Do you tell people?

Old 01-17-2017, 09:28 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
12 Step Recovered Alcoholic
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 6,613
It all depends on motive. Self seeking, or seeking to help others.
Discretion is important. Not everyone needs to know. I would only disclose to an employer the fact that I am a recovered alcoholic if it was likely to help someone.

WhenI was recovering, an honest disclosure of my problem as part of the amends process was essential to my recovery.

Among my friends and family almost everyone knows, yet very few knew me when I was drinking.

Through employers and friends I have been introduced to a number of alcoholics who needed help, and have been an example that others have watched me later came to AA and recovered because they saw how well it had worked with me.

On other occasions, friends have spotted when my non alcoholic drink order suddenly turned alcoholic and have told me in time to avert disaster.

With discretion, I think the balance favours being reasonably open. There seem to be more positive aspects than trying to keep a shameful secret, especially when most people knew about my problem anyway.
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Old 01-17-2017, 10:04 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: OZ
Posts: 2,055
You couldn't pay me to out myself, how does Hozier's lyrics go .."I'll tell you my sins and you can sharpen your knife".
..I have been disappointed in the past when a few people have used my disclosures as a leverage to use against me.. and...then there is those that would support me, well, I just don't want to ever disappoint them.
So, now I choose to keep my sobriety close to my chest, it is very personal for me!
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Old 01-18-2017, 01:17 AM
  # 23 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2014
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Originally Posted by TryingHardUK View Post
I haven't had a drink for 75 days and feel great. Physically, I have lost a load of weight and my appearance has changed quite a bit too (no more ruddy cheeks or baggy eyes, much less tummy etc). Better than that, lots of people have told me I seem different - 'more bouncy' was my favourite description, but basically more energy, less grumpy etc. I have pretended it's all about exercise and diet (which is true, started those too) but I would really like to be honest and say what the real reason is, at least with friends and family (my wife is the only person who knows). I'm a bit scared to 'out myself' in this way, but feel it would be helpful to my recovery to front up to it and stop hiding things from others - alcohol made me do that for years and Im trying to leave that behind.

I'm really asking if people would share their experiences (good and bad), particularly they've been sober for about the same time as I have. I'd really appreciate advice from those who have been in this position before.
No. I don't talk about it. When I was new in sobriety I didn't know how long it would last. I didn't want to put any pressure on myself. Not picking up a drink just for today keeps it simple.

However, I have been asked by a few people who knew me when I was drinking how long I have been sober. If they want to know I'll be happy to tell them.

Yet, 12-step groups are sometimes seen as controversial. I prefer not to discuss them or my sobriety as a general topic of conversation outside the rooms of AA.
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Old 01-18-2017, 01:30 PM
  # 24 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Cambridgeshire, UK
Posts: 74
To start with I did tell a lot of people a lot of details. After a while it got a bit repetitive. So now if I'm away for work and they ask if I'm coming for drinks, I'll go with them but just say I don't drink anymore. Usually you get a strange look and a few questions.

"What you've never drank?"
"Do you just not like the taste?" (I'd love a strongbow cider, but I know I'd be dead in a few months if I did)
"Oh really, how long have you not drank?"

I'll usually tell them the turning point on why I stopped and how bad I was and how much I could drain in a sitting. Normally results in amazed faces and "Yeah, you probably shouldn't drink."

But I'll happily sit in a pub all night I've even been to a few night clubs. And it is an enjoyable experience. Watching the demise of people's behaviour. My works do over in Belfast in December was one that was most amusing!!
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Old 01-18-2017, 03:34 PM
  # 25 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Vashon WA
Posts: 1,035
I was kind of stuck letting people know that I had quit drinking because drinking was a huge part of my life. I didn't volunteer the info but I wasn't going to lie about it. Now most of those people are gone anyways. After five sober years I don't mind telling people that I don't drink because I am an alcoholic. I don't do it very often but it actually feels good. I am proud to beat back this demon!
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