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OMG - I just realized I've been trying to quit for 10 years.

Old 05-26-2015, 11:57 AM
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OMG - I just realized I've been trying to quit for 10 years.

I found a profile of mine on a website I used to frequent, and in there I wrote that I had "given up drinking for good".

I was 25 years old. 10 years later, and I'm still drinking. Only difference is I am undoubtedly drinking more. Basically, every night.

In that time I have:
:: Gone to AA (probably 25 times - possibly 30? I desperately wanted it to work for me, but it really didn't. No disrespect to AA members here
:: Spent 3 years with an addiction therapist. Yes, 3 years - I still see him
:: Got a prescription for Naltrexone, which worked. But in order for it to work, you have to actually take it
:: Reached out to a few close friends - only to disappoint them

On the outside, my life doesn't appear dysfunctional. I have a good job, income, friends, am close to my family and go to the gym consistently. People know me as a big drinker, but I'm a "fun drunk" who seems to pull it all together for important stuff, so they don't express too much concern. But beyond that facade is an alcoholic with no control. The moment I start I cannot stop. Once consumed, virtually everything else becomes secondary to alcohol. This has led to countless regrettable actions, yet somehow not enough to have me stop.

I'm 35 years old and I have no idea how to live without alcohol. Yet at the same time, I know I can no longer live like this. If that even makes sense...

I'm really, really, really tired of having this battle and losing.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:00 PM
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Hi Scram, it's a stark realization, isn't it? I can completely relate. I "started" getting sober in 2003 and finally "got it" in 2013 Ten years later.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:01 PM
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I am 31 and have an awesome life outside of the dark place which is knowing I have a problem. Dont know if I will never drink again or just give up the hiding of liquor. Going strong on day 2. PM me. Our stories seem similar except I have never been a daily drinker or gone to rehab. Nonetheless a problrm is a problem.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:05 PM
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You and me both Scram.

It's almost as if you have to regress into the mind of a 5 year, and from there, re-program yourself from scratch into a life of sobriety. Your entire life, habits, relationships, coping mechanisms, and everything else needs to get switched around. Does that make any sense?
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Scram View Post
The moment I start I cannot stop. Once consumed, virtually everything else becomes secondary to alcohol. This has led to countless regrettable actions, yet somehow not enough to have me stop.

I'm 35 years old and I have no idea how to live without alcohol. Yet at the same time, I know I can no longer live like this. If that even makes sense...
That pretty much describes the problem.


Make today your Stop day and everything will change. I don't think it's possible to know how to live without alcohol until you do it. Even then, it's one day, one hour, one moment at a time.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:32 PM
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I have tried to stop many times as well, I stopped diring all three pregnancies, and then after the third slowly started increasing again. I ended up stopping for three months a few years ago, and then started again. I am on day 8 now, and plan on making this time my last time having to start again. It is certainly not easy, but somehow we managed to function with jobs and families while drinking, so surely we can do this! Good luck, glad to be on this journey with you.
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Old 05-26-2015, 12:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Scram View Post
I'm 35 years old and I have no idea how to live without alcohol. Yet at the same time, I know I can no longer live like this. If that even makes sense...

I'm really, really, really tired of having this battle and losing.
It makes a lot of sense. It took me until my 40s to get to that point.

The turning point for me was accepting that it was a fight/battle that I could never win. I accepted that there is something in the fiber of my being that will never allow me to drink alcohol responsibly. I tried every moderation plan on the planet and every single one of them failed miserably, every time. I accepted that this will always be the case and that there is no way for me to "get better" and somehow drink responsibly...i simply have to either quit drinking completely, or suffer the consequences.

Some call that a vision, acceptance, surrender, there are many terms. But in the end the concept is the same....make peace with the reality rather than fighting a losing battle.
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:06 PM
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Thank you all for your responses, they were more helpful than you know.

I guess I just feel like there's something inherently wrong with me. Who takes 10 years to quit anything? Glad to know I'm not totally alone.
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:10 PM
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Addiction is a bear, Scram. I think it ranks up there with the toughest things in life one can overcome.

