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Old 08-09-2009, 11:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Thoughts Please


I don't really know where to begin. My drinking may not sound all that bad compared to some of the stories I've read here but I know I need to stop as I can sense it is beginning to spiral out of control. It's not so much the frequency of my drinking but rather when I start I can't stop. I don't hide alcohol, never drink at work and never drink and drive. I exercise frequently, am successfully self-employed but I know I have become an alcoholic not in frequency of drinking but on the effect it has on me.

I'm 42 next week. I live abroad in a non-English speaking country, where alcohol plays a big part. It is accepted that men drink every night. I'm kind of alone here and have no friends to turn to. I am married but my wife doesn't give me a hard time about drinking due to its acceptance here and the fact I'm quite a highly functioning drinker.

I like rules so much that my wife jokes that I have aspergers. I have rules about when I drink and what I drink. I binge drink every Saturday. On Sunday I'm so hungover, depressed, anxious and ashamed that I can hardly move. Due to this I never drink on Sundays. For some reason I never drink on Mondays also. Strangly I don't feel any desire to drink on these days. On Tuesdays the desire begins and I drink maybe 30% of the time. Then I'll have at least a bottle of wine on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. My Saturdays are becoming worse and worse.

I am also strange in that I only drink beer, wine and something called shochu. I can and do have whisky in the house, be panting for some alcohol, and never touch the whisky.

Every Saturday I go out with my family to a restaurant. I'll start drinking and want to continue. If I come home I'll just get realy drunk and fall alseep (Previously I'd never drunk alone or at home until I was 27). If I go out, and I have every week for the past 3 months, bad-ish things are beginning to happen. I don't want to go into the details are they are not really important just that things are getting bad.

These incidents have been the final straw for me. I've been wanting to quit for years. I managed 3 months about 4 years ago and 1 month about 2 years ago. Next week I'm off on holiday for 2 weeks. Normally this would be a time to binge nightly but I hope to use it as a opportunity to quit.

I'm so happy to come across this site. I have no one to speak with and I do need help and support. Just re-reading my post I know it doesn't seem like I'm that bad but I really am.

I started yesterday and I really hope to continue for life.

All thoughs appreciated.
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Old 08-10-2009, 12:10 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Hi midton

You sound a lot like me - or the me I used to be....I started drinking alone in my late 20s - I usually drank beer only - I had strict rules about when to drink - I was so good at hiding it, noone knew.

That didn't last for me. By the time I was late 30s, I had no rules, I drank anything, drank anywhere, and everybody knew....bad stuff happened to me too.

I believe it's not how much you drink, or what you drink, or how often...it's why you drink, how you drink, and what happens to you when you do.

I think it's an error to judge yourself against anyone else. I was in with a heavy drinking crowd - I was able to rationalise my consumption for way too many years than I should have.

If you think you have a problem, I think that's reason enough to act.

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Old 08-10-2009, 12:43 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Hi Midton

I totally agree with Dee on this...

It's not the amount you drink... its how it is affecting you... and if you think you have a problem then thats what matters... its only you who you are accountable too...

I binge drank... as in when i wasn't working i was drinking... i could work 2/3 days solid... but during that whole time... i was thinking about my next drink... planning it... even to the stage i would arrange finishing times from work so i would be home in time for the pub opening... i never wanted to give myself enough time to go home first else my partner might not let me out to the pub again for a while and to me this was seriously wasted good drinking time.... thats how my head used to work... I was usually drunk in the anticipation of drinking...

I stopped drinking because things were bad for me (blackouts etc) but they were going to get worse... i never lost my job over my drinking but i did lose my partner and their kids...

You have made the right move seeking support here... the folk are so nice/friendly and have great advice.... there is definately a community spirit here..

I am glad you have found this site and wanted to welcome you

be well
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Old 08-10-2009, 01:30 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'm in full agreement with both of the above posts.

Like Dee, most people I knew drank about as much as I did, but they also did drugs along with the alcohol. I didn't even know I had a problem, because I was always told I was "the good one."

How "bad" the story is is not so relevant as how much it affects you, and how you feel about that. Furthermore, I keep reading how alcoholism is a progressive disease (see y'all, I'm learning...), in which case failing to address a potential problem upon discovery/realization might lead to a "bad story"...

Best of luck, and welcome.
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Old 08-10-2009, 01:54 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Hello and very good to meet you, I hope you post often....

