Alcohol and Fibro

Don't mind me I'm a tad tipsy... due to the subject. As you may know I am 20 and with this age comes the desire for alcohol when in a social situation where everyone else is having some. My issue is I have fibro and staying up till 4am partying is not something I can do but when it's someone having a birthday party for them self I feel obligated to stay especially since my boyfriend wanted to. How do I stay awake in a situation such as this? I am currently not well, the tummy issues is due to mixed alcohol and McDonalds (sadly they were no longer serving fries. :( ). Now that you have the back story any ideas on ways I can explain it to people that I can't stay out that late without feeling bad about "ditching out" on them on their birthday? (I know it sounds silly but this is a problem in my life because of my age and that being what most social engagements consist of.)

Well Shawna, if you are taking some prescription meds, have you read the information that comes with it. All that I know of say Do not consume alcohol. So, why can't you have gingerale WITHOUT liquor?

As far as staying out late partying, you know what payback you're going to have from that. There is no escaping the payback. So, the choice is yours.

Shawna, it is not just at this young life that you are going to face these challenges of late night partying and liquor. That is an ongoing challenge so you have a choice to make. Don't expect your body to give you some slack because it will not!! The payback will become harsher and harsher plus it may bring on different problems. That's just the way it is.

Hi shauna,

You are still really young and being social to you is very important at this stage in your life. You will find that if you explain the situation to your friends, your true friends will understand and be there to support you. It is difficult for all of us to explain to family members and friends why we can’t do things, as to them we often appear fine and they don’t see all the work and meds we have put into just getting out the door. I would be careful with alcohol and medication as there is always the risk of overdoses. Stay true to yourself and remember that only you know what you are able to do on any one day. The fact that you are asking for support shows a great deal of courage and strength. It is difficult perhaps you could try to go to the engagements that are most important to you and just call your friends or meet them for coffee for their birthdays etc, do something that requires less energy. I hope you stay well and have hope.

Hi, just a short message as I have to leave in a few minutes.

Here's a thought: tell them that you're on strong meds that interact badly with alcohol and also make you extremely sleepy. So you'll attend the party, not drink alcohol (your decision if you want to or not) and will leave when the meds start kicking in and making you extremely sleepy.

BTW: I try to drink alcohol only once in a blue moon because Rachel's right, our meds say don't drink alcohol with them. If nothing else, you could blow out your liver from the combo of meds and alcohol. I know you're young and don't think of that as being a very likely thing to happen at your age but it's VERY easy to reach a toxic dose when taking our meds along with alcohol. Esp. if you're throwing in NSAIDs like Ibuprofin or other meds like Tylenol. I never realized how easy it was to blow my liver out until the NSAID drug companies finally admitted it recently and lowered their recommended doses.

Good luck and have fun at those parties!

I really feel for you Shawna. It’s difficult having this disease at any age, but you have so much more life to live and everyone is right. Playing hard = more pain. I have tried to keep up with everybody at a party, go home and not take my meds and go to bed and not sleep all night. Some of us have the exact opposite reaction the alcohol, which is a depressant - it causes us to stay awake and not sleep even more so. Let me tell you, it’s just not worth it!

All great advice below and I now do what Petunia said. I get to the party and talk with as many people that I can see in as little time as possible, drinking water or caffeine- free soda and bow out as early as possible. You are not a party pooper - you are just taking care of your health.

I tell my friends or husband that if its a great event, they can take another car or go back to the party after getting me home. He never goes back and is asleep in his recliner before me!

Be selective in what you really want to do and what not. I’m still learning how to do this, so trust me its not easy. My therapist and I have made this one of my top goals!

Take care of yourself, Shawna - you’re a gem! ~ Sandi

I wish I had the guts to refuse a drink or go home early when I was twenty. I was too afraid to look like a nerd or freak. I regret that because I spent too many night sick as a dog barfing and having stomach pain. Worst of all, I allowed other people to control me and make me feel guilty if I didn't do what they did.

You have to be stronger than them and say "this is how it is" and you may be surprised that, if you are firm in your position, most friends who like you will back off and just accept that you can't drink or party as much. If you have a fun personality, which I'll bet you do, nobody will care if your drunk or sober. You can be the designated driver, too.

Well, that's my two cents.

Thanks for the advice. I do not take any medications that interact with alcohol as a regular pill, the only thing I take is t3's that would be affected but I am sure I do not take it within 2 days of drinking. I was on Cymbalta but my doctor agreed with my worries that the med and it may not be the best for someone who's depressed. And I am on lamotrigene and clonazapam for my epilepsy and have made certain there be no issues with alcohol and the meds, have done extensive research and spoke to my pharmacist when I got placed on these meds years ago. Therefore my meds and alcohol will not have negative interactions if take in moderation. However maybe using it as an excuse won't make me feel like this the next day.

"Playing hard = more pain."

"You are not a party pooper - you are just taking care of your health."

Cut and paste and add those two saying to your refrigerator door so you can reread them infinitely. Sandi, that was perfect. And your comment about Shawna being a gem even put a smile on my face.

Yep! And do you really want anyone who is pissy about you not drinking in your life anyway? It would show they can't handle anyone who is the slightest bit different or who has medical issues or who's not a drinker. Not good choices to hang around for a fibroite, in my humble opinion.

