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Old 11-06-2003, 01:15 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
Jon
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(This is a re-post from Nar-anon yesterday)

As an addict I know that Skid Row, Jail, Loss of Job or Relationship, and yes, even an Intervention can all be classified as "bottoms."

You see, it becomes a bottom the moment I stop digging. It is my ACTIONS that determine when and what the bottom are. Not saying "Well, I guess I hit my bottom."

Believe me-I tried it. Just when I thought I couldn't go any lower, I did. Just when I said I had enough, I went and got more.

What was worse is when friends or family members used the term themselves!

"Oh, he hit bottom this time" or "This HAS to be his bottom."

They were basing their opinions on what HAD happened rather than what my actions were NOW.

A bottom is determined by the surrender and willingness and ongoing ACTION of the addict-not the recent crisis or drama.

So, does Intervention work? Yes and No.

Does Rehab work? Yes and No.

AA? Yes and No.

Church? Yes and No.

I think you get my point.

It is not the method that gets the addict sober. Almost all have the same rate of success.

It is the addict that gets the addict sober. Using tools from any and all of the available methods.
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Old 11-06-2003, 01:59 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
Chy
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Well gosh... if the definition of hitting bottom is the day you finally surrender and quit then I guess the point at which I quit was my bottom.. but I truly feel there are many levels to truly hitting bottom just as the many levels of Dante's hell....and without my program that's only one drink away, and that's how I perceive my addiction... I can alway's one "down" myself a level if I were to continue... so I'll just let this be as we all have our own perception I suppose, I just alway's stigmatized "hitting bottom" with loosing all, and that is different for everyone so I stand informed and somewhat corrected. Thanks for letting me share!

Oh.. Chalkie.. despite all that was said by your A.. I assure you, your in no way to blame and be the reason for his addiction or potential "hic-cups".. this I do promise you!
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Old 11-06-2003, 02:10 PM
  # 23 (permalink)  
Jon
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I think we're all in agreement actually. Why? Because we are describing our personal experiences. There is no wrong or right answer to this, especially if whatever "bottom" took place led us to seek help.

Even the Big Book states that one of the goals of the book itself was to "raise the bottom" so that some would not have to lose all.

When my last run ended I still had more "stuff" than I had ever had. Car, some money left, a business...but the shame, guilt and pain I was feeling was greater than any before. It was MY bottom.

But I also believe that had I just rested up for a few days and went right back at it, then it really wasn't a bottom after all. Just some more denial, rationalization and justification.

How does one "know" if they hit bottom? I firmly believe it's what we do the day after.

My actions will be so loud that you won't be able to hear whats coming from my mouth...
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Old 11-06-2003, 03:02 PM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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I think it all boils down to accountability. Your right to drink yourself silly stops when you start infringing on the rights of other people. You dont have the right to steal to buy booze. You dont have the right to abuse other people. And you dont have the right to drive and injure or kill other people. If you do any of these things then other people are within their rights to take legal action against you.

Maybe us non drinkers do need to intervene more. Maybe the A's need to suffer the consequences more. Who knows. You cant hit bottom if well meaning people keep cushioning your fall.

Instead of us trying to fit into their world. How about making them fit into ours. You can do whatever you want but you cant endanger others.
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Old 11-06-2003, 03:08 PM
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I don't like Dr. Phil and do not care what he has to say about anything..
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Old 11-06-2003, 03:10 PM
  # 26 (permalink)  
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Chy, Jon, thank you again for describing your experiences and your thoughts, they really are beneficial to me. I will continue going to Al-Anon but I'm not really sure it is what I need as I have not really suffered any consequences due to my A's addiction, perhaps because we haven't been together 24/7 and I only saw him 'enjoy' the 2 beers (high alcohol content) after work each evening and perhaps if we had lunch together. I honestly felt more comfortable and more informed at the AA meeting I attended yesterday...I don't think I need to worry about ME at this point, as I have been unaffected by his drinking (but I'm laying the groundwork to protect myself if necessary by attending Al Anon), but I want to learn more so what he's experiencing and how I can best support him.

I know I'm not the reason for his addiction, I got scared because he stated he was doing his rehab because he doesn't want to lose me and if he were to continue on the path he was on, he knows for sure he would lose me (and he's right, once I caught on!). I want to know that he's doing this for himself...I'm only secondary. If he isn't doing this for himself, then I fear he will blame me should he "hiccup"...but...One Day At A Time.
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Old 11-06-2003, 03:37 PM
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Dr Phil has said several times that he has high regard for 12 step programs. Interventions are done often with about the same results as other methods...like Smoke said...done right at least it can't hurt.

