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Old 04-04-2017, 06:09 AM
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We can always reach out

When I look back to why I started drinking I think it was a (mistaken) choice I made in the belief that it would give me confidence, relaxation, good social skills etc. This choice seemed quite harmless at first but when it began to cause problems in my life, I found I just shrugged them off and carried on.

It was as if on one level I was still holding on to my initial belief that drinking would help me despite all the warning signs. However, at the same time part of me did want to stop, more and more and I think this was because as I learnt more about alcoholism my views about drinking naturally changed.

And so a conflict has developed between my former and my new beliefs. I still feel to a large extent that I don't have much power of choice about drinking but I can at least choose to come on here and I have found the advice and experience on offer really helpful. So thanks everyone!
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Old 04-04-2017, 06:29 AM
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Glad you are here.

The concept of choice is huge- have you started a program to help with that? I know for me, admitting that I had no control over my drinking once I started - AA- was critical.

It's always my choice to drink - my support comes from a strong program that keeps making that a non-choice, so to speak, every day.

Good luck- hope to see you around here.
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Old 04-04-2017, 07:40 AM
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My personal view on this dilemma is that I lose control and my power of choice once I start drinking. But I do have the power to choose to not drink in the first place. I need help and support to maintain that power, but I firmly believe part of it come from inside me.
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Old 04-04-2017, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by AlericB View Post
When I look back to why I started drinking I think it was a (mistaken) choice I made in the belief that it would give me confidence, relaxation, good social skills etc. This choice seemed quite harmless at first but when it began to cause problems in my life, I found I just shrugged them off and carried on.

It was as if on one level I was still holding on to my initial belief that drinking would help me despite all the warning signs. However, at the same time part of me did want to stop, more and more and I think this was because as I learnt more about alcoholism my views about drinking naturally changed.
I could have wrote this.

I had alcoholics on both sides of my family. I didn't start drinking heavily until I was 25. I hated what alcoholism did to my father, uncles, grandfather, etc. and I didn't what to be like them.

But once I gave in and got deep into alcoholism myself I told myself it was my destiny and alcoholism was in my family and I needed booze to make myself complete.

The first decade of my daily drinking was usually always great fun; but the last 2 decades were a miserable habit I couldn't shake because I didn't know how to stop, after all I figured being a drunk was my destiny.
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Old 04-04-2017, 08:15 AM
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Old 04-04-2017, 08:22 AM
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It is part of the alcoholic progression where things are all fun and games at first and it seems like a lifesaver, until the years and years rack up and you start to realize all the destruction it is causing.
Being in a limbo on your thoughts (of knowing you have a problem and should quit) vs. your AV (that tells you that you need it and can't live without it) is a power struggle that can also go on for a while.
Your AV will lie, manipulate, and do everything it possibly can to sucker you into feeding it, though in the end, you always have the power over it to do the right thing and stop drinking, no matter how much it may tell you that you can't.
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Old 04-04-2017, 08:50 AM
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Originally Posted by AlericB View Post

And so a conflict has developed between my former and my new beliefs. I still feel to a large extent that I don't have much power of choice about drinking but I can at least choose to come on here and I have found the advice and experience on offer really helpful. So thanks everyone!
I have found choice a redundant concept when it comes to drink. Today I have about as much choice to drink as I used to have not to drink. That is none at all.

The AA program is very clear on this aspect of alcoholism and it is something I identify strongly with, as it matches my experience.

"There was a tremendous urge to cease forever. Yet we found it impossible. This is the baffling feature of alcoholism as we know it-this utter inability to leave it alone no matter how great the necessity or the wish."

"Once more: The alcoholic at certain times has no effective defense against the first drink. Except in a few rare cases, neither he, nor any other human being can provide such a defense. His defense must come from a Higher Power."

"Whether such a person can stop on a nonspiritual basis depends upon the extent to which he has already lost the power to choose whether he will drink or not"
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Old 04-04-2017, 03:20 PM
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I found that the more I posted here and the more I stayed sober the more I realised I do have a power of choice.

I no longer see myself as some hapless victim to my addiction.
I hope you'll continue to realise that too Aleric.

Devising new healthy positive ways of dealing with the kinds of things I'd 'drink over' helps too.

If the only tool in your toolbox is a hammer, yeah - you probably don't have a lot of choice

D
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Old 04-04-2017, 08:07 PM
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you can choose to do a lot of things.

feeling you don't have power of choice over drinking in no way means you are helpless to make choices about what to do about that.
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Old 04-04-2017, 10:07 PM
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Originally Posted by fini View Post
you can choose to do a lot of things.

feeling you don't have power of choice over drinking in no way means you are helpless to make choices about what to do about that.
Exactly. Provided a person can see the true nature of their situation, they can make all kinds of choices on what to do about it. Sadly, many never realise the seriousness of their situation, so making choices about fixing a problem they can't see never happens.
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