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When does this get easier?

Old 06-07-2015, 05:02 PM
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When does this get easier?

I am on 23rd day sober and for the most part I have gotten along fine. But today, a situation where someone owes me money and is not paying, got me so angry I told myself a cold 6 pack of Summer Shanty would help. I was out and about shopping, and as I passed by a beer store, by some miracle, it was closed. I can't say for certain if I would have kept going or I would have stopped. My question is, when does this battle in my head quit? Hiw long does it take when sobriety feels like the norm?
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:05 PM
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You are still a newcomer, like me, and we are used to getting through situations with alcohol. We have learned to cope with our negative emotions by drinking. I would think that as you get more time sober and learn new coping skills to deal with your anger and other negative emotions, it will get easier.

On a more practical level, whenever we loan people money without a signed contract, we are always at risk of not getting paid back since there is no legal contract. In the future, you can either not loan money to people anymore, or you can continue to take this risk with other people, just not this particular person or other people you believe may be high risk of not paying you back.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:08 PM
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For me...the first time around when I had 5.5 years it (cravings, drinking thoughts etc) stopped when I threw myself into AA, outpatient treatment etc. This time around...I am not doing those things and I am really struggling. I think the big thing is having lots of support. It's definitely hard but I know from the first time around (before my relapse) it got significantly easier after about 4 months and was easier and easier after that. My problem...I stopped doing what worked....forgot I was an alcoholic and drank again after 5 plus years of sobriety! :-( Hang in there!!!
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:09 PM
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I am thinking the same thing. This has to get easier! The AV in my head has been screaming loud today. I keep having thoughts about trying moderation, just every once in awhile, etc.. I have to remind myself how bad I felt 23 days ago. I just want normalcy...
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:12 PM
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Thanks Serinidad. I know I need more support. I have attended AA years ago and the religious aspect threw me off. I am thinking I might try it again anyways. And we do have a contract. It is a business matter that is costing me time and money with their non-payment. Very frustrating.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:21 PM
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It gets progressively better the more sober time you get. I thought that first month was the hardest (esp the first 2 weeks). After a month, I had days I had to battle my AV out, but there were a lot of days that where things were good too. I found that after a little after 5 months of continuous sobriety that the battle is just background noise versus it having the prominence it once had. Just keep on hanging in there.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:21 PM
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Originally Posted by neednewpath View Post
My question is, when does this battle in my head quit?
From what I can gather, never. The solution is to teach yourself new coping mechanisms to deal with things like this. Generally, when something stressful happened, we'd instantly revert to the bottle for a few (dozen) drinks to relieve the stress / anger, right?

That needs to change. Go swimming laps in the pool, punch a boxing bag, go for a walk, read a book, hit some balls at the golfing range, listen to some music that puts you in a good mood, have a bubble bath, or whatever.

Maybe I'm wrong, because I'm not there yet, but I believe that's the key to long-term sobriety. Being able to develop new coping mechanisms for any situation that may arise.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:31 PM
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Originally Posted by TroyW View Post
From what I can gather, never. The solution is to teach yourself new coping mechanisms to deal with things like this. Generally, when something stressful happened, we'd instantly revert to the bottle for a few (dozen) drinks to relieve the stress / anger, right?

That needs to change. Go swimming laps in the pool, punch a boxing bag, go for a walk, read a book, hit some balls at the golfing range, listen to some music that puts you in a good mood, have a bubble bath, or whatever.

Maybe I'm wrong, because I'm not there yet, but I believe that's the key to long-term sobriety. Being able to develop new coping mechanisms for any situation that may arise.
This is a good post. I'm at 7 months and can tell you that the daily battle does go away and sobriety does feel normal most of the time. However, the alcoholism or addiction doesn't go away and I find that something can happen and I'm triggered in a big way. It's the coping mechanisms and using them immediately when you get triggered that will keep you sober. It's surprisingly easy to indulge a trigger especially when it is pleasurable, such as certain music or dwelling on certain memories that have a pleasurable association to your drinking days. Things can go downhill fast if you aren't prepared and let these things go on too long, sometimes even as short as a few minutes or an hour.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:36 PM
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The beginning was really hard for me...but it does get easier. If it was easy from the beginning, it wouldn't be an issue. It's so difficult that many give up. But I am here to say that as long as you make some changes in your life, keep busy, eat well, exercise, post and read here, it is possible and so worth it. Everyone is different, for me it took a few months.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by neednewpath View Post
Thanks Serinidad. I know I need more support. I have attended AA years ago and the religious aspect threw me off. I am thinking I might try it again anyways. And we do have a contract. It is a business matter that is costing me time and money with their non-payment. Very frustrating.
If you have a legal contract, then you have to take the necessary legal steps to help get back your money. If the time and cost of taking these steps ends up costing you more than the original amount owed to you, then you have to decide if you still want to pursue this matter. I empathize with your situation and have been involved in similar frustrating situations in the past couple months, and after doing all I can do, I then have to leave the result up to my Higher Power. Good luck to you!
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:40 PM
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I started practicing gratitude at around three months sober and that helped me feel better sober. Being so positive helped me want to stay sober. After six months or so I felt that sober was the norm for me. Even after over five years, I still have thoughts of drinking sometimes, but they are easily dismissed.
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:42 PM
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The more I focussed on what was better in my life after I stopped drinking, and being grateful for it, the less conflicted I felt. Some people write these down - for me it is more of a constant chatter of gratitude in the back of my mind. It's been going like this for more than 2 years and my goal is to never take my sobriety for granted. All the best -

