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Old 11-14-2009, 12:42 PM
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Another friday/Saturday and I have struggled again.

How many people at the age of 23 actually got sober?

Sure i'm sober but it seems that in-order to achieve this week in and week out I have to stay in and just while away the time whilst all the time pining for the exhilaration and just general enjoyment of just socialising with people and boozing. I really cant see how i am going to be able to go out mixing with people and really enjoy it without booze being involved in many ways tbh. Sure most people aren't alcoholics but I just want some fun back in my life. Everything just seems boring and mundane and to be plain truthful I miss drinking in all honesty.

The reality is that the sort of person I am and my personality is that of a drinker/drugger in many ways. I find I ain't got jack all in common with people who are sober but choose to be sober but aren't alcoholics. I always said never to trust someone who doesn't drink.

everyone in AA I have met is pretty much 20+ years older and what they 'have' seems so boring and mundane too. I guess i can't live with booze and I can't live without it. It ain't really so much about the booze but the mindset/philosophy of people who are "on the sesh" compared to the sober mindset. I feel uncomfortable with the "sober" person I have to be as at heart I am still the rock n.roll person who loved to be "on the sesh". (English phrase!lol!)

I am just speaking truthfully and I have not drank neither will i drink today now but it just feels like my life is just mundane and just so polite and boring. I guess only people who live in the UK, particularly certain areas, will understand what it truly means to comprehend being 23 and tea-total. I am aware that I have to stay away from that first drink but I want to be hanging with people and socialising and to be frank I am finding it hard to comprehend a life which is just feeling like this.

Do you people who say that you would have wished to get sober at 23 truly mean that or can you just say that because you had plenty more years of drinking in you. It is easy to say it but when it comes to it it just feels like my "fun" is all over. I am struggling to comprehend a fun future at times tbh.
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Old 11-14-2009, 12:46 PM
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It might seem boring Neo but it is better than the drama of being wasted and waking up not knowing who you have hurt, embarrassed and not wishing the night had never happened. You will find other things that make you excited, you now have the opportunity to try things you might otherwise have never thought about. I wont make suggestions for you, you will find those things yourself. And getting sober at 23 is awesome - you have the best of your life ahead of you - now go out and find who you are!
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Old 11-14-2009, 12:48 PM
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Well, I got a couple years on you, but...

Actually, just that. It's only a couple years, and I can totally relate. I don't want the "boring and happy it's boring" existence... and I'm tired of being told I'll like it when I'm there.

Seems like I gotta go through *this* to get *there*, and that's fine. But I'm designed for the fast/reckless life it seems... so how do I be happy doing the things on that [sticky] list of stuff to do? If I was a non-drinking 20-something, I wouldn't be gardening... would I?
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Old 11-14-2009, 12:57 PM
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I know what you mean about being sober in the UK at 23. Our drinking culture is frightening and in all honesty I could never achieve total sobreity when I was 23. But way more power to you if you do. If you realise alcohols a problem then best cut it out ASAP because further on down the line it only gets tougher. Best wishes to you
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Old 11-14-2009, 01:24 PM
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You are a brave and honest person. That makes you pretty special for a 23 year old. I know exactly what you mean and what you are feeling. You have already admitted you are an addict so this one shouldn't be so hard. If you continue drinking, by the time you are 30 perhaps you will still be fun to be around. By 40 not so much. By 50 nobody will want to be around you (except other alcoholics that have no life). You would have already lost all your money, family, and God knows what else. You will have a life full of remorse, guilt, failure and aches.

The steps you take now to control your addiction will make your future brighter and better. The "fun" you think you are missing now will the source of hapiness as you get older. It is a "quid pro quo".

I also detect that you are too romantic with your addiction (just like me). Drinking and hanging out are not the only things in life that bring thrills and satisfaction when you are 23. You can still live a thrilling life by chanelling your desires to other less destructive behaviours (I don't mean gardening or sowing). Try other things that bring excitement like bungee jumping, parachuting, or any activity that gets your adrenaline flowing.

Take care and good luck in your recovery!!!!
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Old 11-14-2009, 01:43 PM
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There are different types of people and different types of drinkers. Seldom been in a pub in my life. Started drinking at 25, always on my own. In binges with days, weeks or even months dry in between every binge. By 51 I had mega serious losses - even with 5 years sober in the middle. Before even the first year was out (at 26) the neighbours had big question marks over me. At the time of life I should have laid my foundations I was laying it with my addiction.

