Did you know your browser is out of date?

To get the best possible experience using our website we recommend that you upgrade to a newer version or other web browser. IE8 is no longer supported. A list of the most popular web browsers can be found below. Click on the links to get to the download page.

Getting through wine o’clock

July 24, 2014 692 comments

Late in the afternoon is often the hardest time. How do you get through the witching hours without drinking?

Add Comment Register



Leave a reply to alcoholfree Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

692 comments

  1. I’m finding ‘wine time’ OK but wondering if anyone has any ideas for coping with an entire first holiday without booze. I have found the first 120 days of my sobriety amazing, but am dreading a ten day trip to Bali, where with all the downtime I am finding it hard to imagine not being able to sip a cocktail at lunch or dinner. Anyone have any experience of their first sober holiday?

    0
    1. @Freeatlast, your name says it all. Focus on that. I found Alan Carr’s book was a good tool for me when I felt vulnerable. On my first holiday I set some goals, walks, massages, books to read…I remembered that the new alcohol free me was actually interested in other people and what’s more, actually able to connect so I did alot of ‘that’ still do :).
      A friend of mine went out to dinner the other night with another ‘friend’ who was disgruntled that she wasn’t drinking, she said, ‘what’s the point of going out to dinner if you’re not drinking?’ besides being sad, you could apply that to a holiday…what else could you do? absolutely everything…:) Good luck!

      0
    2. Sorry freeatlast – I’m just posting to thank Mrs D for replying to my previous post (I’m sure I’m completely on the wrong thread ….!)

      So thanks Mrs D, I will look at the kinatrust site … and thanks Dotty, yes he is v sensitive re people commenting on his drinking (as I guess nearly everyone is, or is that just when you know you’ve got a problem?); he’s a big guy and can drink a lot anyway – but my father died at 49, in part due to his alcoholism, and I’m NOT going to let him do the same! I hope to post some time in the future with some positive news ….!

      0
    3. Hey – trying to reply to anonymous down below who is asking about her partner. Unfortunately I think the people who are telling you he has to make the decision for himself are right. It’s a very difficult position for you to be in. Does he know about this site? Also for you go to http://www.kinatrust.org.nz they’ve got lots of great information on there for people in your position. You are definitely not alone on this one. xxxx

      0
    4. Just remembered that when I was in Phuket working on the Indian Ocean tsunami for Disaster Victim Identification we worked long hours and no alcohol. After a hard day we would go to the pool at the hotel and have virgin cocktails. My favourite was virgin piña colada.

      To anonymous I concur that you have to wait until your partner recognises his problem and wants to deal with it. Maybe you could ask him to support you by moderating but I know that I was very sensitive to anyone commenting on my drinking and it did not help.

      0
    5. i did this years ago after 10 months sober (have been back and forward since but unrelated to my holiday haha). Went to Fiji and I actually found it really frustrating the assumption the wait staff had that every meal comes with a matching bottle. Anyway, I stayed strong and said NO and was lucky that hubby also doesnt drink. We had all kinds of colourful mocktails and that was ok. I had decided that I would treat myself to a real cocktail if I made it to Fiji without drinking for those 10 months, so on the first day there I was so excited and I ordered something I thought would taste great and be a reward or something like that and wow, a few sips and I was so totally sick! Probably a combo of the intense heat there plus anxiety about all the alcohol plus the alcohol content of the drink and I was stuck in the loo sick as while life on a tropical island was happening outside… Not worth it!

      0
    6. I don’t know if this is the right place to ask, but I can’t seem to find anywhere else on the site …. redirect me if you can! I need to ask all you strong people out there: how do I approach my partner to get him to stop drinking? He can’t seem to have just a few drinks. Tried all the usual things: not drinking during week; limiting the amount of booze in the house; me not drinking (through two pregnancies and two years of breastfeeding) …he knows he has a problem, but just can’t seem to face the weekend without the thought of booze. Would anything your partner said have worked for you? I’ve been told so many times: he has to make the decision for himself … but he’s just not doing it! It was fine in our 30s, but now we’re early 40s; not so fun any more ….

