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Unread 08-31-2009, 11:51 PM   #1
Saint
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Default To all - Hello

Greetings,

I am a 47 year old alcoholic - powerful words for me to write.

I have abused alcohol since my early 20's and the use of alcohol continued daily, whatever it took to get drunk. Through it all I knew I was drinking to much but I denied to myself that I was an alcoholic. Hey, after all my drinking I managed to stay employed and be productive not only at work but also @ home with my hobbies and improvements to the house and all! I can drink and still function!

These are the lies I told myself that I let prevent me from dealing with my addiction.

About 18 months ago I stopped drinking. Just stopped cold. I was proud of myself at the time. Sure it was hard, there were urges to have a drink but I never did. Every day I felt a little better, my attitude was improving and I felt better about myself. I had not had a drink for six months. I had this beat.

One day came and I had that urge to drink, that overwhelming all encompassing urge to pick up a bottle and have just one drink. I've had them before and managed to push them down. This time was different. I could not deny or control by urge, it broke me and I fell. I started drinking again, every day after work and when not working. Just like before. One drink was too much and 12 were not enough. I was ashamed at myself for not being able to control myself. You see I am a very independent person who likes to do for himself, so I go it alone. That is the path I have chosen.

As I sit here now it has been about five weeks since my last drink. I struggled for months before I finally stopped drinking. I realize now it would be presumptive for me to think that I will never drink again but that is my goal. I now realize it can take but a fraction of a second for my sobriety to be destroyed. It is humbling for me to admit that I cannot control alcohol, it instead controls me.

With that said I am starting to feel an inner strength and peace that I have not felt in quite some time. Basically I like myself a lot better when I don't drink.

I have read numerous posts here and they have given me the strength to post here, for that I thank you.

Regards,
Dave
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Unread 09-01-2009, 12:06 AM   #2
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Dave, Welcome aboard! I didn't get sober until I was 60. 42years of insanity. Oh I was able to retire. The union saved my job once do to drinking. I kept a nice roof over my head, nice cars. Plenty of toys.

Along the way I was divorced 3 times. 3 children living 2,500 miles away. No way to protect them because I was having too much fun.

I quit several times on my own. 7 months twice 4 months another. I always had a weak moment & went back out.

I have been sober for over 4 years now. I had to humble myself & use a support system. I work it one day at a time. I no longer have a drinking problem but I have a thinking problem that if not kept in check will lead me to drinking again.

Again welcome to the site & good luck in your soberity. R. Lee
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Unread 09-01-2009, 12:57 AM   #3
Saint
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Thank you for your words of encouragement. I was more nervous reading the first reply than I was with the original post!

I never would have imagined.

Regards
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Unread 09-01-2009, 07:06 AM   #4
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Default Hello Saint, WElcome to the Forum !

Hi Saint/Dave ,

Welcome to the forum and for sharing a bit of your story! I am glad that you have been reading the other posts and felt comfortable enough to post here. We are 100% annonymous and imo have a very supportive group here. There is also a wealth of information on this site, to the right you will see various links and I have posted some links that may be of interest to you.

Congrats to you on Herculean efforts to deal with your alcohol issues! I can imagine battling the urges has been difficult at times, cravings can be overwhelming but there is a solution in various types of support, counseling, and even medication assisted therapy. Coming here is a great start, maybe the next step could be exploring options to help you with your goals.

Finding help is not always a one size fits all deal, my suggestion is to keep an open mind, be willing to work and keep trying until you find the right fit so to speak.

What did you do in the past - you mentioned you just stopped cold turkey, how did you manage it for 18 months ? Do you have family, are they supportive ?
When we put the drink down, issues arise that we had previously numbed by alcohol, was that the case for you ? It is different for everyone, me- I had Issues that I had to deal with.
Then it can be a matter of exactly what you said- "it controls me " in a sense being powerless over the alcohol.
Maybe - We drink because that is what we have known for so long, because it is there, we need to reprogram our brains, our thinking etc...

I have to say this, because we do strive to educate, I know you said it has been 5 weeks since your last drink, but , please, please, in the future - be very careful when you stop cold turkey, alcohol withdrawals can be very dangerous.

Would you be willing to try some form of support? Does counseling, Medication Assisted Therapy, some type of 12 step program ( AA, SMART Recovery) Rational Recovery - or a combination, interest you ?