Quote:
Just re-reading my post I know it doesn't seem like I'm that bad but I really am.
Funny you wrote this, and how differently we see things. As I was reading your post I was thinking...God, that sounds like torture, I would hate to live like that again. Saturdays and sundays are so different for me now. I have not been chained to a bottle mentally for a long time. I hope you get support.
Some one once said to me ,after I had explained about how I wasnt that bad......Nel if your comfortalbe with your drinnking carry on!!..
I wasnt........are you??
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Old 08-10-2009, 02:47 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Hi Midton, welcome to SR you have found a wonderful place where people understand your situation and support you in your recovery.

I am also a binge drinker, in some ways it can be worse than nightly drinking as we tend to go all out & black out (pretty hard on the body/system). I am so happy that you found this site, it has made the world of difference in my recovery.

You have to work your plan & people will ask you hard questions to help you along. Keep sharing openly & asking questions, its an important part of your recovery.

I look forward to watching you grow into your recovery.

Take Care,

NB
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Old 08-10-2009, 04:30 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Welcome to SR Midton. As others have already said, I will back them up, if you think you have a problem........... you have a problem. As already mentioned alcoholism is a progressive disease............ the more an alcoholic drinks, the worse it gets, it never stabilizes, it always gets worse!

Quote:
when I start I can't stop.
Now that jumped right out at me, I can relate to this, before I progressed to drinking daily that is how I was for many years, the longer I drank, the more I drank and the more often I drank until it was a daily NEED! I reached the point where I drank when I did not want to.

The sooner one determines they have a problem and does something about it the easier the actual stopping will be, the biggest problem is staying stopped!!!!

Many of us use programs to aid in staying stopped, I use AA but AA is not the only one, check them out, pick one and here is the secret to a program working:

In order for a recovery program to work no matter what program it is one must work the program, one must be willing to do what ever their program of choice suggest no matter what!

Stay in the day, you do not have to never drink again, just do not drink today no matter what, then when you wake up in the morning sober and without a hangover commit to not drinking that day and to doing what ever it takes that day to not drink.
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Old 08-10-2009, 04:51 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Hi Midton
Welcome to SR.
I had a similar pattern of drinking so you are not that different from a lot of us.
I would drink one day on and then one or two days off with a hangover and then repeat the pattern for several years. This type of drinking is just as bad if not harder on tour body than constant drinking.
What I had to do was break the pattern and develop a new pattern of living replacing the drinking with more satisfying things like working out, movies, and spending quality time with my wife. I didn't think it would happen but my life is much better without getting hammered.
When I get the urge to drink, which hardly ever happens now, I have a list of good things and bad things about drink and I read it. The bad things outweigh the good about 20 to 1 now although when I just quit the ratio was much closer so it is an easy decision to say no to that first drink.
I am also like you in the fact that if I start it is hard for me to stop until I am wasted so not taking that first drink is the key for me.
Good luck.
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Old 08-10-2009, 06:03 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Midton View Post
I don't really know where to begin. My drinking may not sound all that bad compared to some of the stories I've read here but I know I need to stop as I can sense it is beginning to spiral out of control. It's not so much the frequency of my drinking but rather when I start I can't stop. I don't hide alcohol, never drink at work and never drink and drive. I exercise frequently, am successfully self-employed but I know I have become an alcoholic not in frequency of drinking but on the effect it has on me.

I'm 42 next week. I live abroad in a non-English speaking country, where alcohol plays a big part. It is accepted that men drink every night. I'm kind of alone here and have no friends to turn to. I am married but my wife doesn't give me a hard time about drinking due to its acceptance here and the fact I'm quite a highly functioning drinker.

I like rules so much that my wife jokes that I have aspergers. I have rules about when I drink and what I drink. I binge drink every Saturday. On Sunday I'm so hungover, depressed, anxious and ashamed that I can hardly move. Due to this I never drink on Sundays. For some reason I never drink on Mondays also. Strangly I don't feel any desire to drink on these days. On Tuesdays the desire begins and I drink maybe 30% of the time. Then I'll have at least a bottle of wine on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. My Saturdays are becoming worse and worse.
I am also strange in that I only drink beer, wine and something called shochu. I can and do have whisky in the house, be panting for some alcohol, and never touch the whisky.

Every Saturday I go out with my family to a restaurant. I'll start drinking and want to continue. If I come home I'll just get realy drunk and fall alseep (Previously I'd never drunk alone or at home until I was 27). If I go out, and I have every week for the past 3 months, bad-ish things are beginning to happen. I don't want to go into the details are they are not really important just that things are getting bad.
These incidents have been the final straw for me. I've been wanting to quit for years. I managed 3 months about 4 years ago and 1 month about 2 years ago. Next week I'm off on holiday for 2 weeks. Normally this would be a time to binge nightly but I hope to use it as a opportunity to quit.

