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elevated liver enzymes and the painful realization of a potential problem...

Old 10-28-2009, 12:04 PM
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Question elevated liver enzymes and the painful realization of a potential problem...

I have elevated liver enzymes. After multiple blood tests my dr. suggest I stop drinking alcohol for 4 weeks. No problem I say and leave her office. Life hasn't been the same since.

I haven't been able to go 2 days yet and now find myself sneaking alcohol and wanting it more, thinking about it more. I am not an alcoholic but I can't live without alcohol. I don't drink until the evening 5 or so, but earlier on some days.

Wine is my beverage of choice and usually consume half of a magnum in a night. I drink everynight, everyday. It calms me, I feel happier, I feel like I am a better Mom to my 3 boys. I am a stay at home mom. My boys are 5, 4 and 2. They are what I do...who I am...I am crying now. I feel so sad.

I can't imagine life without wine...I cannot imagine where this will lead if I don't gain control. I am constantly thinking of having a glass of wine and at the same time trying to picture life without it. I am not sure which is scarier a life filled with empty bottles of wine or a life without wine. I say wine because that is my first choice but I have had other types of alcohol if there is no wine.

When I look back I don't remember not drinking except during my three pregnancies. After each the first thing I did when I arrived home was have a beer(I was told it helps when nursing, so of course I had a good reason). Then I would start right back where I left off nine months prior.

I could write forever about how I feel. I am scared and nervous and I am not sure where I fall in the wide spectrum of alcoholism. Maybe things are just like this now and will change as my boys grow, maybe I don't drink too much and shouldn't change anything, maybe I have a bigger problem then I am ready to face, maybe since I haven't hit rock bottom I still have time, maybe I am able to drink and raise my family and take care of my house..I've been doing it for years... Maybe someone can help me understand what happened to my world? I want these thoughts and feeling out of my head!!!

Jo
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Old 10-28-2009, 12:50 PM
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Originally Posted by dojoro View Post
I am not an alcoholic but I can't live without alcohol.
The problem with this statement is so obvious to me yet I can't find the words to express it.
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:04 PM
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I thought calming down with a drink made me a better mother, until I risked their lives by driving drunk with them in the vehicle.

I see now that it doesn't matter what label I put on my drinking problem, the fact was that it was a problem and I wanted better for me and for my kids.
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:07 PM
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Hi Jo

I remember - it was terrifying to think of life without alcohol - I used it as my companion for everything.

I didn't have a choice tho - I put off facing my problem for so long that I really only had 2 choices - stop drinking or die.

I took it a day at a time - with the help support and love of the people here and others, I committed myself to the promise 'I will not drink today'...it's been hard at times, sure but two and a half years later, I still haven't broken that promise.

I used to drink all day everyday...it's possible to leave all that behind

Start your day one any time you like Jo. We're here for you

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Old 10-28-2009, 01:08 PM
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Welcome to SR.
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:13 PM
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WELCOME!!!!!!!
You have found the right place. Please come back and make yourself comfortable here.
I did everything you are talking about: the 5PM thang and then some. I am a recovered alcoholic mom to two boys, a co-dependent sister to three alcoholic brothers and an aunt to four alcoholic nieces and nephews. I am also the daughter of two alcoholic parents.
How do you like your latte?
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:18 PM
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i never thought i drank much really till i had a blood test and my enzymes were 4 times what they should of been

i just stopped drinking right away

i was really depressed for a month

anxiety,lonley beyond belief

i felt like my life was over

now five months down the line i feel great and never want to drink again



sorry ramble over welcome to sr
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:31 PM
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Jo,

I can't tell you how good it felt for me to finally admit to myself I had a problem with alcohol. AA talks about this "pink cloud" effect, and that's exactly what happened to me. I said, "Self, this isn't normal. You've wondered for years if you're an alcoholic, and it looks like you are. So quit." And I quit. And it felt great making that admission to myself. The internal fighting stopped. I don't drink anymore. Yes, I get cravings, but I don't follow through on them.

