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|09-09-2009, 07:57 PM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jul 2009
Why I am Powerless
If I take one sip of alcohol, I am powerless over alcohol because:
1) I have lost most of my savings
2) I have diminished my ability to hold down a job
3) I have permanent scars
4) I have sprained my ankle
5) I have lost tons of money on medical bills
6) I have been kicked out of a bar and sent home
7) I have been unable to be in a relationship for over a decade because I have been in one with alcohol
8) I have almost jumped into the sea on Thanksgiving after a ten hour binge
9) I have lost friends
10) I have lost the respect of friends and colleagues
11) I have been turned down for assignments and responsibilities
I have to do this list all the time. Otherwise, I forget that I am an alcoholic.
|09-09-2009, 09:23 PM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2006
This list is not why you are powerless. This list could be the result of being powerless, but it isn't why.
Being powerless means that one day you won't be able to recall all those reasons why you shouldn't drink and find yourself drinking.
|09-09-2009, 11:23 PM||#3 (permalink)|
Join Date: Sep 2009
I could do a list similar to show how unmanageable my life used to be but as stated that would not show i was powerless. if a non alcoholic drank the quantities i did he or she also would do some strange, incredible, tragic things.
I was powerless over alcohol BEFORE i took a drink, i did not have the power to choose if i would drink or not, i did not have the power i needed as a mental defence against the first drink.
I can not rely on my knowledge or memory to remember i am an alcoholic as both will change and besides if i could i would not be powerless over alcohol in the first place.
before I could contemplate taking step 1 or taking a new guy through step 1 I like to look at the first step in recovery. I learned that I had to concede to my innermost self that I was an alcoholic……hmmmm….so what makes me an alcoholic??
Well certainly I can not take a drink without developing the craving and when I try to stop I can not but that is a symptom of me being an alcoholic.
So what is different about me to the normal drinker….well my misses takes a drink and everything about her stays pretty much the same, the people she likes, she still likes, the people she dislikes , she still pretty much dislikes them…..not with me!!!!
When she takes a drink the world stays as it is, her emotions are affected mildly but she remains the same person, pretty much any way….not me!!!
When I take a drink the world and its people change, I undergo an imaginary spiritual experience and experience the step 9 promises….. I take out a bottle of whisket and am amazed before I am half way through…..
I begin to think I am experiencing a new freedom and happiness…. I no longer regret the past and certainly do not shut the door on it…. I dwell in it….
I seem to understand what serenity is and feel at peace…..
No matter how far down the scale I have gone I allow other people the benefit of my vast experience, whether you want it or not…
I no longer feel useless or have self pity…. I pity you and how useless you are…
I lose interest in selfish things and gain interest in my fellows….normally the married ones and always beautiful at the time….
Self seeking just slips away….my whole attitude and outlook upon life instantly changes and I am no longer afraid of you, your four mates and the doorman.
Economic security leaves me and I live in the day…..have a drink on me…I may be dead tomorrow….
I intuitively just know what to do and how to do it…..
I realize yet again that alcohol is doing for me what I can not do for myself…..
Then I wake up….can not remember where I parked my car…how I got here…where the blood has come from and who the person led next to me is but we are both asleep in a jail cell.
I wake up afraid and lonely….but that’s ok because soon I will be able to change my perception of the entire world by drinking yet again until then I remain stuck in reality
Restless, irratablee and discontented……
This complete change of reality does not happen to my misses as she is not an alcoholic but it does happen to me as I am.
As soon as I conceded to this fact I could look at why I could not stop drinking for good, the reason I drink so much is simple, I develop an allergic reaction to alcohol when I take a drink that triggers a craving for more and more. The reason I can not quit for good is that life stinks and I want to escape all the time.
I wanted to stop but did not have the power, I was powerless over alcohol, I had lost the power to choose if I would drink or not…..
I did not have sufficient power to give myself a mental defence against the first drink.
That power I later found to be a power greater than myself called God, why God? The word fits…. Hence I was powerless over alcohol or Godless over alcohol.
I sought him through the steps and am no longer powerless over alcohol, I am happy , joyous and free and have so much power over alcohol today I give it away to suffering alcoholics by explaining to them what an alcoholic is so they can learn and concede to their inner most selfs they are alcoholic too, their first step in recovery then we look at step 1.
this way i never forget i am an alcoholic, a stay active in aa and life is goooood!!!!!!