I'm so happy to come across this site. I have no one to speak with and I do need help and support. Just re-reading my post I know it doesn't seem like I'm that bad but I really am.

I started yesterday and I really hope to continue for life.

All thoughs appreciated.
I have to go with nelco's thought on this... When I read what you wrote, I did NOT think "this guy isn't that bad" but quite the opposite.

I'm glad you've recognized that something needs to change.. we've all come to that point at some point or another. A lot of people drank more thank you, a lot much less. The only point is that it's a problem for YOU. For me that would be one hell of a problem (and was) if I couldn't stop once I started, drank most days of the week, drank til I got drunk and passed out alone at home, and most occasions bad things happen. That sounds like a nightmare.

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Old 08-10-2009, 06:11 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Welcome to the Sober Recovery community.

Best wishes for a complete detox. i hope if you experience any
severe withdrawl symptoms that you will seek medical help.
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Old 08-10-2009, 06:28 AM   #11 (permalink)
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For me, I had to change my playmates, and my playground.
That was challenging, everyone I knew drank, and used drugs, some more, some less than I. The problem with my friends is that it was the common thread that held us together.
The problem with family is that we had many common things, yet over the years the drinking had become a common pattern to all our activities.
I had to let go of these relationships for a time. The friends fell apart.
The relationship with my family apeared to fall apart for awhile as well. Over the years I have worked at practicing acceptance, and taking the advice from others in recovery about having a plan b, always having a way to leave when I need to leave. Sixteen years later, this last weekend, we spent three days with family members working on building a barn for one of my sisters, we all stayed in a cabin together, and after work each evening they drank, while I showered, ate some supper and did some writing in the bedroom, and then fell asleep. During the day as we worked, I got time to chat with each person and laugh and connect as we did this job or that job together.
Their drinking never bothered me a bit. They all were ready to go to work, and worked hard. Some were not feeling too great but as the day went on, everyone enjoyed the time together and we got that barn built!
The cool thing about my own change in drinking is that I have brought the choice into view for my entire family. A choice of not drinking that was never there before. It was always assumed that everyone drank. Today, it is as though there is now permission to choose for all the cousins and aunts and uncles.
You may be surprised to find that what you think others around you think, is not the case at all! Even so, what others think is none of my business. I am responsible today for my own thinking:-)
Much love and light to you!
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Old 08-10-2009, 06:55 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Hi Midton, very glad you found SR.
I was a binge drinker for years, very similar to you and then became an every night drinker, most of the time blacking out. Alcoholism is progressive and will increasingly cause more and more problems in your life.
Keep coming back and posting here; we all understand. My best advise is stay sober for today... don't look forward, don't look back, simply stay in today and when tomorrow comes do the same.
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Old 08-10-2009, 06:59 AM   #13 (permalink)
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but rather when I start I can't stop.
Hi Midton,

That was me! Once I got the 'taste' after my first drink, I'd have no choice but to carry on, and on, and on, etc.

Now, it's not my place to tell people if they're an alcoholic or not, but I am an alcoholic and this was one of my problems. I couldn't not have the first drink, then I couldn't stop, then the next day I'd repeat the process.

AA and the 12 Steps was the only thing that worked for me. I also suspect you're living in Japan; that shochu is a Japanese drink I think (I'm half Japanese) which may pose a problem for you if you can't understand the lingo (I'm sure they'll have AA meetings in Japan though; they like their booze the Japanese).

But I can point you in the direction of on-line AA meetings; if you fancy a try of it; it comes highly recommended by me. PM me if you'd like any further information regarding this, or anything else.

Regards,

Tosh.
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Old 08-10-2009, 08:15 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Hi Midton, Welcome to SR! When I first got sober I I was constantly thinking "I wasn't as bad as these other people" but as time went on I realized more and more the things I DID have in common with them. SR is a great outlet.
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Old 08-10-2009, 07:33 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Thanks for all the nice responses. I know that flaming is against the rules but it is still nice to open myself up on the internet and not be flamed. Here are a few of my thoughts after reading the posts.

1. The fact that people who have gone through this think that I am actually quite bad has made me feel all the more ashamed and slighlty depressed. But it has given me even more resolve to suceed. I appreciate the honesty. I also realise that I've been a binge drinker all my life even when I was young and it seemed fun. Just recently I have been getting worse and I hope and pray that I've nipped it in the bud before things got really out of control. I realise with clarity all of a sudden that me and drink don't work and that I can never drink again. I am almost happy with this realization and don't know why it took me so long.

