What It’s Like to Give In to a Craving

(And how to prevent it.)

Benya Clark
Exploring Sobriety

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This essay originally appeared in the Exploring Sobriety newsletter.

A man drives a car.
Photo by Viktor Bystrov on Unsplash

In last week’s newsletter (“Why Is It So Hard to Quit Drinking?”), I wrote about what it feels like to have a craving for alcohol. This week is something of a follow-up, in which my goal is to describe what it’s like to give in to those cravings.

Sadly, this is a topic in which I have all too much expertise.

I’m very proud to have now been sober for over six years without a relapse, but my recovery didn’t always go so smoothly. I truly lost count of the number of times that I swore to myself that I was quitting alcohol for good, only to end up giving in to a craving the very next day.

The reason I’m focusing on this topic this week is that I think that by reflecting on what it’s like to give in to a craving, it can become easier to resist them. I’ve always believed that the more time we spend honestly trying to understand our addictions, the better we will do in recovery.

A Breaking Dam

Whenever I tried to quit drinking, I experienced nearly constant cravings for the first few weeks (or more often the first day or two, because I rarely lasted longer than that.)

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Benya Clark
Exploring Sobriety

I’m a lawyer turned writer from North Carolina. I write about sobriety, mental health, and more. Subscribe to my weekly newsletter at exploringsobriety.com.