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Third time's the charm?

Old 04-29-2015, 08:47 AM
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Third time's the charm?

Hi. This is the third time I'm trying SR. I'm coming off of about four months of very heavy drinking after a period of sobriety. At first there were few consequences; I was able to drink excessively every night without it affecting my job or relationships. But it quickly got right back to where I was last time: blacking out 4 or 5 times a week, embarrassing myself in public, fights with husband, etc. etc.

I've been reading SR but told myself I had to have at least one week sober before posting. So I have that--sort of. I thought I'd post about the last relapse so that I avoid doing that again.

Recently I decided to get sober again (and not drink occasionally). The withdrawal symptoms were much worse than last time: sweating for two days, exhausted, nausea, body pain, nightmares, vivid horrible memories, headaches, mood swings. I felt hungover for the first six days. But that was OK because I expected to feel bad based on previous attempts at sobriety. Day 7 I felt good. The muscle pain was still there, but I felt energetic for the first time and clearer. Day 8, however, was a different story.

I've read that this is pretty common and may be a symptom of withdrawal. But when you're in it, it's real. I felt completely empty. Worthless. Like my life had no value. Instead of being sad, I felt nothing, which is really scary (I have a history of depression). The AV got really loud. I swore back at it and said I wasn't going to drink no matter what. I drove past the liquor store. When I got home, it was worse. I was shaking and anxious and couldn't get my brain to shut up. I could recognize the AV voice, and kept mentally boxing with it, but it kept on and kept on and kept on until finally I said, "OK, you win for today. But I'm coming back full force tomorrow." When I was driving to the liquor store, I felt this immense sense of calm. I knew that that was because the AV had gotten what it wanted. But I drank anyway. It wasn't fun. It felt like I was taking medicine.

But in fact I DID wake up full of determination. I made it through a long, stressful work day. I got snacks and candy and soda on the way home and used those to combat my "5:00 stress relief" cravings. I read SR. My mind felt clear, so I was even able to read instead of watching TV.

So today is Day 2 again. I'm hesitant to post this because I have been sincere in the past about quitting only to drink again. But I also feel like it will help my sobriety to get out there. AA is not an option, and I don't have any close friends where I live. So I'm back and looking for support. I was so grateful for the strength I got from you guys last time.
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Old 04-29-2015, 08:49 AM
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Welcome back!!

You said something that resonated with me "It felt like medicine"

YES!!! That's what is does become for many, at least for me. It wasn't fun, social, an activity of bonding with others. It was medicine. Medicine that was keeping me sick.

You realizing that is huge. And you came back here. Stay awhile.
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Old 04-29-2015, 08:55 AM
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Welcome back safeandsound. There are a lot of ways to go about this, there are many who use SR as their sole source of support - is that what you were doing during your last stint of sobriety?

For me acceptance was the first step. In AA it's admitting that you are powerless. In AVRT it's recognizing the beast. Some call it surrendering, accepting, "seeing the light" or the aha moment. But at the end of the day, you need to unconditionally accept the fact that picking up even one drink is not an option. And it will never be an option. Once I did that, things got a lot more manageable.

You say AA isn't an option, are there any other local resources available to you? Such as perhaps other meeting based recovery ( Life Ring, Celebrate Recovery, etc ) or perhaps counseling? I only say that because for many, the piece that is lacking with multiple relapses is local support. SR is fantastic of course but some of us need more than that. Basically, keep an open mind for any resource you might find.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:01 AM
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Welcome back!!
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:10 AM
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Thanks, TS! I've been reading your accountability posts, and they really helped.

Scott, there are NO resources here besides AA which I've tried and didn't like (long story). I even looked for free counseling, but they only offer three sessions. I have no steady income. I wish I were in the US where there are more options. And yes, the last two times I only used SR, and it worked. I definitely accept I am an alcoholic.

What is motivating me is remembering how great I felt last time at almost three months sober. The best I have felt in my life. Then I gradually started to feel like I didn't deserve to feel that good. Neurotic, huh?

Thanks for the support!
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:13 AM
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So, SaS, let me get this straight. You've been sober and have not drank for 9 out of the last 10 days. That is an excellent start ! Congradulations !!!

Now it's time to shoot for 10 out of 10 !

Remember, "Baby Steps". You CAN do it !

DD
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:22 AM
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Welcome bk Safe&Sound
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:51 AM
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Originally Posted by safeandsound View Post
Scott, there are NO resources here besides AA which I've tried and didn't like (long story). I even looked for free counseling, but they only offer three sessions. I have no steady income. I wish I were in the US where there are more options. And yes, the last two times I only used SR, and it worked. I definitely accept I am an alcoholic.
There are a lot of online resources you should check out too. You obviously have the forums here, and there is a chat room with regularly scheduled "meetings" ( not AA, just chat meetings ).

Many of the other recovery methods ( both 12 step and secular ) have online meetings that are free via the web, a little googling makes them easy to find. I don't participate regularly in AA or other programs, but I still jump in some of the online meetings from time to time as it's always good to keep an open mind and listen to others who share the same goal as I - and they are all completely free and anonymous.

Self help books are very useful too, both in the field of addiction and mental health - check the sticky for a list of titles.

You mentioned counseling....there is also a forum here for mental health you might want to check out if you feel you might have issues. I personally have GAD and borderline OCD and I've realized that much of my drinking in the past was in part to try and self medicate for these issues, which didn't work of course!

Bottom line, there is a LOT of free help out there...just ask if you need help finding any of it.
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Old 04-29-2015, 10:40 AM
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the sober highway is wide and long, we might take a tumble but there is lots of room and miles to get yourself together .

Just keep on getting through the days learning as much as you can , keep coming back to it , keep learning .

With tenacity and learning you will get there

keep on

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Old 04-29-2015, 10:55 AM
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Hi Safeandsound,

I hope you find something that works for you. We have lots of support here on SR and we have a great book list, too. Books on Recovery & Spirituality
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Old 04-29-2015, 04:13 PM
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Welcome back Safe

As Scott suggested, keep in mind that a lot of recovery groups (not just AA) have online meetings...

Join another monthly group thread and/or the 24 hour thread.

Think about a recovery plan too - something more than trying not to drink - some great ideas here

http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...at-we-did.html

D
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:28 PM
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Hey! Welcome back. AA is out for me as well, just not my kind of thing. I find that this site is helping me immensely.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:37 PM
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I can relate to that old feeling of driving to the liquor store. It was like the buzz started from the minute my keys went in the ignition. What a memory.

It may take awhile to feel good again. I also felt hungover for about six days. It was horrible but I knew I only had to get through it once. You can do this!
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:38 PM
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Hi S&S!

Glad to see you around again. :-)

Sometimes it just takes more than one try for sobriety to stick. You can do this.
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Old 04-29-2015, 09:42 PM
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You posted something along the lines of getting gsober and then feeling like yiu don't deserve it - I was literally just having those same thoughts, especially when it comes to how good I look and feel sober! Master of self sabotage
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