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Old 03-07-2013, 12:58 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Struggling at 48 years old


I started drinking when I was 13 or thereabouts when my parents started having issues. They were never heavy drinkers but it was always available, though I had to be just a little sneaky. By the time I was 16 my mom would buy me beer at the store. Upper middle class family, she was just being "cool" from her point of view.

Anyway, fast forward 30 years and I found myself struggling with job stress, ordering benzos from the internet and it landed me in a recovery center for a week. My wife freaked out. That was 2004. I was sober for maybe 3-4 years, but gradually stopped going to meetings and started back into some OTC things like Nyquil and then finally started going to the package store and now I sneak alcohol at work and at home. Nearly every day, it's probably some 5-6 drinks of either wine or beer, but always on the sly, including in the car, basement, whatever.

My drinking has come habituated with exercise. I can run 3-4 miles most days of the week, but I but provide a "reward" afterwards. So I'm kind of "stuck" in this cycle. I've been to one meeting but probably time to ask for help? I've started seeing some physical symptoms. I notice at night my mouth is SUPER dry, I feel my hands go numb such that it wakes me up slightly, and probably hit the bathroom 2-3 times. I'm not sure what that all relates to, but I'm concerned about the health issues, and feel like in this cycle of addiction and remorse.

Anyway, not sure where to go from here. Probably to a meeting I guess, but I do feel self conscious going back to my local meetings where they'll recognize me and I'll feel ashamed.

Thanks any experience strength or hope,

_jay
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Old 03-07-2013, 01:05 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Jay, it is possible to break the cycles we develop in addiction. I believe much has to do with getting support from people in the same situation. What I've learned to do is to remind myself that cravings don't kill but alcohol can be lethal. There are a number of options for people like us. There are a number of "threads" here that you might find helpful. For a start, why don't you read the posts in the March 2013 thread right on this list of topics? For some of us the shame we feel can be, I believe, dis-empowering. There are plenty of people who have just stopped (some today) drinking and are communicating with and supporting each other. You may find other suggestions about ways to go about this.

Best of luck to you!
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:01 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks Saskia. Much appreciated. I do have a few tools that I know have helped in the past: Vipassana meditation, running (or other intensive exercise), music... just that I have this OCD thing going that makes it tough. I'll read the posts that you suggest, thank you!
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Jay, those tools are a good start. For all of us it's really hard to beat this thing by ourselves and being supported by and supporting others is a big help!

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Old 03-07-2013, 02:12 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Alcoholism is serious. Do you think you are one? Have you tried to stop for a time?
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Yes, you do need to reach out and start going to meetings. I avoided that for years and COULD NOT beat it by myself. The first step of the 12 step program is to "admit that we are powerless over our addiction by ourselfs".

Please. Search out 2-3 meetings in your area and start going to them. Through meetings you meet new freinds who "fight the same fight". Things will start turning around for you. I am 116 days today and never could have done it without meetings.

God Bless!
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:14 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Anyway, not sure where to go from here. Probably to a meeting I guess, but I do feel self conscious going back to my local meetings where they'll recognize me and I'll feel ashamed.

Thanks any experience strength or hope,

_jay
Go back to the meetings, j. You will get over that self-conscious feeling and be back on track in no time.

If you have been at the meetings for a while you have seen folks come in with their tail between their legs and be back on track in no time.
You have also seen folks NOT come back because of some stinkin' ego/pride thing and die.

Your choice .....

All the best.

Bob R
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:18 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Alcoholism is serious. Do you think you are one? Have you tried to stop for a time?
I think so. It's definitely in the family tree. I was sober for about 3 years. Sobriety got shaky with obsession over OTC meds and such. Lots of substituting. Some positive, some negative. The obsession is there now, though.
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Old 03-07-2013, 02:30 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Welcome to SR Jay

It's funny, my mum did a similar thing, though I was 14. She always felt it was better that we drank at home rather than on the streets, but I did both anyway...

I am sure people at your local meetings will welcome you back with welcome arms But there are many other ways to recover too. It may be worth checking out AVRT and SMART recovery among others.