I am a mom to three young ones as well. Same as you, I quit during pregnancies and then started up drinking again even when I was nursing.

The key to doing this well is not to just quit, but to quit and figure out why you were drinking so much in the first place, and fix those problems. You may think you're a better mom, but what you're likely doing is stuffing down whatever anger and frustration you have with the kids and ignoring it. So instead of being a fully present mother who can teach them limits and love, you're kinda smiley bubbly zoned out, not fully present for them and leaving them wanting more. (Maybe, I'm not there, so I don't know for sure ... just going on my own experiences.)

Stop thinking about never drinking again. It's too overwhelming. Just focus on not drinking today, and probably not drinking tomorrow. No matter what, don't drink today. You can always go back to drinking tomorrow if being sober is awful. My guess is, once you get through the withdrawals, it won't be so awful anymore.

Good luck. Keep coming back until you get this all sorted out.

Best,
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by dojoro View Post
I have elevated liver enzymes. After multiple blood tests my dr. suggest I stop drinking alcohol for 4 weeks. No problem I say and leave her office. Life hasn't been the same since.

I haven't been able to go 2 days yet and now find myself sneaking alcohol and wanting it more, thinking about it more. I am not an alcoholic but I can't live without alcohol. I don't drink until the evening 5 or so, but earlier on some days.

Wine is my beverage of choice and usually consume half of a magnum in a night. I drink everynight, everyday. It calms me, I feel happier, I feel like I am a better Mom to my 3 boys. I am a stay at home mom. My boys are 5, 4 and 2. They are what I do...who I am...I am crying now. I feel so sad.

I can't imagine life without wine...I cannot imagine where this will lead if I don't gain control. I am constantly thinking of having a glass of wine and at the same time trying to picture life without it. I am not sure which is scarier a life filled with empty bottles of wine or a life without wine. I say wine because that is my first choice but I have had other types of alcohol if there is no wine.

When I look back I don't remember not drinking except during my three pregnancies. After each the first thing I did when I arrived home was have a beer(I was told it helps when nursing, so of course I had a good reason). Then I would start right back where I left off nine months prior.

I could write forever about how I feel. I am scared and nervous and I am not sure where I fall in the wide spectrum of alcoholism. Maybe things are just like this now and will change as my boys grow, maybe I don't drink too much and shouldn't change anything, maybe I have a bigger problem then I am ready to face, maybe since I haven't hit rock bottom I still have time, maybe I am able to drink and raise my family and take care of my house..I've been doing it for years... Maybe someone can help me understand what happened to my world? I want these thoughts and feeling out of my head!!!

Jo
I haven't read the rest of the posts that others have written. You sound a lot like me. I drank in the evenings too. My drink was beer. I never went to jail, never lost a job, never had a DUI. People told me that I was a good father. Life was going great with the exception of my drinking. I had two years in a row where I received good promotions. I got my Masters degree. But I drank too much. There came a time when I couldn't imagine drinking more. I was spent. Although, I also couldn't imagine a life without alcohol. I couldn't live with alcohol, and I couldn't live without it! Something had to change. Six months ago I threw myself into local AA meetings and became involved with the group. I haven't had a drink in six months and I finally am living with hope that I don't have to drink anymore.

I had to change a lot about my life. Changed my hobbies, changed my friends, started limiting my time with family that drank, and started filling my evenings with reading about alcoholism.

I balked at trying AA for many years. I wish I wouldn't have but I did. It is scary to go to your first meeting. But if you make it to one keep going back and get to know the folks at the meeting. Trade phone numbers and get involved.

Your liver is starting to have some trouble, your drinking won't improve over time, it will only become worse. That is just what happens, tolerance increases so the volume we drink has to increase. I hope the best for you.

There are millions of people in AA for a reason. It works if you want it!
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:36 PM
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There are many ways to quit. AA is one of them. You can stop and stay stopped. I strongly recommend trying AA. Don't become apprehensive about the "higher power" part of it.
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:46 PM
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Welcome to SR!

