Happy people focus on what they have. Unhappy people focus on what they don’t have. It makes sense.
Who said “See that guy over there? He’s been sober for 22 years and he’s just a miserable SOB. All the time. I’m going to call him a Dry Drunk and hope everyone else catches on.” And why did most folks in AA who heard it, say to themselves, “Dry Drunk. Has a ring to it. Yeah – okay. Sounds good.” Why didn’t anyone say, “Wait a minute. THAT’S not right. Grouchy? Unhappy? Okay. Maybe. But a dry drunk? Uh. That seems unnecessarily harsh.”
This term is a great disservice to all sober people everywhere. And by sober, I mean – doesn’t drink. Regardless the adjective used to describe their personality. Calling someone who used to drink a ‘Dry Drunk’ is insulting. And the air of arrogance this term accompanies is staggering. This might occasionally be an unconscious arrogance, but that only spotlights a person’s inability to think independently.
Most non-alcoholics don’t even know what a dry drunk is, much less use the term. It’s normally used by sober folks who attend AA and have come to the conclusion that their sobriety is superior to someone else’s, which couldn’t be further from the truth. No one person or group has the corner on the sobriety market. There is no one right way to get and stay sober. There is only what works for each person. This said – there is just ONE thing that all sober people everywhere have in common – none of us swallow alcohol. Regardless how we got to this point or what we do to maintain it.
Someone either drinks or not. If this person who chooses not to drink just so happens to be infinitely miserable, well, then that’s the correct judgement to make. But even then – all one person can do is perceive another person. What you see might look different to me. I’m pointing to integrity here. How do we feel good about ourselves when we’re referring to another like-minded person in sobriety, a dry drunk? We know how hard is was to get sober; how hard it can be to stay sober. Why demean someone we can identify with? Why resort to insulting someone rather than acknowledge a simpler truth? A lot of people – sober or not – are real unhappy.