Part 2 was far less commercial than Part 1 was. It was intense and very real. I have seen the look on that boys face more times than I can count. There was compassion and firmness and not one huge "come watch" statement. It was draining for the families, the audience and the viewers...at least me.

I have known for a long time that it is possible to create a crisis. When a wife says stop or I leave she is doing the same thing. When parents say get straight or get out it is not so different. The difference here is that rehab is in place but rehab has the same success rate also.

It begins when he gets out. I cringed when they said 30 days and not more like 90. And I cringed when the family looked so thrilled at Dr Phil's offer to pay for rehab...like it would all be ok. It will not be okay. He will still be an addict and as many of us know we don't sleep any better after they get sober. Not for a very long time.

I am glad he attacked this topic. His statement about hitting bottom being a myth threw me momentarily but all it was is a play on words. If this boy gets straight long term then this WAS his bottom. He had had enough, he had dug as deep as he wanted to dig.

At the end of todays show Phil alluded to the fact that this was only the beginning. He may be 90% money making showman but that is one statement that no one can refute.

Hugs,
JT
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Old 11-06-2003, 07:17 PM
  # 28 (permalink)  
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It sounds like part 2 was also a good show. I missed both. This road gets very long even after rehab...that seems to be the easy part. As you said, it is only the beginning.
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Old 11-06-2003, 07:39 PM
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Part two, I found very intense but a bit disturbing. It could just be me, but it was obvious this boy was in no way willing to do this on his own as his own choice I should say... and we all know where that leads. Some are probably thinking "duh.. thus the intervention!" I felt he was railroaded into this "choice" for the sake of ratings and parent desperation and I pray I am wrong, but I think he'll be up to his old way's once he's out.

However, I do understand the addicts family and the path desperation leads to. If for even a small few I do hope intervention is beneficial for some.
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Old 11-06-2003, 09:11 PM
  # 30 (permalink)  
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Hi guys,
I'm a little late on this one...
I DID see the show today, but missed part one.
And BTW, I think Jon is right on the money: there is no solid statement of a "bottom" because it is different for everyone, and can only be defined by the person who is / has reached it.

There was one thing that bothered me about the whole show... I found that I was ansy about the "intervention" part of it, so perhaps it biased my opinion. Anyway, it seemed that Dr. Phil was duping this kid into cooperating with him / his parents. He put it out there that "the boy" needed to suffer some consequences, and had to begin making decisions about his life. He even TOLD the boy that he didn't have to go to treatment, that he could choose NOT to go... YET, nearing the end of the show, realizing the boy was refusing treatment, it seemed like Dr. Phil took the choices away.

I cringed when I heard this boy say "It's not MY choice, it's theirs (his parents)... I guess I HAVE to go." So much manipulation and passing the buck! I thought... Why not call him on it!!? Don't take responsibility for this by making him go to treatment! Allow him to refuse if he likes, let him go to jail, and still keep those boundaries up about him not coming home etc...
I just felt like this isn't gonna work - they are forcing him to go! He isn't ready!!!

Anyway...
Just MY 2 cents
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Old 11-06-2003, 09:33 PM
  # 31 (permalink)  
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This kid is in my prayers. That's all I can do. I pray he catches the disease while in rehab......cause that helps a bunch. *haha First, we have to get sicker and then we have a chance to get well.

You guys are pretty much validating what I was thinking. I don't think Dr. Phil has suffered quite enough with trying to rescue alcoholics. LOL*

He needs to hit his bottom.
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Old 11-06-2003, 09:41 PM
  # 32 (permalink)  
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Wow, great thread guys.

I agree that your bottom is the day you surrender. Actually I may have just realized this. I always thought my bottom happened the first time I got sober because it was so so bad. I lost everything tangible in my life and due to methamphetamine poisoning became mentally unstable and physically was dehydrated, etc. I wound up in the hospital and rehab because it was either that or die.

That was my physical and mental bottom

Once I got my health back mentally and physically, the boyfriend back, the car back, and the good job back....I relapsed.

When I came back after that I had reached an emotional and spiritual bottom because I had never experienced the hopelessness in my soul like I did the day I realized that being sober didn't work for me and using didn't work for me. There was an empty feeling that there was nothing real or worthwhile inside of me and I didn't want to be that person anymore.