Why accept a view (and who is offering you that view?) that drinking is the only fun? Why accept a view that you can't form original views totally of your own on what is fun, post-23?

At AA meetings, you could come out with it and ask people to 'be 23 again' with you. They may not get it right but that should be a source of laughter I hope for all of you.

(When I was in my 20s I mixed with a wide age range but that was just me.)

I hope that before long you will meet other (say) under-32s who need your new message of recovery as much as yourself, togetherness in sharing a new message is very exciting.

Also us fogies when we say we wish we had stopped in our twenties, that is actually our weird undemonstrative way of trying to convey that we think it is cool, exciting, etc etc.

By the way gardening sounds way too racy for me ...
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Old 11-14-2009, 01:59 PM
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Thanks for your speedy replies. I guess it's that "saving for the future" mentality of sobriety that i am finding so hard to deal with.

Thanks for your post TB as well, i am glad I am not alone in what i feel. That's one of the hardest things for me with the whole "find new activity's which are less harmfull to do." It is real hard to comprehend doing these things suggested as tbh I know what I like and tbh most of the stuff just don't fill me with much vigour and enthusiasm. If I was into all of that then i would have already been doing it.

Would it be a terrible waste to throw away over 4 months of sobriety? It really aint so much about the drinking per se more that I feel like i have had to leave behind many of my views/ideas and things i found humour/kinship in to change to someone that your mother would like to have as a son but denying myself any of the gratification/release that i so crave.

I dunno I just don't know how much more of this i can take. Bad sh*t will more than likely happen if i ever did drink again but maybe thats what it's all about?
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:10 PM
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Hey OP. I'm 23 years old and I have 25 days sober. I understand what you mean but at the same time I think you just need to re-adjust your thinking a bit. I go to the movies, out to dinner, shopping, to meetings, and soon will be getting back into dancing/clubbing with my AA fellows and the few friends that I chose to remain in my life during recovery. At first, yes I thought I would have to give up the fun parts of my life but now I see that being sober actually enbles me to do more than before anyways. I suggest you get out to as many meetings as you can so you can meet lots of people and hopefully many in your age group! It'll take work and some adjustment but sobriety is as with anything in life what you make of it. Bottomline is do you desire to stop drinking MORE than you desire to drink? If so, you can find enjoyment trust me!
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:19 PM
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Re: Getting sober @ 23. Heck yea I wish I could have pulled it of 15 years ago at your age. I know that statement is monday morning quarterbacking, but I really feel that and know I would in a different and better place instead of having some struggles in month 4. See my sig. You can figure out a way to get enjoyment out of life w out using. When people ask my why I'm not throwing down; I simply say that it messes with my training (it does and has the ability to mess with so much more). I am now in a place where I can hang out with drinkers and have fun, joke and be merry. I have come to detest alcohol induced, meaness, sloppiness, and rudeness; but respect those who get a little tipsy and have fun with out a full meatmorphisis into Hyde. Some people should just not drink IMHO. I am one of them. I have also found a way to participate in life in increasingly meaningful ways whether or no it is in a context where there is alch avail. Find something to fill the void. You are amazing to be where you are at your age, build on what you have and don't let it slip away.
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Old 11-14-2009, 02:59 PM
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im 25....
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Old 11-14-2009, 03:11 PM
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How long have you had?

I am struggling to find many people who have for example over 1 year sobriety at a similar age. I'm sure they are out there but I think maybe many Americans/Europeans cannot appreciate the culture of England/UK. To say that you aren't gonna ever take a drink again, when this was what to all intents and purposes, gave you a reason go to work for and look forward to, is a pretty daunting thing, since literally everything revolves around drinking and bars/pubs. Even though i preffered drinking alone or at homes anyway is besides the point because without drinking I don;t really want to visit bars/pubs TBH deep down. That is the reality in England as a 20 something, Sure most people don't drink alcoholically ie- soon as waking from binge but many do get smashed and laugh about it.

I will feel better tomorrow morning as that is always the way it works but what is the point of always living for tommorrow? It is starting to do my head in.

