when you’ve started to finally feel OK post-relationship, a text from an ex can release a flurry of emotions.
According to a recent publication, heartbreak can spark a domino effect of lethal consequences. “Rejected men kill themselves at three to four times the rate that spurned women do,” the publication says. “And the mix of grief and alcohol almost certainly dispatches a legion of more men through car crashes, fights, and assorted misadventures, even though they aren’t called suicides on death certificates.” If you feel like you’re starting to spiral out of control, seek help from someone you trust – talking is the best way to prevent isolation and help maintain perspective. You’re not alone and sharing your heartaches and victories with a trusted friend, family member or neighbour will help to carry you along.
Realising you have a problem with alcohol is the first big step to getting help.
You may need help if:
- you often feel the need to have a drink
- you get into trouble because of your drinking
- other people warn you about how much you’re drinking
- you think your drinking is causing you problems
A good place to start is with your GP. Try to be accurate and honest about how much you drink and any problems it may be causing you.
If you have become dependent on alcohol, you will have found it difficult to fully control your drinking in some way.
So you’ll probably need some help either to cut down and control your drinking or stop completely, and also some plans to maintain the improvement after that.
Your GP may suggest different types of assessment and support options available to you, such as from local community alcohol services.
You can also ask about any free local support groups and other alcohol counselling that may suit you or you may seek to receive your counselling or treatment privately.