You have tried it without help - so maybe finding a support would help?
Let us know if you have any questions and there is the treatment locator also, just enter your zip and many options in your area are listed.

Congrats to you on taking the first steps to a new life without alcohol !!!

I hope you will be back and let us know how you are doing, need to vent, questions etc....

Again, welcome and glad you are here, take care, Carly : )
Links....
Treatment Options :
http://www.alcoholanswers.org/treatm...ns/default.cfm

FAQS
http://www.alcoholanswers.org/alcoho...-questions.cfm

Medication Assisted Therapy :

http://www.alcoholanswers.org/treatm...-treatment.cfm

Alcohol withdrawals :

http://www.alcoholanswers.org/alcoho...withdrawal.cfm
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Unread 09-01-2009, 09:05 AM   #5
Saint
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Carly,

Thank you for replying, but most importantly for taking the time to do so.

I do need to correct you on one thing. As much as I would like to take credit for being sober for 18 months I can't. Not yet anyways!

Fortunately for me I have not had any physical issues with withdrawal. There is the mental aspect though. There is a large void that needs to be filled, the void that was filled by alcohol consumption. I mentioned I was a functioning alcoholic. By that I mean I was capable of doing the things I wanted to do, doing them well and still making the time to get drunk, Every night. Granted,I suffered physically, with exhaustion at times,but that is what denial is all about.

I was in my early twenties when I started abusing alcohol, it's been so long I'm not sure what the trigger actually was. Thinking about it now alcohol was a refuge from social anxieties and lack of confidence in myself. As I got older alcohol became a good friend, was always there for me, became routine. Still later it became a love/hate relationship. I would love the high or the buzz but started to realize my addiction was costing me time, time that can never be made up.
I have one daughter, she is ten and the joy of my life.

I agree with you. I also think that at some point we drink and continue to drink because that is what we know, how we have programmed ourselves, how we see ourselves. It has been said it takes 27 days to create a new habit. I intend to make sobriety my new habit. But it isn't easy. Mostly it's the little things. I used to get drunk and mow the lawn and it always got done. Now my lawn needs to be mowed. Hell it now looks like an alcoholic lives here . I realize life without alcohol is about adjustments so I am being patient with myself.

Carly I managed to stay sober for six months on my own, failed, struggled to quit again, and have now been sober for over a month. This is my next step in recovery.

Regards
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Unread 09-01-2009, 02:27 PM   #6
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Hi Dave,

Sorry about my confusion on your time line, I was a bit bleary eyed this morning, lack of sleep- today was my child's first day of school ! I was more nervous than he was! I am happy to learn that you have wonderful daughter : ) They are a joy aren't they!
Congrats on the time that you have, whether it is a day or month, it is still a great accomplishment.

Maybe try not to look at your attempts as failures, but more like, Ok ,so doing it all alone has not worked , so now let's try something else.

We need to have what many call the "tools " of recovery. Without them, it can be like trying to build something without the tools or directions.
I can try to build it on my own, but it is much easier in the long run, to use the tools required and follow the directions. does that make sense?
And Yes, the breaking a habit concept, I agree, but for me, alcohol/substances were so much bigger to tackle, especially that Void you mentioned, that was rough, at first. I had to learn to fill the void with healthy, positive, activities and surround myself with supportive people.

Yes ! I understand about mowing the lawn, heck, towards the end, I had to have something in my system just to get out of bed in the mornings.
I am glad you did not reach that point and are adressing it now ! btw : The lawn can wait ; )

People find recovery through many different ways, if cravings are a tough issue, then maybe speaking with a professional about MAT ( medication assisted therapy ) some people have had great success with Vivitrol or Campral to name a few. All of the info is in the links and on this site.

Would you be open to any of the treatment suggestions I listed earlier? Not trying to push any of them on you, but I tried 6 ways to Sunday to do it my way , without help, and I always ended up back where I started, felt defeated, miserable, alone.

I am glad you are being patient with yourself, ideally a solid recovery plan could help you attain your goals and again, when you have help, it lessens the burden on you and optimizes your chances of long term recovery.

I hope this helps, if you have any questions, let us know. Hang in there, we are here to support you and help you find a plan that will work for you.
Take care, Carly : )
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Last edited by CarlyO; 09-01-2009 at 02:33 PM.. Reason: spelling
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Unread 09-01-2009, 04:57 PM   #7
Saint
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Carly,

Hello again.