May your God go with you, who ever he is and where ever you go
|09-10-2009, 05:28 AM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Zion, Illinois
I'm powerless oveer alcohol because my behavior changed in ways that would never have happened had I not taken that drink. The first and most obvious was that I could always guarantee the next drink, and the next, until I couldn't drink any more, or there was no more to drink. The things that happened were as a result of the mental obsession and physical compulsion that was caused by just a little alsohol. The proof is that since I quit drinking, that mental obsession and physical compulsion haven't been an issue.
|09-27-2009, 01:02 AM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: in France
Thanks auxilio, jim, john and music. This discussion is really helping me to understand things i've only been half understanding for ages-in particular about whether it is a choice to drink or not.
I have no problem admitting i'm an alcoholic but being able to do something about it i find harder.
This is something I often here people say-you have the choice whether you take that first drink or not.
I often feel i don't have a choice although that would sound ridiculous to many.
So that should make me see i'm powerless over alccohol right?
Thanks again for this thread-as i've explained elsewhere for some mysterious reason i can't thank posts but really wanted you all to know how much you are helping me
"The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up." -
-- Mark Twain
|09-27-2009, 01:34 AM||#6 (permalink)|
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: london, england
i am powerless, because of the physical allergy (a craving beyond my mental control).
my life is unmanageable because of the spiritual malady. (irritable restless and discontent), (inside), not my external situation. eg, thats why when i stop and get everything back, my girlfriend, the job, the car, the flat, the money, i still go out and drink again.
1) powerless equals godless.
2) unmanagability, equals internal, NOT external.
try writing a gratitute list instead, 10 things everyday you are grateful for.
eg, hope, freedom, health, sponsor options, god, program, meetings, alive, sober,
and change it everyday !!
"ENLIGHTENMENT IS JUST A RECOGNITION NOT A CHANGE AT ALL"
|10-03-2009, 11:20 AM||#7 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Brooklyn, NY
I believe your list means your powerless. You are powerless over alcohol cause you do those things on your list.
Keep up the good work.
|10-03-2009, 10:14 PM||#9 (permalink)|
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Vancouver, BC
I have a hard time saying I am powerless over alcohol. I don't have to HAVE that first drink. I am quite capable of sitting in a bar and not having a drink. that is not a problem for me. I do have a problem AFTER I have had that first drink...usually after two or three I really don't want to stop...but I have...it sucked but I did it. I don't know, maybe I am delusional...maybe I am powerless after I have had a few...I just hate saying I am powerless over anything. I am pretty sure I want a sober life...but I don't know if I want to say I am powerless...I guess I need to do some more soul searching on this. Sorry if this makes no sense, but I find just writing this helps me along my path...
|10-03-2009, 10:50 PM||#10 (permalink)|
Forward we go...side by side
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Serene In Dixie
For me to be around drinkers and not drink
was not a big deal.
I made my living doing just that for years....
Socially it was a big deal......when I quit....I did try to
keep my drinking friends. I could go out with them
not drink.....and sit there ...powerless to stop my yearning
for a drink. Alas....I eventually always gave in to temptation.
Then my life became ..once again....a destructive
mess of bad choices. I could not manage
to be both a drinker and reasonable.....
Each Day Sober Is A Victory!!
Joy In AA Recovery!
|10-05-2009, 07:52 AM||#11 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2009
Hmmm. It was easy for me to see that once I had that first drink, all bets were off. I had thousands of examples of not knowing where that drunk would end. I had a handful of examples where I kept it under control. That idea of an abnormal reaction to the ingestion of alcohol made a lot of sense to me.
It took me some time and study to understand the powerless over the first drink part of it.
I look at Bill's story, Jim's and Fred's stories, the jaywalker, pages 23&24, most of Chapter 3, and most importantly, my own experience.
I looked at my own trivial excuses for picking up that first drink and saw if they made any sense in light of the almost certain consequences. Was my being bored, or angry, or happy, or anything else really a good enough to pick up a drink, knowing where it would lead me? That's when I started to wonder if maybe there wasn't something else going on. Maybe I had a mental obsession. Maybe I was powerless over that first drink.
If I'm not powerless over the first drink, my solution is simple. I don't drink. Then, there is no physical craving, no allergy, no bad consequences. Problem solved. Bill tried this numerous times. He was convinced that he could not safely drink. He knew he had to stay away from that first drink. But he could not.
That's me. I'm a jaywalker. Why in the f*ck would I do that? Why would I pick up that first drink?
Because I'm powerless over it. Lack of power is my dilemma. I had to find a power, and it had to be a power greater than myself. Where and how was I to find this power?
Well, that's exactly what this book is about. It's main object is to enable you to find a power greater than yourself which will solve your problem.
