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You cannot toast! And other wierd things

Old 03-04-2010, 06:46 AM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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That's OK Fandy... There are lots of great people here along with good support. Look at some of the posts that you see are abrasive... are they meant to be abrasive or are they looking at a way to help the person recover?... like chemo, sometimes it hurts.

Like in this thread. I agree with most everyone, I think HH's friend(s) were insensitive...

I can't and shouldn't speak for yeahgr8, but what I saw in his post... HH is newly recovering... she gets an insensitive remark about not drinking, and everyone else is drinking... Has HH recovered and is she in a place where these comments wouldn't cause her some resentment and self pity? If she's not there yet, she could be at risk to say just eF it, pour me one.

It seems to me, however, that HH was just fine in that situation and that's all good.

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Old 03-04-2010, 07:15 AM
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Not that I took any of your comments, Fandy, as directed to me, but I am one of those people that can be very opinionated and abrasive. Or at least my comments can. The only thing I am trying to do, is tell the truth of my experience.

I think the truth about my experience with alcoholism is far more useful to another suffering alcoholic than a pat on the back and a catchy phrase. I have good reason, based on my experience, for believing this. Sometimes in recovery, we can love a person to death because we want them to feel good at the expense of actually beating this thing.

I was at a couple of meetings recently that consisted basically of one chronic relapser telling other chronic relapsers how to stay sober. And then they traded places. It was heartbreaking, really. Many people in the room were repeating the same failed experiments of thousands of alcoholics who have failed to get sober. When I see 30 people repeating what has failed for the previous 30 people, do I say 'great job', or do I share my experience with my failure at doing just what they are doing, and then sharing my experience with actually worked?

Originally Posted by Fandy View Post
....my problem is individual and no one is more aware of that than I am.
In that spirit, this is one of the biggest lies out there. It's delusional, and it's a near universal manifestation of untreated alcoholism. Nearly every alkie I've worked with, and there have been many, believes that they have a unique problem with a unique solution. The fact is, the recovered alcoholics I know come to believe that they have a very common problem with a very common solution.

It's no fun to be told that you are believing a lie. I understand that. Opinions about alcoholism are a dime a dozen. When I wanted to recover, I needed to set aside my opinions on what I thought my problem was and what I thought the answer was, and start looking at the opinions of people who had recovered.
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:18 AM
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Mark, I do think we are capable of seeing more sides to other people, including Gr8 in this thread. I am not in AA, but I have felt offended (too strong a word) when I have found the odd comment that puts it down or even when someone talks about the God or HP debate that always comes up (despite being one of those people with a similar hang-up, more so in the distant past than nowadays).

I'm not all-knowing, but I too have an instinct that HH would not have felt the "thing" that says pour me one in that context... I think she was using the experience of feeling like an alien to do some constructive research with herself and invite comparisons from other people as a reminder that she is not alone. That's what seems to be so successful about this site. I can't remember if HH started to go to AA or if she is thinking about it, but if she wants to, it could be a great thing to add to her project.

I am also sensitive to the idea of making it seem like HH is getting better "friendship" here than in the real world, where we can't be physically present. We keep talking about her in the 3rd person, but hopefully she appreciates it, by the way....I think I see similarities to HH in me when it comes to feeling like the picture that does not match the other ones in a picture puzzle - and the homework we give ourselves, rightly or wrongly, because of it. So I think I am being vocal about this because I want her to own the usefulness that comes out of the exercise of diffusing (or is it defusing) the things that bother us and seem like challenges from friends.
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:19 AM
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Fandy Wrote:
I was thinking that after reading a few of the threads where people are so VERY opinionated and abrasive....I would be very hesitant to post any slips I may encounter along the way...and these type of posts are JUST the reason I am hesitant to ever seek out AA...pushypushypushy....(if you don't do what I did, you can't quit drinking, because AA is the ONLY way)...baloney....my problem is individual and no one is more aware of that than I am.

I agree with this in such a way....in fact, it was the tone of many posts that kept me lurking for as long as I did before reaching out. I tried the AA approach myself and found it to be offensive, to be honest - I am much more than just an alcoholic and I hated being labelled from day one. I am currently awaiting treatment in a CBT community and I appreciate that method of treatment much more. I found AA cold and lacking in consideration for the things I have been through to get to where I am today; how am I to understand my illness if I don't understand the roots of it?

Just my opinion - I hope I don't offend so early on in my postings....
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Toronto68 View Post
I think she was using the experience of feeling like an alien to do some constructive research with herself and invite comparisons from other people as a reminder that she is not alone. That's what seems to be so successful about this site.
Couldn't agree more!

Originally Posted by Suomi View Post
I found AA cold and lacking in consideration for the things I have been through to get to where I am today; how am I to understand my illness if I don't understand the roots of it?
If giving consideration to all you have been through becomes a way to be permissive to an extent that it excuses alcoholic behavior... well yeah, AA is gonna call you on it. But everyone here, and in AA, has been through a whole hell of a lot... you may not get much sympathy in AA, but you'll got a lot of empathy and unconditional love.

