Everyone knows the penalties for drinking and driving include hefty fines and imprisonment, and can lead to death. Yet a worrying number of drivers are still caught behind the wheel when they’re over the drinking limit for driving.
It seems that for some people, knowing the UK drink drive limit is one thing, sticking to the UK alcohol limit rules is another. But could that be because some people are more predisposed to having a toxic relationship with alcohol than others?
So many social events are based around drinking, it can be hard to say no to a pint of lager – or something stronger.
Most drivers – especially those who drive a truck for a living – know that drinking and driving isn’t worth the risk. And the vast majority of drivers know when they are over the limit. But even when they understand the drink drive limits, they still miss the way alcohol makes them feel.
According to the experts, if you’re wondering whether you have a problem with alcohol, you probably do. Is it time to re-evaluate how you think about alcohol and become more mindful about your drinking?
Here are three signs you have a complex relationship with alcohol.
1 You can’t stop thinking about it
There are very clear rules about how many units you can drink before driving. There are no rules about how many units you can think about while driving… If you find yourself thinking about alcohol regularly, you may have an unhealthy relationship with it. I’m not saying thinking about a cold pint towards the end of a long shift is a bad thing. But I am saying it could be if you’re thinking about drinking the whole way through your shift.
2 You prefer to drink alone
As mentioned above, drinking can be a wonderfully sociable thing to do with friends. Until it’s not. If you feel you’d rather drink alone, don’t want to drink in front of your partner or kids, or feel like you need booze to get through the day, it’s time to stop and re-assess. The more secretive you are around your drinking, the more of an issue it’s likely to be. Just as you need to know the drink driving limits, you also need to understand your own drinking boundaries.
3 Your responsibilities take second place
We all have responsibilities in life – from work, to family, to friends and more. However, anyone who is struggling with their relationship with alcohol can find that they end up neglecting work commitments, relationships and other appointments purely because they want to drink in peace. When alcohol starts to get in the way of your daily life, it’s a sign that things aren’t going well. How many units you drink in a week should never take precedent over the other elements of your life.
If you’re worried about the relationship you have – or someone close to you has – with alcohol, you should speak with a GP, support group or other professional.