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Never thought I would google this topic!

Old 10-29-2009, 08:30 AM
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Never thought I would google this topic!

Greetings,

My name is Michael, I'm 37 married with 4 kids (3 that live with their mother my ex wife and 1 that lives with me and my current wife whose son I adopted). I see my kids every other day and every other weekend.

My growing up in a family of drinkers is so damn predictable and cookie cut that I won't even explain it. I'm a professional who knows through clients the risk of abusing alcohol. I've always been a "drinker", at first 6-10 beers a night after work (just like both my parents) for many years and then I started drinking Captain Morganís as I enjoyed the taste. Never had a criminal offense and alcohol never had a obvious effect on my work to co workers but there has been many times I went to work feeling hung over.

In the last 2 years I have been privately concerned about my increased drinking. I would pick up a fifth of Captain Morganís Monday through Wednesday, my wife would have 2 drinks and I would consume the rest of the bottle myself. After the 4th night I would take a night "off" from drinking. I guess I'd say I did this so I wouldn't feel like I "needed" a drink. Then it's Friday so I buy another fifth for Friday or half gallon for the weekend.

That was my routine for the last perhaps 3 years. In the last 6-8 months I told my wife we should slow down on the drinking, mine being the amount and frequently her being the frequency. She was fine with this, yet when she got home from work she would check the freezer for a bottle.

In the last 4 months I have done the typical red flag behavior. I would buy a fifth pour half in a empty pint and hide the half empty fifth somewhere in the house. My wife would think I was slowing down on my drinking and I was actually drinking the same. I've been doing this for about 4 months and drinking a fifth a night 6-7 days a week.

The messed up thing is I should know better, I've been trained to recognized substance abusers. The shame and guilt reached its crest last weekend when I found hidden empty fifth bottles I forgot about around the house. I have been thinking I was ok as I lost 30 pounds in the last 12 months due to running a few times a week and changing my eating habits, so things seemed fine to me right? This was one of my self explanations that I was not over doing it.

On this past Sunday there was no alcohol in the house, I decided it was time to change the drinking before I became addicted. I am actually scared that I am addicted. Today is Thursday and other than 1 glass of wine last night (which I could barely finish) I have not drank anything since last Saturday (nor has my wife). I feel no emotional or physical need for alcohol today but I have felt fatigued and a little foggy headed all week. By noon I need a nap and have gone to bed before 9:00pm all week (2 hours earlier than normal).

Whatís my point? I donít even know, due to my career I donít feel able to talk to anyone about this and have always been one to deal with his problems alone.

Michael
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Old 10-29-2009, 08:44 AM
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Michael,

Thanks for coming here. Trust that little voice inside you that is telling you you might have a problem. You are doing well, just like I did when I quit, but in a few days that voice will pop up and say, "Look at how easy you quit! Let's celebrate with another Captain Morgan's!"

Try to commit to some real period of sobriety. I've committed to a year, and am taking that year to work on the problems I've been stuffing down while drinking. Some AA meetings here and there, a lot of SR message boards, some self-help books, lots of deep conversations with my husband, and reconnecting with old friends. I am just about 40 days in, and feel great. I feel so good, I may never drink again. We'll see.

And I understand you on the career thing. We've all got job worries, for sure.

Best,
PL
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Old 10-29-2009, 08:45 AM
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Welcome Michael you have come to the right place. You will get alot of good advice here. I wish I would have done something about the red flags. You are ahead of the game in realizing you have a problem. That is the good side. The bad side is you are probably going to have to give up drinking. Your mind will probably tell you that you can moderate after awhile. I read and listened to what everyone hear has said. It seems like since you don't want to talk to anyone you probably don't want to go to AA. I am at 15 months sober and this site has been my recovery. You really do have to talk and listen to others who are going through the same thing as you even if it is only via internet. I am a 50 year old woman who didn't start my drinking career until my kids were adults. I'm still not sure if I am a true alcoholic but sometimes I drank like one so that is enough for me. good luck
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Old 10-29-2009, 09:15 AM
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Welcome to SR Michael, some folks just drink to much and when they decide to just quit drinking, they simply quit. Perhaps you are amoung those folks, then there are alcoholics which come in many varities, the common denominator is alcoholics when they decide to moderate thier drinking may for a little while, but some how seem to wind up drinking just as much as they did before, then they will try to quit totally and may have some success or none to speak of at all, but they find that they always seem to wind up drinking again.

Here is one of many test that are pretty good as far as indicating if one is an alcoholic or not Alcoholics Anonymous : Is A.A. For You?

The key to accurate results with any of these test is to be BRUTALLY honest when taking them.