2. I didn't drink Sunday or Monday but don't feel I have started on the road to sobriety as I never did drink on these days and seldon on Tuesdays. I feel anxious to really get some days/weeks under my belt.

3. In the past when I quit for a week or so it was to clean myself up until the next Saturday. I never had the long term goal of sobriety. I now do.

4. Wolfchild wrote about withdrawel symptoms and this had really concerned me. I am a binge drinker and before when I stopped for days or even weeks I simply quit. As far as I know I had no symptoms. After reading this I do feel tension in my left arm and can sense my blood pressure rising, but that might be because I'm now scared of getting symptoms upon quitting. What kind of symptoms should I be on the look out for and when are they likely to occur?

5. Normally after a Saturday night binge I feel really anxious, depressed, self-loathing and whatever the next day. On Monday however I usually feel better. I joined this site on Monday and it's now Tuesday and I still feel pretty bad but I'm hoping the anxiousness is more excitement about the next, better stage of my life. I also went to the gym this morning and did my normal run. For some reason the stories I read yesterday on this site, both positive and negative were buzzing through my head. I had my best run in months.

6. Tosh, I think I'm going to try this with the help of this site rather than an online AA group at present. I don't want to make any committments to people that I can't meet. If I fail then I will take you up on this offer. I hope to use this site for encouragement, especially when I am or might be tempted.

Thanks again.
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Old 08-10-2009, 08:08 PM   #16 (permalink)
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4. Wolfchild wrote about withdrawel symptoms and this had really concerned me. I am a binge drinker and before when I stopped for days or even weeks I simply quit. As far as I know I had no symptoms. After reading this I do feel tension in my left arm and can sense my blood pressure rising, but that might be because I'm now scared of getting symptoms upon quitting. What kind of symptoms should I be on the look out for and when are they likely to occur?
Hi Midton

It's a public board - it's important for us to stress here you can suffer serious health risks from withdrawal, and you should always check with your doctor to be totally safe.

But it's a 'can suffer serious health risks from withdrawal' not a will.

Here's a thread detailing some experiences of detox from SR members. I hope it gives you a clearer perspective

http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...at-we-did.html

Having gone through a detox and having not seen a doctor, I heartily recommend doing so, especially if you're worried.

D
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Old 08-10-2009, 08:39 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Midton ... Thanks for being so open. SR is a great place for that. I have less than a month of not drinking under my belt. I've gone without alcohol for a month or more before, but I feel like it is going to be different this time. This site is the bomb! I would have a hard time going to a meeting right now, so it's a wonderful place to get support. Good luck and come back often.
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Old 08-10-2009, 09:56 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Dee74

Reading that link was terrifying. This is my third day of total sobriety and I have to say that I ain't anywhere as bad as that. Yes, I am anxious and yes, I suspect my blood pressure is up but that is about it. Most of the stories seem to be from people who drank hard daily. My binging, despite getting worse and the alcohol getting stronger, has always been punctuated with days of total sobriety. I suspect my body is used to going without alcohol for 2 or 3 days at a time. How it will react to a week or a month with no alcohol is a worry now.

The non-binging me is actually quite health-conscious. I hope this has helped me. Still I will speak to a family friend who is a pharmacist and get his thoughts.

Thanks
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Old 08-10-2009, 11:03 PM   #19 (permalink)
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It wasn't meant to terrify, but it is pretty stark yeah.

I started as a binger too.

I'm not convinced it was that much better or healthier than where I ended up as a daily drinker tho - yes I had 'days off' as a binger, but I also drank more in a shorter space of time...I probably ended up 'pacing' myself better as a daily drinker because I simply couldn't binge drink 24/7....but neither behaviour was healthy LOL.

Having been both, I don't downplay either. Its the same hell I think - just a slightly different experience.

D

ps just out of interest - why not see a doctor?
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Old 08-10-2009, 11:09 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Dee74

Reading that link was terrifying. This is my third day of total sobriety and I have to say that I ain't anywhere as bad as that. Yes, I am anxious and yes, I suspect my blood pressure is up but that is about it. Most of the stories seem to be from people who drank hard daily. My binging, despite getting worse and the alcohol getting stronger, has always been punctuated with days of total sobriety. I suspect my body is used to going without alcohol for 2 or 3 days at a time. How it will react to a week or a month with no alcohol is a worry now.

The non-binging me is actually quite health-conscious. I hope this has helped me. Still I will speak to a family friend who is a pharmacist and get his thoughts.

Thanks
Thats a wise idea, being on a public forum im not able to give you advise but I wish you well and God speed your recovery.
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