I just finished helping my daughter with her Math homework. She finished her second day of school today(6th grade). So far I'm keeping up!

I understand I need to acquire the tools to assist in my recovery but I am still foolish enough to think I can do it alone. Call me stubborn if you would like(I am), or anything else. You won't hurt my feelings. I will search out the knowledge and resources I feel I need which has brought me here. I don't mean to sound dissrespectful, that is not my intent. I have read many of your posts and understand you have significant life experiences to learn from. With that said I am not ready for meetings or individual counseling. I intend on learning how and this forum is a step in that direction. I am mindful of the significant damage alcohol has had on some of the posters here and respect the struggles and obstacles they have overcome to become and stay sober. They have survived what appear to be insurmountable odds yet they have come out ahead.

Cravings have not been an issue so far. It is good to know there is medication available should that be an issue for me.

The last time I stopped drinking I thought I had control of the situation. I dealt with my addiction on a day by day basis but I never thought of the future. That's why I think I relapsed .

The other day I imagined myself sober for 5 years and I got nervous inside. Could I do it? Did I want to do it? I believe my answers to both those questions are Yes I Can! I intend to do it one day at a time.

Even though I have been sober for a short amount of time I feel at peace withmyself now. Not sure why, and not sure I have the right but for now I am in a good place.

I'll talk to you soon...... It's time to mow the lawn!

Thank you,
Dave
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Unread 09-01-2009, 05:41 PM   #8
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Hi Dave ,

Just do what you need to for now, recovery is a process. Just know we are here for you, Ok ?
Good luck with the lawn ; )

Ack ! 5th Grade homework ! Congrats on that ! I hope I remember all those things I learned back in the day. Thank goodness for the internet !

Take care, Carly : )
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Unread 09-02-2009, 12:28 AM   #9
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Dave-
Hi,I'm a moderator here, and in recovery myself for over four years. I tend to think most people in recovery look back and can tell you exactly what fueled their addictions-that social anxiety, I had that too- now I am taking medication for it and doing very well.Self-medicating is a normal act but often has very negative consequences because we are not professionals.We only know what works in the moment and do not think about the aftermath.It goes with the territory.
Because we live in our sickness mostly in isolation, we have a tendency to assume we can get well on our own too.That has made many people end up right back at the starting gate.If you are not armed with the necessary information and support, how can you fight? Having people around who have been where you are is vital to your recovery.They see what your eyes refuse to see and could save you quite abruptly.We are of the same cloth- we hurt, we use, and we repeat. That is the sickness in a nutshell,insanity at it's best. I used to think that I was going to be the one to prove that I could go against the grain and do it on my own too.What followed was the worst relapse of my life and I contemplated ending it all together.The pain would never go away, and all I did was create more by what I was doing in my addiction.I tried the meetings, the therapy- whatever! It almost cost me my life. Don't be so quick to close the door on reaching out to someone.
Being here is a great start, it shows you want to get well.I know nobody can make you do anything, but there is such an amazing
world out there, it just takes a few steps.Life without active addiction has been everything I ever wished for.Some days are a struggle but I know it is just momentary- it does get better!
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Unread 09-02-2009, 09:03 AM   #10
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Magda,

Hi - Well what can I say? You are right of course. I figure I got myself into this by myself therefore I am going to find my way out. I'm not closing the door on reaching out to someone, I don't feel I need it right now. You're probably sitting there thinking how I'm being incredibly naive, stupid, hardheaded and you are right. Did I mention stubborn!

I realize I've just started down the path to sobriety, taken the first few steps, steps that were incredibly hard for me. I also realize that I can very easily fall off that path and fall in a pile of manure. It scares me when I hear of people that have been sober for long lengths of time and then start drinking again. I can't imagine the pain that must cause them to feel.
I am humbled by the control alcohol has over me, it is something I had a hard time admitting to myself and I know it always will control me if I let it. I am just enjoying my small victory by taking my first steps on the journey I will be on until I take my last breath.

Magda I am happy withmyself at the moment. Yes there have been moments when I wanted to drink. After an argument with my wife( I'll show you) but I recognized the situation for what it was and the moment passed.

I don't presume to know it all. Reading the posts here give me an insight into how insideous and destructive the disease can be. I feel deeply for those people here who have faced far greater personal struggles than I and are finding there way out.

It will be one day at a time for me. One day, every day. Please be patient with me.

