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Old 01-25-2010, 11:10 AM
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New & My Story

I'm brand new here...just discovered this site. I've been seeing a substance abuse therapist for a good month, but haven't reached the point of total abstinence yet. I have gone from nightly drinking to drinking 3-4 nights out of the week, so I guess that's improvement. What's that called, harm reduction? But, my goal is 100% abstinence, and I decided that last Saturday was my last night of drinking. He is also an EMDR therapist, with whom I will be working not only on addiction, but reconciling past trauma. But we can't start EMDR until I have at least two weeks abstinence.

So, Saturday was my last drink. I slept horribly last night and have a massive headache. Nothing new for me...I've been through the first week of abstinence before so I knew what to expect. It's the keeping abstinent after the withdrawal effects subside that I have the toughest time with. I start thinking, "see, it wasn't so bad. It's not like you had to be in the hospital for detox like dad did..." and I'd cave.

Talking with my therapist has given me some clarity that I am indeed poisoning myself and that I may not need hospitalization now...but that will be a reality eventually unless I change this. I'm going to see a psychatric nurse practitioner this afternoon to discuss medications to help with cravings. I'm hopeful that this is the beginning of a new life.

I'm 35 and have struggled with anxiety and depression most of my life, the likely result of genetics and childhood sexusal abuse. I drank occasionally in high school, but not much. Then I went to college and fell into a deep depression and experienced a lot of anxiety....until I discovered college parties. Then the anxiety disappeard...as long as I was drinking. The foundation for my later nightly drinking was laid. After college, whenever I had trouble sleeping or feelings of anxiousness, I'd drink. The few nights a week became more frequent, until I was drinking every night. Except for when I was pregnant with my daughter, I'd say I've been drinking a box of wine every 3-4 days for a good 10 years. Seeing that in writing is horrifying. How could I ever convince myself that it's not "that" bad?!?!

Part of me feels very foolish. Like, how could I end up here? I watched as alcohol destroyed my dad. He was also bipolar. His life became a revolving door of hospitals (he *had* to be hospitalized through detox), rehabs/psychatric facilites and suicide attempts. He died by suicide 5 years ago.

My daughter will be 3 next month. She is the absolute sunshine of my life. I never want her to have to go through what I did watching my dad dying little by little day-in and day-out. I want to be healthy: emotionally, physically and cognitivly. I just want to be comforatble being me. Sounds so simple. So why is it so hard to achieve?

Anyway, just wanted to introduce myself.

Sarah
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Old 01-25-2010, 11:17 AM
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Welcome to SR and congrats on deciding to live a sober life. Your child will never have to see her parent drunk/drinking and all the mess that can cause, as you well know.

It IS simple but not easy. There are many face to face support groups out there for those who want to stop drinking. THere are also many people who do it on their own. Some use this site as a recovery tool. Some read everything they can get their hands on about alcoholism and the knowledge helps them stay sober. There are also 'sticky' posts at the top of the page in the Alcoholism forum. Lots of info in those posts.

Whatever way you choose, I wish you the best. :ghug3
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Old 01-25-2010, 11:26 AM
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First, my hat is off to you for saying enough is enough. This road we are on is rough but we are here or looking for help because we know our lives are better and we are better people without alcohol. I will post my story shortly but I please know that we support you and to stay strong. It is a courageous moment to say I am done drinking and we each have our own reasons for doing so.

I wish you all the best but when you are at your weakest just remember your reasons for quitting and the better person you are without alcohol. You can do this!

Huggs - Kim
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Old 01-25-2010, 11:36 AM
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Your background sounds just like mine. Hopefully your therapist has some group sessions. Or, that you have a support system with like individuals.
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Old 01-25-2010, 11:47 AM
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Welcome

You are on the right track. Well done for stopping now.
Tapering down would have never worked for me.
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Old 01-25-2010, 12:09 PM
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Thanks for the welcomes. Oh, and I forgot to mention that my therapist is starting a group mid-Feb. that I will be attending weekly. I feel like I have the base support, or at least the beginnings of it, for once. I've tried to quit before just by willpower alone and all by myself, but haven't been successful.
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Old 01-25-2010, 12:30 PM
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Hi Sarah,

You've made a good decision to cut down and hopefully stop your drinking.

I also used alcohol to self-medicate anxiety and depression. What I found was, that the anxiety level was increasing and so was the depression because I was causing problems with my family and my life. Stopping drinking didn't stop the anxiety, but I learned how to cope with it. And, I have been taking anti-depressants for years now, which is necessary for me to level the playing field.
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Old 01-25-2010, 01:50 PM
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Hi Sarah and welcome to SR.

Within week, even days of being sober you will see how much you have been missing with your daughter. And by quitting you are changing her life completely for the better.

You do have a way to go but it sounds like you have some good support and a plan.

We are always here......also keep an open mind about AA. It can work in conjunction with your other support and it will open up opportunities to make friends who will be every step of the way with you.
Take care.
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Old 01-25-2010, 02:06 PM
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Hi Sarah

I identify with your post too - I drank all day everyday - but I 'wasn't that bad'. It's an insidious thing.

It sounds like you have a few irons in the fire as far as support goes - I think that's great.

For me, good support was vital to counteract the 'maybe I wasn't so bad' feelings
down the track

I hope you'll get as much out of SR as I do

Welcome!
D
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Old 01-25-2010, 02:07 PM
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Welcome to you too, Kmber

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Old 01-25-2010, 02:19 PM
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Hi and welcome.
I too have a 3 year old to bring up who is the sunshine of my life...he's my grandson...I can't tell you how humble I feel being able to hear him crawl into my bed at 2 or 3 in the morning and not be too drunk to wonder what time he got in...also to snuggle up with him...Fabbby stuff.
I've just been 6 days without alcohol, and without alcohol is how I plan to spend the rest of my life.

I'm glad you are getting some support x
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Old 01-25-2010, 03:54 PM
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Hi Sarah, welcome to SR. I too can relate to your story with the issues from childhood etc only you are smarter than me because I didn't get the help I needed until I was 50--you won't be missing out anything by staying sober but being drunk you'd miss out on your child growing up even if you were there.
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