Sorry for whining but at least if i type my feelings out here then I maybe helped somewhat by people who can relate/have been through it.
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Old 11-14-2009, 03:14 PM
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hello neo,you asked the question would i honestly have liked to have been sober at 23.well no,becuase i wouldnt be the person i am today.however if i had got sober at 23 i would have missed out on several arrests,bankruptcy,abortion,getting with men that i let beat me up because my life was completely unmanagable.losing my daughter because alcohol BECAME the most important thing in my life,indeed it became a necessity and i didnt even want to drink in the end,just had to.a stint in a phsyc ward.shaving all my hair off and slashing all my arms and legs.running away from my hometown.loss of several jobs or leaving them before i got caught out.the hangovers that were so horrific,dry heaving or indeed being sick,the drink i was forcing down my neck to get rid of the hangover meeting the stuff coming back up.diahriah,promiscuity.paranoia.anxiety,panic attacks.sweats.complete lack of reality.arguments,violence,lies,cheating,stealing. shall i go on or do you get the general idea? you have conceded you are alcoholic,what in the heck make you think it is going to get any better? maybe just maybe it might be the obsession that you have that is not been treated that one day you will be able to drink like other men.i am not going to wish you well whatever you decide to do,because in my experience in never ever ends well.but i will pray for you.this post is not meant to sound condesending and i apoligise if it does.but at the end of the day it is life and death we are talking about.i told myself all throughout my 20s when i did alot of party drugs too that i was having a good time.and there was a few occasions,but it was when i got sober and did and inventory and cleared the wreckage of my past i saw how deeply tragic it all was.there is a difference to being sober and just not drinking,and we have to work for it.i started by minding my own business about what others had or didnt have,it didnt matter,however what did was my life,and i mean real life.i see the good in the most what you call "mundane" things these days.its how you percieve things.and believe you me,an untreated alcoholic mind will tell you all the bull in the world to get you to drink.your head is lying to you.
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Old 11-14-2009, 03:22 PM
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Australian culture is very similar...yet, while I smoked pot socially I actually didn't 'drink' in our sense at 23 - the very occasional beer at most....

I had a great life - parties, pubs, gigs, friends....and drugs weren't a fundamental part of that at all for me....

Then things happened....and I started my 'serious' drinking at 25. Buh bye 15 years.

I don't know how you convince yourself that you don't need alcohol to be who you are, or indeed who you want to be, but I wish you luck with it Neo.

I wish I had had your insight, courage and foresight at 23 - coulda saved myself a whole lot of years and a whole lot of damage. Don't blow it - who you are and what you have is awesome, mate.

D
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:00 PM
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Neo, take it one day at a time. Keep an open mind and don't limit yourself to some bar/club atmosphere as your sole source of gratification. Most can have that luxury at 23but unfortunatly you can't do the same. It is a reality that you have assume. Your addiction makes you different.

Like I told you before, you are too romantic when it comes to your addiction's atmosphere. Once you realize this, you will start to control your romantic feelings. Eventually, you will find a new love (hopefully not another drug!) and replace the love for the "bar life" with something that you can safely handle. Addiction is just like that girl/partner you CAN'T bring home to mum.

Please don't give up!!!!!!
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:01 PM
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Hi Neo, just had another couple of ideas ...

Firstly what son anybody's mother wants is her business alone not yours or mine.

Secondly 'in my younger day' pubs were quiet places and there weren't many of them (and mainly in residential areas at that). The culture you rightly point out was brought in in the last ten years as a business policy.

Thirdly as EW tells, one can still go along while the others have their beers and enjoy the conversation - if it really is sparkling - which sometimes it is - over one's orange juice or cola - if one can afford it.

Fourthly don't think you have already had all the ideas you will ever have about what to do with your time.

And every time you pick up you will have progressive losses. I told you about mine a quarter century along, but those earlier were terrific, I had forgotten; also they won't be the same as Charmie's,

The personal stories in the BB 4th edition plus those in "Experience Strength and Hope" which is personal stories from 1st - 3rd editions not in 4th ed., plus the stories in 'Share' magazine plus the stories you will hear over a period in the rooms can give you a better sample ...

Also a better sample of the refresshing fulfilling feeling of relief we are growing into ...

We all have dull days. Why tell ourselves it will be dull before it starts?

What would be exciting for you at 23 you would have done it already you say. But you don't know about 24 yet.

Dabbling in AA and-or recovery based environments you risk undergoing life changing experiences (of an educational variety maybe)

Sometimes quickly sometimes slowly. Wait for a bus. At the time, each moment has an infinite existence. There is still no bus - - -

You're not saying that at 23 you have become set in your ways ... ?

Don't like the 'image' of the types of people you see? Evolve a new image then. Draw on Greater Power to give you what you need ...

