It is quite easy to drown in it, but mostly we thrash or tread water.
A while back I had a patient in addiction recovery who was an alcoholic. A heavy drinker throughout his life, he'd built a business, spending decades developing and expanding this business until he retired and sold it. He was a pleasant fellow whose only controversy during his recovery was his efforts to buy things for other patients who were in need. He'd sold his business, which is a fairly well known apparel company, for almost a billion dollars.
After he retired he didn't know what to do with himself, and so he would go to the bar earlier and earlier every day. He'd drink from the time the bar open to when it was closed. His wife was upset at him and demanded that he stop or she was leaving him. She wanted something more out of their retirement beyond watching him pickle himself.
One of the things we do for each other is point out what the other has missed. Sometimes what you say may seem so obvious that…