When you have entered the realm of alcoholism, your priorities change then and there.
Even though you may not be aware of it yourself, alcohol has become the priority, and it becomes important to you that no one interferes with your drinking.
At the least, you minimize your drinking to the outside world, never letting anyone know how much you are really putting away. Many withdraw from family and friends, holing up so they can drink as much as they want to, whenever they want to. This of course makes you unavailable to the people who need you and may want to spend time with you.
Since, as a problem drinker, you have a tendancy to drink at the most inappropriate times knowing full well there are going to be sometimes serious consequences, you start missing family functions or outings with your friends, particularly your friends that don’t approve of heavy drinking. You make promises you can’t keep. You become a no-show, unintentionally building a reputation for unreliability.
For all intents and purposes, you may be keeping everyone at arms length. So while you are constantly drinking, your friends and family have no choice but to carry on without you.
You may start to notice that your friends are making progress, maybe getting a house, getting a promotion at work, buying that new car, getting married. Funny how nothing has changed in your life. It’s always the status quo – there you sit with a drink in your hand and incredibly everything remains the same.
The important people in your life will have no choice but to learn to live without you if you become unavailable. Some may be hurt because you had to check out. They don’t understand what alcohol addiction means.
This is how your relationships can erode while you are under the influence, and since it is a process, by the time you notice and decide to do something about it, in some cases it may be too late to repair the damage. Chalk another one up for alcohol.