by Gayle Cue, Bangalow NSW
I never really liked the taste of alcohol. However, it was part of being normal in society and so I tried. I wasn’t very successful at enjoying or abusing alcohol. Nonetheless, it has played a major role in my life.
My father had fought in the trenches of Germany during WWII. By the time he came back to the US, met my mother, and I was born, he was heavily into a relationship with alcohol, to try and drown out his memories and nightmares. My mother held off for several years while us kids were really young, but she eventually joined him in his misery and chosen relief.
I married at 18 to get out of the house. At the time I married my husband, he wasn’t truly an alcoholic – yet, but he was well on his way. His parents were also alcoholics so you can appreciate that it was difficult for us to see drinking as a problem. It was just part of life. I was still trying to be part of the norm and would try to drink, but I could never stomach more than one or two so rarely experienced being drunk, although I often experienced the headache and lethargic day that followed my attempts.
By the time I was in my mid-twenties, I started to realise that alcohol was a real problem for most people. They, in fact, became ‘other’ people after a few drinks. This was hard to spot because some people drank every day and so I was only occasionally given a glimpse of who they were when they weren’t drunk or hung over.
And so it came to pass that I found myself with two small children, and a husband who needed constant supervision. After several wrecked vehicles and other shenanigans, I decided that I was fine about supervising my children – but not the husband. And so I made the painful decision to divorce. I still hadn’t really linked the behavior to the alcohol. I had just decided I didn’t want to be raising two children and an adult.
And blimey, if I didn’t go and do it again! I married another alcoholic. He was charming, funny, loving, a great father to my children and his, a good provider… and addicted to alcohol. No, I didn’t see it during the year that we courted but it became obvious shortly after we married.
Three years into the marriage and probably three wrecked vehicles later, I gave him the ultimatum. It was either me, or the bottle. He could decide. I won that round and the next five years were wonderful. We were a real team, raising my children and his children in a beautiful home in the country, travelling, having friends over on the weekend.
After a trip to New Zealand in 1985, we became unsettled about our lifestyle. We had a good life but we wanted a simpler life. And so, crazy and brave as it sounds, we just decided to pack up the kids and move – somewhere. New Zealand seemed simpler. We sold the business, the house, the cars and all the ‘stuff’, and off we went.
It seemed safe to have a celebratory drink – it was the beginning of the end.
Now there were four children under our roof to consider, mine and his, and we were partners in business and so I rode the turbulent years with as much grace as I could muster. It was a foolish plan, but all those years, I thought if I abstained from drinking, it would make those around me see that drinking was bad for them. (It didn’t work).
After my husband died in 1998, I found myself living on my own for the very first time in my life. I realised I could buy a bottle of wine or a couple of beers and they would still be there when I got home from work. It seemed safe enough and so I started to enjoy a glass of wine with dinner, and much to my surprise I found a nice cold beer at the end of a long day in the garden tasted pretty good.
When I first attended Universal Medicine presentations and heard Serge Benhayon talking about the effects of alcohol, I never even tweaked that what was being presented was relevant to me. I knew I had never abused alcohol. In fact, most of my life I had never drank any alcohol. And even though I occasionally had a glass or a cold one, I could easily go without. I didn’t go to bars, I didn’t hang out with people who drank heavily. So, surely, this part of the presentation, about alcohol, wasn’t about me, right?
What I didn’t see creeping in was an increasing negative attitude towards life (which an occasional glass of wine seemed to relieve), a pessimistic outlook, the lowering of my self-esteem, and the drain of my energy, which was effecting everything. I wasn’t turning to alcohol to solve these problems and I wasn’t trying to drown myself into oblivion. But the ‘occasional’ drink was becoming more frequent. I eventually noticed that my tolerance to the effects of alcohol was increasing. Therefore, I could drink more than ever before – and had a new found stamina to draw on for the recovery the next day. Then I actually found myself getting ‘drunk’ on an occasion or two. Still, it seemed safe enough because it wasn’t often and the rest of my life seemed good.