      0
    7. I am just completing my second. The first was a week as a trial and I relished the ‘extra bonus’ times to fill with more chilling/reading/napping!!! (the best feeling of recovering on all the past bad quality sleep) and whatever you choose to positively do. 120 days will have given you so many amazing things to do…take the best of em on holiday. Enjoy. Just completing the main hol of two weeks and it has been great most of the time and tough some of the time, but still, as you say, amazing sobriety. Hope it will be brilliant for you.

      0
    8. Maybe the same triggers wont be there when you’re away and relaxed. But if so, I physically have to remove myself from the situation. ie – walking shoes and away, or go for a swim. And, sometimes I just sit. Yes, just sit and quietly try and zone out until the temptation goes away and it does, for that moment. I am so impressed by you 120 days. I’m still struggling to even start my time.

      0
  2. I’m finding it hard now that I’m AWARE of how many things I’m chucking in my mouth instead of my usual beer, beer, beer, dinner, beer, beer, beer. Or if I’m drinking cider, or wine, same routine.
    I must have been consuming millions of calories drinking loads EVERY night, but it didn’t concern me because I wasn’t really eating all that much (snacks). Now I’m drinking almost nothing, have slipped up a few times, but I can’t stop eating! I get so annoyed with being hungry. I can’t wait to stop replacing the booze. I think summer will absolutely help!

    1
    1. In my twenties alcohol didn’t seem to effect my weight and as someone who’s been watching calories since the age of fourteen it was easy for me to replace snacks with drinks. I would never have considered eating a whole bag of chips but several glasses of wine seemed to be without caloric consequences i.e. putting on weight. Like you I’ve been snacking a lot more and eating more at mealtimes since I quit drinking. I think I’m just missing my go-to treat.

      0
  3. I have a glass of ginger beer with a capsule of magnesium and L-Theanine, a green tea extract. It’s calming and helps the anxiety settle till five o’clock passes into the distance. Then in the morning …no self hate!!! YAY

    0
  4. I take care of small tasks when I get home, such as feeding the dog. Then I sit in my chair and meditate. After that I have a small snack (used to be with wine) and start fixing dinner. Once that’s done, I’m “safe”. In the past it was wine, snack, more wine and then drag myself to the kitchen to start dinner, or decide I was too tired and ask for takeout.

    1
    1. By the way, it’s 8:13 pm here and still August 6. I feel like I have a leg up on my fellow timezone citizens by posting in the future :)

      0
  5. I make sure that I have gingerbeer or lemon lime and bitters (diet) in the house and I have one while I am getting dinner ready. I don’t fee like a drink after dinner it is just beforehand.

    1
  6. Drinking wine while cooking dinner was a BIG part of my nightly ritual. So now I come home, and in a wine glass, make a Perrier, splash of cranberry juice and fresh lime “mocktail”. It’s very delish, and I think that (for me, anyway) drinking it out of the wine glass helps tremendously.

    0
    1. Drinking from a nice wine glass is a great idea as I think for me so much of the problem is mental!
      I loved the idea of sitting in the garden or cooking with a chilled glass of something alcoholic, but the reality was always so different…..drinking too much, getting nothing done, feeling guilty and wretched then falling asleep.!!Wasting my evening…..[and life!] and waking up the next day feeling rubbish. The endless cycle of mindless boozing.!!
      Now I try and play the movie to the end……lovely glass of chilled soda and lime. with lots of ice and a few mint leaves…..yummy!
      Happy family, happy me, happy ever after!
      Happy Sober Day everyone from the not so sunny UK x

      0
    2. Yes I really love drinking out of my wine glass, it helps me loads.. prob all in my mind but as long as it works for me and I stay sober that is good for me.. will make your mocktail it sounds lovely

      0
  7. I stock up on Non -alcoholic drinks and have them in a wine glass like some of the other posters. I’ve tried non alcoholic ciders, lager. Wine and also lime & soda, black currant & soda etc. I suppose it’s a bit like the people giving up smoking and their substitute ciggies!

