Guilt, Anxiety, Anger, and Depression.

Old 02-09-2010, 09:48 AM
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Guilt, Anxiety, Anger, and Depression.

These are my four main triggers. I was just wondering how any of you might deal with these feelings. Guilt being my main cause of drinking and drinking being my main cause for guilt. Anger is getting easier to control the more time that gets between me and my last drink, but that gives a lot of time for guilt and depression to take over. Have a good one guys.
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Old 02-09-2010, 09:58 AM
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I dealt (and still deal) with guilt and anger by a 4th Step inventory, followed at once by Steps 5-9. When I did (and do) that, the anxiety and depression took care of themselves.

Perhaps I'm different from you, but the main cause of my drinking was that I am an alcoholic, and that I had lost the power of choice in drinking. It didn't matter what I was feeling, my solution to that feeling was drinking. My solution to just about everything was drinking. My reaction to life was drinking.

I've been doing those things I mentioned for quite some time now, and I haven't had to drink. I haven't had the anxiety and depression either. Doing the same things, getting the same results. As the result of doing those things, my reaction to life was profoundly altered.
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Old 02-09-2010, 11:39 AM
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Well i have had anxiety problems since before i started drinking so i turned to alcohol.
Ive done alot of bad things in my life that the guilt is unbarable, thus leading to depression. So that was another trigger (triggers) for me to start drinking i know what u are saying, and it is the same everyone of those emotions is just another "reason" to drink. i am prescribed xanax for my anxiety. i can control it aslong as i have my meds. I have been sober this time since 1/30/10 before that i was sober for 28 days. But me sitting at home unemployed atm my mind runs rampid. Used to i would stay drunk so long that i never felt any of those emotions because i stayd drunk so i wouldnt have to. now that i am trying to quit for good this time im staying at home i wrecked my car the 29th from drinking with no way of leaving to get a drink hoping that when i get a ride i wont go back to doing the same thing i was. its all about me worrying. Dont get me wrong i enjoyed drinking it was the things i did or the withdrawls i felt the morning after. I would wake up in the morning and start it off with a fifth of ezra shortly after leading to another......My question was in what ways can i stop these triggers before they start. im already feeling guilt it just makes me cringe thinking about all the things i did. I started using meth and coke at an early age i feel it took away all the willpower i had.
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Old 02-09-2010, 12:23 PM
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Have you thought of using a program?
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Old 02-09-2010, 12:58 PM
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I too was drinking to medicate anxiety and depression. I have been seeing an addiction counselor for over two years and she helps me a lot. She listens to me venting and gives me feedback, advice, and suggestions I might not think of by myself.

Do you have a local mental health agency where you live? If so, I'd suggest you see someone about your drinking/anxiety/depression and, if possible, have regular counseling. It's helped me a lot.
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Old 02-09-2010, 02:09 PM
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I got to the point where I knew drinking would lead to my death, directly or indirectly, so I had had to find other ways of dealing with the stuff that made me drink.

With guilt I had to learn that what's done is done - I can't affect or change the past no matter how I want to...but I can go a long way to atoning for past mistakes, and dealing with guilt and shame, by doing things right from now on. Drinking on guilt only feeds the guilt.

With anger - I was lucky...I met a great woman who makes me laugh. You can't be angry when you laugh. When she's not here, I ride it out - I go for a walk, I play my guitar - I ride it out...I do anything but drink on it.

If your anxiety and depression are severe I encourage you to see a Dr or therapist. Self medicating either with alcohol just makes them worse - and I speak from 20 years experience.

As I dealt with these things more and more in a sober way, I found them all easier to deal with as I got more 'practice' - all still happen (guilt not so much) but I ride them out ok and I don't feel the compulsive trigger sensation anymore

Keep it up lonelyranger

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Old 02-09-2010, 03:24 PM
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personally if i feel guilty about my drinking or whatever else i did in the past, i tell myself that it's in the past now, there weren't any HORRIBLE outcomes, though some very bad ones, but its past now so it doesnt matter anymore.

if i feel really depressed i do something that i really like to do, which, for me, is play video games. it is relaxing and entertaining.

i'm always angry about random things but i think i've always been like that so i dunno what to say there :P

anxiety is really hard to deal with for me because the alcohol ruined the transmitters in my brain that allow you to return to a calm state. aside from the neurobiology, i get very anxious an shaky a lot and feel like im going to pass out. i usually try to tell myself that its all in my head and that everything is ok. if its really bad, i have to take medicine for it. i really dont deal with it all that well though because it is involuntarity caused in my brain. sads
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Old 02-09-2010, 07:54 PM
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Untreated depression led to increased drinking for me. I was a pretty well-controlled social drinker for years prior. A depressive period in my life led to more drinking which led to more booze which led to more...well, you probably get it.