Regards,
Dave
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Unread 09-02-2009, 11:31 AM   #11
Magda
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After four years of recovery, when I am alone and thinking- what if I relapsed now? I get so freaked out by it.It really scares me, and I know it is the last thing I ever want to experience.As long as I keep working at it, I will be fine. For me, it is lack of communication that starts the cycle. I have to talk or I will start to fall back.Isolation has always been my weakness.It is difficult for me to trust others, and I know that the problem began because I wanted to trust people that were not trustworthy.Does that make sense? I complained about how jaded my friends were, but the quality of those I had close to me was quite tainted.A revelation that came in time!
You are experiencing revelations of your own, and that is good.Embrace your comfort with self right now.Every day you face without picking up that first drink- you become more of a miracle.
Also- I wanted to tell you that there are many different paths to get where you want to be. The choice is completely yours, and I have chosen alternatives to 12 step recovery.I have a great respect for AA/NA, but have found other means that work very well in my life! DO what works for you. It is so good to see you here and working on yourself.Keep posting!
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Unread 09-02-2009, 12:23 PM   #12
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Magda,

I'm right there with you on the trust issue. I also find it difficult to just trust people outright. For me trust with someone is something that is earned over time and is so easily destroyed. It sounds cold. It's not that I initially distrust someone. It's seems for me that I trust people, and over time, based on experiences, I come to find out whether people are trustworthy. I always think about what Ronald Reagan said about nuclear arm negotiations with the Russians, "Trust but verify".

I believe the way I feel regarding trust is based on all the little lies I have told myself and others that enabled me to continue my abuse of alcohol. My denial of my behaviors. How can you trust someone else if you can't be honest, and act honestly yourself! Sounds easy, most things are. The devil is in the details.

Thanks for your support.

But most of all congratulations on your 4 years of sobriety.

Regards,
Dave

Last edited by Saint; 09-02-2009 at 12:28 PM.. Reason: grammar, spelling
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Unread 09-02-2009, 08:31 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint View Post
Thank you for your words of encouragement. I was more nervous reading the first reply than I was with the original post!

I never would have imagined.

Regards
You are welcome Dave. Your story is so much like mine "the functioning alcoholic." I tried stopping several times only to go back. I finaly gave in & sought out a support group. One alcoholic helping another. I have to give away what was so freely given to me.

As others have said there are other ways of staying sober than a support group. I believe that too. Do what works for you. Just don't stop trying.

You are in a good place here. Good luck, R. Lee
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Unread 09-03-2009, 12:42 PM   #14
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Saint,
The back and forth of these posts have made good reading. A good thread. Should be helpful to others who come across it looking for inspiration and advice. Thanks for initiating this thread. I believe you see where people are coming from regarding the recovery community, networking, counseling and similar areas. And I also support you in your own efforts to remain sober. Your recovery is your life and you know better than anyone what you are comfortable with. Only you can make these choices. When you drink you bail on that process. But it does not change the fact it is your intimate relationship.

When I hear someone mention the "void" that is attributed to alcohol abuse, I feel I need to point out the "void" is not about emptiness. The fact it is identified as present actually should say it is more of a fullness. It is full of you, the one identifying it. It appears empty because it is dark. There is a need to shed light in that area, so to speak, these are parts of us that are dying to be expressed and eventually resolved. It is in a recovery community (AA, RR, counseling, what have you.) that supports us in this very intimate and sometimes painful ongoing process. Still, you certainly undertake this process, shedding light in the shadows, as is apparent in your engaging this board.
Here you are part of a community.

Glad to have you with us.
All the best
Jerry
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Unread 09-03-2009, 01:34 PM   #15
Saint
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Jerry,

I feel fortunate to be here and amongst people who care and give so freely of themselves.

Thank you

Regards,
Dave
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Unread 09-05-2009, 12:45 PM   #16
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Hi Saint,

Just saying hi, hope all is going well.

I posted a "funny " on OT for ya, I will go back through my old emails and try to find "board appropriate " humor not an easy task sometimes ; )

I usually go to the OT forum on the opiate forum, but it would be great if members would utilize OT to talk about topics that interest them.

Anyway, have a great holiday weekend ! Take care, Carly : )
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Unread 09-21-2009, 09:22 AM   #17
Saint
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To all,

Two weekends ago I attended a reunion of some of my closest friends. We all used to hang out together and party. This was when we were in our early to mid twenties so of course alcohol was a major player in all our fun and games. It was also the beginning years of what would turn out to become my intimate relationship with alcohol.