x-post, Least - sounds like we've had similar experiences. Congratulations on > 5 years!
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Old 06-07-2015, 05:43 PM
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The # 1 thing that makes me take a step back is how shi,,,y I will feel the next day and the next day...............................I don't miss throwing up dryheaves shaking etc.Think about it ...about 2 months for me no I don't know the exact date and don't care today is today
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by strategery View Post
It gets progressively better the more sober time you get. I thought that first month was the hardest (esp the first 2 weeks). After a month, I had days I had to battle my AV out, but there were a lot of days that where things were good too. I found that after a little after 5 months of continuous sobriety that the battle is just background noise versus it having the prominence it once had. Just keep on hanging in there.
Thanks for that. That is what I wanted to hear. That there does come a time when it gets easier. I know we are all different, and I know 14 years of turning to alcohol to deal with negative emotions will not go away overnight, I just need the hope it will eventually get better. And easier.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by TroyW View Post
From what I can gather, never. The solution is to teach yourself new coping mechanisms to deal with things like this. Generally, when something stressful happened, we'd instantly revert to the bottle for a few (dozen) drinks to relieve the stress / anger, right?

That needs to change. Go swimming laps in the pool, punch a boxing bag, go for a walk, read a book, hit some balls at the golfing range, listen to some music that puts you in a good mood, have a bubble bath, or whatever.

Maybe I'm wrong, because I'm not there yet, but I believe that's the key to long-term sobriety. Being able to develop new coping mechanisms for any situation that may arise.
I think if it NEVER gets any easier, than I am pretty sure I am doomed to failure. I have been turning to other things to take up my time and energy. I am working more, I have been going backpacking, and spending more quality time with my son.

Thanks for the suggestions they are all good ones.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:14 PM
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Originally Posted by Lance40 View Post
This is a good post. I'm at 7 months and can tell you that the daily battle does go away and sobriety does feel normal most of the time. However, the alcoholism or addiction doesn't go away and I find that something can happen and I'm triggered in a big way. It's the coping mechanisms and using them immediately when you get triggered that will keep you sober. It's surprisingly easy to indulge a trigger especially when it is pleasurable, such as certain music or dwelling on certain memories that have a pleasurable association to your drinking days. Things can go downhill fast if you aren't prepared and let these things go on too long, sometimes even as short as a few minutes or an hour.
I do pay attention to the music that is playing. I have found myself listening less to country music as it references beer more than I ever remember!!
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:23 PM
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All of your words are extremely uplifting! I needed some hope today and I once again got it here.
FreeGSA and Least, thank you for your words of wisdom, feels good to read people that have been where I am right now and made it through.
Soberintexas, as far as the contract, non-payment, etc, it is a real estate deal, not something I can let go of, and will take the appropriate legal steps, but it is causing me great stress at the moment. I am starting to wonder if the person doesn't suffer from addictions of their own, thus not fulfilling their obligation. And honestly, I have no sympathy if that is the case, as I always paid my bills and obligations even when I was a sloppy drunk. Thanks for letting me spill that out, I needed it.
I was so relieved when 5pm rolled around here, as that is the time the beer stores close here on Sunday. I made it through another day, and will wake up feeling good physically and mentally. Exwell66, that is exactly the motivation that keeps me going also. Not feeling sick anymore is the biggest blessing of all.
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:35 PM
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You said it right there...

" I was so relieved when the beer stores closed"

I did the same - and still do - chewing my knuckles knowing it is 6.30 and I could just make it before closing ( 7 ).

The difference in feelings while the store was still open ( intense anxiety ) versus after it closed ( huge relief, crazy laughter, ) told me that I might be crazy, but at least tonight I would sleep well and wake up tomorrow free from some crappy hangover and the whole sorry process of aching for the first drink.

It hasn't got any easier for me ( I'm back on day two right now ) - but I have started to enjoy ( a little ) the psychological adventure that I am embarking on.

You sound to me like you are doing fine, old boy
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Old 06-07-2015, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by TroyW View Post
From what I can gather, never. The solution is to teach yourself new coping mechanisms to deal with things like this. Generally, when something stressful happened, we'd instantly revert to the bottle for a few (dozen) drinks to relieve the stress / anger, right?

That needs to change. Go swimming laps in the pool, punch a boxing bag, go for a walk, read a book, hit some balls at the golfing range, listen to some music that puts you in a good mood, have a bubble bath, or whatever.

Maybe I'm wrong, because I'm not there yet, but I believe that's the key to long-term sobriety. Being able to develop new coping mechanisms for any situation that may arise.
IMO, yes, you are wrong that the mental mayhem never ends.
It takes practicing new ways of thinking and T.I.M.E. as many here can attest to.
Wouldn't have been any point for me to get sober if the mental mayhem wasnt going to leave, but it did. Where my life and thinking was drama and chaos every waking moment, i now have peace and serenity.
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Old 06-07-2015, 07:57 PM
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One thing that is helping me not struggle for more than a few fleeting minutes is knowing who I am. I'm bluntly honest with myself. A simple "not so terrible" trip to the beer store for "just a couple" is actually the first dent in the armor where the slide back to the real drinking me starts. And it will be MUCH easier the second time and the third time will quickly follow but I'll stock up that time.

It sucks being me when it comes to drinking. I've tried moderation. Lol. What an unpleasant way to drink. Unsatisfying is a gross understatement. I've tried weekends only but watching the clock waiting for the green light every 5 days is a grind that brought no joy.

I ask myself often when my AV kicks in, will I gain anything at all by giving in just this once? It's awful hard to find a way to say yes to that question. This has been helping move past the rough spots without getting too hung up
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