Dry Drunk vs. Sober

Sobriety is a process that requires commitment, demanding work, the right attitude, and the help of others. Although the initial goal is simple, stop drinking, those in recovery face many challenges throughout their lives. One issue that arises is dry drunk syndrome vs being sober. 

Myrtle Beach Recovery offers short and long-term 12 Steps programs for successful rehab. Contact us to learn more about the tools we give you to help you move forward and start changing your life.

What Is Dry Drunk Syndrome?

The dry drunk broke free from physical alcohol dependence –but did not develop the healthy attitudes necessary to live a meaningful, productive life. Instead, the alcoholic habits and attitudes continue assaulting the mindset of the dry drunk to deprive them of joy, fulfillment, and peace during recovery. 

Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) defines dry drunk as “the presence of actions and attitudes that characterized the alcoholic before recovery.” Although physically free from alcohol, the dry drunk retains the alcoholic mindset, which prevents the typical contentment experienced in sobriety.

Difference Between Dry Drunk And Sober

Many dry drunks get sober without help. They conquer physical addiction by their strong will, without considering how they first fell into alcohol abuse. Thus, they miss the insights, tools, education, and encouragement provided by AA, counselors, nurses, friends, and rehab centers, such as Myrtle Beach Recovery.

The sober person understands the issues underlying their reliance on alcohol. They also understand the science behind their addiction that prevents them from ever drinking like a “normal person.” According to AA’s definition, the person who is sober has no emotional attachment to alcohol and lives a meaningful and content life.

Warning Signs of Dry Drunk Syndrome

Alcoholics develop various unhealthy habits and attitudes. The behaviors that result from these can also characterize the person with dry drunk syndrome. Loved ones, who grew accustomed to them before the alcoholic got sober, often overlook them. Instead, behaviors such as these should be recognized as possible signs of dry drunk syndrome: 

  • Intense mood changes.
  • Self-pity.
  • Difficulty communicating
  • Negative thoughts about the possibility of change.
  • Constantly feeling like the victim.
  • Self-centeredness.
  • Jealous of those in healthy recovery.
  • “Right all the time,” thinking.
  • The belief that sobriety is boring.
  • Refusal to accept any criticism.
  • Trouble making decisions.
  • Avoiding a 12-step program.
  • Nostalgic about past drinking.
  • A feeling of numbness toward life.
  • Inclined toward negative thoughts.
  • Difficulty concentrating.
  • Involvement in other addictive behaviors, such as eating, gambling, and shopping.

Dry Drunk vs Sober Recovery

The good news is that if you or a loved one show signs of dry drunk syndrome, it is treatable. The first critical step is to recognize and admit that you have a problem. Next, getting help, such as a 12-step program that connects you with others seeking a sober and fulfilling life, is essential. 

After joining others, dry drunk recovery can include:

  • Identifying life stressors and learning healthy coping strategies.
  • Discovering your purpose in life.
  • Uncovering other problems that may hinder your recovery, such as depression, anxiety, or codependent relationships.

Consider Myrtle Beach Recovery

Myrtle Beach Recovery can help you build healthy habits that promote a positive attitude and sober life. Contact us and learn more about how our welcoming and professional staff can help you break the emotional attachment to alcohol.