I have been sober 18 months and have worked very hard in my recovery... AA, reading, spirituality, SR.... I still don't understand my illness... I quit trying.

Welcome Suomi!!

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Old 03-04-2010, 07:58 AM
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Thanks for the welcome Mark!

I'm not saying that what I've been through is an excuse for my alcoholic life, but I guess I meant that there is more to me than just a drunk. I suffer from concurrent disorders and AA is not equipped to handle that...I get it.

I am looking into long term treatment for the first time (in a non 12-step community) and I am scared sh#^&%less about it. I don't know how I am going to explain to others why I have to go away for 4-6 months to another city altogether. My whole family is about appearances and what others think about things, while my fiance is of the opinion that who cares, get better and let's get on with our lives....talk about a rock and hard place.
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Old 03-04-2010, 07:58 AM
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I don`t like people speaking about HH in the third person.

Please direct your posts to the member personally.

Also this is NOT going to be a thread debating AA or other methods of recovery.

There are many people on this board who are recovering using a variety of methods.
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Old 03-04-2010, 08:07 AM
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For me a tremendous stride with my recovery was like Dee's.

I today care about what I think of myself, I quit worrying about what others thought of me a little over 3 years ago. The only thing I can do about what others think of me is to be the best me I can be.

If I am happy with me, if I worried about what others thought of me I would be miserable.

When I was drinking for many years all I worried about was if people thought I drank too much, if I was a drunk, etc. I would look at myself & the mirror and despise the man that stood before me.

In sobriety I have found that if I like who I have become, others like me as well, if they don't..... well that is thier opinion..... not mine! I know who I am deep inside, they don't, I know the whole truth about me, they don't.

To quote Alfred E. Newman "What? Me worry!"

I prefer being known as a recovered alcoholic then a drunk, which is what I was the last 5 years of my drinking at least.
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Old 03-04-2010, 08:11 AM
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Originally Posted by Suomi View Post
while my fiance is of the opinion that who cares, get better and let's get on with our lives....
Sounds good to me!!

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Old 03-04-2010, 08:43 AM
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keithj, your is experience is YOURS, not mine...which remains to be seen. I don't appreciate your remarks about what is truth about me and what is a lie...(snap diagnosis when you don't know all the facts). For now, I am happy with MY progress and approach and that's all that is important to me.

This is HH's thread, i'm giving it back to her for the original discussion and I apologize for it getting off track.

I truly appreciate all the help and encouragement I have rec'd from SR since joining on 2/16....it has changed my outlook, makes me think "outside the bottle" and kept me on a path I didn't know I could take. peace.
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Old 03-04-2010, 11:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Houndheart View Post
I am new here. And I am pretty new to really working on sobriety. This time I want it to stick.

I was at a friend's house drinking a soda the other night..when another friend came in. She poured herself a wine, and started to make a toast to something...and she held her glass up to "clink" with the other 4 people at the table..and I raised my glass up to clink hers, when she started to move her glass towards me to do the ritual clinking of my glass, then stopped herself midway and then said, "oh, no...never mind."

That threw me, and I said, "Muriel, just because I am drinking soda, I cannot join in the toast!??!!" And I proceeded to clink her glass.

I guess some people just do not know what to do. It upset me at first, but now I think it's just strange and a bit comical.

As a newbie to sobriety I guess I will be running into a lot of little strange actions on the part of friends...probably particularly drinking friends.

Anyone want to join any other stories, funny or stupid, or downright crazy and drink tempting kind of actions or words from friends/acquaintances now that you have stopped drinking, and how you handled them?
Hi HH,

I think people in general just have trouble dealing with people who are "different". It's got nothing to do with you or the alcohol. If you look out around in any social situation you will see people avoiding or reacting strangely to the person who is "different".

I have issues with food as well as alcohol and I am well used to people struggling to deal with that.... with "why aren't you eating?" in a restaurant. My experience of this is if your recovery is such that the obsession to use the substance has gone, then you will deal with social situations well.

If you are not at that stage, then it may be wise to avoid the situations until you are. I have found that these types of comments from people, even the strange ones which can be comical and can drain you over time.
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Old 03-04-2010, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by Fandy View Post
I was thinking that after reading a few of the threads where people are so VERY opinionated and abrasive....I would be very hesitant to post any slips I may encounter along the way...and these type of posts are JUST the reason I am hesitant to ever seek out AA...pushypushypushy....(if you don't do what I did, you can't quit drinking, because AA is the ONLY way)...baloney....my problem is individual and no one is more aware of that than I am.
Hi Fandy,

One thing I have experienced in AA is people dying.

