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So Lost and Not Sure

Old 04-04-2010, 10:38 PM
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So Lost and Not Sure

Hi All. I'm not sure if I am in the right place or not. I am pretty confused about all of this. I am 35yrs old and have been drinking since the age of 14. My father was a recovering alcoholic for 11 years (he quit drinking the first time I drank...when I was 14). He is drinking again and most of the time (not always) has much more control than he did. This is not about him...it's me.

I am a mother of three (7 and 8 yrs olds). I worked for 10 years as an engineer and decided to quit to be home with my kids. I've been home for almost 3 years now, but in the last 1.5 yrs, my drinking has really bothered me. I never drink during the day...not even a craving for a drink. The only time my kids even see me with a drink is when we are camping during the summer months, or on a holiday. But I really look forward to when they go to bed so that I can have a few. Some nights it is 3 or 4, some nights it is 6 or 7 drinks. Sometimes my spouse joins me, sometimes I'm alone. But I do it most nights of the week. It is relaxing and it is "my" time. When we do go out, I can have about 10-11 drinks and be okay (I am only about 125 lbs), which also bothers me. I think I can drink as much as my husband who is about 180 lbs.

The fact that I don't physically seem to have withdrawal symptoms, but want to drink every night for that little buzz....do I have a problem? Or am I over sensitive because of my family history? I'm also a personal trainer and was a fitness competitor....is it my guilt about "healthy living", or do I have a problem I need to deal with?

Thanks for reading this...I rambled. I thank all of you out there who are willing to give people like me advice. It's been a really mental struggle for me and sometimes affects me the next day (not wanting a drink, but wondering if I have an issue to deal with).

Thank you all so much and God Bless you all!!
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Old 04-04-2010, 10:52 PM
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Well for me I thought I was ok but Im not since you are here and drink everyday crave it.You have to look at the facts. There are great people here who understand I use to think I was alone.I AM FATHER OF 3 . 11 year old boys twins and 4 year old little girl which I love very much and I realize its not worth all the risk for me I couldnt do this any longer . only think why did I wait so long.It will fool you.GOOD LUCK KEEP COMING BACK.There are great people here
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Old 04-04-2010, 10:57 PM
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Hi tkmal

I think the only person who can really decide whether you have a problem or not is you...but you say your drinking bothers you - that's good enough to start thinking about it...and, reading your post, looking forward to drinking, and drinking alone may be red flags too.

There's a few online self-diagnostic tests available. Have you tried any of those?

While the results are obviously not conclusive they may give you food for thought.
The Michigan Alcohol Screening Test is a standard.
Michigan Alcohol Screening Test (MAST), Revised

Welcome to SR
D
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Old 04-04-2010, 10:58 PM
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Thanks for joining us! I've heard more than once that if you think there is a problem, there most likely is. If nothing else, your drinking seems to be bothering you, so what's the point in doing something that will cause you worry?

Sorry, but I really can't identify with "not wanting a drink" (well, not until these last 11 days, anyway). I'm a real alcoholic. I always wanted a drink. And I did worry about my drinking, but I blew it off. Until people close to me commented on it. Blew them off. Then came the run-ins with the law. Hard to blow those off.

As you said, if you're wondering if there's an issue you need to deal with, it's entirely possible there is. I wondered for a long time, till wondering wasn't an issue any longer. I had what some refer to as a "moment of clarity" or "spiritual experience" or "divine intervention" or whatever. In that instant, I knew there was a problem, and the problem wasn't the alcohol; it was the way I consumed alcohol.

There are many different people here with thousands of years of drinking and at least hundreds of years of sobriety. Stick around. There's lots of great advice and assistance on these boards.

Best of luck to you and thanks for coming!
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Old 04-04-2010, 11:04 PM
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Thank you for your post. I have 7 yr old twins and an 8 yr old. But I guess deep down I do feel as if I'm fooling myself (or not). I've tried to stop my nightly routine of a few drinks and do just fine for about 3 days. Then I reward myself with a few.

I am just really afraid of seeking help at home. We live in a very small town, I have a good reputation with the professional field (and intend to work again eventually), and don't trust anyone at AA meetings. That's why I came here.

