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Old 01-24-2011, 08:35 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Hello I'm new...


Hi my name is Joe and I am undoubtably an alcoholic.

I have been drinking a pint plus of vodka for over a few years now. Very functionally at first, held the job, went to school, had a girlfriend etc. etc., but I definitely had the classic delusions of grandeur (sp?). Now I have lost my job, had to move back in with my mom, lost the girlfriend, and have lots of financial pain and physical pain. In October I went 30 days without a drink, went to meetings, met a sponsor, and then something about that 30 day mark - I tried to do some contolled drinking. Well, it didn't end up being very controlled. The whole pink cloud thing got me. My ego is strong.

I abondoned my sponsor, and went on some big benders throughout the holidays. My old sponsor called the holidays the Bermuda Triangle of AA. Last week I said enough and went through withdrawal. It sucked. The worst flu ever and I said to myself I would never ever again. I got through it and started to feel better again and then Saturday that itch came and I got a big case of the F*** its, and I went out again. Now Monday and a few pints of vodka again and here I am. I have to go through this ish again. Sucks!!!

I'm going to see my doctor tonight because I probably need some meds, but the hard part is after the withdrawal. I need to get back into AA and to find a sponsor whom I can relate to.

Anyway, I just wanted to put my story out there. This crap is so embarrasing. I just want to move on with my life!!! Reading on this forum gives me hope....
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Old 01-24-2011, 08:49 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome Joe - I can relate to trying the "controlled drinking" approach (probably most everyone here has tried it). We start to feel better and when that itch comes up again, we forget why we wanted to stay sober in the first place.

You sound determined to make this work - so that's awesome. I think you'll find that this forum can add alot to your recovery. To me, it's like AA at my fingertips.

Hang in there - you can do it!
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:01 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yeah, I remember being in the position of knowing i had to go through withdrawls again -awful, and yes, it's a good idea to talk to your dr.

And, you're right, that the stopping is just the beginning. But, we're here to support you as you begin your recovery.
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:03 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks!!! I just feel so crappy right now. I'm sick of being this mess. I would go to a meeting tonight but I feel as though I might have a panic attack in the meeting. Definitely going to see the doc though.
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:11 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I know that most of us can relate to moderating our drinking. On January 1st I had spent enough time and energy on trying to control my drinking. As much as I wanted to be a normal drinker, it would never happen. Too much stress. It's like a ton of bricks off my shoulders knowing that I can't control alcohol and simply have to avoid it. Simple no.... but worthwhile? ABSOLUTELY!!! 24 days and counting....

Glad you're part of the SR group.
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:44 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Hi Jo!! I know from my own experience..you have to REALLY want to stop drinking more than any urge to drink to make this transition to sober life. I did one relapse and was so p!ssed because I went to a birthday party and decided to shoot some shots. wtf..started my count all over again and will NEVER look back. I think we all try it. I wanted to tell you that anxiety you are feeling..hopefully it will leave you once you get some days sober. Mine did..I was starting to think I was full blown nutcase with the "anxiety attacks" (in quotes because they were actually part of hangover days) and it all left once I put my bottles down. You will start feeling some peace like you have never known after you string some time together..hang in there..and WELCOME! I use SR daily..great place for support and knowledge!!!
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:56 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Welcome Joe, and I'm very happy you've found this site. It's been a tremendous source of support and strength for me since I've put down the bottle.

Pretty sure just about everyone here has tried some controlled drinking. Sure, I could "control" my drinking on certain occasions, but there would be others where I would go all out, black out and not remember doing some rather embarrassing (and worse) things.

I'm sorry for the things you've lost due to drinking. Many of us can share similar stories. I lost jobs, created financial ruin for myself, got into trouble with the law, had to move back home more than once...The only reason I am still with my fiancee is that she is an absolutely amazing woman who put up with far more crap from me than she should, and somehow managed to hang on through the bad times until I was able to start to put my life back together.

