Gay body & booze

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    Jun 21, 2007 7:46 PM GMT
    I've found that the better I take care of myself, the less I enjoy feeling inebriated and the lower my tolerance seems to be for boozing. I'm thinking of giving it up entirely (I don't smoke or do drugs now, though have in the past) and wonder if anyone else on here has made this transition and how it is?

    It seems like from the time I came out way up to the Pride event I attended a few weeks ago, liquor and gay men go together like a hand in glove. I understand that booze allows one to release inhibitions, feel sexier, whatever, but why is it we're so "dependent" on drinking in social situations and so lax about seeing others engage in unhealthy (i.e. alcoholic) behavior? Gay men and women can be some of the most fascinating people you'll ever meet yet with too many, you'd never know it because in social situations they lose the ability to form coherent arguments due to being sloshed. Has anyone else here thought about this issue? In terms of living a healthy lifestyle and being "social," how have others balanced it all out?

    Any feedback appreciated! :O)
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    Jun 21, 2007 8:21 PM GMT
    Well, there is a difference between drinking to get "sloshed" and having a beer or a drink, and enjoying the buzz. You're right, of course, that you can't have a coherent conversation or anything with a sloshed person, or even a person who is just "this side" of being sloshed.

    As is true in society at large, I am sure the lonelier guys get, and the more problems they have as gay men, the more apt they would be to seek solace in the initially pleasant feelings that booze gives them. It's tempting to think that more of the same will continue the feeling, make you feel better.

    Of course it doesn't.
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    Jun 21, 2007 8:25 PM GMT
    Stop drinking? Are you insane? Have you ever spent more than 5 minutes in a gay pub or club without needing a drink?

    In all seriousness. Go for it. I'm sure your liver will thank you.
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    Jun 21, 2007 8:28 PM GMT
    I haven't given up drinking entirely, but I've tapered off a good deal--the most I'll have is a glass of wine with dinner and a martini (maybe a martini and a half) later in the night. I'll also have a glass of water for every drink I have (hydrate, dehydrate, hydrate, dehydrate).

    You're right, we use alcohol to ease social situations, to wind down at the end of the day, etc. In moderation, that's not so bad.
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    Jun 21, 2007 8:29 PM GMT
    I figure it I need every single brain cell I've got. None expendible here. I don't do bars much, but when I do if I don't want anything I pick up a left over beer can and hold it looking like I already have a drink. Very poor student here, by the way!! Got to do what a guy's got to do.

    $2.00 on a beer is 2/3 of a gallon of gas for my car. It's a few more brain cells that i would have lost had I drank.

    Gay seems to revolve around drinking. At gay pride it's like a bar but outside. All the beer you want and they stand in line for 30 minutes to get it. I'm wondering if the drinking in gay culture is more shame based?
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    Jun 21, 2007 8:42 PM GMT
    I think you need to get over yourself Powerpack. Some people call it having a good time. Jeez.
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    Jun 21, 2007 8:43 PM GMT
    Well certainly, the more you drink, the more your body builds up physical tolerance to alcohol inebriation. (Except for some people who have a particular gene in the alcohol dehydrogenase pathway that gives them inherently low tolerance.) When you cut back on drinking, that tolerance eventually goes away.

    I can't help thinking that there must be something else to it, though. When I think back about how much beer that I KNOW I drank on Friday nights, in my early 20's, I'm amazed. There is no way I could drink that much now if I had to. Something about being a growing boy, I guess.

    In any case, sex is WAY better sober (or maybe just slightly "mellow") than drunk. Except for coyote love, and let's just not go there.

    There are other social scenes than bars and taverns, at least in most cities: coffee houses, juice bars... climbing gyms, hiking trails, maybe? I dunno... I'm out in the sticks. We just have the internet.
  • Vordhosbn

    Posts: 38

    Jun 21, 2007 9:15 PM GMT
    Coyote Love?
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    Jun 21, 2007 9:27 PM GMT
    Coyote love is sex that you would not (and should not) be having in the first place, if you were sober.

    "You wake up in the morning and look at what you've got your arm wrapped around. Rather than risk waking it up, you chew your arm off at the shoulder and quietly sneak away. "
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11649

    Jun 22, 2007 12:01 AM GMT
    it's true that the more healthy you are the less you need to become inebriated to make yourself "feel good"
    people and it's not just gay men
    do not know how to drink 1 or 2 drinks and stop there
    they have to become completely drunk and make fools of themselves
    thats why I hate gay bars
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    Jun 22, 2007 12:52 AM GMT
    interesting thread! i'm surprised more people don't agree with the premise: a fulfulled, happy, adult gay life need not include booze. actually i have recently thought about abstaining, for health (fitness) reasons and also because i still get the odd killer hangover, despite years of practice drinking ;)
    not sure i'm ready to go cold turkey, ut then tapering off has had spotty results!
  • Starboard

    Posts: 242

    Jun 22, 2007 3:36 AM GMT
    I find that the older I get, the harder it's become for me to recover from a "night out". I still like to go out and have a few drinks, but now I am much more likely to consider the consequences the next day. My drinking routine is also heavily influenced by my fitness routine...if I am looking forward to taking my bike around the lake on Sunday morning, I am going to make sure that whatever happens on Saturday night, I am going to be in proper form to enjoy the ride....
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    Jun 22, 2007 3:29 PM GMT
    Well I never understood the whole "drown your problems in booze" philosophy because I will admit I tried it once. The final result-the next day the problems were still there, and on top of that I had a hangover so drinking just made me feel even worse after all was said and done. So I limit my drinking to the occasional once a month event
  • OrlGymJock

