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Old 03-24-2010, 09:08 AM
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Three days after celebrating 30 days, I picked up drinking again. The only day I haven't drank so far this week was Sunday. Somehow I'm not surprised. Seems that even when I'm sober I'm just waiting for the hammer to fall, and just like that, I'll be back to my old ways. Time to face the music and get back to my meetings I guess, though I don't know what purpose that will serve since I don't believe I can stay sober for more than a month or two.
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Old 03-24-2010, 09:21 AM
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Where the mind goes, the feet will follow.

If you're already anticipating defeat before and during your attempts at sobriety, it may be more internal work you need to do rather than external meetings.

It doesn't sound like you're willing to do whatever it takes to live a sober life - not that you should stop trying - but you just might not be there yet.

Hopefully it won't take something devastating to get you there. Keep trying. All the best to you.
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Old 03-24-2010, 09:22 AM
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Well, lost, you and I can count today as the first day. I went a week, and was doing well, until I had a terrible terrible breakup and have been drinking the past two days. So I hear you, and just wanted to say I'm with you. I need to let everyone know where I am and get the support of the group--we're going to pick ourselves up and start over, keep trying, I know we'll get if we keep trying and reaching out to other for help. Thanks all.
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Old 03-24-2010, 09:40 AM
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Originally Posted by lostmyway View Post
Time to face the music and get back to my meetings I guess, though I don't know what purpose that will serve...
Howdy Lost and City,

I sometimes get weary of reading these same things over and over. Get a little sober time, things seems great, and wham, back to drinking without a real understanding of how that happened. The remorse, the renewed promises and hope, and the repeating of the cycle.

The best I can do is share my personal experience with ending that cycle. AA's Big Book tells me that I am doomed to repeat it unless I can experience and entire psychic change. The very start of that change for me, was to actually believe (at a heart level) that I was doomed to keep failing.

I became convinced, much like I hear from you Lost, that I was hopeless. I just knew that I was going to keep failing. That's when the idea started to sink in that I simply lacked the power to stay sober. It didn't matter what I tried or what I did, I couldn't stay sober.

That's when I surrendered to the idea. Surrendered to the hoplessness of trying to get sober. Surrendered to the process. I called a guy in AA who was sucessfully sober. He didn't tell me to get back to meetings. He told me I was doomed unless I had a spiritual awakening. He said it was my only hope as a chroninc alcoholic. But he also told me that he would show me precisely how he and countless others had that spiritual awakening, or psychic change.

I did, to the best of my ability at the time, the actions contained in the BB for taking each of the 12 Steps, and I recovered from that hopeless condition.

For good. Forever. End of the cycle. I never have to go there again as long as I remain willing to live by those spiritual principles.
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Old 03-24-2010, 09:47 AM
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These are all good replies. HumbleBee, you are probably right. I am not doing whatever it takes to live a sober life. A lot of people say that it takes a lot of energy to be an alcoholic. We are always thinking about how much we can get, when, and how we will hide it from others. For me, sobriety is equally exhausting.

I believe I am capable of the psychic change keithj spoke of. What confuses me is that in order to have that, I must need to work the steps under the guidance of someone who is knowledgable about them. And every sponsor I've had (which is three now) has never touched step work with me. I finally asked the sponsor I have now and she told me not to even think about it, to just worry about staying sober. That's all fine and well, but when I have sobriety, it's like I don't really know what to do with it...then, inevitably, I fall again.
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Old 03-24-2010, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by lostmyway View Post
I finally asked the sponsor I have now and she told me not to even think about it, to just worry about staying sober.
Oh my God, Lost. I am so sorry that AA has abused you like this. It's unfortunate that people with that level of misunderstanding of the AA program go around representing it.

Sadly, it's fairly common. I don't know why I'm surprised. Here's where the willingness comes in, Lost. Find somebody who has had a spiritual awakening as the result of the Steps who is willing to show you how to have your own experience. Go to different meetings where the members actually carry a Big Book and know what it says. Call the AA hotline and ask to be hooked up with someone that meets that description. You may have to do some searching, but I'm confident that those people are out there in every town.

I will add that my very first day of not drinking, I was heavily involved in Step work, out of the BB, with directions from a knowledgeable sponsor.
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Old 03-24-2010, 10:33 AM
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Originally Posted by lostmyway View Post
And every sponsor I've had (which is three now) has never touched step work with me. I finally asked the sponsor I have now and she told me not to even think about it, to just worry about staying sober.
Sorry to say this, lost, but it may be time for sponsor #4. Of course you can't do whatever it takes to stay sober - you haven't found someone to guide you!

