I do totally buy into the "once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic" thing though. Maybe replace the word "alcoholic" with "addict" but I definitely feel like there's truth to it. Most folks can stop themselves after 2 or 3 drinks. Once they start to feel it, they're satisfied and they stop. They might be able to just have 1 drink with dinner. And while this obviously isn't *impossible* for folks like you and me, it's still something of a foreign concept and considerably more difficult (would take way more willpower than it would for the average person). It also affects behavior that has nothing to do with drugs or alcohol- weren't we recently talking about the rush we get from "copping" at our local record store?
Maybe there is partly an ulterior motive behind the whole "always an alcoholic" stuff to get people to "KEEP COMING BACK- IT WORKS". I wouldn't deny that. But I think it can be a slippery slope if you start believing that you're "recovered". That makes it easy to convince yourself that you've learned how to drink responsibly. I heard stories in AA about people who had decades of sobriety and suddenly decided they could use their AA tricks to drink like a "normie" and wound up killing themselves one way or the other. The main one I remember was a guy who just fell on the street and hit his head and that was it (I came close to doing the same thing in my drinking days so it really hit home).
But this is obviously very personal so if the way you're currently defining yourself and your addiction is keeping you sober, you might has well stick with it. Just be careful, brahski