Thank you again and I will keep coming back! Good luck to you too!
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Old 04-04-2010, 11:37 PM
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dee74 is right only you can decide. I too am from a small town Ive always coached my children and others and was able to keep my problem hidden my children have seen me drink often to states I wish they hadnt I am shameful I cant change it but I can educate them I am not a trainer though I wish I had one.My wife and I are or were since I am 33 good athletes had many chances .I was in good shape so I thought I could abuse myself it catches up to you.Its really not worth it. The money,health issues ect.We have a good life BUT I feel I could have done so much more.I came to this place many times and could not say honestly I didnt have a problem so I try to exept it. I still feel ashamed and is hard to admit but Im just speaking for me.GOD BLESS AND GOOD LUCK
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Old 04-04-2010, 11:40 PM
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Hi tkmal -

Welcome. Glad you are here.

For me, it started like your story, a few drinks a couple of times a week, then a few drinks every night, then daily drinking and a few nights with a lot of drinks... (all while being an athlete, as well)

you get the picture... it is progressive.

So, I finally decided that I didn't want to keep drinking, so I tried to stop. And I couldn't. I'd stop for a few days and then start feeling like "I deserved it" or "It has been a bad day, so a drink would be nice..." all the stuff we tell ourselves when we aren't really being honest with ourselves.

My favorite one was how I would pour myself an 8 oz glass of whiskey and call that 1 drink... but that is another story for another day...

Anyhow, as others have said, only you can decide. The best test that I found was to try to stop drinking for 30 days. If you can do it without craving for alcohol, then you probably just need to cut back to get back to your healthy lifestyle. But, if like myself, you have crossed that invisible line into alcoholism, you won't be able to do it.

If it bothers you, you should stop - and if you aren't an alcoholic, you will be able to. If you can't, then you're in the right place. Be honest with yourself. Keep posting.
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Old 04-05-2010, 12:02 AM
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Here is something you might find of interest...

What is moderation?

According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control

Moderate drinking is no more than
2 drinks a day for men..1 for women

They consider a drink to be
12 oz. of beer..5 oz. of wine...1 1/2 oz of liquor.

Your body and mind processes all 3 toxins equally
so drinking only wine or only liquor or only beer
or mixing them is of no importance.
They all do the same damage...not just to alcoholics.


According to the Center for Disease Control

22,000 deaths are recorded per year as being alcohol
induced this is excluding accidents and homicides,
on top of that number there is another 13,000 people
who die per year from alcohol related liver diseases.
As you do have young children.....I am concerned
about what could happen late at night
What if they needed you to be mentally alert?
That buzz fog would not be useful in an emergecy.

And ...of course....you wish to see them grow up
You want to set a healthy example for them
I'm certain.

Not trying to guilt trip you ...just things I hope you
will consider

Blessings to you and your family
Welcome to our recovery community.....
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Old 04-05-2010, 12:40 AM
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Hello Tkmal,

Glad to see you here and welcome to the board. I was once a personal trainer too and had the NASM, AFAA, ISSA and ACSM certifications. I'm still an avid gym person and now I enjoy doing aquathons and biathlons. When I was drinking, especially when I was working out hard, I used to worry about the calories in the alcohol. I would tell myself to only drink 7-8 shots so that I can burn off the calories the next day. Pretty much, I would calculate beforehand and try to limit myself and what not. Well.... that didnt always go according to plan. I'm in recovery now but when I think back to how I was thinking, I realize that it was insane thinking. When I did "control" my drinking, like having a beer or two, I would kick myself afterwards because those two beers did absolutely nothing for me and now I just ingested 200 calories and must burn it off. Crazy thinking right? I know i'm an alcoholic and my addict mind makes me rationalize and justify things that can lead me to trouble. I recognize that now and i'm taking steps to cope with this problem.

Like the people above me said, only you can really decide for yourself if you have a drinking problem. Maybe you can do some honest self reflection and see if you can spot signs of alcoholism from your past drinking experiences. Since you are on here, I think that you are definitely taking a good step in the right direction.
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Old 04-05-2010, 07:35 AM
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If it bothers you, you should stop - and if you aren't an alcoholic, you will be able to. If you can't, then you're in the right place. Be honest with yourself. Keep posting.