Sense of time is only that, a sense ...
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:24 PM
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Hey MDB79 thanks for the reply. I think thats one of my major problems. I think if i could find a girl that i really liked and she really liked me then I may have the hole in my soul, or whatever it is that i feel, filled. But I ain't never had that and I have always used booze/drugs to get my kicks TBH.

I am very shy and scared to try to even attempt to try to find a relationship, also I only meet the people I see at work and meetings as I obviously don't go to pubs/clubs to try to find a girl or whatever as I have been staying away from that first drink for 4+ months. My social life became non-existant whilst drinking pretty much anyway but I am feeling that I can't see how it's gonna improve.

When i start to think about myself and things I just tend to get a f*ck it mentality and that I ain't never gonna find anyone as I ain't like most people so i may as well just get smashed and stop fighting, even though I surrendered. It just feels wrong to be doing what I'm doing ie- living at home and staying in every night/weekend at my age. I don't love myself but I have a love/hate relationship and my moods can go from one extreme to the other pretty quickly. I have also had bad depression in the past but as you know it's hard to differentiate between depression and alcoholism. I ain't going on no pills or nothing again though and tbh I can get over it myself.

I am feeling better now but thats because the day is nearly done and it's nearly bedtime. i am just getting a little sick of living for tommorrow and i am dreading feeling like this next weekend TBH. i try to keep it one day at a time and i guess that is how I am still sober.

I am finding it difficult to distinguish what is my own rational thoughts and what is my addiciton talking, if that even exists, afterall it is still my own mind isn't it. I suppose I do romanticise drinking but isn't that because I truly enjoyed it, even though it was fleeting and very destructive? It is my romantic stories and tales of my past that I love talking to people about and I think that is what's difficult. I sometimes wonder whether I just think way too deep about things and that I created a self-fullfilling prophecy for myself with my alcoholism/drugs.

Deep down I always wanted to drink the next morning really i guess, although i suppose only after i got introduced to it. It is strange what i romanticise, i often think about how I enjoyed just sitting in my bed at 6.30AM and watching the sun come up and cracking a beer and feeling the smile etch onto my face as the booze hit. I guess only a true alcoholic could ever understand. I think I am just pining for booze and it's effect and that I am in mourning still.

Most people just will never understand the power that booze had/has on certain vulnerable individuals. it runs so much deeper than merely the act of chemical being consumed.
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:30 PM
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IMO I think you've hit on it - you feel you still have a hole to fill.
Nothing external can do that Neo - no drink, no drug, no gf is that powerful.

This is the brass tacks of recovery - beyond the drinking/non-drinking bit...

you gotta take a look at your self and your life, and try to work on filling that 'hole in my soul, or whatever it is that i feel' yourself...

Once you do that? Everything else is gravy, man

D
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:38 PM
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Don't know where in the UK you are, but I just got back from a fun saturday night with two women from AA. One is 21 and has been sober 2.5 years. I am 28 and just starting. The other is 37 and has been sober 9 years. In the young persons meeting I go to, there are a few under the age of 25 and sober a few years. So they do exist.

I understand about the pub/drinking culture here, especially at that age. I can imagine it must seem hard and can't really offer any advice. But hang in there, there are other sober people your age, and the ones I have met so far are really fantastic.
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:40 PM
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Thanks again Dee for your reply. Thanks also to you Found for bothering to construct a well thought out reply.

You see deep down I know that your right Dee. I know it but that ain't to say that its easy. My thinking goes from relative clarity to desparate and "rabbit caught in the headlight" type panic (or whatever the saying is "!haha) very quickly.

I know too drink again would resolve nothing and would be conceding defeat to alcohol. but at the same time it somewhat pains me to think it has gone... i guess thats only natural though. Man "normal" people dont know what an absolute mind-f*ck all this sobriety lark is !haha.

Thanks for listening to my whining... xxxx
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Old 11-14-2009, 04:54 PM
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Hey Neo.

I understand, I really do. I'm 29 and sober about 3 months. You've got 4 months yeah? I think it's very normal and to be expected to long for "a lost love" that's been there for many years and wish for "her" to come back. But she's changed you know. It's not the one you fell in love with anymore and she's not even that beautiful. It's just the memory of her that's haunting you. And it will keep on haunting you for a while still. But you'll get by, and you'll move on to new things and then suddenly you'll find she's only a fleeting memory and you don't really nee her anymore.

That's what I hope for, anyway..and I believe that

All the best
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