Living sober is not a matter of "just not picking up a drink." It's soooo much more than that.

How can you worry about "staying sober" (as your current sponsor told you to do) if you don't know how.

Your sponsor should rock - you should want what she has - if neither of these are true, time for another one - even if that means #10. It's worth it. You're worth it.
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Old 03-24-2010, 10:45 AM
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Lost, I apologize if I came across too harshly in my first reply.

You've made valiant attempts to seek out sponsors; you just need to find the right one - and you will.
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:06 AM
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HumbleBee, no need to apologize. You didn't sound harsh, and even if you had, I am at the point where I can take it. I am just as irritated by my current status and situation as those I'm sharing it with.
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:12 AM
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Actually, all of this brings me to my next question: I haven't told my sponsor about my relapse. Should I just go to my meeting tonight, come clean, and say that I think my relapse was a result of not doing step work? Should I then say that I am specifically looking for someone to help me with the steps? Until now I wasn't even sure I was going to admit to going back out.
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:30 AM
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Originally Posted by keithj View Post
Oh my God, Lost. I am so sorry that AA has abused you like this. It's unfortunate that people with that level of misunderstanding of the AA program go around representing it.

Sadly, it's fairly common. I don't know why I'm surprised. Here's where the willingness comes in, Lost. Find somebody who has had a spiritual awakening as the result of the Steps who is willing to show you how to have your own experience. Go to different meetings where the members actually carry a Big Book and know what it says. Call the AA hotline and ask to be hooked up with someone that meets that description. You may have to do some searching, but I'm confident that those people are out there in every town.

I will add that my very first day of not drinking, I was heavily involved in Step work, out of the BB, with directions from a knowledgeable sponsor.
Be honest and follow the suggestion in above if there is really no-one in the meetings that you go to...you are looking for that person who will guide you through the steps like now (second time i saw my sponsor we started the steps, only because the first time he wanted me to go away and answer a question: was i willing to do anything he told me on the basis that all his 'suggestions' could be found in the Big Book...this was just a formality really i said yes as soon as he asked lol but it was sat night and very late) and who has had a spiritual awakening themselves...go for it!
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:35 AM
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I agree with the person who posted just above. The only trick which is carrying me forward on this path is determination and HONESTY. Be honest to whoever is your guide. tell her what ever you feel. Do not feel ashame, she knows where were you actually and how far you have come. Do not lost your way, you can do it. Nothing is impossible, that is my belief.
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Old 03-24-2010, 12:57 PM
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Originally Posted by lostmyway View Post
And every sponsor I've had (which is three now) has never touched step work with me. I finally asked the sponsor I have now and she told me not to even think about it, to just worry about staying sober. That's all fine and well, but when I have sobriety, it's like I don't really know what to do with it...then, inevitably, I fall again
For me, I had to want to be sober before the idea of even doing the steps came about. My sobriety did not hinge solely on 'doing' the steps. I already clearly knew that I was powerless over alcohol and my life was more than unmanageable.

You might ask your current sponsor what exactly you should be worrying about (ie, doing) right now to stay sober - if the answer is 'just keep going to meetings'...that'd be red flag for me.

I've seen many people who attended 2-4 meetings a day and believe they were doing everything they needed to be doing to stay sober. Not.

I would no more be in remission (notice I didn't say cured) of a life-threatening illness if went to my doctor's office every day, heard his/her diagnosis and directions to treat it and do absolutely nothing about it.
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Old 03-24-2010, 02:03 PM
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The fact is that most alcoholics, for reasons yet obscure, have lost the power of choice in drink. Our so called will-power becomes practically nonexistent. We are unable, at certain times, to bring into our consciousness with sufficient force the memory of the suffering and humiliation of even a week or a month ago. We are without the defense against the first drink.




There is a reason why this paragraph is in italics on page 24. It's very important. By all means take your book with this section highlighted and show it to people at the meeting when you tell them you have been drinking again.

I have to say that it appears that you sponsor doesn't understand what AA is.
You need someone to sponsor you through the 12 Steps who understands that an alcoholic like you cannot stay sober on will power.