On the few occasions that I would have a session with Serge Benhayon – when I was feeling particularly low or trying to get over some traumatic experience, he would inquire if alcohol had been involved. I always answered truthfully and I never felt any judgement. But I did notice that he was asking that question. I remember the last time I ever went for a session with Serge – hoping to get back on track because I had clearly fallen off the rails – and he asked that same question. When I had to answer YES, I didn’t feel any judgment from him BUT I did notice that he cringed (involuntarily, I think). In that moment, I got it. I saw how having a drink, even one drink, even once a month or once a year was saying YES to the whole energy that goes with alcohol.
My body had shown the allergic reaction to alcohol from the start and it was only through repeated exposure that I was able to increase my tolerance to the poison. And I considered this a good thing. How crazy. I trained my body to accept a poison and I failed to notice the changes that even an occasional drink was causing in my attitude and emotional wellbeing.
Thanks to Serge Benhayon’s unconditional love, and patience, I was able to eventually see all of this for myself and make the choice about not having alcohol in my life. Now, even when there is a celebratory toast for a graduation or a marriage, which seems safe enough, I fill my glass with water and join the toast. I know I will never take a drink of alcohol again.
184 thoughts on “A Little Bit of Alcohol seemed Safe Enough”
Gayle I get this. It’s seems the norm to celebrate with alcohol and there is absolutely nothing wrong celebrating without it. I recall a manager proudly announcing that they had taken their 18 year old son to have his first drink!..Wowser, that is a concern but this is where society is now a days.
I too was one of the numbers that drank every weekend. Eventually my body gave up and it just took longer and longer to recover even with the tiniest amounts of alcohol. Thank goodness I stopped as I’m coming to myself more and more. It is now discerning where else I’m being hoodwinked by stimulation. It is all around us, if we are prepared to see it.
The liver is the main organ of detoxification in the body, but it also has a whole bunch of other important roles to play (such as processing and metabolising hormones, storing energy, making bile etc). However, when alcohol comes into the picture all these other jobs get put on hold – much like a triage process in the Emergency Department of Hospitals – alcohol is so toxic to the body that it gets a priority to be detoxified over and above all other things it is supposed to do. Like having someone with a heart attack being treated as a priority over someone who has a broken leg – the person with the broken leg, no matter how much pain they are in just has to wait till the heart attack person has been saved first. And interestingly the human body is not equipped to detoxify alcohol efficiently – it converts the alcohol first to acetaldehyde which is far more toxic than the alcohol to begin with! And then from there can convert it into by products that can be urinated out….And we still choose to drink alcohol!?
Wow Henrietta when you put it like that, why do we drink alcohol? How you have explained it, needs to be shared with the world. But wait! What’s the point when people have died because of drink driving and that still does not sway another to consider their drinking habits. Because we walk around thinking it will never happen to us…
Alcohol in our society is accepted as a normal, and in fact someone who does not drink is seen as having made an unusual choice (unless they say they are a ‘recovering alcoholic’ in which case it is accepted more easily)…And yet the number of incidents, accidents, domestic violence etc that is associated with alcohol use is huge. What will it take for us to realise that one contributes to the other and that as a society we have a problem that deserves to be lovingly looked at and discussed?
Wow Gayle, this is a very honest and great sharing – because of your whole journey from not drinking at all to then being more involved in drinking and the whole idea of convincing yourself it was ok. This is super interesting how so many of us experience this too…and then how refreshing and supportive it is to finally let go if this and not drink again – it is truly like a fresh start and the body certainly loves it!
Although we can talk about the poison of alcohol to our bodies and state studies and facts about that, one of the things we don’t talk about enough is the destructive effect of alcohol on relationships. Over my life I can see many examples of abuse, even violence, that have been strongly contributed to because of alcohol use, and a case of a daughters death by a drunk driver and the effect on the family. I have seen studies that red wine is proven to be good for health, but how can that be (and who funded that research?) when alcohol is now scientifically proven to be linked to many cancers? The good thing about this conversation is it allows for greater honesty, not to make anyone wrong or right or good or bad, just plain and simple honesty which can affords us greater awareness in the choices we make.
Yes, we need more truth and honesty in our world like, as you say, who funded research to say red wine is good for your health, when we all know alcohol is a poison in our bodies.