I was eager to see old friends but also anxious. Would I be actually be able to get together with this group and not consume alcohol? Am I setting myself up for failure? Years ago the question to drink would never have entered my mind and now I was left wondering if I could pull it off. What was I getting myself into?

Days before the reunion I was committed to not drinking. No way, not gonna happen. But then the thoughts start; maybe I could have one, maybe two beers at the most. I'll be fine. Sure you will, you stupid bastard. (This is me talking to myself, sorry for the language).

Anyways we're all sitting around the table and the waitress arrives to take the drink order. Everybody is ordering their drink of choice (alcohol of course) and now it's my turn, eyes upon me, my anxiety building as I tell the waitress "nothing for me, I'm good". Perhaps it was just me but I thought I caught a couple of raised eyebrows, or a certian tilt of the head. Regardless, I survived round one.

That night stories and events were remembered, friendships rekindled, and most importantly, laughs were had by all. The moral of the story: Yes you can have a good time and stay sober. What a liberating experience.

Regards
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Unread 09-21-2009, 12:59 PM   #18
R. Lee
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One day at a time.
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Unread 09-21-2009, 01:12 PM   #19
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Anyone can carry his burden, however hard, until nightfall. Anyone can do his work, however hard, for one day. Anyone can live sweetly, patiently, lovingly, purely, till the sun goes down. And this is all life really means. ~Robert Louis Stevenson

Saint,

Good work. =)

-Idol
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Unread 09-21-2009, 01:40 PM   #20
Saint
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Quote:
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One day at a time.
R. Lee,

Baby steps, as I like to visualize them, teetering and tottering, one day at a time.

Regards
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Unread 09-21-2009, 01:42 PM   #21
Saint
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Quote:
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One day at a time.
R. Lee,

Baby steps, as I like to visualize them, teetering and tottering, one day at a time.

Well, off to my daughters X cross country meet. It's a beautiful sunny afternoon.

Regards
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Unread 09-21-2009, 02:27 PM   #22
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Hi Saint - Congrats for facing that hurdle and not drinking ! keep moving forward, take care, Carly : )
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Unread 09-26-2009, 08:58 PM   #23
Saint
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It was a tough week. I 've been extremely tired the last two weeks, this week not as bad as last. Just have no desire to get anything done. No desire to drink either so all is not lost. Feeling mildly depressed??? Woke up today and things are feel a little better. We'll see how tomorrow goes.

Regards
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Unread 09-26-2009, 09:11 PM   #24
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Hi Saint,
I am glad you do not have a desire to drink - that is progress yes? Sometimes we hit plateaus and we have to work a bit harder to get through it. Let us know if we can do anything and keep talking about - maybe that will help. The important thing is that you have not had a drink !
Hang in there and I hope that you are feeling better soon !
Take care, Carly : )
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Unread 09-27-2009, 09:35 AM   #25
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Came across something I thought worthwhile - "Comfort zones can keep us safe, but they can also keep us from moving forward."

Food for thought.

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Unread 09-27-2009, 12:18 PM   #26
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Saint, Keep doing what you are doing it seems to be working. Keep us posted. R. Lee
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Unread 09-27-2009, 01:43 PM   #27
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Dear Saint-

Have you had an opportunity to read about the medications involved in Alcohol treatment? I was just curious if you were comfortable with the option because of the possibilities these medications present to you? Many times, it is something that can be done discreetly in a physician's office so it may be worth considering.I know that you have been holding your own lately, but Alcamprosate and Naltrexone reduce cravings, are non-addictive, and they both do other things that are helpful in keeping the balance in your life.
It is very good to have many tools in your toolbox when dealing with all the facets of alcohol in your life.As I learn more about addiction, I believe the more knowledge and support, the better.You can never have too much of a safety net! Wishing you a happy day!
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Unread 09-27-2009, 08:21 PM   #28
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R Lee

Hi - Thanks for the support, it's appreciated.

I've seen you post about people being "dry drunks". I was hopeful you could elaborate on the topic, provide some insight for someone like(including) myself.

Regards

Last edited by Saint; 09-27-2009 at 08:29 PM..
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Unread 09-27-2009, 08:54 PM   #29
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Saint, A dry drunk is a term used when someone quits drinking only & continues to live the kind of life they lived before. They can gain another resentment about not being able to drink like normal people. This would have been how I probably would have acted.