Have you listened to some of the men sharing at the meetings you go to? I'm not suggesting that you get a male sponsor as it is not recommended for obvious reasons (although it can work) but talking to these men who are sharing the 12 step solution could be a benefit. Ask them if they know any women who are working the program and sponsoring people through the steps. You tend to find that the AAs who are living in the solution, know the other AAs who are living in the solution.

good luck.
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Old 03-24-2010, 02:48 PM
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Dear Lost,
Please dont lose heart and give up as that is what this cunning disease wants you to do and then how will you end up?... back into the downward spiral of unmanageability?
I am now 22 days (after many relapses) and TRULY TERRIFIED of this disease and where it takes me.
I am now "willing to be willing" as somedays the demon on my shoulder thinks up all these excuses to pick up a drink
I am now willing to do what ever it takes to stay sober,going to meetings,doing step 1,2,3, and now have to look out for sponsor. I am scared of sponsors as had horrible negative experiences twice and feel burnt, so thankyou everyone above for the encouragement to look out for new one!
Lost and City, YES! we can do this we can live a life without alcohol ...we just have to have it seared into our addicted brains that we have to be willing to go to any lengths! and for me that is-
attend meetings with open mind
do step 1,2,3 over and over each day
ditch any so called friends who encourage me to drink when i tell them that i have given up
stay away from slippery places for now or maybe forever, going to Vegas in June and terrified of that party atmosphere. My ex drinking buddy said to me "you can have a drink on holidays" NO this alcoholic cant! I am willing to cancel hols but already fully paid for
most important thing is PUT SOBRIETY NO 1 and ask myself will this threaten my sobriety?
without sobriety I might as well throw the towel in, as I am like the walking dead.
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Old 03-24-2010, 02:57 PM
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I remember thinking a week was beyond me - why argue with the evidence? In 15 years I had a 'record' of sobriety of 8 weeks - and that near as killed me.

For the last 5 years of daily drinking, my only 'breaks' were the 3 or so days I needed to recover and feel good enough to start drinking again.

I'll never forget the despair and utter hopelessness of cracking the new bottle. I never gave up on the idea of 'someday' tho.

Next week I'll have 3 years. I'm still the same guy - I just decided to get some help, learned some things I really didn't know, and determined to try my utmost to change things.

It's possible
D

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Old 03-24-2010, 03:05 PM
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Just keep going regardless of how you feel about it. The evidence your looking for is in those around you who are clean/sober for many years and you can bet your bottom dollar many of them drank like you or worse.

Bread and butter of 12 step recovery is meetings, sponsor, talk to other members and as your in a 12 step program actuall go through the steps wth your sponsor.

Recover is possible we have to work at it on a daily basis though
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Old 03-24-2010, 04:32 PM
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Lost,

You can do this, and yes it does take a lot of work and a lot of change. I am not an AA person, but I truly changed myself, from the inside out. Everything I had believed about myself was shaken up and I slowly began to see and to like, the real me.

We do understand!
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Old 03-24-2010, 09:09 PM
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Originally Posted by lostmyway View Post
Three days after celebrating 30 days, I picked up drinking again. The only day I haven't drank so far this week was Sunday. Somehow I'm not surprised. Seems that even when I'm sober I'm just waiting for the hammer to fall, and just like that, I'll be back to my old ways. Time to face the music and get back to my meetings I guess, though I don't know what purpose that will serve since I don't believe I can stay sober for more than a month or two.
You and I, lost, seem to have a very similar mindset on this process. I have not been able to make it past the 30 day mark since my first attempt at getting sober last June. I have had 3 seperate 30 day stretches, but I just can't seem to make it past that month.

I always set out with a good outlook, and a strong mindset, but over time it seems to weaken, and I tend to doubt that I really have the will power to quit drinking forever. I start to question if I'm really serious, and sometimes if I even really want to stop, and then I end up going on a binge, and reminding myself of why I was trying to get sober in the first place.

I'm now two days sober, and coming off of my latest period of relapse, and latest binge, and I am wanting sobriety as much as ever, but I still have all kinds of doubts and questions surrounding all of this.

I guess what I am trying to say is that you are not alone. If you really believe that sobriety is what is best for your life then do not give up. I refuse to stop trying no matter how many times I fall, and I hope you continue fighting for whatever it is that you want.

I hope that helps some.
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Old 03-24-2010, 11:09 PM
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Lost.....
Starting my Step work switched me from
shakey sobriety into solid recovery....

Hopeing you will find that true too.
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