You said "I can't imagine life without wine". I was in that place for many, many years (except BEER was my drink of choice). Just over four months ago I was in that same dark place...now I can't imagine my life WITH beer!

We can sit here and tell you all of our horror stories, but only YOU can make the decision to stop. It's that simple...and that hard.

Whatever you decide, you'll find lots of support here.

Keep coming back!
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by dojoro View Post
I have elevated liver enzymes. After multiple blood tests my dr. suggest I stop drinking alcohol for 4 weeks. No problem I say and leave her office. Life hasn't been the same since.

I haven't been able to go 2 days yet and now find myself sneaking alcohol and wanting it more, thinking about it more. I am not an alcoholic but I can't live without alcohol. I don't drink until the evening 5 or so, but earlier on some days.



I can't imagine life without wine...I cannot imagine where this will lead if I don't gain control. I am constantly thinking of having a glass of wine and at the same time trying to picture life without it. I am not sure which is scarier a life filled with empty bottles of wine or a life without wine.


I could write forever about how I feel. I am scared and nervous and I am not sure where I fall in the wide spectrum of alcoholism. Maybe things are just like this now and will change as my boys grow, maybe I don't drink too much and shouldn't change anything, maybe I have a bigger problem then I am ready to face, maybe since I haven't hit rock bottom I still have time, maybe I am able to drink and raise my family and take care of my house..I've been doing it for years... Maybe someone can help me understand what happened to my world? I want these thoughts and feeling out of my head!!!

Jo
You're not an alcoholic? But your liver tests are off the charts, you can't picture life without wine, and you wonder somehow where you fall in the wide spectrum of alcoholism. You think that maybe you don't drink too much (yet) and perhaps you have a few more years of failing liver function tests left so you can continue to drink a little longer. Rock Bottom? Jo, you passed that a long while back.

Jo, I'll bet the farm that you're an alcoholic. I know that the official AA liturgy says that only you can determine if you're an alcoholic. I'm gonna be a little abrupt here, but I do that sometimes. You have admitted in your thread that you're powerless over alcohol and that your life has become unmanageable. You have physical damage to your liver. You have a disease! It's not your fault that you have it, but it is your responsibility to do something about it. You have 3 boys to raise!

Alcoholism has four undeniable characteristics. It's a primary disease as nothing causes it but alcohol. It's a chronic disease - you'll have it for the rest of your life. It's progressive - it takes more and more to satisfy the need even if you're not drinking. If you stopped today and started again ten years later, the disease would have progressed as if you never stopped. And lastly, Alcoholism is fatal. You will die from it. Or, if you're really unlucky, you'll suffer from Werneike-Karsakoff Syndrome, a form of alcoholic dementia which leads to permanent institutionalization.

The good news? Yeah there's always good news. While you can't be cured, you disease can be successfully treated. The damage to you body will heal if you quit. Your whole outlook on life will change. You'll be (are you ready for this?) happy!

So first thing I would recommend is that you go back to your doctor and fess up. Leave no stone unturned. Then start going to a few AA meetings. The number in the phone book is manned 24/7 and they'll tell the location of the closest meeting. Some meetings are great, some stink. You've gotta find some you like. Try a Women's Only meeting for a start. But stick with it. Tell the folks that you're new and need help. But it isn't an easy task, as any member here will attest. We'll support and advise you the whole way. The first step is up to you.
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Old 10-28-2009, 01:55 PM
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Thanks for the replies. My liver enzymes are almost 6 times the normal level. So it is probably alcohol, right? I get I need to stop and I knew when I wrote I am not an alcoholic but I can't live without alcohol I was making a very "wrong" statement. I guess I meant to say... I don't think I am an alcoholic...I saw the movie leaving las vegas...it isn't me. That is what I like to tell myself. I am not that nieve. The idea of doing one day at a time seems doable because when I think of a life without alcohol I am truly overwhelmed and sad.