Thank you for sharing how alcohol gradually crept into your life, and was causing problems unknown to yourself, ‘when I was feeling particularly low or trying to get over some traumatic experience, he would inquire if alcohol had been involved. I always answered truthfully and I never felt any judgement.’
Agreed Gayle, in the 1950s and 60s our generation had alcohol as a normal thing and then we took on the drugs that seem to all about freeing our selves but this has also been exposed as True freedom come without any attached to this physicality accept for the most Loving way and thus understanding how abusive these years were in our development.
I’ve learnt that the more I allow my body to provide feedback on food, drink and all other choices it is easier to drop unloving habits and adopt more loving ones.
So true – we train our body to accept poison. This really floors me. It’s not that it does not let us know that which it does not like, it does, then we ignore. Yet, we keep pretending we didn’t know.
This is a very honest look at the effects of alcohol and how it can destroy people and their relationships. I know quite a few people who think they are in control when it comes to their alcohol consumption but in truth they are kidding themselves as they are completely dominated by the urge to switch off and disconnect from the world. Surely this way of living doesn’t work because after the effects of alcohol wear off not only is the body suffering but the problems that they were trying to escape from are still there just as unresolved as before.
We have an idea that moderation is fine, but in fact if something affects it, in the way alcohol does, then it affects us no matter how little of it we use, and so it is with alcohol, and that makes sense for how could something that is a poison to our bodies not impact us? And more importantly why would we want to imbue that poison?
Great point Monica, and not only a poison but one that the body clearly tells us does not work and we keep over-riding the signals.
Some people marry their addictions first and foremost. People come second. Those cases are pretty hard to change. So, we are usually left with the decision of simply accepting that we are second, enjoining or leaving.
We can say what we want to hear for as long as we don’t want to change a pattern of behaviour, because, in truth, we still need the behaviour to cope with what we are not wanting to address.
‘having a drink, even one drink, even once a month or once a year was saying YES to the whole energy that goes with alcohol.’ True, YES is yes, independent of the number of times you say it. Actually we always say YES, but often are not aware of what we are saying yes to.
What happened to you Gail, is what I observe with lots of people: keep going and somehow get your body used to the effect of alcohol. My body never agreed with this, luckily, it kept rejecting almost all forms of alcohol. Last week I visited a couple that I will marry in 2 months and the bride said: ‘I don’t like alcohol, I can’t sleep afterwards’ and the groom just stopped drinking because he didn’t like how he felt after drinking beer. They shared how unusual it is amongst their family and friends that they will not throw a big late (alcohol) party to celebrate their wedding.
It is a very liberating feeling to simply lose the urge for alcohol. For a little time afterwards there can be regret about missing out on all these tastes but that goes away as well.
Isn’t the body amazing how it builds a tolerance or it knows how to exactly respond. It knows pure harmony so if one system is working harder than normal other systems or organs make up for it putting the body out of harmony. So imagine how it would be working when listening to the body.
I am constantly inspired by the power of no judgement and utter understanding. It gives another space to not react as we are not prompting them to react from judgement. Understanding instead supports the awakening of their own awareness and empowerment.
How absurd are we? We say yes to every possible negative thing about us, and then we say yes to what can help us not to feel what we have said yes to in the first place.
I know, absurd, we are essentially saying yes to self abuse to not feel who we we are in our essence.
And it’s a long list of behaviours we say yes to in an attempt to manage how bad we feel – not exercising, eating poorly, using drugs and alcohol, checking out on entertainment or screens, not taking care of our money, accepting abuse in relationships… wow, the list goes on. Imagine the list of what we would accept in life when we say yes to being our amazing selves?
The relationships close to us whether in the family or at work or both are our biggest reflections. Whether we choose a partner who chooses to be an alcoholic or a partner who chooses another abusive behaviour it is still a reflection of the abusive choices we are making in our lives. The behaviour in its reflection may not be as obvious as drinking alcohol but dig deeper and we will find the behaviour or behaviours lurking elsewhere in our lives offering us to uncover and heal so that we can live the divine beings that we are.