    0
  8. I have found reading blogs is helping and also writing one myself. I tend to get anxious around 3pm. Diet lemonade I am finding to be a good substitute when I put my mind to it.

    Cherie xx

    0
    1. My monster often starts to stir around 3pm! Altho at that time there is usually something I can do to o take my mind away from that – by 5pm I’m on the fruit juice & fizzy water !

      0
      1. and that’s my plan too: I plan on cranberry and soda water and I like ginger ale. My wine o’clock has been as soon as I get home in the evening, whether I have gone for a run or a workout. still have the wine. Have plans for after work and plans for early mornings as a motivation to remain sober for a clear morning! Love clear mornings!

        0
  9. Having strategies and planning well ahead really helps. I make sure I am not starving when I walk into the kitchen. I used to use my first glass of wine to blunt the edge of my hunger. Now, I have a small lunch but a sandwich or something reasonably filling around 4 or 5. Then fill a wine glass with soda and lime (I buy the no-calorie cordial or use fresh limes) and have that handy before I even think of starting to cook. Just having a stemmed glass there to do my usual lifting-sipping-and-clinking-down-on-the-bench really helps. After about 10 minutes, I’m into the cooking and really not noticing I’m not drinking (20 days sober today).

    2
  10. I have a Lime Perrier as I love the bubbles and when times got tough I have a couple of apps for 10 minute or more meditations which I find really relaxing

    0
  11. I actually talk to my kids now and ask them how their day is… and really do want to know ! (before I asked and didn’t really listen , I was too busy thinking about my next sip, or would I have to share the bottle with anyone, or how I would cope if I spilt a glass )
    Being present has been the best gift of being sober.

    1
    1. Exactly!!! I feel the same. I am so much more present and happy! I’ am reading a book “Presence” by Patsy Rodenburg – you might enjoy it :)

      0
    2. You’ve reminded me – I once spilled a full large glass of wine over my IPhone – what was I angry about – not that I’d just ruined $$ worth of IPhone but that I had lost the last glass from my daily bottle – I might even have licked the phone !

      0
    3. This is so true. I just keep looking at my little girl and marvelling at her now, rather than trying to get her settled with snacks and a DVD so I can cook dinner and drink flat out.

      0
  12. Friday is the worst night for me coz that’s the big drinking night out with all the boozy mates. It became a habit for me years ago when my husband started working nights. So, for me the plan has to start early in the week. Firstly let everyone know I’m not out coz of? Then plan my evening thoroughly: housework then a treat of take away, or something amazing that I wouldn’t usually eat. Plan a knitting project that I can relish the extra time Friday evening whilst hubby at work. Plan a west end trip that we take me far beyond the witching hour of getting home to go out etc., even enjoying dinner after the shopping trip (don’t have to buy if funds are short, I can go there @ peruse for ideas etc). Then above all, relish in my first prize, gold star moment of…….knowing I’m going to wake up hangover-free, without fear, pain & remose.

    0
    1. That is what is getting me through – the knowledge that I will wake up the next morning and not have to hate myself for the drinking I did the night before! 6 days sober …

      1
  13. I get a really nice glass, I’m still using my really good wine glasses, and make myself a cranberry juice and soda water and sip away on that while preparing meals etc or I just have a glass of water with lemon juice in it. It’s just nice to have a drink and for a change one that is good for you.

    0
  14. I bought myself a nice, new, pretty coffee mug, banned my entire household from using it and also bought some expensive fancy decaf coffee. For some reason the fact that I went and spent money on setting up this ritual helped; it was to do with honouring my own commitment to what I was doing, and it felt special and ritualistic to sit down after the school run with my nice coffee in my pretty mug.

    0
    1. I used to sit in the spa drinking loads with hubby staring at the stars and theologising. That will be something I will miss until I feel ‘safe’ enough to try it.

      0
  15. Cuppa tea which is great during the winter. Need to find something for those hot Welling summer days… I have also taken a shine to photographing wildlife, and have found early evening or wine o’clock to be a grate time to do that.

    0