When I started questioning my drinking I knew deep down I had a problem. I hope we can be helpful to you in deciding what to do about it. :ghug3
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Old 04-05-2010, 08:12 AM
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Welcome to SR tkmal, it is only theory right now, but they beleive alcoholism is hereditary, they are probably right considering both my grandfather, my father, my brother and my son along with myself are alcoholics! Luckily my father stayed sober the last 19 years of his life, I have been sober 3 1/2 years and my son for over 2, my brother has been sober about 10 years now.

Any how it is a fact that the longer an alcoholic continues to drink the worse their alcoholism gets, it never stabilizes, nor does it ever lessen, it ALWAYS gets worse for an active alcoholic. For many years I could quit drinking with no real withdrawal symptoms, then I crossed that invisible line and had to drink even though I no longer wanted to.

SR is an awesome place and there are some who stay sober with SR alone, but for folks like myself SR alone does not cut the mustard, it is a great supplement to AA for me. It is also a supplement for folks who use other recovery programs.

How many people do you know who attend AA in your area? Do they tell you who else attends meetings in your area or have they just divulged to you that they attend? If they just divulge to you that they attend then there may be a reason why they are breaking thier anonymity to you.

I can tell you from first hand knowledge that I know judges, lawyers, priests, doctors, therapists, business owners, etc. that go to AA meetings all the time. They take the same attitude about it that I do......... I would much rather be known as a rcovering alcoholic then a drunk which is what I was known as for many years before I get sober via AA.

Believe it or not, but more people knew me as a drunk outside of AA then people know I attend AA meetings now.

I know that fear of AA very well, by God there was no way I was going to AA, it was not until after I got sober that I found out that my great secret about me being a drunk was not a secret to anyone who knew me. Why did I finally go to AA? Devil be damned, I was tired of being a drunk, I wanted a new way of life sober and I found that in AA.

Not only did I find a new & awesome way of sober living in AA, I found myself on equal footing with Dr.s, lawyers, a judge, policemen, busnessmen, etc. You might be shocked at who attends AA meetings on Capitol Hill!

Hey if AA is not for you then there are other recovery programs out there you could work, just keep in mind that the doors of AA are always open if the other programs do not work for you.

Keep in mind though, that no matter what program you choose to work, you have to work the ENTIRE program all the way, not picking & choosing what you will & will not do. When it comes to recovery from alcoholism one thing is for sure half measures avail us nothing!
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Old 04-05-2010, 08:29 AM
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Welcome to SR...it has saved my life.

Please keep reading and posting!
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Old 04-05-2010, 08:51 AM
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Big Thanks

I just wanted to thank everyone who posted a response to me. You have all been so helpful. It amazes me how similar your situations were/are to mine. It is so good to know that I don't have to battle this alone in my own mind. I do intend to keep coming back here. Thanks again.
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Old 04-05-2010, 08:55 AM
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I thought I was the only one with the same problems that you have, when I quit drinking. I wasn't. Many, many, many of us could write the same stories.

I only wish I had quit when my kids were your kids age. You are giving them (and yourself!) a huge gift, getting sober now.

You do NOT have to battle this alone. In the early days, I lived on SR (I don't do AA). Sometimes, I still do!
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Old 04-05-2010, 09:19 AM
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Yes good luck and keep coming back
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Old 04-05-2010, 09:26 AM
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I'm glad you found us, and it's so true you are not alone.

We're all here to seek support from each other.

I think the fact that you cannot stop drinking for more than a few nights is a big red flag. If you were not an alcoholic, that would not be a problem for you.
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Old 04-05-2010, 03:05 PM
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Hi Tkmal and welcome to SR!

Ditto to all the comments about AA, "if you think that you have a problem, you probably do", the 30 day test, etc. I just wanted to say welcome and tell you how invaluable SR has been for me. There is a lot of wisdom on these boards. An SR member (sorry, not sure who) once posted:

I used to think that Alcohol was my problem, when in fact, it was my solution.

That really resonated with me.
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