Because alcohol is so normal people are not looking for the many and varied ways it harms the consumer, unless it’s excessive consumption. We seem to also accept not feeling vital, joyful, and clear emotionally as normal so within the context of this alcohol may not stand out clearly as lowering our quality of wellbeing.
It’s a deceptive game isn’t it Gayle, you may not think you have abused alcohol yourself but the abuse of alcohol was a constant shadow in your life for so much of it.
Amazing how we override the first taste of alcohol, which straight away tells us that we really shouldn’t drink it, yet we then kid ourselves that we like the taste of it, and one drink leads to another, which changes how we see or feel life is, often making us more emotional and depressed. So amazing how our body automatically knows what’s good, or not good for us.
Yes the smallest amount of alcohol or smoking or any hazardous drug, the smallest amount of emotion etc. we are agreeing to the entire energy. Well done on the awareness and the beholding of yourself until the body has kept up with your awareness, this is a very patient process and one which is deeply inspiring and loving all the way.
“I saw how having a drink, even one drink, even once a month or once a year was saying YES to the whole energy that goes with alcohol.” This brings so much clarity to life, that everything we say yes to, even if it is only a yes to a part of something, energetically we receive the whole package whether we want it or not.
“How crazy. I trained my body to accept a poison and I failed to notice the changes that even an occasional drink was causing in my attitude and emotional wellbeing.” And how many other patterns of behaviour do we poison our body with?
Gayle I had never really considered how alcohol can allow people to not notice the gradual erosion of things like self worth, relationships, or other things they hold dear. We may reach for alcohol to numb ourselves, take the edge off, relax, etc, but it can divert our much needed attention and clarity away from areas of ourselves and our life that need our support.
Spot on Melinda, Gayle has certainly highlighted a pertinent point – we focus often on the direct effects of alcohol rather than seeing the more long term and longer reaching effects of such things on relationships, self worth etc.
Interesting to consider the effects of alcohol here go way beyond just the physical and physiological effects, even though if we considered just these it would still be a compelling reason not to drink.
A great article and it’s amazing to see the knock on affect that things can have. Also how we when allow ourselves to compare to others we can also find someone better off and worse, it matters not so long as the focus isn’t on ourselves and what we are doing. I’ve said in other comments I never enjoyed the taste of alcohol and I remember all along at certain points it tasting like I was drinking a glass of nails but yet I would soldier on. In this article there are some pretty traumatic experiences and I remember a family member who grew up with severe alcohol addiction in the house and it seem to rule everything. We haven’t yet seen the true cost of alcohol and all it’s trimmings, needless to say the price isn’t advertised but we still pay for it in full.
Thank you for this sharing Gayle. It reminds me to never pass judgement on another but at the same time not hold back in our expression. The way that you came to your own conclusions about what was best for you, eg not drinking alcohol meant that your healing came about through your taking responsibility for your own well being, still able to toast your friends with a drink that could support rather than harm.
It is amazing to read how self-love works in and throughout our bodies. How we can use it as a marker or a guide to what feels right or true for ourselves and from this perspective we can shape our whole lives. It is also interesting to read how we can use our minds to override this innately personal relationship in favour of what pleasures and distractions some parts of life can bring and how if we choose these over our love for ourselves it ultimately does lead to some kind of dramatic event such as a wrecked vehicle or how it can slowly dull away at our senses leading to a state of just plain misery. It is the awareness however that you have written with that seems to make all the difference, bringing you to a place where no matter what – that voice is still inside speaking the truth, perhaps because on just one day you listened to it and now that pathway is clear – a great lesson for all of us to be inspired by.
We are a crazy society, to put poison in our bodies, and then come back for more, ‘My body had shown the allergic reaction to alcohol from the start and it was only through repeated exposure that I was able to increase my tolerance to the poison.’ I love the understanding you came to Gayle.
What has it come to that alcohol is such an ingrained part of society that now it is those who don’t drink that stand out?
Such an honest sharing. Thank you, Gayle. It’s really hard to see the harm of alcohol if we think we are drinking in moderation and call ourselves a social/occasional drinker and when that nice cold beer at the end of the day tastes so good. It’s an awesome realization that no matter how little a yes might be, yes is still a yes, and we are always saying yes to one energy that heals or the other that harms.
