What is risky drinking behaviour?
Drinking more than five standard drinks in single session is considered to be risky drinking. Risky drinking behaviour increases the risk of accidents, and the risk of developing chronic disease.
Who is risky drinking?
Certain groups in Australia have been shown to drink at higher rates than others. Lesbian, bisexual and queer (LBQ) women have been shown to be one of those groups.
Why are some LBQ women drinking too much?
There are several reasons why some LBQ women are drinking at higher rates than heterosexual women. They might use alcohol to cope with the stress of minority discrimination, or a sense of isolation. Some LBQ women said they started drinking when they were coming out and drinking too much became a habit. Research has also shown that drinking to get drunk is more normalised within LBQ women’s communities.
Why ‘Couldn’t Have Done That With A Hangover’?
Most women we spoke with said the dreaded hangover was often a barrier to achieving their goals. The effects of a hangover can include, headache, nausea, fatigue and anxiety – and sometimes these symptoms can be debilitating. Those we spoke with said they didn't necessarily want to give up drinking, but they did want to reduce the amount they drank so that the next day wasn’t a write off.
Why feature sporting clubs?
We work with LBQ women from all walks of life. This time around we collaborated with women from local sporting clubs such as the Fitzroy Football Club, Darebin Falcons, The Clams Water Ballet Squad, Victorian Roller Derby League and Queer Sporting Alliance. Many LBQ women engage in local sports, either as a participant or a supporter, and these local sporting clubs have been pioneers in tackling inclusion in sports for women and creating safe places where LBQ women can not only play sport but connect with community as well. The women involved in this campaign are passionate about their communities, and supporting LBQ women to become the best they can be.
Is it about abstinence?
For some it is and for others it is about being mindful of our drinking behaviours and being honest with ourselves. Is your drinking holding you back from doing what you want to do with your life? Is it affecting your mental health? Is it affecting your relationships?
I’m too embarrassed to talk about it?
Once you reach out, you’ll be surprised by how many people are going through exactly what you are. If you don’t want to reach out to a friend or family member, there are online support groups where you can remain anonymous while chatting with a trained counsellor.
How can we combat risky drinking?
This can be a difficult process, especially if those habits have been in place for years or in many cases, decades. Whether it’s about trying non-alcoholic beer and wine or joining a support group, there are plenty of strategies to help you reduce your drinking. Check out more strategies here