I'm seeing blessings in my life that I couldn't conceive when I was drinking. Heck, just having a clean house and being able to wash and fold my laundry is a blessing. I now realize that I could never have the life I want if I go back to the bottle. Cutting the alcohol was the first thing that needed to happen before I could start to make real progress in my life. Sure, once I hit certain landmarks (30 days, 100 days, 9 months) I had the thoughts of, "I've done well and shown I can handle myself...I could probably go back to drinking." But I can't listen to those thoughts, because deep down I know where the alcohol will lead me. And it's not toward my hopes and dreams.

Again, welcome, and I hope you're able to find the help you need.
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:56 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Been there done that. Can totally relate. the whole "controlled drinking thing". I think another important thing to remember is that if we feel we need to "control" it, then it really must be a problem right? Glad you are here. Post often and read alot and you will find it is a great help. Welcome!
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Old 01-24-2011, 10:29 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Welcome back! I too was on and off the wagon for almost two years before I finally got serious and said "enough!!". That was over a year ago and I'm doing better than ever and live an enjoyable life now. No more waking up feeling horrible and hating myself. No more wasted money and wasted days. No more risk of legal and physical problems. I can't think of a single reason to drink now but can think of a hundred reasons not to.

I hope we can be as much help to you as this site has been to me.
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:10 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Thank you all so much!!!

Your words are trully helpful. Its weird how just blurting out all this stuff going on is a lift. Just knowing that others have been there and are ok now is huge. I'm such an inpatient person. I just want the peace that a lot of you have found but I want it now! I'm so impatient.

I'm 32 years old and I feel like I have wasted so much freaking time. I get these alumni magazines from my college which details what people are doing with their lives and it seriously makes me want to go out and drink. Counterintuitive. But, I see that so and so has kids and is a doctor or someone else is doing this great thing and that great thing and I start to feel worthless. Welcome to the pity party! See I know all this stuff - I'm very keen on my thinking but I can't seem to put it into action.

This is going to take a lot of patience, which I do not have a lot of. Feeling sick doesn't help either.
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Old 01-24-2011, 03:03 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Everyone has their journey I think.

It's important to remember Joe - you've taken the first step in your journey to who you want to be....with some time, some work and some determination, you'll get there

Think about where you want to go, not where you've been

Welcome to SR
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Old 01-24-2011, 04:40 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Hi Joboo; just looked this up after seeing you post on another thread.

Yeah, we've all been there. But as you can see, it can get better! This go-round is better for me in every way—I'm feelings strong, and actually embracing sobriety, instead of just resisting alcohol.

One absolutely critical piece, I think, is that I realized I can never have another drink again. Not one. I will never be a normal drinker. Let's face it, I tried that a million times, and it just didn't work for me. I always dreaded the idea of never drinking—but once I accepted that, recovery became a lot easier. Like mmh said, it's been a huge relief to stop fighting to control it.
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Old 01-24-2011, 07:13 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Cravings

Welcome Joe!

Your story brought back vivid memories. The important thing is to keep on trying.

I learned not to compare my life with what I read or hear about others; we never truly know what goes on behind closed doors. One woman in particular who I met in early sobriety looked polished, professional and accomplished as a corporate executive...only to learn that she was in a domestically violent relationship. You never know...

As for cravings after having stopped drinking, I wanted to share this. It's an article that helped me to understand and prepare for cravings before they hit:

"Since alcohol is a powerfully addictive drug that is toxic, your body had to make some physical changes to keep you from being poisoned. Your body's chemistry, especially that of your liver, had to change to keep you alive while you were drinking.

However, once your body chemistry changed to accommodate the presence of alcohol, it cannot be un-changed. This is why you are experiencing physical cravings for alcohol; your body wants it back!

These cravings are most intense in the first six months of abstinence from alcohol. Thus, this is when most relapses occur. Here's how you can beat alcohol cravings today, right now:

Cravings occur on a Bell curve: they start out mild, grow in intensity until they peak, and then gradually they return to the "baseline" of no cravings.

When you feel a craving begin, now you know what's going to happen - so you're ahead of the game! As your craving peaks in about 30 minutes, do something else...anything; exercise, go to your recovery group's web site and talk through your craving, call a friend, read your email, go to a movie, read a book, watch TV, just get your mind onto something else.