Right now I am finding it sooo hard. It is almost five o'clock, pouring rain out, screaming and fighting boys trapped inside, trying to cook dinner, house is a disaster and I want a drink. I have no wine but there are other options. This is so hard. I feel a drink will help me tolerate this chaos. I can't leave, take a bath or otherwise distract myself. I am here in the midst of insanity and I know a drink will make it better. UGHHHH!
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Old 10-28-2009, 02:00 PM
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I too was a wine drinker. It started innocently enough, with a glass of wine before my two teenagers got home from school so I'd be 'relaxed' and not get into arguments with them. It didn't take long until I was drinking all day, every day. And when I realized I was hiding my drinking, hiding bottles and lying to my kids about how much I drank, I knew I had a big problem.

You said you're not an alcoholic but can't live without alcohol - I think that's a contradiction in terms. That's what makes an alcoholic: we can't live without alcohol. It seems to me that your drinking is not a 'potential' problem - it's here right now, in your face.

I'd recommend seeing your doctor and being honest about your drinking. Maybe even do a medically supervised detox. I hope you can stop drinking. You have a lot to live for and your kids need a sober mom.

Welcome to SR!
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Old 10-28-2009, 02:03 PM
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I don't think anyone should compare themselves to Nicolas Cage in that movie.

I have 3 kids, I've been trying to quit drinking for 2 years, i've been to 3 AA meetings in the last 2 weeks and they have done more for me than all my efforts in the last 2 years.

I knew that I was an alcoholic when I thought that my drinking was more important than their wellbeing.
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Old 10-28-2009, 02:03 PM
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I don't think I am an alcoholic...I saw the movie leaving las vegas...it isn't me.
LOL we come in all shapes and sizes - I like Elvis but not that much

Labels don't matter so much Jo - I don't know whether you're an alcoholic, but you have a problem right?

You need to starting working on fixing it
D
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Old 10-28-2009, 02:36 PM
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jo, dive in with your boys and get them engaged. give them a job to do, with you, or get on the floor and wrestle with them for 15 minutes. spend 15 minutes cleaning one spot in the kitchen, and another 15 minutes tomorrow. you can't get it all fixed today, but you can start participating around the house again and start engaging with your boys.

good luck. please don't drink today, OK?
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Old 10-28-2009, 02:58 PM
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Haven't had a drink. Dinner is done, now for baths and bed. Then time to sit on the couch and watch TV. Wine goes really good with that. Kinda dreading the stillness which is strange since I used to look forward to it all day and even rush bedtime so I could sit still and be one with my glass of wine and favorite tv shows. Your replies are enlightening and some have even struck a nerve but the truth hurts doesn't it. Every time I want to turn to the liqour shelf I check here first. Always a reply which gives me the strength to get through another 15 minutes or so. Thanks!
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Old 10-28-2009, 03:00 PM
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I know the feeling, you get home and the kids are wound up. The only thing you can think about is getting that first drink. Your nerves will ease with time. I didn't notice how wound up I was until I stopped drinking. Now I am very mellow, thanks to the help of my doctor. If the kids are wound up it doesn't bother me as much.

You are probably jonesing for alcohol right about now. Just make it till they go to bed. Then you may be able to calm down and relax a little bit more.

I do think you should talk to an expert. Along with AA I also see a psychiatrist. He has helped me a lot. He put me on SSRI's and they really help me. Anxiety was a major trigger for me to drink.

Hang in there! You can make it tonight, that is all you have to think about. I have almost 200 days and if I start to get worried I just focus on making it until the liquor stores close.

Do look into AA. Depending on your location you can go to meetings morning, noon, or night. Whatever fits your schedule.
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Old 10-28-2009, 03:06 PM
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It feels impossible, but it is not. Just hang in there. Have you talked to your doctor? Also, you could try something like Campral. Campral can be effective when used in conjunction with a twelve step program.

AA is a twelve step program.
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