I think maybe Chy, you reached your spiritual and emotional bottom before you reached a physical bottom. The emotional bottom for me was the true bottom because I surrendered.
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Old 11-07-2003, 03:49 AM
  # 33 (permalink)  
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Live or Die

Angels watching, waiting, praying. . . I'm thinking of the father who came to the show - in the audience who does not have his son - did not get to do an intervention - his son is dead. I watched a program on Bill Moyer's the other evening (a repeat) which showed the actual changes in an addict's brain - impaired thinking which gives way to "the disease talking". My son tried an intervention with his dad (my ex) - brought in counselors, friends of my ex A- some came in from out of town. They all met in a hotel lobby. Ex-A reacted with fear - and bolted from the room - never speaking to his friends again. ExA has suffered the consequences of his drinking - losing his toes, a foot, a lower leg - clumps along on his prothesis, uses the wheelchair - continues on and on with his abusive behavior - my son stays with him - works for him - continues to "take it". My son is very ill - as the rescuer - doesn't get/seek help. Help is just across the street for him with CODA, Al-Anon meetings available. I am finally "letting go, letting God". I had my relapse this year, too, by getting involved (not romantically) with a person who is a DD (dry drunk) - business partner now. I'm going to my meetings and a counselor - I come here with you all for guidance, sharing and support. I pray that the young man chooses life over death. Thanks for listening. "Keep coming back - It works".
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Old 11-07-2003, 05:03 AM
  # 34 (permalink)  
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Now that we have all seen it...did anyone notice the look on that kids face when his mother said she had planned his funeral in the middle of the night?? I think that was the most emotion he showed.

Considering his age, his DOC and this only being a 30 day program I bet he takes a break but goes back to his friends and using in time.

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Old 11-07-2003, 05:33 AM
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The funeral statement triggered me too - I've done that so many times...

I don't think he's ready. He certainly didn't appear to reach a spiritual, emotional, mental, or physical bottom. And 30 days? Long enough to detox, but certainly not long enough to make any real changes, IMO....
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Old 11-07-2003, 07:25 AM
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I wondered if they were fibbing on the 30 day thing. Phil said somthing like "could be less, could be more... whatever it takes."

A thing I didn't get was... if he failed his drug screen with his P.O. all those times... why was he not already in jail?
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Old 11-07-2003, 07:43 AM
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I thought yesterday's show was a gut ripper. The attitude of the son made me want to reach through the screen and knock him off his chair. However, the part that gave me hope for this family was when the mom said that her son had confided in his closest friends that he wants help. That is when my attitude toward him changed. The kid is 21 years old, sitting in front of an audience, and knowing that the show is going to broadcast to millions. IMHO, all that surly, hateful behaviour was his way of trying to show some bravado and cover up how scared he is inside. Until that point, I believed that it was going to be hopeless.

And Smoke - I couldn't figure that one out either.
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Old 11-07-2003, 10:48 AM
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*high fives* to Smoke.. my exact thoughts as well... and margo I think your right on as well.. we shall see I suppose.

Not realistic in my book!
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Old 11-08-2003, 04:01 PM
  # 39 (permalink)  
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Thank you Dr. Phil!!!!!!!

Sally & all others,

I have to give Dr. Phil credit, because he has done two things. He has people thinking and talking!! Those are the MOST important tools one needs to make it in life!!!
Who cares WHEN one hits bottom, or HOW one hits bottom?? All anyone should be focused on, is that they FINALLY got help!!! It shouldn't matter if they did it on their own, or someone "lovingly" shoved them "into the light!"
I work in an Adolescent Sub. Abuse center, and VERY rarely do we have a kid, beating our doors down for help!! However, upon leaving during their short interim there, their hugs, smiles and "thanks" say it all.... Are they all healed??? H--- no! But how many of us as adults got the "big picture" the FIRST time around???
I believe that most times, our major issue that we become aware of, has a domino effect on many parts of our lives, and the best we can do is to "chip away" at the layers...No one is going to be "healed" in one trip! We learn at best, that we have "miles to go, before we sleep." So, be proud of all those willing to go the distance. Support them, be positive, and let them go at the pace they are comfortable with... I was a "long distance runner" when it came to my therapy and recovery; I did it in a zillion small "sprints."
Please remember: "I haven't failed. I've found 10,000 ways that don't work." (Thomas Edison)

"Every Negative Can Be Turned Into
A Positive"

Bonnie!
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