Glad you're here x
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Old 03-07-2013, 06:53 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Glad you found us Jay. You are right to be concerned about your health. Maybe that's a good motivator to get back to meetings, if they helped in the past. Maybe think of other "rewards" for your running and get rid of all alcohol in your house?
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Old 03-07-2013, 07:08 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I have not had a drink since 1/15/13. Can identify with the exercise. I run about 4 days a week and thought the same about the "reward". Couldn't wait to empty out 1/2 a vitamin water and fill back up with Vodka.Haven't been to any meetings, but read this board daily.
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Old 03-07-2013, 08:09 PM   #12 (permalink)
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welcome jtinkerton and DanDeluxe

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Old 03-08-2013, 11:36 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Welcome to SR Jay

It's funny, my mum did a similar thing, though I was 14. She always felt it was better that we drank at home rather than on the streets, but I did both anyway...

I am sure people at your local meetings will welcome you back with welcome arms But there are many other ways to recover too. It may be worth checking out AVRT and SMART recovery among others.

Glad you're here x
I'm curious about other kinds of meetings. I've been to a zillion AA meetings, but not to AVRT or SMART recovery. Also have inclined toward things like Buddhist meditation, but of course you don't get the specialized support that's really needed, I think. You guys are all great, I'm glad I found this group.
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Old 03-08-2013, 03:54 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I'm curious about other kinds of meetings. I've been to a zillion AA meetings, but not to AVRT or SMART recovery. Also have inclined toward things like Buddhist meditation, but of course you don't get the specialized support that's really needed, I think. You guys are all great, I'm glad I found this group.
No reason you can't use a combination of things, I know I do. SMART meetings are completely compatible with AA, or complimentary rather, but AVRT less so. It didn't stop me taking advantage of both though I would love to get into meditation but it isn't something I have done much of yet apart from just at home. I am sure a lot of the philosophy would be beneficial to sobriety and I think there are quite a few buddhists knocking round here...
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Old 03-12-2013, 03:04 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Thanks for the AVRT suggestion. I love discovering something new, so I am checking that out.

>>
Notice that you feel both ways about quitting.

This is the meaning of the word, "addiction."

On one hand you want to quit.
But on the other hand,
you would like to continue
drinking or drugging
as much as you want.

Forever.

You are ambivalent,
feeling both ways.
<<

But it isn't clear to me from reading the site that they actually have meetings.


Peace,

_jay
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Old 03-12-2013, 03:37 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Anyway, not sure where to go from here. Probably to a meeting I guess, but I do feel self conscious going back to my local meetings where they'll recognize me and I'll feel ashamed.

Thanks any experience strength or hope,

_jay
Hello Jay and welcome, I am a newbie but the little I know, I can assure you that you have no need or fear for feeling ashamed or self conscious and I bet you people who know you will only be happy to see you again.

Best of luck,

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Old 03-12-2013, 04:46 PM   #17 (permalink)
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to the family!
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Old 03-12-2013, 05:03 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Anyway, not sure where to go from here. Probably to a meeting I guess, but I do feel self conscious going back to my local meetings where they'll recognize me and I'll feel ashamed.

Thanks any experience strength or hope,

_jay
First of all, we are just not that important that people are thinking about us, you know how many people come into AA leave and come back? Most! I wouldn't worry about that. Most people in AA have also relapsed. I went to my 1st meeting in 1981 and I am 51 and have less than a year sober. The only requirement for member ship is a desire to stop drinking. This is your life and what others think about you is really none of your business. do you want to get sober? Then you know what you need to do, it worked before , it will work again. Quit stalling just walk thru the doors and get it over with. If anything, folks in AA will be glad to see you didn't die from this disease.
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Old 03-12-2013, 05:19 PM   #19 (permalink)
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IAnyway, not sure where to go from here. Probably to a meeting I guess, but I do feel self conscious going back to my local meetings where they'll recognize me and I'll feel ashamed.
Go to a meeting and don't feel ashamed. The people there have probably been thru this too. There is no shame in seeking help even if we relapse. It happens and honestly we embrace people who come back. I personally would never make anyone feel bad or ashamed.
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