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Relapse: I am a hypocrite!

Old 01-18-2010, 06:48 AM
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Relapse: I am a hypocrite!

I am a hypocrite because I relapsed and lived a lie. I really want to call myself a newcomer. Despite 5 years of sobriety and clean time and a wealth of knowledge on the subject of addiction, I lied to myself, betrayed my wife and kids, decieved my fellow-professionals and clients. For the last two months I tried the marijuana maintenance program...which I know, is just a fancy name for "smoking pot on the side while pretending to be in recovery..." My wife found my stuff yesterday...I am lucky to still be living at home. Self-knowledge has failed me. Wow, this disease is truly cunning, baffling and powerful. I have come clean to wife, two teens, sponsor, therapist, pastor and a few close friends. I cannot pick up white chip in home town as it would affect my professional life. Must find a meeting someplace where noone knows me. Asked several other professionals whether they thought I was an impaired professional and they said no, as long as I pick up white chip, do a rigorous and thorough housecleaning, and rework my program again with a newfound willingness to be completely honest in all areas of my life. I am really tempted to do some serious self-loathing but know that is self-defeating. I know I am not special, just because I come armed with credentials....Dear Lord, please remind me that I am always powerless over my disease....I humbly ask for your guidance. May my ears be open to others feedback and suggestions....
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:07 AM
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Welcome to SR Fresh .. its the lies that keep us sick . ~ huggles Endzy ~
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:16 AM
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Welcome!

This disease is relentless, but you've found a great place for support.
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:25 AM
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Hi and welcome,

Having started working a 12 Step programme in OA back in 1999, I found myself relapsing a couple of years ago with my latest addiction which was alcohol.

I know exactly how you are feeling. I was ashamed because I should have known better alongside self-loathing and guilt. How could I face anyone at a meetings, people I have previously sponsored. I was a hypocrite. Note : Ego talking - I should have known better.

None of that matters. I've been welcomed at meetings with open arms. No-one has judged me. I've been on my knees admitting my powerlessness and working the 12 steps again. It feels great! Recovery is great.

Plenty of support here too
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:27 AM
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Welcome to SR and a fresh start on living sober.
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:46 AM
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I had to get that white trip three times. For me, the beginning was step 1,2,3 slip, 1,2,3 slip

My sponsor made me get up in front of everyone at the biggest meeting here in town and get that white chip three times. It was humiliating. However, hindsight is 20/20. It was more about humility. Letting go completely my ego and of being embarrassed. A show of complete surrender.

Although professional and livlihood issues would be another whole story.
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:35 AM
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Thanks for the replies and the unbridled love for another struggling addict. I would love to be able to pick up my white chip at my home group. Unfortunately, for this addict, picking up a white chip locally, could have repercussions for me professionally leading to repercussions for my family financially. Therefore, I have been advised by my sponsor who is a therapist, to accompany him to an out of town meeting where I will pick up my white chip. In the last 24 hrs, I have come clean about my relapse with my family, my own therapist, my sponsor (also an LPC) and my pastor. I have several other mentors in and out of the program with double digit sobriety, who I am in the process of contacting and informing of my relapse. I have agreed to take a 7 panel drug test 2x/month, do step-work with sponsor, counseling with therapist, couples counseling with my wife, and continue to attend Church 2x/week and AA mtg 2x/week, wife/family night 1x and the other two nights a week I am tied up with work obligations.
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Old 01-18-2010, 10:35 AM
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Old 01-18-2010, 12:13 PM
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Welcome to SR! I am glad you found it, as it's one of those places where it's "The more the merrier!" and I really mean that. There is so much support, love, guidance, and information. No matter where we're at, in our journey, we can always find people and things to relate to and learn here at SR. It's a very big, online place! LOL.
I am CrackQuack, a crack addict, 11 months clean. My birthday is February 3rd 2010 (wow, I almost wrote my naked birthday, just four days before, LOL). Anyway, I was there. I did the same things! I thought that by smoking pot, drinking just two or three drinks, or even popping an extra couple vicodins, I'd be in a much better place than where I was when I smoked crack. I thought "As long as I am not smoking crack, I am OK!" and that simply is not true.
While I totally agree with my uncle smoking pot, and would never judge him for it (recovering heroin addict with AIDS), this system was clearly not designed for me. I didn't switch addictions, but doing other drugs ALWAYS lead me back to smoking crack. I'd get that buzz off of pot or the vikes, and next thing I know, crack is in one hand, the stem in the other. Looking for a place to hide and a lighter to get it on.. Ugh.
I still hate it, but I've got to remember that none of it worked for me, and I was still lying and hiding.. Being sneaky. I had to surrender and give it all up. I still have SO much to learn, but I am clean and looking forward to learning it!
And I think we all will continue to learn, much about ourselves, and other people, places, and things. It's part of why I love life so much more now. There is so much to learn and I want to live long enough to learn as much as I can!
Again, welcome to SR. Congrats on getting right with nearly everyone (I understand, in a professional world, it's a bit tougher to do things like that, I do have a semi-professional thing I do that I could never reveal my addiction to, but the IMPORTANT people know and are there to support you). Get that white chip, where ever you need to, and you're doing the absolute right thing and getting back on track. :ghug3
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Old 01-18-2010, 01:13 PM
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Originally Posted by FRESHCLAY View Post
In the last 24 hrs, I have come clean about my relapse with my family, my own therapist, my sponsor (also an LPC) and my pastor. I have several other mentors in and out of the program with double digit sobriety, who I am in the process of contacting and informing of my relapse. I have agreed to take a 7 panel drug test 2x/month, do step-work with sponsor, counseling with therapist, couples counseling with my wife, and continue to attend Church 2x/week and AA mtg 2x/week, wife/family night 1x and the other two nights a week I am tied up with work obligations.
You've achieved so much in the last 24 hours. You have made a decision and started to take action. Keep on with the action......and every day you are going to feel so much better.