Alcohol never supported my health, wellbeing and my vitality. It was not until I had a full understanding how it effected my body through Universal Medicine and the healing Modalities that I was able to stop miraculous so and forever almost instantly. Alcohol is not in my life or home and will never be again. The healing modalities showed what it was to feel the sacredness in my body. Alcohol poisoned this feeling with great effects. So, instead of building tolerance to a poison in my body I am building my sacredness. There is no comparison.
Brilliant blog Gayle. Your story shows that the reasons we use alcohol are very revealing. In my experience alcohol only ever compounded negativity and stress in my life. The day I took my last sip of alcohol I knew without a doubt it would be the last time because I had allowed myself to feel the truth about what it did to me. Five years later I am overjoyed at how great life without alcohol is and I wish I had never taken a sip of the stuff.
It’s important isn’t it, to not simply see alcohol as the ‘big bad wolf’ here, isn’t it Gayle. Moreso, it is the underlying factors that would lead us to poison our bodies and relationships so, that we need to look at, if we truly want to heal what’s gone on for us, in partaking of such sabotaging behaviours.
I used to drink, and for a few years there when I was younger, drink a-plenty… It was a great mechanism for blocking out the world and avoiding dealing with the pain I felt of being in it. Restoring a deep and true connection with myself, inspired beyond measure by Serge Benhayon, is what has made the difference for me – essentially, knowing that I can indeed live and be all of me in this world, without reservation.
Today, I’m as you are – nothing in me could put a drop of it near my mouth, as I know without a doubt, how immensely such a choice would diminish the richness I feel in myself today.
Why block out the light of the sun, when its brightness is so full of love?
To be so honest about the destructive nature of alcohol’s presence in our lives and in our relationships, offers a great opportunity for many to stop and consider for themselves, just what part alcohol is playing in their lives and is there truly any positive that comes of it? Your story Gayle, speaks reams about the normalisation of alcohol having gone to such an extent, that we don’t even question that we are putting poison in our own bodies, and teaching our children to do the same.
A great illustration of how insidiously an addiction or dependency can creep in when we choose not to deal with things that happen to us in life. Alcohol as a coping mechanism, either to block out life in some way, or to feel as though we ‘fit in’ with others can be very harming, as you so clearly show in your case Gail.
Thanks Gayle, for a great article shared with much honesty and transparency .”My body had shown the allergic reaction to alcohol from the start and it was only through repeated exposure that I was able to increase my tolerance to the poison. And I considered this a good thing. How crazy. I trained my body to accept a poison and I failed to notice the changes that even an occasional drink was causing in my attitude and emotional wellbeing.” I remember my first beer as a teenager and it was bitter ,and didnt task good at all, and all the years of training myself to get used it ,it was a passage of right to be able to drink beer well to be what i thought of at the time a real man .As well it was the only refection I saw, men drinking beer and enjoying it and themselves, there was no one elder or young adult I knew knew that didnt drink . Its funny how the alcohol consciousness is so strongly etched in our society and for many thousands of years it has ruled peoples behaviours .Like the colonial countries conquering of the so called “new worlds” indigenous cultures bringing with them alcohol and distilleries as major form of commerce and control of people through the powerful drug and known poison alcohol. Now days alcohol sponsorship in sport and music dominates the stage . The world would be a total different place without it I’m sure .
It is interesting how we train ourselves and learn to override the uncomfortable symptoms alcohol has on our bodies and then we get so used to having them that they become normal and we forget how we can feel without them. It is sad as we miss out on the amazingness that we are because of that.
“What I didn’t see creeping in was an increasing negative attitude towards life” This line really struck me today as I saw more the root cause for why we look to products or behaviours that relieve our frustration or disappointment. We focus on whether or not we should drink the wine but the focus really should be on why we are choosing to drink the wine…what is going on in our lives for us to be making that choice?
The greatest question we can ask is why we are making a certain choice or behaviour… this really does open up the conversation with ourselves and/or others.
