How much alcohol is too much?

My mum has steadily drank a little more every year. I’ve never been a big drinker and don’t like drinking much, so it’s hard for me to tell whether this is a problem or not..

She has at least half-to-one bottle of white wine every Friday (this is routine for ‘takeaway night’). A couple of glasses on Sat and Sun. And she’ll sometimes have a glass, or couple gin and tonics one night during the week. To me this seems like a lot. Or am I overreacting?

I also notice she’ll hide drinks sometimes if I’m around. For example, I went downstairs the other night and noticed her quickly moving something near the sofa. When she went to the kitchen later, I checked by the sofa and found a half glass of wine hidden behind the table.

I’ve no idea whether that’s because she feels ashamed at drinking so much, or if she just thinks I’m judgemental...

Any thoughts or advice?

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  • It's not the amounts that are the issue (although a whole bottle of wine in one evening is not a casual drink), but rather what effect it's having on her life. If it affects her ability to do what she needs to do, it's a problem. If she can't function without the drink, that's a problem. Hiding drinks from you isn't a good sign either.

    Have you tried talking with her without judging, but showing your concern and asking if there's anything you can do to help her? You may have found a problem before it got serious.

  • Thank you. I wouldn't say it affects her ability to do what she needs to do. She'll get visibly drunk maybe 2-3 times a month, like stumbling and slurring, but she's fine the next day. I don't usually live with her, so it's possible she drinks more when I'm not around. I'm young and have no siblings so I don't really feel comfortable confronting her... I just wish she wouldn't. It's the kind of thing where, it doesn't feel like a problem now.. but I can see it becoming one, one day

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