If you find that you are an alcoholic hang around, ask questions, seek out a long term recovery program because if one is an alcoholic today, they will still be an alcoholic 20 years from now even if they reamin without drink the whole time.
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Old 10-29-2009, 09:25 AM
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Welcome to SR! You've found a great place for support and good info. Only you can say if you're alcoholic, but if drinking is creating problems for you in any way, best to give it up.
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Old 10-29-2009, 09:27 AM
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I don't have any advice to you except that's a hell of a lot of alcohol you're putting in your body. Some of us get in here due to brushes with the law, lost jobs, spouses, the list is endless.

The smart ones can go back and read what, they posted and are willing to make a change in themselves!
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Old 10-29-2009, 10:14 AM
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If you have a Big Book please read page 44.
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Old 10-29-2009, 10:37 AM
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How I envy you! You were able to stop because you know there's a big problem with your drinking. That you have a problem.

I knew that too but went on drinking. "Oh, I'll deal with it tomorrow, or today will be different, bla bla bla". What happened was that in a blackout I took a big bottle of valium, woke up in a hospital emergency room strapped to a gurney. I was very lucky, a friend couldn't reach me and came into my home, found me unconscious and called 911.

For some reason I decided to kill myself but 18 years later, I have no idea why.

Of course I wish I'd come in when I knew I had a problem. I wish I didn't have to almost die to confront my problem.
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Old 10-29-2009, 11:34 AM
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Good for you doing your homework on this.

I'm about your age with a 2.5 kids and a big time job. I'd recommend just taking 30 days off and journal your thoughts along the way. Read back to your first entries frequently.

This may sound like a PIA but I can assure you that alcohol can progressively push you into a deeper and deeper hole... one so deep you may be scared and overwhelmed to try to climb out of.

I think if I had just abstained for 30 days a few years back then I would have probably avoided most of my own personal hell... AND.... found out that I love being sober and I've got so much energy and motivation that there is no time to drink and no desire to be hung over tomorrow.

Nothing worse than getting drunk or hung over while being a parent, and that is what I did for tooooo long.
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Old 10-29-2009, 11:57 AM
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Great insights, thank each one of you. I could not go to an AA meeting without driving 2-3 hours away from where I work and live due to my job. Frankly I am not the AA type, that's a reflection on me not people that go to AA. Also, I don't think I'm an alcoholic, but I think I'm at great risk of heading in that direction. Then again perhaps I am, I will evaluate that as the weeks go by. When I take some of the test out there used to evaluate one self I tend to score just on the fence of being considered an alcohol.

At the very least I have abused alcohol for years, it's effected by marriage, how I interact with my kids and my motivation to do things I would normally be doing if I was drinking the way I have been.

My extended family has no idea how much I drink as I do not generally drink at all around them, they see me as a strong professional leader so I try and play that role publicly. I often view addicts as weak human beings (I know this is stupid) which is likely the reason I've ignored my own heavy drinking.

This site will be a great help to me personally and in my career. When one acknowledges they have been abusing alcohol themselves it makes it easier to feel compassion for the people I supervise who have similar if not worse additions/abusive behavior.

Michael
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Old 10-29-2009, 12:10 PM
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Michael,

It is absolutely true that you may not be an alcoholic but there is not one reason to be drinking that much liquor. You are killing your insides. I argue with myself on that. I was definitely affecting my health with as much alcohol as I was drinking. I wish I would have done something like quit for 30days. My ordeal was a little more traumatic but whatever it is keeping me from not drinking. You really do need the sober time to reflect on how bad the situation really is. Again good luck and keep reading and posting.
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Old 10-29-2009, 04:11 PM
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Hi Michael

Welcome to SR. To me the issue should be - is your drinking worrying you?
It obviously is. Labels and definitions can come later if you like.

I think you've found a good place to work some stuff out. Normal drinkers don't hide drinks to make themselves look good.

and yeah I'm a pretty proud guy too - the more time I spend here, the more it's reinforced to me that addicts are NOT weak human beings - addiction is not a character defect, a weakness or a moral laxity - accepting that helped me immensely in dealing with my own issues

Good to have you aboard Michael!
D
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Old 10-29-2009, 05:13 PM
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Old 10-29-2009, 05:23 PM
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hi and welcome to sr!

I'll just say here what I usually say and that's -
people who don't have a problem with alcoholism
don't come to recovery webpages.

I'm glad to read you didn't suffer any substantial withdrawal,
and that you're able to function with family and all that -
but I must include here
that in my years as a bartender -=
I witnessed first hand people
who 'took time off' from drinking
anywhere from a week to a year
and could do so
because they KNEW they were going to pick it right back up.

it's not for me to say if you're an alcoholic or not
but I will say up front
non-alcoholics
don't hide their booze.

they don't worry if they have a problem
they don't come to recovery websites
they don't need anyone's advice
whether they might have a problem or not.

they KNOW.
and we, as alcoholics - also KNOW.

we just try everything to get out of it.


Just my personal experience.
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