What the Hell is Happening Here? Also, I Drink Too Much.

Dear Readers:

As I grow my blog and brand, I also must widen my appeal beyond those seeking to chortle at my snarky-yet-spot-on advice. You will begin to notice a change in the content here as I offer more opinion pieces on various topics about which I am passionate, including divorce reform, personal responsibility, self-improvement, and gender equality.

The new direction is not solely for brand expansion but also because I have spent so much time writing the blog that I have shamefully shirked on my book-writing duties.  My deadline is fast approaching so several hours of my day must be focused on that project.  

You will love this book! How to Get Divorced Without Losing Your Kids, Your Money and Your Mind: a Holistic and Practical Guide to Marital Dissolution and Family Reorganization is going to be poignant, funny, and most important: this book will shed light on how the divorce sausage is made and what you can do to avoid being ground to bits.

Sample Chapters include:

  • The Bulldog Lawyer: Why Hiring an Attack Dog for Counsel Puts You, Your Kids and Your Future at Risk.
  • Managing Lawyers: How to Keep Your Attorney in Line and Ensure You Aren’t Getting Screwed by Sketchy Billing Practices.
  • Talking to the Kids: A Primer on What to Do and What NOT To Do.
  • Involving Friends and Family in Your Drama: Why Making and Taking Sides Hurts Everyone
  • Moving On: Living an Independent, Productive and Happy Life After Divorce.

Personal stories will be featured in each chapter, so if any of you have a story to share please email me at robin@robindescamp.com.  I can use your material anonymously so don’t be shy: step right up!  

I am especially interested in horror stories about that certain type of divorce lawyer – you know the one.  

Personified here in Portland by the Divorce Lawyer Who Shall Not Be Named, these practitioners make an already challenging process much more difficult as they use their insatiable greed to fill their coffers while emptying those of their clients and leaving in their wake anger and distrust that lives on long after the divorce has been finalized.  

Fridays will still be devoted to the “Ask DesCamp” questions from readers and I will do shorter versions as often as I can.  Many of you tell me I go on too long so here is today’s abbreviated column.  Please give me feedback in the comments.

Dear Robin:

I made a job change almost a year ago from a fairly laid-back workplace to an intense, often chaotic one.  I have never been much of a drinker, especially during the week, but over the past few months I’ve noticed I’m having a cocktail or two when I get home from work to wind down from a crazy day.  

Should I be worried?


Dear Ben:

I appreciate your letter, although coming to me for advice on this topic is rather like going to Oscar Pistorius for advice on gun safety or Bill Cosby on creative (and legal) ways to pick up women.  

I used to buy wine based upon varietal, region, age, and of course, price.  I considered myself a bit of a connoisseur, to tell you the truth.  

Now I just buy the ones with the screw cap so I can open them more quickly.


Let’s talk about you.  I think noticing changes in your drinking habits and questioning them is a healthy exercise.  My questions back to you are these:

  • Is this new cocktail hour affecting your personal life in a negative way?  For example, are you drunk-dialing ex-girlfriends or posting things on Facebook that you really ought not?  Have you set your children on fire yet?
  • Are you hungover in the morning?  Like, “I need greasy food” hungover?  
  • Has your work been impacted?  Do you miss meetings because you can’t find your pants after a night of fun?
  • Do you notice any changes in your health since you amped up the party?  How’s the old Giggle Stick working these days?
  • Have you incurred any legal difficulties due to drinking such as a DUI or having to explain to a police officer, “she really did look 18?”

You astutely noticed that your burgeoning Happy Hour is connected to your new and stressful job, so my advice is that you spend time identifying ways in which your job is causing you stress and then work towards solutions to minimize the impact your challenging employment has on the rest of your life, including how much you drink.

If your workplace is not one that can be tamed and your drinking habits continue to escalate, consider whether you’d be happier and healthier in a calmer environment.

I’ve got a little test for you; one that I did recently.  

White wine is my Achilles Heel and I needed to peel off a few pounds for a photo shoot in Miami, so I eliminated it from my daily routine (even breakfast!) both to lose a little weight and to check in on my relationship with alcohol.  I’d like us to remain friendly but I’m not interested in a long-term monogamous relationship with booze.

Wine and I parted ways for several weeks and I found out two things:

  1. Wine is really, really fattening.  I changed nothing else about my diet or exercise routine and dropped a full size, almost two.
  2. I am not so dependent upon wine that we can’t part ways from time to time.  That’s good to know.

Of course, I did take up a torrid affair with Mr. Vodka, but we only hang out until dinner starts so that’s totally fine. Nothing to see here – move along!

Ben, take a week off from your cocktail routine.  If you have no problem doing that, I think you’re ok.  If you struggle with cutting back, call your doctor and make an appointment with him or her to discuss.  After that, call me so we can set up a cocktail hour!



This Post Has One Comment

  1. Mike

    Great advice, especially on the wine issue. I’m doing the same (cutting it out altogether) for a couple weeks to see if I get the same results. ‘Course the fact that I’m also going vegetarian and no-carb can’t hurt, either.

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