Jump forward a few years when I finally did get some help and get various Dx and treatment plans and I'm feeling the most positive that I had in years. Unfortunately, I was deeper than ever into the bottle so that didn't change and when I would have darker days or waves of anxiety I would immediately head for a bottle. My very own best friend.

I found an treasure trove of stories here on SR. Most were helpful in that I was trying to learn more about myself and why I did the things I did. I read, I practiced, I experimented and only recently have I come to a deeper understanding of myself and the triggers that can bring on a drinking binge or an emotional flare-up at my family. Now I am better able to understand me.

Now, unlike the past, I am finally able to practice and embrace sobriety as opposed to bouts of abstinence.

Find what works for you - I was humbled when I spent some time around SR and learned just how much like everyone else I was and how far from the bottom I was still lucky to be. There are good voices here - share them.
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Old 02-09-2010, 08:35 PM
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When I was drinking, I dealt (or didn't deal with) with those issues ALL of the time. It was horrible.

And now that I'm got sober, I really don't deal with them.

I was using them as an excuse to drink. And it worked perfectly.

Glad you are here....lots of good people here to help.
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Old 02-09-2010, 09:06 PM
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Horrible feelings, and I can relate

Originally Posted by Lonelyranger View Post
These are my four main triggers. I was just wondering how any of you might deal with these feelings. Guilt being my main cause of drinking and drinking being my main cause for guilt. Anger is getting easier to control the more time that gets between me and my last drink, but that gives a lot of time for guilt and depression to take over. Have a good one guys.
Good question.

I felt a lot of guilt when I was coming to the end of my drinking days. Ugly days they were indeed. How awful a feeling it is to know that something has control over you and there is nothing you can do about it short of turning your life over to a HP, which was an immensely hard step for me. I felt guilt that I couldn't beat my disease on my own. I felt guilty that I was a drunk raising a toddler and a newborn. It is only by the grace of my HP that I still have my kids in my custody today. You name it, I felt guilty about it. I carried the weight of the world on my shoulders.

I'm pretty much the Queen of Anxiety; I am OCD and bipolar depressive. Between the two conditions I was often anxious the send myself into frequent panick attacks. I suspect I drank to self-medicate my psychological problems. The drinking, of course, just added to my problems and did nothing whatsoever to better my situation except give me a reprieve from my constant racing thoughts.

Anger? Yeah, that's a funny one. It's something I never expected to feel when I got sober. I figured life would be all rosy when I got sober. Instead I was greeted with overwhelming emotions I could not deal with because I had given up my way of numbing them. Like a child, I am still learning how to deal with emotions, and it is complicated sometimes. But anger was definitely one of those emotions. I have days where I just want to beat the crap out of everyone I see, pick fights with random strangers, flip people off in public, etc.

And depression, really, is just anger turned inward. It's what you do when you feel you have no way to release the anger. I have days I am so depressed all I can do is crawl into bed, put my blanket over my head and let my husband or my mom care for the kids because I am simply paralyzed and can't do it.

If there's one thing I've learned, getting and staying sober, learning to love life sober, is not an easy task. We have taken the higher road. We are willing to battle these emotions and take the steps necessary to eventually live a peaceful life. The road to that is long, and personally the hardest thing I have ever had to endure. I must remind myself daily to have patience, that this too shall pass.

The people here with a long time of sobriety under their belts say it is worth all the struggle and pain we have to endure througout our recovery. I listen to them because I know they can't be wrong.

We are here because we want to better our lives, and in all reality, there is nothing better we could be doing for ourselves.
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Old 02-10-2010, 11:58 AM
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the past~ ahh, the crap that never quits haunting.
the same crap that is to blame for many a relapse........

life's not a "do over .... don't count"

But, I have found what I need to "TO SURVIVE" , is to rely on the serenity pray

"god grant me the serenity to accept the hings I can not change"

that would be EVERYTHING in my past!

and then creeps a little message I was privileged to read last Sunday at mass


yep, I can roll with that too
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