First contact

Old 10-31-2012, 12:04 AM
  # 1 (permalink)  
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First contact

Hi all and thank you for the opportunity to post here. I'm 40 years old, married with three daughters, and have for the past year or so, become increasingly worried about my alcohol consumption, which has been increasing. I drink wine, mainly. Usually about a bottle a night, sometimes more. I am worried that it is getting in the way of my relationships, and my daughters, who are by now quite used to seeing their dad put away a bottle of wine or more a night

A couple of months ago, after a rough weekend, I decided that enough was enough and I joined a weight control programme, smokenders and started exercising, but carried on drinking. As of today, I haven't smoked for five weeks, I have lost 12 kilograms and am working up to half an hour of solid running 3-4 days a week. I have in the past two months stopped drinking for 6 days for one period and 8 days for another period, but have, after both periods, started again (and with gusto). I wake up in the morning with a hangover, feeling pretty lousy, get through my day at work and at the end of that, I'm ready to start drinking again. Feels like a vicious cycle that I want to get out of. My wife also drinks and I struggle not to drink when she is, and I think she feels awkward about it. What I am coming to realise is that I don't think I am able to just have one (or two) glasses of wine. Once I've had a glass, I just carry on until a bottle or more is finished, then I make my way to bed. I don't drink in the day (except for the odd working lunch here and there), but am starting to worry about my drinking. Of course, it is not helping with weight loss (I am drinking about a third of my allotted calories on the weight loss programme), and I think I need to take a firm decision to stop drinking altogether. I in fact did just that two weeks ago, made it through 8 days (during which I felt pretty miserable), before starting up again.

I'm not sure what I want any of you guys to say, other than to maybe point me in the direction I need go. Also, any tips/tricks relating to how to go about stopping altogether would be much appreciated.

Again, thank you for taking the time to read my story.


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Old 10-31-2012, 12:19 AM
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Hi Matthew and welcome to SR. You've come to exactly the right place to find the support you're seeking.
First of all, well done in recognising you have a problem. I was in the same situation as you a few months ago. My husband and I had gradually slipped into a pattern of drinking every night , and any attempts to moderate or stop failed completely. I went through a crazy few months, years even, of attempting to set myself limits-don't drink during the week, drink wine instead of vodka, stop drinking after a certain hour etc. but I just couldn't maintain it.
Finding SR was a huge blessing for me.
Take time to read about what others are doing for their recovery, what is working for them.
Post and ask advice when you need to.
You are amongst friends here x
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Old 10-31-2012, 12:46 AM
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Mathewv, welcome to SR. As Jeni mentioned, you have come to the right place. Your situation is very similar to most of us. You will get lots of support and guidance here. Keep reading the posts and you will get lots of information.

There are two things observed from your post. One, you felt " miserable " during those 6 and 8 days when you did not drink. This is quite natural and every one goes through it. However, it is advisable to consult a Doctor to avoid serious withdrawal symptoms. You also need to prepare your body to fight through proper nutritions with healthy diet and Multivitamins. Secondly, you mentioned that currently you are taking almost one third of the allowed calories, in the form of alcohol. Alcohol is nothing but " Empty Calories " and does not provide any nutrition. You have also started a quite intensive physical activity of running for half an hour and you have lost 12 kg.

It is really important that you keep your body fully nourished. You can also try having proper dinner at just the onset of evening , before touching the wine bottle. It worked for me. After dinner, if if I tried to drink, could not. However, it may work for you or may not. A good thought would be " My body needs solid food and hydrating liquid (only water.) Wishing you all the best.
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Old 10-31-2012, 12:51 AM
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Hi Matthew

Wow your story is my story or it was 7 months ago. I drank every night usually a bottle of wine then off to bed, wake up hungover and off to work saying I am not drinking tonight but by lunchtime when I started to feel better I would think ok I have a few tonight and that was my life for over 5 years. For me the bottle of wine started to turn into 2 as I started to panic when that one bottle was gone in a hour. I was not living and scared to stop drinking as I could not picture my life without a drink.

OMG what life, I didn't have one, drinking was my life. I too started a diet and was allowed 17 ww points I drank 10-12 of them and eat nothing almost just allowing 5-7 points for food.

For me as an all or nothing person I had to quit totally and I did that with the help of a treatment centre. It was the best decision I have ever made. Read loads on here, believe you can do it. I had not gone one day without a drink for 20 years and I am 7 months sober on Friday so you can do.

I wish you all the best.

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Old 10-31-2012, 01:01 AM
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Wow. Thank you. It means a great deal to me to get such welcoming support and reassurance from total strangers. I am going to read a lot over the next few days and would like to stay in touch. Thank you again very much for your messages.
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Old 10-31-2012, 04:31 AM
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The weird thing about this addiction/disease/problem (whatever), is that it progresses. In my case, a bottle of wine was sufficient--never even really questioned it.

However, then I needed more to achieve the desired buzz. Over the course of a a few years, it went up to over two bottles of wine when I chose to drink. And, oh god, the misery and sense of hopelessness that came with the binges the next day.

I think you're on the right track by being aware of the problem and coming here for support. You'll find a lot of stories and paths to recovery that worked for so many.

Best to you.
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Old 10-31-2012, 08:49 AM
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Matthew, I think it is wonderful that you have given this issue your attention and realize there are lurking dangers. As others have said, quitting is the only route for people who prefer more rather than a little, a buzz rather than a brief social experience. You asked about tips. I would suggest identifying the time of day/place/circumstance in which you customarily drank and alter your pattern of behavior. Make a commitment not to drink for at least 3 months because it takes that long at least for your brain to start operating without the alcohol confusing your neurotransmitters. Be easy on yourself and do not expect anything other than sobriety for the first couple of months, be aware you may have some odd physical responses aside from the urge to have a drink, such as fatigue, numbed feelings, anxiety, etc. it gets better and you will have a much deeper understanding of what role alcohol has been playing in your life after you get away from it. I knew alcohol was hurting me but I had no idea of the far reaching effects until I got down the road. Best wishes to you.
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:09 AM
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Hi, Matthewv and congratulations!! You are definitely in the right place! SR has helped me so much! I'm working on day two and these past two days have been fantastic!!
I can offer a few tips/suggestions. Read over SR and read whatever books you can get your hands on that are written by people just like you and I, who have overcome this demon! One last thing, do you have any hobbies or things you love doing that you havent done in a while becuase of the drinking? I personally have a craft room that went unattended for quite some time. Cleaning it and getting back to my sewing is my top priority right now. I also love to cook. Looking up new recipes to keep me busy helps as well. Good luck in the upcoming days! Drink some herbal teas, coffee, hot chocolate, etc... when you feel the urge to drink something.
Take care and keep us all posted!!
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Old 10-31-2012, 09:25 AM
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Welcome to SR Matthew, I came here for the exact same reason, today is day 20 for me, the longest I have been sober since pregnancy five years ago. Keep reading and posting, you will find lots of support her.
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Old 10-31-2012, 10:31 AM
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Thank you all for your input and kindness. It feels good not to feel alone with the worry and to feel that my situation is understood. Thank you all very much for taking the time to reply. I have spent quite a while thinking this over and it is clear to me that I am going to have to stop drinking - one day at a time as they say. I am sure I will use this forum as I do so.

I hope to speak to some of you again over the next while on this forum.
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