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Old 07-16-2015, 01:53 AM
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struggling

I am currently struggling really bad.....I'm on day 103 and out of no where the last few days my mind is racing playing scenarios of drinking over and over again. I'm dreaming about it constantly and I've got a knot in my stomach that feels the size of a bowling ball. It's like the obsession was starting to abate a little and having realized this it's come back with a vengeance.

How can cravings come from no where and beat you down this way. I've been clenching my teeth so hard recently I feel like they're going to shatter.

I keep telling myself I'm strong and resolute in my decision and will never go back but the words ring hollow in my ears even as I say them. I talked to my AA group and it helps for the hour I'm there but then in the car on the way home it all starts again.

I think I'm doing what everyone calls white knuckling but don't know what to do to change it. I told my wife how I'm feeling and she simply said if she's can see or can smell that I've been drinking then she's off for good. I was hoping for a bit of compassion or help but maybe that door is more closed than I first thought.

It doesn't feel like it's ever going to get easier......everything to loose and nothing to gain yet it feels like the easy option......go figure.
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Old 07-16-2015, 02:28 AM
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Hi again MM

A lot of people have trouble around the 90-100 day mark.

It's long enough to forget the worst of our addiction, yet not quite long enough to really see the full benefits of sobriety.

There really are some great tips here;
http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...-recovery.html

I also like this link for making a recovery plan.

https://store.samhsa.gov/shin/conten...0/SMA-3720.pdf

I understand you're going to AA but sometimes it can help to have a template to work off and maybe even identify just where the trouble lies?

If you haven;t gotten a sponsor to work the 12 steps that might be something else to consider?

I also wonder what ever you've changed apart from the not drinking. Building a sober life you can be happy in is pretty fundamental too.

In the end, no matter what you decide to do, I think the bottom line is you have to stand firm and have faith that things will get better.

They absolutely will - as long as you don't drink again.

There's endless support here, as you know. Use the site and the support here as much as you like

D
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Old 07-16-2015, 02:38 AM
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Have you looked into AVRT or RR? I found making a big plan helped me so much.
It also gave me the skills to talk my AV down...There were days when I felt that as long as I could tell my AV to shut up I could get control over my out of control AV.

Remembering HALT..Hungry Angry Lonely Tired. it helps. Also sometimes just calling the day quits and going to bed.

I find the milestones are the toughest as well.
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Old 07-16-2015, 03:59 AM
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Hang in there, MM. One minute at a time if that's what it takes. Urges come and go, ride the waves. Keep posting, too.
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Old 07-16-2015, 04:26 AM
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MarathonMan I remember those feelings at that time, you can get through this. The thing is you are on a marathon when you go into recovery, every so often the going gets tough, all sorts of obstacles and hurdles come up but you can get past them.

Try turning the tables a bit: when you run a marathon how do you get through the hard bits? I'm guessing that your training, your self-talk and your stamina come into play? Ok, so how can you apply this to recovery? If you can run a marathon you have skills that some of us are still developing.

As for your wife: she's a normie. They don't get it and love 'em as we might we aren't normies. Demonstrate your commitment to sobriety ti her, she's still with you, I'm guessing she's still there because she loves you.

You can do it, I'm cheering you on.
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Old 07-16-2015, 04:47 AM
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A game fish will put up a mighty struggle just before it is landed in the boat. That is what your addiction is doing.
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Old 07-16-2015, 04:53 AM
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Sorry MM, sometimes just reaching like you did out helps. Glad you are still holding on and patching things up with your wife. :-)

White knuckling or not, a few days is just few days out of the rest of your life. You've made it this far and it's bound to get easier, it just doesn't feel like it while in the middle of an AV attack. Hope you are feeling better.
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Old 07-16-2015, 05:01 AM
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Originally Posted by doggonecarl View Post
A game fish will put up a mighty struggle just before it is landed in the boat. That is what your addiction is doing.
That is honestly how it feels, like if you cornered an animal you'd expect it to attack.

Thanks for the link Dee, I've often wondered what exactly a recovery plan is that people talk about on here but that is the first.thing ive seen that actually explains it. Can't do the steps unfortunately as they are to religious (i know people diagree with this but just being true to myself as thats how the feel to me). I would like a sponser but wont ask because the first thing to do is the steps. I do exercise, drink water, take vitamins, get 8 hours sleep. I dont read enough on recovery, meditate or have relaxation techniques, keep a sobriety journal or make gratitude lists so i will try to implement these to step up the plan and hopefully help me reflect on what i need to do.
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Old 07-16-2015, 05:11 AM
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I was an atheist back in 2007 but honestly? I would have done the steps in a heartbeat had I felt myself slipping again.

someone recently posted about how the 12 steps were pretty fundamentally similar to points of Taoist philosophy or Buddhism.

I don't think that's a long stretch at all.

D
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Old 07-16-2015, 05:23 AM
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MM, you absolutely CAN do this! Any voice inside you that says that you can't is your AV....don't listen to it! Kick its butt instead....

It may be tough right now, but it DOES get easier....do whatever you need to get over this period. Habits die hard, but they do die!

