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I need to stop

Old 12-26-2009, 04:59 PM
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I need to stop

Heavy drinking has been a part of my life since I was in college. Every weekend I would end up drinking huge amounts of alcohol in the weekends, which wasn't unusual I guess, and waking up remembering nothing of the "fun" we had the night before. It was always a social thing back then though, and it wasn't as if I was the only one.

When I graduated and moved overseas to work, this pattern continued. Alcohol was cheap and accessible where I was living. Same thing - sober during the week and then getting hammered during the weekend. The difference was, I was often doing this by myself in my apartment - coming home with a 12 pack, finishing it off, and then going out to buy more.

Then I went travelling for an extended period of time. While travelling, I would always end the day with beers in a local bar, or a bottle of wine I brought back to my accomodation. Drinking had now become a daily habit.

When I returned from travel, I resumed this new-found habit. It wasn't too bad at first - I came home with 3 cans of beers every night. (I was also drinking more heavily in the weekends). Then that became a six pack every night. Then two six packs every night. I woke up every morning and went to work hungover. God knows how I kept my job - I was usually unable to work effectively before the afternoon.

The last year I've been drinking wine a lot - lately two bottles a night. That's 16 standard drinks a night. That's 112 standard drinks a week! I feel terrible. I don't read any more. I watch TV but don't remember anything I have watched. I chat to friends online, but have no recollection of the conversation.

I had my first alcohol free day in years on December 25th (Christmas). I don't know my I chose Christmas. It's been two days without a drink, and I'm starting my third. Waking up without a hangover has been a revelation! I feel like I've slept better - I'm even dreaming! I haven't dreamt in years!

I'm determined to get through my third day!
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Old 12-26-2009, 05:02 PM
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Welcome!! Congratulations on making the decision to quit. When I gave up booze last December, I just wanted to be sober. I never realized that my life could and would be so wonderful!! Stick close to SR, this site was a major help in my journey.
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Old 12-26-2009, 05:06 PM
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Welcome to SR John. I started young too, but my friends didn't continue in life as I had. Glad you made the decision to be sober. Good for you and again, glad you joined SR. It has helped me tremendously.
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Old 12-26-2009, 06:25 PM
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Welcome to SR, John. Finding this forum was a turning point for me. Keep posting and let us know how you go. If you find you are struggling to stay sober, I recommend checking out AA. Many people stay sober on their own, but some of us need a little more help. Well done on three days without drinking. Isn't it great not to wake up with a hangover and be functional all day? Alcohol is a depressant and interferes with sleep so not drinking goes a long way to feeling better just in general.
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Old 12-26-2009, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by John1979 View Post
I don't read any more. I watch TV but don't remember anything I have watched. I chat to friends online, but have no recollection of the conversation.

Oh boy, that was me. I would watch movies, but have no recollection of the endings, ever. I didn't pick up a book. I made phone calls I didn't remember and embarassed myself thoroughly. I am so grateful to be able to enjoy these things again. Books had always been a passion of mine throughout my life. Since I began recovery, books have once again taken a prominent position in my life.
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Old 12-26-2009, 08:08 PM
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welcome you've come to the right place...
come join us in the "class of december 2009" (in the new to recovery forum)! and congrats on making the decision to stop.
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Old 12-26-2009, 08:14 PM
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Welcome to SR, John. This place can save your life....literally.
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Old 12-26-2009, 08:14 PM
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Your post struck a chord with me too John.
I don't recall large swathes of the 90s...one of the best gifts of recovery for me is total recall...and interest in my passions again

Welcome to SR - you'll find a lot of encouragement and support here

D
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Old 12-26-2009, 08:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
..one of the best gifts of recovery for me is total recall...
You got a movie for getting sober Dee?Heck, I got nuthin!!! LOL (kidding, kidding)

But seriously, welcome John!Your post struck a chord with me too.I can now enjoy reading and movies and remember them instead of having huge blank patches in my memory.It was so awful. I love being 'present' now in my life-my conversations etc.

I'm really pleased you've decided to stop, and you will find so much support here.Glad you joined us!

Jules
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Old 12-27-2009, 05:12 AM
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Thanks so much for your support guys. This third day has actually been quite hard.

I've made plenty of plans to quit before and it usually goes a little something like this.... I abstain all day and around about 9pm I think, "Screw it, I'll go and buy some booze and I'll quit tomorrow. After all, it's only one day we're talking about."

Of course, this happens the next day. And after a few days I've forgotten my original plan.

It was almost like this today. I came really close to getting in the car to buy some booze. Somehow I stopped myself, and since it's 1am now there is nowhere open to buy anything, so I'm safe for one more night. That's three days!!

I think it's going to be tough tomorrow.
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Old 12-27-2009, 05:33 AM
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My heart rate has seemed to have significantly lowered too. I'm not sure if that's a symptom of being sober. It seems to be a very drastic change after only three days. Maybe I'm just imagining it.
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Old 12-27-2009, 05:37 AM
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Hey Man-
You're on a roll! Yeah this day may be hard but you have made it so far don't screw it up- from my experience around day 3 or 4 the WDs really ease up. BTW I drank and did all sorts of stupid things in my past, and my life doesn't sound far from yours except different businesses early on. My business then had about 99% drug/alcohol addicts then, and I of course participated. I have changed businesses and am trying to quit also. Went 7 freeking days then had 2 glasses of wine that I didn't enjoy because I knew what it was going to turn into.

