The stages of alcoholism are subtle. Alcoholism creeps up on you. It grabs you by stealth. You have to recognize the fact that you are drifting towards the wire. You have to be able to change your habits before you cross the wire, to avoid that bl**dy wire.
When you cross the wire you never come back. You have changed yourself permanently. All you are left with is the hourly, daily struggle to control it. This will go on for the rest of your life.
The key is to recognize the drift towards the wire and stop it. As you might have guessed the wire is the imaginary fence or line (call it what you want) that you cross when you have programmed your brain to seek the "reward" of the pleasure of alcohol. This transient pleasure happens when the booze starts to take effect on the brain and takes you away from the pain that you are suffering.
For Jane this pleasure is short lived because like all alcoholics she can't stop as she seeks more of that transient pleasure. Only the brain is being tricked because in drinking more booze you will quite soon fall asleep (especially if it is neat Vodka and you are a women as you have less body mass).
The first stage in alcoholism is then the beginning of the "brain-training" or conditioning process. This occurs when you drink too much too regularly. You are gradually training the brain that if you drink you get pleasure. Action and reward. Just like Pavlov's dog.
The second stage is when you lose your ability to choose when you drink. Your brain tells you and you do not have the will to disobey. That is the moment you cross the wire.
The third stage is the life long struggle thereafter to control your drinking. This is a very uncomfortable battle as you have to deny your self something that your brain tells you is pleasurable. That is hard to do and for very many too difficult. They remain practicing alcoholics.
The others are called recovering alcoholics. You are still an alcoholic and always will be.
Coming....stuff of pills and how control it.