I was a drunk until I was 60. I lived a me. me life. I always put my wants 1s before family & friends.




When I quit drinking I decided to use a support group. I thought I was just quitting drinking. I stayed sober long enough to learn that drinking was just a symptom of my problem. My problem was a thinking problem.

If I don't live my life diffrent now not drinking. I will go back to my old ways. I no longer want to be a lier, cheat & a theif along with may other chatacter defects.

Today I still deal with anger, resentments. When I mess up I make my amends & move on. I don't have to be perfect but I have to be aware of my mistakes & work on them.

Saint anything I post is just a sugestion on my part on how I stay sober. Thanks for asking. R. Lee
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Unread 09-27-2009, 10:08 PM   #30
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R.Lee,

Yes, you make perfect sense - thank you.

Thanks to this site and individuals such as yourself you have made me aware that I drank to get away from my problems or issues instead of dealing with them.

Now that I've stopped drinking I know I need to work on myself. I have always tried to be self aware but it's amazing how blind you can be to events in your life when alcohol is controlling your life. I was thinking earlier this week how my drinking has impacted my relationship with my wife. How I "scheduled my drinking" at the expense of our relationship. I realize now the problem lies with me and I'm the one that needs to change.

R. Lee, thanks.

Regards
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Unread 09-27-2009, 10:38 PM   #31
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Saint, Keep on doing what you are doing.
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Unread 09-27-2009, 10:49 PM   #32
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Magda,

Today has been better, thanks.

I've heard of Naltrexone from posts here but I haven't had any cravings yet so I never researched further. I will now.

I can still recall the craving I had when I relapsed in the past after six months of being clean. I am still amazed how strong the craving was and how fast it came on. I've tried to recall if there was any specific trigger but I can't. I do remember having a general sense of agitation, although no specific reason.

I'll be honest here, not that I've been dishonest in the past : ).
When you mentioned the physician's office I immediately thought, no way, I don't want him to know (that I have a drinking problem). My rationale being if I told him that I have a drinking problem that would mean I had not been totally honest with him in the past. How could he trust me?

Of course I realize how incredibly stupid I am for thinking that. The statement above does speak volumes though doesn't it?

I have been thinking about my next step, perhaps counseling but I'm not ready yet.

Magda, thanks for adding some tools to my toolbox. I can never have enough(tools)!

Wishing you the best.

Regards
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Unread 09-28-2009, 11:19 AM   #33
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Saint, Has your doctor ever asked how much you drink? They usaully ask in the questioner they have you fill out. Doctor's say that most of their patients admit to only about half the true amount if someone is a problem drinker.

I would tell them the truth. Only 1 doctor told me I better watch what I was drinking or stop. I had the pleasure to see him in the hospital visiting someone. I told him he was the only doctor that had told me I drank too much. It stuck in my head & did contribute to my quitting drinking.

I think you have to level with him which you post you allready know you need to do. Part of recovery is honesty. Good luck on your decision. R. Lee
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Unread 09-29-2009, 01:47 PM   #34
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Hi Saint,

Hope you are off to a good week. You can always see a doctor who specializes in addiction, but regardless, I am sure your regular physician will be pleased that you are taking your alcohol issues seriously should you want to pursue medication options for alcohol cravings.
It is true, what you mentioned about triggers. They are sneaky, in fact sometimes , the disease lies in wait for that perfect moment, and then Bam. For others it could be a gradual process towards relapse, it has been said something like ...if you are not moving forward then your are heading towards that next drink.
Be vigilante, think about what your process has been in the past and what you can do and are doing to change it. Have a great week !
Take care, Carly : )
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Unread 10-01-2009, 07:56 AM   #35
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Dear Saint-
You are most welcome, one can never have too many tools when it comes to recovery. You realizing there was reason to re-think your feelings about telling your doctor means you are getting better, but do not ever think it is "stupid". You are growing and learning positive new ways to handle life, and that is quite intelligent.
One thing your doctor should know is that people suffering from alcoholism work very hard to conceal their disease until they become willing to get help.I think he/she would commend you for doing just that!
When you do see a counselor, they may have some referrals for doctors specializing in addiction medicine- just in case your doctor is unable to help.I do think at least telling your doctor is warranted because of medical reasons though. You never know how it may affect future treatment.
Cravings are sneaky little buggers.After four years I still have cravings for my DOC, I often wonder if they will be with me forever.I do feel confident that I have a solid enough set of cues to deal with them, and they are nowhere near as strong as they used to be.Just talking about them with people that understand makes a world of difference.
You are off to a great start, keep up the good work!
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Unread 10-02-2009, 12:52 AM   #36
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Magda,

Hello, how are you today? I hope all is well.