Those feelings of being a hypocrite will fade quickly as you get back into working the 12 Steps and the fellowship.

Keep in touch.
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Old 01-18-2010, 02:29 PM
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Hi FreshClay

I think this disease is relentless. I find I have to stay honest and keep in touch with others every day to stay true to myself.

I'm glad you're back on the right road

Welcome to SR!
D
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Old 01-18-2010, 02:34 PM
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Cunning, Baffling and pwerful indeed. As long as I remeber that then I'm OK. When I start thinking I've got it licked is the day I need to say I'm at my most vulnerable.

Thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-18-2010, 08:34 PM
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:08 PM
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A wise man recently said on this site that you cannot save face and save your ass at the same time. I can sort of understand your reluctance to pick up a white chip in your home town if you sincerely feel that there will be serious financial and professional repercussions. I just don't agree with it. What's your plan after you get the chip? Are you going to return to your hometown and participate is a recovery program? You failed to mention if you were already in a program, but since you have a sponsor then I assume that you are. And if you are, then your integrety is suspect if you don't admit to the group that you haven't been honest thus far in your recovery.

Your "other professional" friends are advising you to be thoroughly honest is all areas of your life as part of the requirement to avoid being considered an impaired professional. I think I'm just a bit confused here. You're being advised to pick up a white chip under the cloak of invisibility in a place where no on knows you. That's not being honest. After taking this first step in your new recovery plan, then you jump on the honesty wagon, do a rigorous housecleaning and all that stuff? You're building a house on a clay foundation, my friend.

You've mentioned your extensive knowledge of the subject of addiction and the fact that you hold some credentials in that area. Unfortunately, all the knowledge of addiction and all the credentials in the world aren't going to help you here. The issue isn't addiction, it's recovery. Two separate things. Trust me, as I've been in your shoes, that your knowledge and credentials are worthless. You need to learn the process of recovery, and complete and total honesty is essential here. Lurking in strange alleys to pick up a white chip so nobody finds you're not the person you had them believe you were is not complete and total honesty. I get the distinct impression that regardless of your pleas for guidance and acceptance, you're more concerned about your reputation than you are your recovery. I would suggest that your successful recovery is far more important that your professional reputation, and that such a recovery would be a great benefit to your reputation in the long run.
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:13 PM
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Welcome.....

sounds as though you have your plan in place
Hope it works out to benefit you and your family.
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Old 01-19-2010, 08:27 AM
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WOW, quite a response JoeDris!! Although it seems harsh, you are absolutely correct. It wasn't until practicing openness and honesty in all my affairs daily (to the best of my ability) that I started noticing some changes within myself. Sure there are some white lies or half truths to make myself look better in certain situations, but I am much more aware of them now and can rectify the situation.

As far as the OP, tell me what you are afraid of at your home group/home town meeting. You say it will affect your professional life, but as I see it any of your co-workers who are at this meeting understand what the second A in AA stands for correct? And if they are not adhering to it, they are not working a program and will relapse. And if coworkers are in attendance, wouldn't this be affecting their professional life as well seeing they are seeking help as you are? Maybe I'm not understanding. In any case you are correct, cunning/baffling/powerful as I am finding out more and more on a daily basis while working step 4. Just remember, you will do "WHATEVER IT TAKES" to remain sober. On a lighter note, what is an impaired professional? Haven't heard that phrase.

Ciao
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Old 01-19-2010, 11:05 AM
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Welcome back and good on you for coming clean to the people that matter. As far as the professional life is concerned, I understand the point about how you think it could hurt you. I also get what others are saying about whether it is totally honest or not to go to another town and pick up a chip.

You have to decide what you need to do for you. In my opinion, if it would really and truly hurt your livelyhood, and your sponsor and other professionals agree with that, I would do what it takes to protect that. As much as the second A in AA is supposed to be, it is not always the case. People do talk, at least in my AA. I understand that it is not supposed to happen, but anyone who says that AA is always and truly anonymous must be blessed with a city of saints that I have not lived in.

