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Alcoholism has caused me financial chaos

Old 01-18-2010, 07:14 AM
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Alcoholism has caused me financial chaos

For the last couple of years that I have been in relapse I have been in denial over my finances. I knew what my spending budget was but I ignored it because I knew I couldn't help afford my binges.

I have a bank account tied in with a mortgage account with a huge extra borrowing facility with all bills/credit card being paid by direct debit so it has been easy (I drank away the pain) to ignore what has been going on.

I hadn't checked my bank account since November 2008. I have not opened my credit card statements and checked off receipts. All the bills and statments have been piling up unopened. It had got so bad that I couldn't even deal with the junk mail which turned up - I just slung it in the same pile as everything else.

I would quit drinking and bingeing for weeks at a time knowing that my spending was somewhere within my budget but instead I would "treat" myself to clothes, shoes, bags. I could shop for England!

I have been sober 15 days and I am full-out working the steps like my life depends on it. There's no way back for me now. I have worked really hard at my Step 11 (seeking God's will through prayer and meditation) which was lacking to say the least. I really have felt God's will guiding me.

This morning I knew it was time to take financial inventory. I was really scared but I actually wanted to do it.

I got out pen, paper, calculater and read last bank statement. I said "oh f***". Then I added up income, outgoings and said "oh f***" again. It was bad.

I thank God that I have done this today as next month letters would have started arriving which I couldn't ignore. I still have a huge pile of unopened mail which I will tackle in the next few days but I know where I am and where I am going financially. It is going to take years to pay off the money which I have spent recklessly....but that is OK. I still have a roof over our heads and there are people in far worse situations.

I will make a call later to share all the details and the exact nature of my wrongs and then onwards with the Steps on this. I do have some amends to make.

I do have a feeling of "how could I have been so stupid?" but I know that I was sick. This disease robs us of everything, including money.

Overall, right now, I have a tremendous sense of relief that I have faced up to something I have hidden from for so long. It feels good. And it feels good to share it. Thanks for being there, SR.
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:19 AM
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Great post, Intention!

This disease does indeed rob us of everything.

I am sure that facing your financial issues has been difficult, but I know for me, once I face something full on, it's easier to begin to take small steps to help the situation.
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:28 AM
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Thanks Anna.

Before starting this morning I read my For Today OA book. Today's quote was "The best way out is always through" by Robert Frost.

Very apt
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:39 AM
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OK wow! That post makes total sense and is sane! That's some quick work intention!

Just a question, please don't go off on one hehe are you working the steps with a sponsor? That was the only thing i didnt see you mention...i presume thats who you are calling...just me worrying i guess as you are making so much progress:-)
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Old 01-18-2010, 07:39 AM
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Congrats for the tackle. I never thought that part of the promises would come true for me. But, it did. It's the wording that we have to pay attention to. It says "the fear of economic insecurities will leave us" Not that economic problems will necessarily go away.

It's nice not to have that fear anyome. Just somehow knowing I will alway's get what I need and having it be enough. Part of getting there for me was not sticking my head in the sand and pretending the debt didn't exist. Even $10 a month on an old bill works wonders in relieving stress.

Awsome, isn't it!
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Old 01-18-2010, 08:07 AM
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I am in the same boat. But at least sober I can start to deal with it in the right way!
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Old 01-18-2010, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by yeahgr8 View Post
Just a question, please don't go off on one hehe are you working the steps with a sponsor? That was the only thing i didnt see you mention...i presume thats who you are calling...just me worrying i guess as you are making so much progress:-)

Hi yeahgr8

I am not going to go off on one....I'm an alcoholic, I need to be told things straight - I learned the hard way that my way doesn't work :rotfxko

The person I will be sharing with is not someone who I have called as an official sponsor. She works the 12 steps, I call her daily. I trust her totally, she knows everything about me (all of step 4) and she will tell me the truth when I can't see it and she is very good at giving me perspective on my problems. She told me a few months ago that I had to sort the money out.......you can imagine my response, as I was still drinking. Does that make her a sponsor? I don't know. Is that enough? I don't know.


I also shared that I met my old sponsor who I had not seen for at least 8 or 9 years in my very first AA meeting. He did say that technically he was still my sponsor. We did talk but not for long because time was short. This is someone I also trust a great deal. I have been thinking about that as well.

I have been really working Step 11 particularly about indecision in the last week and I have found that many answers have been sent to me..... so I am being open minded on the subject.

It is very difficult for me to get to meetings because I am a single mum with no-one to care for my son in the evening, so day time meetings in school time are very few. I have not had a chance to speak to many people or hear many shares ...particularly on the solution (if you know what I mean) but I am keeping an open mind.