You are right of course . ‘Stupid’ was a poor choice for a word. I think now ‘irrational ‘or ‘illogical’ would have been a better choice. It is the behavior of which I speak. I have always known and have been aware that I should be honest with my doctor regarding my addiction. It is the feeling of shame of the addiction that has stopped me from being honest with my doctor.

I have lived with the awareness for years that I adjusted my life for alcohol. The choices that I made on a daily basis so I could get my fix. The adjustments and planning I made every day centered around my drinking. I was aware for a long time that I was living a lie, that I was being dishonest with myself and others and that alcohol controlled me. The shame and dishonesty led to guilt. I did my best to push those feelings aside but I knew they were there. They chipped away at my self esteem and my feelings of self worth. I was aware of my insidious relationship with alcohol and yet I chose it as King over all others.

It is that awareness that haunts me.

Fortunately I am moving forward and feeling positive. I look to the past so I can prepare for the future. Tomorrow is a brand new day full of opportunity.

Wishing you all the best.

Regards
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Unread 10-02-2009, 06:53 PM   #37
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Saint-
I am good, hope you are too.Shame is an awful feeling.I know it well.The hardest thing for me with shame was the emotional neglect my daughter went through because of my addiction.We have talked about it many times, and she says she does not remember anything bad.I hope that is true, but I think she may fear being totally honest with me. I was so wrapped up in resentment over my life that I used to numb myself, but I lost out on very precious one in a lifetime moments with her.It has been one of the hardest obstacles in my recovery-forgiving myself for what I did wrong with her.It is a work in progress, and has gotten better.
You know, I am sure alcohol was King because it never talked back,never gave you dirty looks, was always around, and kept you from others that worked your nerves.Who wouldn't want that? Be gentle with yourself, you are healing and you will be just fine!

-Mags
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Unread 10-02-2009, 09:17 PM   #38
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Magda,

Yes, you and I have lost out on once in a life time moments but you, and every one of us here have an opportunity to learn from the mistakes, the behaviors of our past. They can continue to exist as mistakes only if nothing new is learned. They are truly learning opportunities because we now know what did not work and we have an opportunity to improve, to apply our new found wisdom and continue to grow if we will only allow ourselves. We will cherish the new lifetime moments we create because we truly understand how easily they can be lost.

When I post here I become saddened by thoughts of the time I have lost. I grieve for that lost time but am thankful I have another opportunity.

For example.........
My daughter has taken up cross - country racing, her first year. Every race she has improved on her time and placing. Her goal this race (sheÂ’s 11!) was to finish ahead of one of her teammates who had consistently placed ahead of her all year. She not only placed ahead of this teammate but another teammate who was also a strong runner. Her coach and other parents approached her and recognized her for running an outstanding race. She graciously accepted their praise but I saw a smile slowly spread across her face. I was extremely proud of her because she succeeded at achieving her goal. A goal that seemed unattainable but was achieved through her hard work and perseverance.

I will forever cherish that moment.

Regards
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Unread 10-03-2009, 09:57 PM   #39
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Wow, congrats on your daughter's success. It feels so wonderful when my kid does well in something- she is a pretty decent artist, her father and I both were art students,glad it rubbed off! Being proud is so amazing.
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Unread 10-04-2009, 11:32 AM   #40
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Hi,

I just finished a book by Abraham J. Twerski, M.D. , "Addictive Thinking". It provides a short but concise look into the thoughts and behaviors of addicts. Less than 150 pages with excerpts from dialogues with his patients the book provides some real life examples of addictive thinking. The book would be useful to both the addict and family members, friends of an addict, etc. I identified with many of the examples in the book.

R.Lee - Thanks. I picked the book up because of what you post; "I don't have a drinking problem I have a thinking problem". It's referred to as "stinking thinking" in this book.