Sorry for the paraphrasing. It's so clearly spelled out in the Big Book. It doesn't matter whether I'm comfortable or accepting of the idea or not. All that matters is the truth of it for me. I'm powerless over the first drink, even when I'm long separated from alcohol. This is exactly the 1st Step question.
|10-05-2009, 08:49 AM||#12 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Upstate, N.Y.
Blog Entries: 7
For me it took a long time to see that I was powerless over alcohol. I could see that my life was unmanageable, but you would drink too if you had my problems I thought.
I finally wanted to try sobriety after joining recovery forums like this one. I finally got acceptance in my heart, not just in my gut. I have to remember every day that I'm an alcoholic and remember what would happen if I pick up that 1st drink. I wouldn't stop at just 1 drink. I know that now today.
* BB quotes cited from the 1st Ed.*
One Day at a Time
Sobriety Date: Jan 19, 2008
|10-05-2009, 11:37 AM||#13 (permalink)|
Join Date: Nov 2007
I know plenty on non-alcoholics who have had each of those things happen in their lives. I know plenty of alcoholics who haven't had ANY of those things happen. It doesn't seem to be a representation of powerlessness that is being addresses at step 1...at least in my experience or the book I use, which is titled Alcoholics Anonymous.
If alcoholism has to do with powerlessness - we need to get down to "the common" amongst us:
I am powerless over alcohol because #1 - I cannot stop drinking it once I start. #2 - I will drink, no matter what, unless a miracle happens - EVERY DAY.
If getting technical is going to help someone get clear on the alcoholic vs the non-alcoholic ~ by all means get as technical as possible.
|10-05-2009, 03:16 PM||#15 (permalink)|
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Austin, TX
If we're gonna get technical, there's a pretty significant difference between the evidence of my powerlessness and actually why I'm powerless. The answer to "why" for me is "I dunno." Part of God's mad genius plan.
|10-05-2009, 04:39 PM||#16 (permalink)|
Join Date: Mar 2009
I am powerless because my alcoholic mind did not bring in with sufficient force the memory of the suffering and pain drinking caused me, to stop me, for example,
I was hit by a taxi one night because I staggered in front of it, the driver got out and kicked the hell out of me, the police came and I tried to hit the cop and ended up in a police cell, the next morning when I woke up I was in physical and mental pain, I swore it was the worst experience I had ever had and it scared the hell out of me,
when the police let me out I walked down the street and by the time I had walked 50 yards my mind was saying "just have a couple", "it will be different this time" and off I went again, the night before was but a fleeting memory, not a single thought of the consequences crossed my mind.
All Big Book quotes are from the First Edition of the Big Book
|10-05-2009, 05:38 PM||#17 (permalink)|
Join Date: Dec 2008
my persuit of the perfect social drink never did happen...lol
it wasnt about "my" drinking it was about when i drank...what i drank...whom i drank with......ill just change um all around.....
unable to bring to mind with any depth the debacle of the last drunk..
prisons....hospital......convinced id do it this time...ill show the bastards.
"she gonna wish she stuck with me"............only to drink again convinced i had the outcome all mapped out.....sometimes my last debacle wouldnt even cross my mind...sometimes my mind would convince me it was just a "hiccup"...lol.
i am unable to see the wood from the wolfs and all bet were off the minute it touch my lips..powerless to see the truth.....powerless over alcohol.
|10-05-2009, 06:41 PM||#18 (permalink)|
Join Date: Mar 2009
1, when I started to drink I could not stop,
2, when I started to drink I had little/no control over how much I drank,
3, I never knew how I got started again in the first place.
All Big Book quotes are from the First Edition of the Big Book
|10-05-2009, 10:11 PM||#19 (permalink)|
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Southern Colorado
|The Following User Says Thank You to McGowdog For This Useful Post:|| |
|10-26-2009, 01:00 PM||#20 (permalink)|
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: South Florida
Hello All. I am new to this Forum, and very happy to be here, for the subject, powerlessness over Alcohol is avery haunting subject for me. I am happy to be back because, after a few 24's, I started drinking, and really thought I could drink for ten years. This disease is so baffling and destructive that I became powerless the minute I decided to pick up a drink, and that one drink lead me down a path of the ole, "Self Will Run Riot". Thank AA that I woke up today, and became clear what I have been doing to myself, family, and fellow addicts. I am getting back on the saddle again, and live this one day at a time.Powerlessness is losing my mind to a toxic solution, simply put, but so intensely powerful that this addict never has a hold my Powerlessness, just the will to follow the steps, and stay sober this hour.....Thank all of you for being here. i am very lucky to be alive...
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