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Psychotherapy and Mental Health questions

Depression - Blacking Out

Wed, Jan 20th 2010

Hello Dr. Schwartz,

I was laid off from my full-time position as an investment banker almost one year ago. At first I was extremely happy, since I really disliked my job. I would go out on the weekends as I have done since college and get drunk with friends but without issue. On occasion I would blackout but would always end up in my bed. At the same time I was dealing with a cousin who was divorced a few years ago and has had a serious drinking problem where he was blacking out almost everytime that he drank. Also, he was only drinking beers,  no hard liquor. I wondered if there was something chemically going on in his brain that caused him to blackout so easily.

I moved to another city as I felt that my job situation and drinking with friends in New York was not the best environment for me to be in. I moved to Chicago to be closer to friends from college. As I looked for full-time opportunities, there was not much. As a result, I feel that I have been starting to get depressed. I have been drinking pretty excessively on the weekends, doing shots, and drinking a mix of rum, vodka and wine and any given weekend. Blackouts have been a more of a rule than an exception these days. However, even when I am not drinking that much...I find that my memory is still a bit hazy. Could the fact that I am feeling depressed affect how the alcohol is affecting my body and brain? Thank you very much for your help.

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