HANG IN THERE!!!!
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Old 07-16-2015, 05:32 AM
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Hang in there MM, you owe it to yourself.
I slipped a few times at around the 90 day mark but today i'm 2years and 1 month sober so I know what your going through.
I'm glad your going to AA because that is what worked for me. It is not religious but it is certainly spiritual.
I tried big plans and other methods nearly everything in fact to try and beat alcohol myself but it beat me every time.
Self is no use to addiction imo.
Once I surrendered to alcohol and asked my higher power for help, I got it.
I begged God as I understood him/her/it to remove that obsession over alcohol that you talking about, and it happened.
I got a sponsor and work the 12 steps daily. It worked for me.
If you want the release from alcohol as Dee said try anything.
The program was a last resort for me but i'm glad I found it. My life is good today.
I really hope you get through this difficult period
all the best
Sean
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Old 07-16-2015, 06:10 AM
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What D said
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Old 07-16-2015, 06:15 AM
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Marathon, I sometimes had that feeling of being so wound up that I'd break into a million pieces. You ever drop a light bulb?

These feelings will pass. You've gotten some great suggestions to help get through it and to start creating that plan to minimize their future impact. Keep going.
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Old 07-16-2015, 06:32 AM
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Hi MM,

Glad you decided to post about this. Lots of good suggestions here. I also found that intense cravings came and went during my first ~6 sober months and often came out of the blue without apparent triggers. It's just the "games" of the addicted brain. For me what helped best was making the life changes everyone mentions, and often simply just distractions even if they did not give me much long-term benefit but served the purpose of taking my mind off drinking in the moment.

That is honestly how it feels, like if you cornered an animal you'd expect it to attack.
I would also recommend getting into RR/AVRT a bit based on this feeling. For me, that was the very first recovery method I got interested in and read up on based on the premise that it's something we can do on our own and self-regulate. I figured it wasn't enough for me on its own, and I also became pretty critical about it for a good while for other reasons... but looking back now in retrospect, that was pretty much what I used primarily early on, how I made a decision to quit drinking for good, and then how I dealt with my cravings for alcohol. Without the original terminology and concept, simply just the idea of not acting on the desire and becoming very familiar with our thought patterns. It (or a version of it) can be combined perfectly well with any other recovery tool in my opinion, even AA.

If you don't like the 12 steps but think you could still use a set of pre-designed instructions that you could explore, either by yourself or with help, I found Refuge Recovery a few months ago based on a suggestion here on SR. It has nothing esoteric attached to the inventories the original book suggests and you can do it on your own even though it does suggest discussing with a mentor. I no longer had problems with drinking urges at the time when I found it, but figured it can be wonderfully applied to any kind of obsession (or suffering coming from distortions, excess and obsessions) in introspective exercises, and that's how I decided to use it for myself. They also have meetings worldwhile although far more scarce than AA.

As for the alcohol cravings, they really dissipated for me and then mostly disappeared after a few months with only occasional fleeting thoughts remaining that have no real power, but I doubt it would have happened so efficiently simply just white-knuckling, simply just trying to fight the urges. What helped a lot, again, were all the changes and new challenges in my life -- some I chose, others just happened and I dealt with them. Also lots of new stress coming with all this, but I personally find even the stress and difficulties a good distraction because they give me stuff to focus on and solve as long as I can keep myself from slipping into old coping strategies. I recall from older posts that you have a relatively newly expanded family now, is that correct? Well, that is certainly a big change that can create so many opportunities to do things in different ways, but you need to make it happen.
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Old 07-16-2015, 07:54 AM
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Keep going strong MM. Your AV is putting up a hard fight right now. I've been there too. I promise, it does get easier. For me, my cravings really seemed to ease around the 9 month mark. Can't ever let your guard down, but they seem to ease up during the second half of the first 12 months.

Just remember, nothing good will come from drinking. You've done a great job making it this far, the finish line is getting closer and closer. Don't give up, don't ever give up.
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Old 07-16-2015, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by MarathonMan View Post
Thanks for the link Dee, I've often wondered what exactly a recovery plan is that people talk about on here but that is the first.thing ive seen that actually explains it. Can't do the steps unfortunately as they are to religious (i know people diagree with this but just being true to myself as thats how the feel to me). I would like a sponser but wont ask because the first thing to do is the steps. I do exercise, drink water, take vitamins, get 8 hours sleep. I dont read enough on recovery, meditate or have relaxation techniques, keep a sobriety journal or make gratitude lists so i will try to implement these to step up the plan and hopefully help me reflect on what i need to do.
Dee's link is wonderful.

I might suggest trying to work the steps using the AA group or even SR as a whole as your higher power. It's worked for a lot of others.

Wishing you the best today. I think you've made a wise step forward in just coming on here and admitting your struggles. I know you've helped keep me sober today, so thank you for that.
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Old 07-16-2015, 01:54 PM
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Thanks for the kind words everyone.....seems ive still got a long way to go.....i wont shy away from it this time though and I wont give up, my stakes are too high...pretty sure wife and baby will be gone if I fall down. Somethings not working so I need to figure out what it is and why its broken.
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Old 07-16-2015, 02:17 PM
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I know people say bad things about white knuckling, but it's still better than drinking.

There are rocky phases during giving up. There can be bad phases years after you give up, although most people find it gets much easier after the first four months. Understanding that you're not necessarily doing anything wrong just because you're unhappy while taking the steps you can take are both important things.
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Old 07-16-2015, 02:25 PM
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Hang in there, MM!!!! Whatever it takes- don't pick up today!!!
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Old 07-16-2015, 02:31 PM
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MM, I know that you can get through this and it will be so helpful for your recovery as you move on. Keep focused!
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