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The Jumping-Off Place

Old 07-22-2007, 10:39 AM
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The Jumping-Off Place

The following is a partial excerpt from Chapter 11 of the AA Big Book. It describes what happens when we alcoholics reach our "bottom".

The old pleasures were gone. They were but memories. Never could we recapture the great moments of the past. There was an insistent yearning to enjoy life as we once did and a heartbreaking obsession that some new miracle of control would enable us to do it. There was always one more attempt -- and one more failure.

Some day he will be unable to imagine life either with alcohol or without it. Then he will know loneliness such as few do. He will be at the jumping-off place. He will wish for the end.
High Bottom Drunk:
An alcoholic entering AA who has maintained most of the trappings of 'success'; a family, a home, a job, a car, reputation, health, etc.. Almost everyone entering AA has hit some kind of emotional bottom, but for some the social, legal, or financial bottom may be relatively high. The more one has managed to retain upon entering AA, the higher his or her bottom is said to be.

Low Bottom Drunk:
An alcoholic entering AA who has lost 'everything;' house, car, family, job, health, etc.. Almost everyone entering AA has hit some kind of emotional or spiritual bottom but for some, the extrinsic circumstances may be particularly low. The more one has lost upon entering AA, the lower his or her bottom is said to be.

It doesn't matter whether one reaches a high or low bottom...and, it can be dangerous to compare one's drinking/bottom to that of another, for it can lead to denial and prolong the agony of active alcoholism. "I'm not that bad...perhaps I'm not really an alcoholic."

The degree of one's "bottom" is not important, as long as the decision is made to try to climb back to a sober way of living.

Have you reached your bottom?

What brought you to the point you recognized as your bottom?

What are you doing to climb out of that pit alcohol has taken you to?
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Old 07-22-2007, 11:59 AM
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Actually, I've been called mid-bottom

However

The old pleasures were gone. They were but memories. Never could we recapture the great moments of the past. There was an insistent yearning to enjoy life as we once did and a heartbreaking obsession that some new miracle of control would enable us to do it. There was always one more attempt -- and one more failure.

I was unable to imagine life either with alcohol or without it. I knew loneliness such as few do. I was at the jumping-off place. I wished for the end.
That was me.....
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Old 07-22-2007, 12:52 PM
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That was me too, exactly. I think you know when you have hit your bottom because that is when you finally admit you cant do this alone, you need help.

That might only apply to those as stubborn and insane as I, but I think lots of us are!
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Old 07-22-2007, 03:43 PM
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I had decided to try to quit after drinking for 32 years. My moment of clarity came one night after attending an AA meeting with my nephew who had been sober for about two years. We were sitting around a diner table having coffee, and someone was telling us about just having come back from a trip through Europe.

I had always dreamt of going to Europe, but I thought to myself, "How do you go to Ireland or Germany without drinking beer, Italy or France without drinking wine?"
The tears just streamed down my face as I said aloud, "I don't know why I feel worse since I quit drinking...I thought I would feel better."

All eyes turned to me and someone asked how long it had been since my last drink. They knew I was going through withdrawal, and my nephew got on the phone with a local hospital that had a ten-day detox, mini-rehap program. They had a bed for me the next day, so my nephew and a friend sat with me until they could take me to the hospital in the morning. It was the longest night of my life...but, what a relief to finally find out I wasn't losing my mind...I was just a chronic alcoholic trying to come off the booze!

Aside from a brief relapse (made the mistake after three months of thinking, "This was so easy, I couldn't have been all that bad."), I have enjoyed 27+ years of continued sobriety...by the grace of my Higher Power, and a lot of help from AA.

I don't know if it would have been considered a high, mid, or low bottom...but, it was mine, all mine!
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:02 PM
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At the jumping off place thats for sure. Socially, legally, and financially all messed up.

Cant live with alcohol cant live without it.

Im stubborn as hell and insane also.

Thanks Jerseynonny, knowing you have 27 years clean gives me some kind of hope. I would much rather find sobriety than jump.
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:31 PM
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Im stubborn as hell and insane also.
Alcoholic Insanity:
An untrue belief held by some alcoholics that they can control their drinking or that somehow, someday they will be able to drink normally.

bfree4u, it was not by accident that the founders wrote Step Two as follows:

Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
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Old 07-22-2007, 04:36 PM
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I really felt step two a few weeks ago, but it seems hard to grasp today.
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Old 07-22-2007, 05:04 PM
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Reminds me of the Chapters in the BB..

'They Stopped in Time" and "They Nearly Lost All"

Through 6 relpases I went through the spectrum of bottoms...from a functional

alkie to a suicidal alkie who lost everything..

Denial played a huge part in the first 4..and also as the BB says..the last two were planned

binges..headlong plunges back into hell because of emotional pain and fear.

That's about it for my (bottoms)

Thanks to HP I now have over a year..and nothing..absolutley nothing

is worth relapsing over.

My HP is "God of the Seventh Chance"


Thanks JN...

Love,



IO
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Old 07-22-2007, 05:36 PM
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Angry Bottom

This is where I get in trouble b/c I have had many bottoms and know I am there right now, the problem and blessignall in one is that my bottom is always severly empotional, I have never got in trouble w/ the law, ruined a relationship, lost a job or hit any of the bottome anyone can see. Just the opposite when I am at my worst on drugs I am told by employers or family mamber how well I am doing. This is a problem for me I know b/c it makes it harder but I know my bottoms b/c I lose it emptionally, I feel like the worst person, mother, wife daughter sister in the world. I feel dirty, embarassed and unintelligent all at the same time and it mentally ruins me.
I need to figure something out soon before the bottoms in my mind become ones for all the world to see. Mayve that is what needs to happen I have been going on like this for 10 years( minus my entire pregnancy) I am only 31.
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Old 07-22-2007, 10:33 PM
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I've always had a high bottom I guess. I never lost jobs, homes, or family. My bottom is losing myself, emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. I relapsed last night and thank god i dumped the rest down the sink today. Mon will be Day 2 and I'm trying again and going to my meetings and posting on here.

Barb
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