The craving will begin to recede slowly, and soon it will be gone altogether. This process takes about an hour. Keep telling yourself "I won't give in. This is going to pass." And it will! Your self-confidence will be increased significantly as you enjoy the success of not picking back up.

The psychological aspect behind cravings: It is the habit and routine that you built around alcohol use that is causing the craving. The obvious solution to this type of craving is to make a new routine that does not involve drinking.

The fancy term for this process is known as "pattern interruption," which simply means that you stop drinking. However, you must have another behavior to do instead of drinking; this is called "pattern development."

You can't just leave a big hole in your life without filling it with something else; this is a sure-fire relapse trigger."

That was the gist of the article, Joe. Information liked this really helped me to understand what was going on with my body and mind in the early sober process. Hopefully it helps you too.

Support from others who understand what you're going through is very important to sobriety as well...whether that's through this site, AA, counseling or another sober program, I wish you the best!
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Old 01-24-2011, 07:41 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Joboo.

Let me throw something different at you-- stop trying.

Yes, you read that correctly.

Trying to stop drinking for me was like shoveling water uphill. With 100% regularity, I returned to it. Each time, my resolve was greater-- this time it was going to be different. If you gave me a lie-dectector test, I would have passed it.

Yet, I drank again. I went to AA and they gave me all sorts of explanations-- I didn't want it bad enough, I wasn't finished, I wasn't committed, etc. But I knew-- I REALLY KNEW-- that I was an alcoholic, and that it was better for me not to drink. So why couldn't I stop?

I did not understand my disease.

Alcoholism is a fatal, chronic condition. Calling it a "drinking problem" is like calling leprosy a stubborn rash. 100,000 people die from it each year in the United States alone. It is characterized by two key components:

1) the inability to control how much you drink once you start drinking (physical allergy)

2) the inexplicable return to drinking after a period of sobriety despite good intentions (mental obsession).

These two components add up to complete and total powerlessness. "Trying harder" makes no difference-- it always ends up the same. The only thing that's different is the amount of time it takes the alcoholic to this stunning realization:

"I'm screwed. I have no hope. I can't help but drink."


So now what?

The program of AA suggests not that we build obstacles to drinking, but that we begin the process of removing obstacles to a power greater than ourselves that can solve the drink problem. These are the steps of AA, and they work, regardless of what you believe. Because if you've been able to concede to your inner most self that you are powerless and your life is unmanageable, you are in a position to recover. But you cannot do it through willpower, exercise, calling your sponsor, going to meetings, eating better, changing your friends, moving, taking vitamins, or not watching TV.

You need to undergo a fundamental personality change.

So it's not about trying not to drink. It's about trying to find a power that can solve a problem you are completely unable to solve on your own.
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Old 01-24-2011, 08:05 PM   #15 (permalink)
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welcome Joboo to SR, as you've already found there is a lot of support and wisdom here.
Glad to hear you're going to see a Dr to supervise you're detox.
As others have all said l think every alcoholic has at some time tried "controlled drinking" for me it's not about having one or two with a meal for me "1's too many and 100 not enough, l only drank to black out and have no delusions about that.
l too have embrased sobriety and everything it offers me, no not easy at times but it has gotten easier. Every morning l wake up with a clear head and clear conscience, l love my life today.

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Old 01-24-2011, 08:18 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Hi Jo, I'm new here too. Been sober over a year living One Day at a Time. Read the AA 'Promises'. Good things happen to alcoholics who get sober. I have met more of the best people I know in AA the past year then in the past 20 years of my life partying and being sick. Hang in there!
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Old 01-24-2011, 08:45 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Thanks much to you all. Can't sleep much now, but will check in again tomorrow...
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Old 01-25-2011, 12:22 AM   #18 (permalink)
Forward we go...side by side-Rest In Peace
 
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One positive thing about not being employed?

You have plenty of time to begin your formal Step work
That's when my new life started...and I finally quit drinking...

Yes...you too can win over alcohol...Welcome....
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