Regards
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Unread 10-04-2009, 05:46 PM   #41
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Saint, You are welcome. My stinking got me in trouble this last week. I have made personal amends & learned from my actions. I must now turn it over & move on w/o resentments.
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Unread 10-26-2009, 08:37 AM   #42
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Good Morning,

Just got home from working last night - had my first mild craving/ yearning for a drink. Damn, I was hoping it wouldn't come.

I'm going to get some rest.


Regards
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Unread 10-26-2009, 02:14 PM   #43
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Hi Saint,

Just checking on you. Cravings are normal, think it through, can you pinpoint the circumstances that led to it ? I hope you made it through it - let us know when you get a chance. We're here for you, take care, Carly
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Unread 10-26-2009, 05:03 PM   #44
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Good Afternoon,

Hi - I got some rest, feeling much better. When I posted this morning I said I wanted a drink but it seemed much more than that. Thinking now I don't think I wanted a drink so much as I wanted to get trashed for lack of a better word. It's not that I conciously wanted to get trashed. It seems like subconciously I was being pulled in that direction.

I feel as though it's been relatively easy for me to not drink until this A.M. Today was the first real 'pull' I've felt to consume alcohol. It caught me off guard which I didn't like, nor did I like the feeling of wanting to consume.

Carly you asked about the circumstances prior. Nothing immediate stands out. No significant work pressures or issues at home.

BUT

My wife and I went out for dinner two weekends ago and it came time to order drinks. My wife and I had waters with our meals. I recall looking at the other diners, enjoying a drink with their meals, and wishing I could be normal and be able to enjoy one glass of wine with my meal.

If anything I think I was being complacent and lost my fear of relapse. I recall reading somewhere it is better to have a small fear of relapsing than no fear at all. How true!


Regards & Thank You All


P.S. My sobriety remains intact. One day at a time, right R.Lee?
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Unread 10-26-2009, 07:52 PM   #45
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Saint, 1 day at a time works for me. You thought it through. Alcohol is cunning, baffling & powerful. It will stike you when you least expect it. I had to stay out of places that served alcohol for quite a while before I felt safe. I still get uncomfortable sometime because it can look attractive. Good job Saint not only not drinking but sharing it with us alcoholics. You help keep me sober. I will never be cured. R. Lee
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Unread 10-26-2009, 10:06 PM   #46
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R.Lee

Yes the urge did seem to strike out of nowhere.

I am not a sailor but when I read your post I thought of a rogue wave on the ocean striking out of nowhere. Smooth sailing one minute and then all hell breaks loose. The rogue wave being formed by powerful forces unseen, gaining strength beneath the surface and then striking, even though the sun is shining.

Can't believe I just wrote that!

Thank you - I appreciate your support

Regards
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Unread 10-27-2009, 09:11 PM   #47
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Hi Saint ,

I like the Rogue Wave metaphor - wow - it is so relevant to urges and cravings. It sounds like the other weekend, maybe you were romanticizing the ritual of drink ? When that happens, I try to think it through, what will happen next ... maybe this was a wake up call, that that beast lies in wait?

You had mentioned a possibility of an AD ? Do you think talking with a doctor about it would help ?

I am just so proud that you made it through, sometimes I have held on a minute, an hour at a time. Way to go Saint !!!! : ) : ) : )

Keep us posted and take care, Carly
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Unread 10-27-2009, 10:00 PM   #48
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Yes Saint you did write that! What a metaphor. It sure describes how alcohol can come up & grab you out of nowhere. Best of luck, R. Lee
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Unread 10-28-2009, 01:28 AM   #49
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Hello,

Carly, yes "Romanticizing the ritual of the drink". That certainly sums up my feelings. Alcohol is so ingrained in our culture that I took it for granted until I gave it up. I get the visual picture of a couple dining, lights low, the glass of red wine reflected by the candle light. That is what "normal" is for people that do not have alcohol depency issues. I was feeling sorry for myself for no longer being "normal" as defined above. Of course a person cannot be defined by one meal alone!

The TV ads for alcohol and beer that never seemed to have an impact on me suddenly started too. Yes the beast was definitely in wait! Watching and waiting for it's opportunity to strike.

I'd like to post more but it is getting late.

R.Lee, Carly - Thank you so much for your advice and words of encouragement.

Regards
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Unread 10-28-2009, 03:13 PM   #50
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Saint, 1 more day behind you. Keep checking in. The Bud Light wheat commercial seems to attract me. It is always waiting. R. Lee
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