Almost every time I go to a meeting someone mentions someone who has died recently because of this illness. I was in a meeting a while ago and someone announced mid-meeting that one of them had died that morning.

I had been in my own little world with alcohol. I thought I knew it was deadly, I thought I knew it was going to kill me but until I walked into the rooms of AA I didn't actually realise how DEADLY this disease is.

Alcohol is the big liar. When the alcoholic stops drinking the alcohol addicted yet deprived brain will do anything and everything to trick them into drinking again.

I am recovered and I don't have that obsession of the mind any more. But if it returns I would like to think (I actually know they would) that the regulars on this forum would bluntly point out the truth to me when I am blinded by it by the denial of addiction. I may not like the truth but it could very well save my life.

A while ago I was with someone very newly sober and they had a bottle of booze with them that they had bought as a present for someone. I asked them if that was wise. They reassured me they were OK with it and fair enough, they were and they didn't drink. I don't regret asking the question. If they had been in denial that question may very well have shattered the illusion that alcohol created and saved their life.
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Old 03-04-2010, 12:12 PM
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HH, keep your chin up and be aware that in your sobriety there will be moments like that. Try to remember, as someone else pointed out, that there is a lot of misunderstanding about the disease of alcoholism, even by alcoholics themselves.
Maybe you can take it as a learning experience, and if it happens again, you can point out that a toast is a toast, and it is not necessarily tied to the use of alcohol!

Fandy wrote:
I would be very hesitant to post any slips I may encounter along the way...and these type of posts are JUST the reason I am hesitant to ever seek out AA...pushypushypushy....(if you don't do what I did, you can't quit drinking, because AA is the ONLY way)...
Fandy, I don't want to turn this into another thread derailed by a debate about AA. But, just allow me to clarify something, for your information. The basic protocol at AA meetings is sharing. After the 12 steps and 12 traditions are read and the literature chosen for that meeting is read, the floor is open for sharing. Each person can share something about themselves, their day, their thoughts, etc, if they choose. There is a strict rule in place that does not allow interrupting of the person sharing, questioning of their share or comments directed at them regarding their share. Criticism especially is never allowed.

Just so you know!
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Old 03-04-2010, 12:23 PM
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I'm very glad that you are recovered and doing well...I hope to get to your point in the future, stories of how everyone gets to where they want to be with their recovery are the inspiration that keeps me coming back to this site.

I assure you I am doing well and I am happy with my progress right now, as I said, that is what's important to me.....and I like being sober.

Littlefish, thanks for the information, I'm glad it works for you....and I'm sure it depends on the group you mix with and attend, everyone is different, groups are different from what I've read.

However, at this time, I do not believe that AA is a good fit for me....and I do not have any intention of pursuing it now....but thanks again for the information.
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Old 03-04-2010, 12:40 PM
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However, at this time, I do not believe that AA is a good fit for me....and I do not have any intention of pursuing it now....but thanks again for the information.
You're welcome!
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Old 03-04-2010, 12:53 PM
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HH,

Welcome and good luck. I too had that issue recently not with a toast but an old drinking buddy and a bartender that slipped vodka in my club soda as a joke.

Now at first I was P.O. and wanted to confront them and tell them that it is not a joke and WTF they were even thinking. But I stepped outside, mellowed out and realized that if they are that sad and threatened by my choice they are not worth my time and energy. We have an old saying in southern maryland "F*&% them let them eat beans and walk in the rain and make bubbles"

that being said, I think there are diffrent reactions from others about my choice to stop drinking.

Most of my drinking buddies, we have no real friendship other than hanging out and drinking, seem threatened and question your motives.. Like my story above.. They are insecure about how much they drink and need you to continue to help justify thier own choices...

My true friends, people I fish, hunt, ride bikes, get our families together are supportive of my choice. A bunch of us go to hockey games together and I thought it would be an issue if I stopped drinking..Boy was I wrong they couldn't care less and were happy that I am the driver now...But there still are wierd situations that arise, I found out that I wasn't invited to a dinner party because it was a wine themed party and the host did want to tempt me, once again at first I got P.O. then after thinking about it, they have not guide book of how to handle this anymore than I have. They thought they were being a true friend by not tempting me, and I can't hold that against them.


Sorry to ramble and best of luck.....
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Old 03-04-2010, 02:26 PM
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I would be REALLY upset if someone slipped vodka into my drink if I told them it was my decision not to drink...that is just so underhanded....I applaud your calmness and restraint.

(The wine tasting I can understand as you explained it).

Patience has never been my strongest trait....but as I've become more clearheaded in the last 17 days, I am MUCH more patient and tolerant, I do not lose my temper 1/2 as much as I did when I was drinking...I think I feel much more calm these days....
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Old 03-06-2010, 03:16 AM
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I had stepped back from this thread to digest all that was written. I want to thank everyone for all that has been shared/written.
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