Yes I'm with you Petunia Girl, who needs people like that to bring you down? We need supportive friends who can help us not hinder us!

I agree though, peer pressure is a terrible thing to have to deal with at a young age, but there comes a time when we all just have to be true to ourselves and realise that we are really the only ones who are going to take care of us.

Stay strong Shawna, you'll feel better for it.

Hugs to you.

Bring a dog to protect you when you pass out, Its hard to fight nature. I drank at your age and was sick but did not know it. No way could I stay up till 4am, my body just would not do it. More important is whats the mater with your boyfriend that he does not get you limitations?

4 pm is a social obligation. 4 am is someone just looking to have a wild time and get in trouble. Seriously when I drank I never remembered anything past 1 am anyway.

Not totally meaning to make light of your situation but I was young once also. Saddly I was also a drunk at the time. My kid did do the dog thing, cause the dog was the only one that stayed sober at the parties that would keep her drunk friends and the sharpies away.

Sometimes there just are no right answers.

Dear Shawna,

I am lecturing here, but you are only 20? Be careful, most states in the USA have a ZERO TOLERANCE LAW. Which means if you even have a drop of alcohol and for any reason need assistance of Police, Fire, Emergency etc. It's off to jail for you. Which could shut down any law career etc. If your Boyfriend wants to party all night, that's ok. You don't have to. If he is serious and loves you, he will worry about you and want to take care of you. If not, DUMP him. Most people your age have their thinking skewed with raging hormones. (I know, I was there once) This illness doesn't get any easier as you get older. So, until they find a cure, I'd say be careful with yourself. The best long term relationships that I know of are of two people with confidence in themselves and are ok with independent outiings. TRUST in each other and the ability to TALK about everything right down to the schedule of cleaning the bathroom and who's taking out the garbage and the heart to heart talk about the what ifs. Can I handle taking care of him if he suddenly becomes ill.... vise versa. You're very young and need to worry about you and your future.

I had to go to the Apple Store today to get my ipad checked out. I knew I would pay for it and I am. I walked down the mall a little and could barely make it back to meet up with my dad and manfriend. I was bent over, dragging my feet. My dad ran over to get me when he saw me. What do I know: I pay when I do anything, and it is not for just 1 day. But sometimes it is worth it. I rarely get to go to Charlotte anymore, and my parents went with us. I have taken pain pills and am hurting all over. The moral: if you do the dance, be prepared for your feet to hurt.

I tell people I can’t drink because of all of the meds-the truth. At home occasionally I will drink a wine cooler-maybe every 3-4 weeks. 1 does not effect me. I don’t have to pay the piper as you do. 1 load of laundry done over the entire day is okay. 3 is not. You, like the rest of us, know know your limitations.

As for staying awake, I can sit down and fall asleep while my mom is talking to me-or anyone else! I have no idea, alcohol or not.

It is up to you as to how you handle them and which ones are worth paying for. I don’t mean to sound firm; that’s the retired teacher in me.

Good luck are young but intelligent.

I know at your age it probably seems like everyone drinks, but that really isn't the case. My son had a drinking problem and I watched him struggle with this issue. (Not because of Fibro, but because he needed to stay sober) I'm in my 50's now, and I've learned with age to be assertive. Because of your age group you will probably deal with this for many years unless you learn to stand up for yourself. Even if your friends don't understand your Fibromyalgia (which most don't) you need to take care of yourself and set limits with your friends. It's OK to say No, and it's also OK to seek out friends that don't drink, such as church groups. You don't have to stay out until 4 AM just because your friends do. You can tell them ahead of time that you'd love to spend time with them but because of your illness and meds you take, you need to go home earlier. I would have enjoyed my life a lot more if I had been more confident at your age and no allow my friends to be such an influence. Good Luck! If you have Fibromyalgia you will spend many years having to set limits with others, so you might as well start now!! ^_^

The dangers of drinking alcohol with having epilepsy.

You are playing with fire!

Thank you for the relationship advice I truly appreciate it. However here in the great north (Canada) our drinking age ranges from 18-19 in my province it's 18, so it's all legal.

I completely understand and personally I'd rather drink a small amount (it's expensive) and in 2 years I will be done college and in 3 out on my own so I won't have the money or the priority at that point. I got a great idea in a message from someone to ask for virgin drinks and the things I like are the ones with low alcohol content cause I like the flavours they add to milk or juices plus a virgin tequila sunrise is awesome (maybe an idea for you too :)! And I'm thinking I'm gonna have a cut off time myself, not too sure what time this cut off should be though, bars close at 2 and so that may be a good cut off time.

I have decided that I'll do the weak shots like apple pies (they are delicious) cause that's all I like and that weeknights midnight is the latest weekend 2am and therefore my boyfriend and I can still enjoy the company of the buds without me feeling ill. I do have a group of my buddies who like to only stay up till mignight or 1 unless we are playing poker so maybe going there a bit more often too. :)

Thanks Sandi, I appreciate it! :) I think I'm going to explain this all to my buds and let them know that if I need to leave early it's not me being rude or bowing out because I don't like them.

when I sobered up I always had a glass in my hand at parties, generally it was cranberry juice. Most people thought I was drinking red wine. At keggers I just told people that beer always seemed to make me wake up in corn fields. or some joke. I always got giddy when others did so only those close to me knew I was not drinking. I actully had more fun watching others drink them selfs stupid.