I am pulling for you. Hang in there! We are all trying!!
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Old 12-27-2009, 05:57 AM
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What a present you gave yourself! I was socially very shy but got to an AA meeting and found very understanding people who helped me alot and became lifelong friends. ow.....a miracle on Xmas....
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Old 12-27-2009, 04:55 PM
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John, your post really hit home to me as well. I was also a 2 bottles of wine a night person, the tv, the phone calls, the online conversations. Yep, all me. So glad you have decided to do soemthing. I found the first few days ok for me days 5 to 10 were really difficult. Stick with it, and really think about giving AA a call, its not at all what I expected.

Love
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Old 12-27-2009, 05:03 PM
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John, you're a wise man - you won't be like me, insisting I could control it & losing 25 yrs. of my life. Always seeking the euphoria of my early drinking days, never once finding it. What a price I paid. This never has to be you - be proud of yourself, and welcome to the family.
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Old 12-28-2009, 02:20 AM
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End of day three. I'm feeling really good! The thought to go out and buy some booze has crossed my mind, but it's not too bad. What I'm left with is a lot of time to fill - from waking up earlier and being lucid in the evenings. I'm trying to fill it up with exercise and reading. Thanks for your support guys!
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Old 12-28-2009, 04:07 AM
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Congrats on day 3! I know what you mean about all that spare time. I watched the entire 7 seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in my first few months of sobriety. I also filled up time by going to AA meetings and getting to know some sober alcoholics. Helping other people stay sober has helped me stay sober. I couldn't do it on my own and god knows I tried. Posting here on this forum was a huge help when I first tried to get sober.
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Old 12-28-2009, 04:14 AM
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Awesome to have 3 days sober, good on you and well done!

I related to your story too, the progression from weekend binge drinking in my teens to drinking more and more frequently as life went on. I got 5 weeks sobriety through AA at one point then decided I would "just be careful" and manage my drinking better.

I noticed that when I went for 3 or 4 days without a drink I would hit it way too hard, drink too fast, get TOO drunk and really ruin my night (and other peoples). So to manage this better I decided to drink more often to keep it in my system!! I would have a few beers or wines every day, then I could drink steady on the big nights and not totally obliterate myself ... it worked ... for a while! The few glasses quickly became a bottle, half dozen became dozen, then I could drink a bottle of wine and feel nothing ... became 2 bottles. So basically I was getting drunk 3, 4 sometimes 5 times a week in the end. On and on and on, for weeks, months, years, I drank like this. Very sick with hangovers all. the. time. As soon as I felt well enough I drank, sometimes I drank on still feeling sick ... was ok after the first 3 or 4 drinks. It wasn't living ... but I don't have to tell you that.

I went back to AA after crying out silently in my soul for help one night. I didn't want to go back to AA, I remembered the first time round being misery ... basically because I had white-knuckled on will-power alone for those 5 weeks I was sober. This time was different. I knew I was powerless. I knew I couldn't do it. I had to rely on something else, something bigger than me. I surrendered. I started going regularly to meetings. To my suprise I stayed sober!! A week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks ... how was this working?? Because I actually felt ok ... it was the craziest thing!!

Now I'm 2 1/2 years sober and it has just flown by. Been an amazing journey so far, and I love it!!

Please don't sit around wondering what to do and how to fill in your time. You will drink again unless you take some serious action towards staying sober. It takes more than just a decision to stop, although this is a fantastic place to start. There is so much support and help out there, please pick up the phone today and talk to someone and get the ball rolling. Set a goal to do that one thing towards sobriety today.

Better still - look up where the local aa meetings are, (there's probably a website) and get straight into the steps ... you WILL get sober, but even more than that ... you'll discover life again, and the joy of living. Sobriety is so much more than just not having to drink constantly, but not having to drink is pretty damn awesome in itself!! If that was as good as it got I'd still be pretty happy with that. :-)

Take care
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Old 12-28-2009, 02:01 PM
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Hey John

Welcome to SR - I am fairly new myself and can say that what everyone else is saying is true.

This place does help and so do the meetings. I have been to a few now and walk out feeling so much better than when I walk in the room.

You are doing great - its a hard road - keep busy and dont pick up the first drink.

Oh and what everyone tells me was useful so may help you - dont pick up the first drink!
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Old 12-28-2009, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by John1979 View Post
I've made plenty of plans to quit before and it usually goes a little something like this.... I abstain all day and around about 9pm I think, "Screw it, I'll go and buy some booze and I'll quit tomorrow. After all, it's only one day we're talking about."

Of course, this happens the next day. And after a few days I've forgotten my original plan.
That was exactly me, but tomorrow never seemed to come.

I am really new this time around, too, and the more days I have under my belt the more determined I have become to stay sober. Doing it today is way better than waiting until tomorrow!
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