On Mental Health

Me And Beer.

I’m trying to only come here to write if I can do a “normal” post that doesn’t revolve around something negative in my life because lately I sound like a basket case.

But then I remembered: Oh, yeah. I am a basket case!

I cut back drinking a lot over a month ago. I had basically been drinking 2+ beers every night since the election. Before that I was prone to the periodic “Beer Before Bed” during the week and maybe 2+ on the weekends, but my weekends were getting 4+ and my weeknights were 2+ and I decided: Okay. This is a bad habit.

That conclusion proves I’m super-smart and intuitive. People should be paying me to evaluate their lives.

So, I cut back a few weeks ago and am back to where I was pre-election. Some nights none, some nights one, but rarely more than 2 even on the weekends. Since I’m also monitoring how I feel closely as I evaluate Lexapro’s effectiveness, I’ve started really thinking about how alcohol affects my mood/mind and I’ve decided that I really should limit it to 1 beer, or 2 if they’re spread out over 3+ hours. Because more than 1 beer every 90 minutes and my emotions plummet and I get so very depressed.

One beer is fine, it loosens me up and calms anxieties. And I like beer, we have a lot of good local breweries and I love trying new stuff. I had two over the course of an outing with friends that lasted more than 3 hours and that was fine too. Just kept me a little looser than normal. But last night at family dinner I wasn’t driving, and I get stressed about Wesley’s behavior at these type of gatherings, so I drank 4 beers over the course of 3 hours and I felt SO TERRIBLE. I just could not stop thinking about how terrible of a wife and Mom I was, and on the way home I just closed my eyes and fought back tears thinking about how they deserve so much better.


So I’m going to quit that shit.

I’m going to keep it at no beer during the week unless it’s something special and then never more than 1 beer unless I’m at an event that lasts longer than 3 hours and then I can have another beer an hour after I finish the first one.

This schedule will allow me to enjoy beer, but hopefully keep me from falling into the bottomless pit of self-hatred I tend to fall in lately.

Oh, and related: Unless my goal is an effed up sleep schedule, Lexapro hasn’t done shit for me. I’m still only about 10 days in and my doctor gave me 3 weeks before a follow-up appointment because she said it could take that long, but as of right now? No change. I’m still running and eating better (I’m down 6 pounds!) but I still feel terrible a lot of the time. Fingers crossed it will kick in but if not, we’ll try something else. Life is too short to feel this shitty, AMIRIGHT?

8 thoughts on “Me And Beer.”

  1. Maybe between the sleeplessness AND no change in how you’re feeling, you could just call the doctor to check in?

    I hope today is the start of a good week!

  2. I gained like 15 pounds since the election, and I couldn’t figure out why, and then realized that I’d started drinking 1-2 beers EVERY night since the night after the election. Oh…that was probably why. Even my doctor mentioned it. So, I cut back. Now I’ll have a beer like maybe 3-4 nights a week, and I dropped like 9 pounds almost right away. Plus I felt better.

  3. Oh dude. 10 days is not “nothing” when you feel like hell, but in terms of getting the drug in your system and where it needs to be? It’s totally totally normal that it’s not doing shit for you yet. A pain in the ass, but totally normal. Hang in there. (Also keep in mind that alcohol can interact with certain medications in weird ways, so that’s something to look out for too.)

    And that’s my assvice for the day.

  4. First, you are a great Mom and wife! You do so much for your family!
    Sounds like it might help to check in with your doctor, so you can get change meds sooner in case some good effects are expected within 10 days. I’ve been trying to cut back on alcohol and chocolate myself, since my consumption of both also increased since the elections and added pounds. I haven’t lost weight yet, but am feeling a little better.

  5. Just wanted to say that I too started out on 10 mg of Lexapro and didn’t feel any better and had horrible insomnia. I stayed on that dosage for a few months before finally going up to 20 mg. It made all the difference in the world. I felt much more relaxed and happy and I could sleep. I think it’s probably still too early for the Lexapro to have fully kicked in for you, but you may think about increasing your dosage if you find it’s still not helping after a month or so. Also, I love beer too 😉

  6. I can’t remember how long they gave me to try lexapro, but it never kicked in for me. Changed to Zoloft and I think I could tell a difference sometime that first month. It’s been so long I don’t remember the details. But I know when I tried to go off the Zoloft when I was pregnant with bz and I finally went back on it, I started feeling better pretty soon. So yes, I agree with the others, at least let your doctor know what’s going on, even if she says to stick with it for 10 more days at least she’ll know where you are. When the medicine kicks in and your start seeing the world more clearly again it will be so worth it!

  7. My dear mama recently tried some anti-depressants here in the U.K. (Not sure which ones) and she hated the way she felt and stopped them (not saying you should do the same!).

    While I’d quite liked if she’d continued, I was still so proud she could take the same step you have, of realising they could be helpful.

    So I guess even if these ones don’t work out or the dosage isn’t right, it’s still a really important first step.

    Well done.

  8. One thing I learned while going through treatment is that alcohol, due to it’s barbituate nature, is a chemical depressant in your system.

    Not only that, but it has a compound effect on your brain and mood.

    So let’s say you are 4x as depressed as normal, and you drink something alcoholic. That alcohol may on it’s own offer an additional 2x depressor to your brain, but if you are already depressed, your brain doesn’t go 4 + 2 = 6. Oh no, it goes 4 x 2 = 8. And then let’s say you have another drink? It’s all let’s take it to 16!

    One of many reasons they recommend that you don’t drink if you are suffering from depression. They other reason is that it can react with meds as well. Until I learned all this though, I just assumed they were being jerks about the whole thing, or it was like “don’t swim right after you eat” kind of advise.

    It stinks though, because when you’re depressed, it seems like the answer to all your problems.

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