Simple concept; tough as hell at times to execute.

Don't let what you didn't do in the past stop you from doing it right now
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:14 PM
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Took me pretty much 10 years from the moment of realization until honest action took place. And I am 29, 5 months sober this week.
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:20 PM
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You are not alone. First time I realized I had to quit was 2001... I started working at it in 2014. 13 years... There's no use in looking back other than to learn. What matters is from now on.
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:27 PM
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I'm at almost 13 years since my first AA meeting on July 22, 2002.

Have 19 days sober today and proud of it! It took what it took for me to get to this point so though I'm not proud of those 13 years, I also don't regret them. Things are looking up now and I'm feeling more and more sure of my commitment to sobriety every day now.
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:40 PM
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Hey Scram,
You are not alone. One of Dr Phils books that I read actually mentioned 10 years as a benchmark for bad habits is common.
Start again today. I'm only on day 10 again, but know that this is it. What I'm learning is that the fear of going without is much scarier than the reality of going without. Everything is so much better on the other side. Try not to focus on what didn't work in the past. Come up with a realistic plan and keep it at the top of your priorities every day. Every morning when I wake up with a clear head I go through the things I am grateful for to begin my day. I have to remind myself often during the day not to let daily stress change my thinking. That's usually when I jump on SR and strengthen my commitment.
You can do this!
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:40 PM
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Funny you should post this, scram. I am new here, and realized only a few weeks ago that my binge drinking has in fact been a solid pattern for ten years rather than a "recent uptick." The recent uptick, in fact, is just that "gremlin" inside knowing I am just starting to recognize my behavior for what it is, not what I want it to be, and telling me to "pour it on!"

It takes a long time for us to recognize our own patterns, if we ever do, because we don't want to admit we are prone to them. I think of all the time--years!--I was trying to decide if I had a problem, since I wasn't a daily or daytime drinker. Only when I began keeping a journal I realized what an absolute creature of habit I was and how often I'd tie one on (for example) on a Monday night. Literally for years I looked at that as a fluke rather than a pattern. And if it wasn't a Monday it was Thursday. Or Saturday. Really, who cares--it was almost always at least once if not twice a week.
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:49 PM
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I too am 35, but feel like a teenager now I am sober! I too tried to quit for 10 years! You can do this, but you must do it for you!
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Old 05-26-2015, 02:51 PM
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I know the feeling scram! Hasn't been quite 10 years that I've tried to quit drinking but it took me a very very long time to accept the fact that it has become an issue; I am dependent on the stuff almost daily; have to drink until I'm drunk; never 1 glass or two; and that in order for me to be sober and happy I just had to give up the bottles of wine no matter how uncomfortable it is!

Today is day 50 for me! I couldn't even imagine that I could make it past day 3!

It SUCKED at first! I don't think anybody will sit here and tell you that this was a piece of cake, but the life everyone talks about, the fact that life got better for people, intrigued me! So I gave this sobriety a serious go! I'm still here!

We are all here to help you! You can post on here and someone will always respond to you! Good luck to you!
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Old 05-26-2015, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Scram View Post
Who takes 10 years to quit anything?
Well....I wish I had quit at 10.

It will never get easier than it is today. Get after it!

You can do this.
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Old 05-26-2015, 03:45 PM
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It took me 15 years Scram.

For me, it all starts pretty simply - a desire for change and an acceptance that change cannot come while I'm drinking.

I can be the man I want to be - or I can drink...but not both.

lots of great ideas here on what a recovery plan might look like...

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

D
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Old 05-26-2015, 04:26 PM
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15 years for me too. I tried every way known to man to control it and even made some things up off the top of my head. Lots of pain and some good times in 15 years. Now I have good times and no self induced pain. It's not all sunshine and lollipops but it's not dark and depressing anymore.
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Old 05-26-2015, 05:53 PM
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I am equally exhausted by the never ending cycle. So tired of chasing sobriety only to have it beat me down in the end. Had a terrible weekend and my life seems to be slipping away before my eyes. The only hopeful thing that happened today was logging on to SR and reminding myself I am not alone.
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