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Old 02-27-2018, 07:52 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Staying sober witha chronic illness?


Does anyone else here have a chronic illness but hasn't relapsed, or has found a way to cope?

I was in recovery for quite a while.

I now have an illness that pretty much leaves me bedbound most days. I have some kind of symptom every day, from dizziness to fatigue to brain fog. No medication has helped.

The first year, I maintained my sobriety and was fairly pragmatic about it. The second year, I started to struggle with constantly feeling like this, especially as I am alone in bed most daytimes and my only companion, my cat, died. I had some short relapses. The third year, I was a complete mess - my relapses were getting longer and longer.

Now going into the fourth year, I am despairing and depressed. I don't trust myself not to drink.

I have basically lost almost everything - my career (which I loved, as I was helping others), my independence, my mobility. I can't even make a meal because my dizziness is so bad. I can rarely have friends round, as I find it difficult to shower and am a stinky mess most of the time.

I feel useless, purepurposeless, guilty, hopeless, overwhelmed. lonely - you name it.

My drinking is making me iller and iller but I feel I have little to live for.

I have just signed up with a counsellor (luckily, he does evenings, so my partner can drive me there). I don't know if it will help.

Does anyone else have chronic illness like this, and how do you stay sober? Thank you.
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Old 02-27-2018, 08:05 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I think seeing a counselor is a great idea. I deal with a chronic mental illness and staying sober has been the single best possible thing I could have done to help improve my condition.

Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, so it's entirely possible that your drinking may even be the cause of many of the problems you are having. - especially the depression like/hopeless feelings. Drinking will do that to you unfortunately.
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Old 02-27-2018, 08:41 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Several (dare I say many?) of us have chronic illnesses. It is easy to fall into self pity, particularly when our symptoms or issues constantly remind us of our illness. Being sober gives us strength to try to pursue the things we can do. I think a counselor would be very helpful.
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Old 02-27-2018, 10:41 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Stoprelapsing View Post
I have basically lost almost everything - my career (which I loved, as I was helping others), my independence, my mobility. I can't even make a meal because my dizziness is so bad. I can rarely have friends round, as I find it difficult to shower and am a stinky mess most of the time..
I am sorry that your illness has robbed you of so much. Don't let alcohol steal what's left.
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Old 02-27-2018, 01:04 PM   #5 (permalink)
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We're very happy to have you with us and we hope you hang around and continue to contribute.
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Old 02-27-2018, 03:22 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Hang in there. If you are in bed a lot using the phone can be a good tool. Chronic illness is not easy to manage. Glad you are on this forum though.
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Old 02-27-2018, 04:37 PM   #7 (permalink)
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My drinking is making me iller and iller but I feel I have little to live for.
That's all booze does, drags you down into the pits of hell. Though you have all the life to live that you choose! Make the right decision
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Old 02-27-2018, 06:52 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Yes I know the feeling.
Many counsellors will allow you to call or email them if you are unable to meet in person, I think that might help you.
I hope you are feeling better soon.
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Old 02-27-2018, 07:04 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I have laundry list of chronic health conditions

For 20 years I tried drinking to cope with them. None of them got better in that time, all of them got worse and I got a few new ones to add to the list.

For the last 10 years I've given myself over to the support here at SR and the care of many drs and nurses.

Even those a lot of my conditions are actually worsening with age, I feel less angst about them.

The quality of my life is immeasurably increased now from what it was when I was drinking. Alcohol poisoned me, emotionally and physically.

Whatever your ailments are there's better ways to cope with them than drinking - trust me

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Old 03-01-2018, 07:54 PM   #10 (permalink)
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If I have learnt anything on this journey it is that recovered alcoholics that continue to work with others never relapse not matter what. I have seen countless expamples. In my very early days a beautiful young lady just a few months sober was diagnosed wth leukemia. She joined the Salvation Army and decvoted her remaining time to helping others.

A really lovely old timer who helped me a lot, developed a brain tumor. His sponsees drove him to meetings. He was helping others right to his last few days. Another lovely guy up north, has a wheel chair and an oxygen bottle still puffs his way to meetings and helps others. My sponsor, dying of cancer gradually lost the use of his legs. His partner got him dressed in the mornings and of he went to work with what might be called the lowest of the low, alcoholic addicts in the youth justice system who had committed horendous crimes. At his funeral one of the big Maori Gangs performed a haka in tribute. It was very moving.

None of these folks drank. Every one of them left a legacy of hope for those who come after.
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Old 03-01-2018, 09:09 PM   #11 (permalink)
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hows it going stoprelapsing?

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