Alcohol does change people, of that I have no doubt. I have seen people close to me change completely under the influence of alcohol – so much so that they behave in ways that are completely out of character and on one occasion started to use a different name altogether. Alcohol lost any allure it once had once I connected with what is truly does. My feeling is that we would chuck it straight out of our lives if we had any true level of awareness of its impact. Something I sometimes consider is how our relationship with alcohol would be if our bodies did not perform the miraculous elimination of toxins it does and that we take for granted. Perhaps we would then be aware that it is indeed a poison and to drink it is like committing suicide.
I have heard many stories and seen for myself how alcohol changes people, not just drastic changes whilst drunk but gradual changes to the loss of the essential self because of moderate or regular drinking. I also heard of someone who always spoke in a completely different accent when drunk, to me that is alarming and not a novelty to laugh at, as what has entered that person when she is under the influence of alcohol?
Amazing how we “celebrate” by poisoning ourselves – what to say!
It is interesting that the power of the ‘normalisation’ of alcohol in our society was so strong that even when it made me sick from the beginning, it never occurred to me that it was deeply harming to consume it. I just thought it was a defect in my body that it couldn’t cope rather than the body rejecting an obvious poison. This is the danger of allowing ourselves to be swayed by the all-pervading influence of advertising, propaganda and social acceptance, fuelled by a common agreement to uphold the numbness so desperatley sought by so many, .. rather than listening to the obvious communication from our own bodies – and empowering ourselves to live by its guidance rather than by anything telling us how we should be..
It’s crazy how we have to train ourselves to like something that is so rotten to the body. No child has the taste for alcohol or cigarettes or drugs – so what happens to us as teens and adults? I remember making myself smoke cigarettes and I really hated it at first, it burnt my throat, my lips, nose and eyes. I felt terrible afterwards and really dirty. Even washing my hands 3-4 times would not get rid of the smell. Makes me realise what hard work it is to become addicted to these things, yet we think the work is letting them go.
‘only through repeated exposure that I was able to increase my tolerance to the poison’. I’ve heard this method of getting used to poison used in different situations, but its true that we do it throughout life. There are plenty of substances and behaviours that are no good for us in the long run, but if we keep at it then the body will acquiesce for a time and adjust round the behaviour…. but we are only storing the problem for another day.
When we cut out or stop something without truly understanding the effects it has, it always eventually seems to come back. There is no shortcut to feeling in full what life’s about. The greatest trick is we think in cutting out one vice we have succeeded there but then find a replacement habit to do exactly the same thing. For as your story shows Gayle, there is no end without us healing the true root cause of everything.
i too have never looked back since giving up drinking. I am so glad i did it, i really enjoy social occasions so much more now, I certainly don’t miss it.
I too grew up in an environment where heavy drinking was the norm, and for many years into my adulthood I continued with this – but always with an acute wariness because several of my close relative were alcoholics. I decided I was going to stop drinking, and it took me about a year to reach the point where I took that step, but from that day I never looked back.
Honest Sharing Gayle, just goes to show how a glass of alcohol is poison and can spread through our body very quickly and cause so much damage without us even knowing.
I am with you on that one, I will never choose to drink again, it’s not worth it. I had a non alcoholic beverage called Kombucher the other day, its fermented and tastes like booze, that was enough to make me feel drunk and hung over the next day, it was the worst.
“How crazy. I trained my body to accept a poison and I failed to notice the changes that even an occasional drink was causing in my attitude and emotional wellbeing.” This is a very common factor with so many things in life. We learn that we can train ourselves to do anything but these ideas come from our head through the thoughts we let in and lives at the expense of the body.
It is extraordinary that such a powerful poison can be so normalised even at the cost it has to our health and wellbeing, let alone finances and lifestyle… and who can ignore the social impact? There is nothing more inspiring to hear of people coming to a place where they realise they no longer need it as a way to support them through life in some form and are therefore 1 less statistic in a world of avoidable statistics.
Gayle you have deeply exposed the harm that alcohol brings with it, whether drinking it, or being around others that are. There will be many who will not like the clarity in which you have written. But like it or not, all know deep down the truth.