    Posts: 1

    Jun 22, 2007 3:33 PM GMT
    I've given it up entirely... used to party and drink. I found a 12-step program, yes, AA, taught me how to be in a gay bar for more than 5 minutes without a drink and have a BLAST... In fact, i can go to circuit parties with other sober guys without drink or drugs, and have a great time (i just don't go to ALL of them). And I never act like an ass (at least without making the concious choice to), i never get told about the horrific and embarassing things i did the night before, i never have coyote sex, i never have a hang over, i never have a fear of DUI, and I'm in the best shape of my life... and I would not have learned how to have all that stuff without the drink or drugs without the help of AA. (ie, i might could have stopped drinking, but I would be the miserable one that couldn't take 5 minutes in the club, without learning how to LIVE without through the program). It's also given me an incredible group of gay friends that are not ONLY concerned with how hot I am, how much money I have, what brand of clothes I'm wearing, etc. If you're thinking of giving it up, but don't know how to really LIVE WITHOUT, the only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking... You don't have to beleive you're an alcoholic!

    Go for it. I would have NEVER believed sobriety would rock like this, and it's been almost 2 years. and I have a choice, if drinking were better, i could just go get drunk at any time, but i choose not to!
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    Jun 22, 2007 3:52 PM GMT
    mindgarden: Thank you for the Coyote Ugly quote!
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    Jun 22, 2007 4:06 PM GMT
    I think it's just all about moderation. For instance, this past week, I switched to just drinking water (and protein shakes) because I took a step back, and looked at how much I was drinking. It turns out that I was drinking about 5-6 days a week. Granted, I was not getting drunk all those times. Sometimes it was a couple glasses of wine at home. But you have to think about how your body is responding to it. Alcohol dries you out. It forces your liver to work overtime. And alcohol can lead to serious health risks later in life (i.e. heart trouble, cancer). So I've decided to flush out my system, and start back slowly.

    In my opinion, stick to a moderate amount of red wine. You can start studying up on different types and decide which ones you like. You'll impress guys later with your knowledge of the subject. And only do a drunken binge with your buddies once a month, if you must. (This may be hard considering I'll be in P-Town this summer). And when you party, remember vodka and soda has no carbs! :)

    ~Alex

  • masculineone

    Posts: 43

    Jun 22, 2007 5:10 PM GMT
    I managed to stop drinking after my 1 of college and I remember every cute guy I have ever been with. I never wake up with a loser and I feel good the next day. I am so glad I gave it up but there are times now and then I get bored at parties. I would, however, rather just go home when the party sucks instead of getting drunk so I can nose dive way below my standards and possible pick up HIV.

    Good luck to all of you out there!
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    Jun 22, 2007 6:41 PM GMT
    I've never been drunk. I dont like the idea of loosing control, or being out of control. Its my issue. I'm also mean to to my friends when they're drunk. I'm not a babysitter. Sure, i'll bandage you up if your bleeding, but I'll also use an airhorn to wake you up after a bender and make you some good, gooey scrambled eggs for breakfast.
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    Jun 22, 2007 8:16 PM GMT
    GQJock, I agree with this:

    "..."it's true that the more healthy you are the less you need to become inebriated to make yourself "feel good" ..."

    ...I feel the effects after one beer, and by "effects" I mean just mellow. I hate the feeling of inebriation and agree it's both unhealthy and counterproductive to fitness.

    I focus on the issue of using alcohol as a crutch here, though, to get through bad times. It never works, in my opinion. However, that doesn't mean that moderate drinking (one or two) is counterproductive to fitness. In fact, as someone else pointed out above, drinking red wind with dinner is undoubtedly good for you, unless you have issues with alcoholism, it tastes good, and makes digesting dinner efficient.

    By the way, I always drink lots of water, and drink more when drinking alcohol. If I have a beer, I also have a tall glass of water...and that seems to counteract the dehydrating aspects of alcohol.
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    Jun 22, 2007 8:59 PM GMT
    There were a few times back in my drinking days when I managed to chug down a glass or two of water before crashing, and the hangover was always far less severe the next day. Unfortunately, I was usually too blitzed to remember to do that.
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    Jun 22, 2007 10:48 PM GMT
    i have pretty much given it up. once in awhile (maybe 1x a month)i'll have some wine or some negra modelo. i just don't have a need for it. i have a much better time when i'm lucid. i hate being drunk and being around drunks. they more than annoy me. i'm lucky that most my friends are health friends like i am and don't get piss drunk any more.
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    Jun 22, 2007 10:53 PM GMT
    Interesting topic, When I was younger I used to party and get drunk and what not.. but ever since fitness has become a major part of my life I haven't had the desire or need to get drunk or do drugs at all.. I in no way crave those things.

    Freinds tell me that it might possibly be the endorphines that are realesed when I work out that have pushed away the cravings for those other substances.

    and as far as drinking now.. I really only have one drink two at the most when going out or I'll actually be lame and have a shirley temple or something silly like that..


  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 23, 2007 12:58 AM GMT
    I see nothing wrong with drinking on a daily basis if you have a few. Your body has a few ways of telling you enough, whether or not you listen is your choice.

    I drink a fair bit, mostly just a few beers or wine or cocktails, but rarely do I get drunk... much better to smoke marijuana, work those brain cells don't kill em!
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    Jun 23, 2007 2:39 AM GMT
    Hee hee hee.
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    Jun 23, 2007 3:00 AM GMT
    I quit drinking at the end of my 20s. The police thought it would be a good idea.