Any thoughts welcome.
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Old 01-18-2010, 10:53 AM
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Thats great my friend, sounds like a great set up to me considering the difficulties you have getting to loadsa meetings:-)

I went to a meeting tonight, was a big book study one and we read a whole chapter, 'there is a solution'! Then there were 5 people that shared afterwards, all been around for years and all amazing shares...totally solution and steps focussed...i've been to big book study meetings before but this was really hardcore and was amazing!!!! It's really made me think about things...oh and i realise i have loads to learn yet which is great too.

One of the guys said that he thought he had been born with an alcohol guage and it was stuck to must drink, when he hit his last rock bottom it reset itself and in that brief time he had, by working the steps he made concious contact with his HP and it is his HP that keeps the guage jammed right back ensuring it doesn't go to the must drink point, a daily reprieve...he said if he ever lost that contact with hsi HP it would go straight back to the must drink level again...wow!!!!!

don't go off on one, don't know why i said that...ahhhh must have been feeling sensitive when i posted pre-meeting! But thanks for not going off on one, not that you were going to anyway;-)
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Old 01-18-2010, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Alizerin View Post
It's nice not to have that fear anyome. Just somehow knowing I will alway's get what I need and having it be enough. Part of getting there for me was not sticking my head in the sand and pretending the debt didn't exist. Even $10 a month on an old bill works wonders in relieving stress.

Awsome, isn't it!
Hi Alizerin...how are you doing?

The insanity of it was that I thought by ignoring it, I didn't have to worry about it but I was more worried and frightened than I am today having faced it. Really insane.

I'm looking forward to paying off the old debt, however long it takes. My Christmas credit card bill is due in the next few days. I shall open it as soon as it is delivered. I feel like I can take on anything now. It's great
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Old 01-18-2010, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by yeahgr8 View Post
I went to a meeting tonight, was a big book study one and we read a whole chapter, 'there is a solution'! Then there were 5 people that shared afterwards, all been around for years and all amazing shares...totally solution and steps focussed...i've been to big book study meetings before but this was really hardcore and was amazing!!!! It's really made me think about things...oh and i realise i have loads to learn yet which is great too.
Hi yeahgr8

That's the sort of thing I would love. It's early days for me in AA but I've found this site immensely helpful as I have been unable to get to meetings. There's a lot of hardcore BB stuff which I love reading and learning.

One of the guys said that he thought he had been born with an alcohol guage and it was stuck to must drink, when he hit his last rock bottom it reset itself and in that brief time he had, by working the steps he made concious contact with his HP and it is his HP that keeps the guage jammed right back ensuring it doesn't go to the must drink point, a daily reprieve...he said if he ever lost that contact with hsi HP it would go straight back to the must drink level again...wow!!!!!
wow indeed. I now know that I was an alcoholic before I even took my first drink but it is definitely only a daily reprieve. It's not the time between now and my last drink but the time between now and my next drink that matters - I like that.


don't go off on one, don't know why i said that...ahhhh must have been feeling sensitive when i posted pre-meeting! But thanks for not going off on one, not that you were going to anyway;-)
You're definitely not on my resentment list today
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Old 01-18-2010, 02:09 PM
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The insanity of it was that I thought by ignoring it, I didn't have to worry about it but I was more worried and frightened than I am today having faced it.
That was EXACTLY my thinking for years and I still have to fight the tendency - like you, I've found that facing whatever is always preferable for me.

Thanks for your post Intention - and I'm glad you're on the right track to sorting this out

D
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Old 01-18-2010, 02:27 PM
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Good for you Intention!! I am also facing the things that I know I have to face inorder for me to be able to be the person that is truly at one and at peace within in himself.

This disease indeed will rob us of everything if we let it. It will also be able to give us a rebirth if we choose too acknowledge it and live in the solution and not in the problems.

I used to always have a tendency to want to bury my head in the sand too but now I am facing what I have to face sober and growing spiritually and in my confidence as a result. Feels great!!

You're doing great!!


Peace xxx
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Old 01-18-2010, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
That was EXACTLY my thinking for years and I still have to fight the tendency - like you, I've found that facing whatever is always preferable for me.

D
Hi Dee,

I am sure it will be preferable for me too. I have learned a very powerful lesson today and I don't want this lesson again. It is learned.
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Old 01-18-2010, 03:33 PM
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Thanks Neo.

Originally Posted by NEOMARXIST View Post
This disease indeed will rob us of everything if we let it. It will also be able to give us a rebirth if we choose too acknowledge it and live in the solution and not in the problems.
Absolutely. I am choosing a rebirth and living in the solution. Today.
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