Just my .02 and congrats on the new start.
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Old 01-19-2010, 12:01 PM
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Originally Posted by joedris View Post
Lurking in strange alleys to pick up a white chip so nobody finds you're not the person you had them believe you were is not complete and total honesty.
I am ambivalent about your statement Joe.

On one hand I see the need for a professional in a small community to be assured anonymity... and yes we all understand what the second A stands for... But we also know that it's never guaranteed... and if one has a lot riding on it... well??? On the other hand, the OP came here and used the word "hypocrite" in his message title, and, given his post, it certainly seems to propagate the hypocrisy to go to another town for recovery, in his specific case. And hypocrisy and rigorous honesty do not co-exist well.

There is a third perspective not being considered.

I am a fairly high profile "professional" in a small town for nearly 25 years. I go to neighboring communities for AA. I don't consider it hypocritical. I always, every time, even in neighboring towns, run into people that know me. I don't mind. But, sometimes, I just can't share freely... not because of some fear of financial disaster or anonymity breach... but because I have a hard time sharing from the heart when there are young adults present who grew up with my own kids in my own neighborhood and they call me "Mr..."

Maybe someday... But I don't feel that I'm hypocritical. And I don't consider my home group (12 minute drive) to be a dark alley.

Mark
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Old 01-19-2010, 12:23 PM
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Back, in the day of old, when the government was less nosy as well as PEOPLE, in general, and there were fewer cameras and laws and such, anonymity was much easier to maintain. Now, these days, with everyone all up in everyone else's business (thanks to our government, our new snitch on each other policies -which is a WHOLE other thread I could ramble on about-, the media, cameras, the internet, and all that), it is not assured and there will be a person, in there, who is not working their program of recovery and respect someone else's right to anonymity.
Now, as a semi-professional racer (I was up and coming until I got hooked on drugs), I don't want all my racing buddies to know I am a recovering crack addict, but I also will not sweat it, if they found out. ALL of my VERY public profiles (Myspace, Facebook) mention addiction. However, had I already become a famous racer, you bet I'd be doing all I can to hide, from the public, my addiction. Not everyone needs to know. My friends and family, sure. But people JUDGE, often unjustifyable so. I'd hate to live in such a small town that everyone was giving me the nasty eye..
I can understand, kind of, both perspectives. You need to be able to trust that, everyone, in meetings, would be working a program of recovery and respect your anonymity. But there are many newcomers (most important persons, remember!) whom do not know and could ruin a professional career in an instant, and part of one's recovery might just be that career. It could be considered living a lie, but at the same time there are just instances, in this day in age, where it becomes a grey area because people have to constantly protect themselves. And, face it, no matter how much recovery you've got, there's gonna be one donkey's behind, out there, getting all high and mighty and judgemental when they find out you're an addict.
There can even be someone, there, that doesn't like you, and as soon as they see you pick up that chip, they get all high and mighty and not respect your anonymity. They may want your job position. Or plain just haven't learned to work the program.
I think it's respectable, to know the risks involved and make appropriate decisions. It's just one of those grey areas we're gonna have to deal with because, in today's world, more and more people are so super self-centered, they do things only for themselves without reguard to other's feelings. And it doesn't have anything to do with addiction, it's the person. *sighs*
IDK. I think the OP has made the decisions he's going to make and needs to make, according to his situation. And I am happy for him, but maybe the post about not picking up the chip in his hometown will give him something to think about. It may pertain to him, it may not..
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Old 01-19-2010, 01:15 PM
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I think a lot here are misinterpreting what I said in my reply. I think the OP should do exactly what he is instructed to do by his sponsor/therapist/Dr etc.

Just for the sake of my own opinion, I think it will be rather hard to go to an out of towner to get a white chip, then go back to home group and act as if nothing happened. It's a complete set-up for lying, or half truths if he is going to have to hide what he did in front of other professionals/nosy people. What happens if someone asks, how's your sober life, is everything going OK at home, are you struggling with any steps (obviously #1, maybe not the powerless part but definitely the unmanageable area) And, I understand it is NOBODIES business, but there will be the busy bodies, and that is where the dishonesty set up comes from. If it were me and my career depended on nobody knowing, I'd have to bite the bullet and go someplace else. I am in no way attacking the OP, I just don't understand how it is possible to go back to a meeting and act like it never happened. And it was never clarified....Why such a fear if co-workers are in the program. Wouldn't they be just as frightened of being found out?

Also, I know most people understand what the second A in AA stands for. That's why I followed up with And if they are not adhering to it, they are not working a program and will relapse.

Yes, it is not guarenteed but in the case of freshclay, there is no possibility of working an honest program at his home group anymore if this doesn't come out.
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