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Introducion and admission of a problem with Alcohol

Old 05-29-2017, 09:26 AM
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Introducion and admission of a problem with Alcohol

This is the first time ive taken active steps about my level of alcohol use.

I'm not sure what to say. I thought maybe posting here would help me clarify my own mind.


I'm male, in my late 30s, started heavy weekend binge drinking aged 18 when i went to university and the patten hasnt changed in 20 years, but its now taking its toll.

I work in a professional role, have a wife and 2 young children and i have come to realise that weekend binging is impacting now on my entire week. I'm successful at work, have a nice home and the usual trappings of a middle income life. I have a lot of friends; nearly all drinkers. I apparently dont appear a drinker, my colleagues were shocked when I said I was going for a few drinks one friday night and said they couldn't imagine me drunk. I must be a convincing actor on mondays...

I sit here now, typing this post, feeling wretched. As my wife is away with the children I went out on Saturday (2 days ago) and started drinking at 11.00 with friends, i finished at 1.30 am the next morning. I drank roughly 14 pints of beer and cider.

I am used to tiredness, irritability, anxiety stretching into the working week - upto wednesday usually. The hangovers have gradually got longer and longer.

Today i'm scared for my emotional and physical health. I have pins and needles in my hands, i feel agitated, anxious, depressed and ashamed of myself.

I've decided i will see my GP as soon as i can get an appointment, but i am concerned about disclosing too much about binge drinking as in my profession health checks with GP are the norm when moving between employers. I am hoping for blood tests as a starting point. I expect the GP will probably know the hallmarks anyway.

I'm really scared by the tingling in my hands, the shakes, the night sweats and the feeling that I dont have the control i should.

I've been out and purchased some B vitamins, fruit juice and good food. It was an ordeal coping with the shops - anxiety. I have no idea how i will cope when the children return tomorrow - acting again, but how convincing?

I have taken the beer from the fridge and locked it outside in the garage. I plan to stay away from friends for a few weeks whilst i figure out how to proceed. I dont even know why i drink as much as i do, i must just enjoy it.

I am hoping that the pins and needles / tingling goes away. Ive never had it before this month but i can see from reading that its likely a symptom of nerve damage. Im not a daily drinker but 20 years of 8-10 pints every friday night then a few on Saturday look like they have caught up with me now. Ironically the pins and needles went away on Saturday - after my first drink. This worried me in itself.

Apologies to anyone reading this sorry, rambling post. I feel a bit better for writing my thoughts and worries down. I need to make a significant change, for the sake of my family if not myself. I have a beautiful, clever and loving daughter and a strong and happy baby son, i dont want them to see and remember their father as tired, irritable or unavailable because of the aftermarth of his drinking. I dont want to fall into chronic ill health or be a burden.

What i do need is to understand my behaviour and stop binge drinking, or maybe just stop entirely. I dont know where to start.

Thanks to anyone who has borne with this post or who is able to offer any advice or guidance.
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Old 05-29-2017, 09:50 AM
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The tricky part here is that alcohol affect people differently. Your hangovers are getting worse and you feel that you might be starting down a slippery slope. That in itself tells me that taking steps to try and stay away from alcohol is a food thing.

Going to your dr is a good idea. Binge drinking on the weekends could easily lead to more drinks during the weekdays like it dis for me. Then before you know it a so pack is being downed every weekday night and more on the weekends.

My hangovers go to be two days long in my late 20s and got to be a good 36 hour hangovers when i finally stopped. Its your body of saying "Dude wtf cut it out"!
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Old 05-29-2017, 09:55 AM
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Hey Husky! Glad you found this place, the people are great and will do what they can to help!
It will be important to be 100% honest with your doctor about your situation, how much you drink/drank etc.. The anxiety does suck, believe me I know, I've been dealing with it a long time but there are meds that can really help to get you through the first week, if you and your Dr choose to go that route.
Don't think about what hasn't happened yet, don't worry about what hasn't happened yet.
Almost everyone has the "I know its going to be unbearable, so I'm not going to even try" thought the first few days.
Sounds like you are taking the right steps in your new beginning. I think being honest with everyone who is impacted by your drinking is important.
So, who has the key to your locked up beer?
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Old 05-29-2017, 09:55 AM
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It was so much easier for me to stop entirely. Moderating was a dead end and so frustrating. The guilt, the shame, it all wore on me. In my heart I knew I had a problem, but I could not figure out how to "make it work." The best thing I ever did was stop completely a year ago. I do not drink. I am so much happier, and have so much energy. No more guilt, no more shame, no more hangovers. Present in my life. Good luck to you.
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Old 05-29-2017, 10:19 AM
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Thanks for the replys.

Currently concerned enough to have the resolve not to touch the beer in the garage.

The shakes and pins and needles have been a wake up call to say the least.

Im not drinking as much as i used to, i'd happily see off a litre bottle of rum in a session if friends were round; a good few of those would do the same.

I dont touch spirits now but even with just binging on beer the hangover are getting longer and much deeper / darker.

The only way I can moderate is if I drive, but i tend to find ways of not driving.

I could recover from an all nighter in a day in my 20s, it writes me off for 3 days now.

I have good time when im out and never get into any bother; im a sociable and happy drunk, but the payback is making it not worth it.

Its such a part of my lifestyle and social group I'm struggling to think of ways to avoid drinking at weekends.

I've set myself the challenge of not drinking for one month. Its my best friends wedding during this time and im organizing the bar. I'm going to drive to the venue and make sure i have some responsibility that will mean i cant just ditch the car.

I think the big thing for me is that i cant imagine my life without drinking at the moment. If it wasnt for the fear the current hangover has caused with the tingling and shaking I'd probably be feeling bad but also thinking forward to my next binge / high time.

Ive now told my wife via phone im concerned about my drinking, my emotional and physical health and impact on family which is a relief. I think she was shocked. She has only ever known me as a drinker and the life of the party. My wife stopped drinking when she was seeking to become pregnant with our first child but we used to binge together.
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Old 05-29-2017, 10:53 AM
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You can do this Husky.
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Old 05-29-2017, 12:07 PM
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Glad you're here and posting Husky.

Lots of UK GPs still remain pretty uninformed about alcoholism and will recommend moderation (like we didn't already think of that!!) It was when I went to AA and joined this site that I was able to learn what I needed to so that I could get sober and work on my recovery in such a way that sobriety was eventually comfortable and therefore sustainable in the long term. Hopefully your experience will, be different and your GP will have some good information and resources for you.

Wishing you all the best for your sobriety and recovery. BB

PS the one thing that really helped me to know was the HALT triggers. Hungry-Angry-Lonely-Tired. These are all things that will make staying sober difficult and even more uncomfortable than it needs to be. It's worth planning ahead so that you can avoid these if at all possible.
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Old 05-29-2017, 03:04 PM
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Hi and welcome Husky

What i do need is to understand my behaviour and stop binge drinking, or maybe just stop entirely. I dont know where to start.
I thought I needed to understand my behaviours before I could stoip too and that sounded a reasonable scientific premise.

The problem with addiction tho, is it's not logical.

I tried to understand my behaviours for 20 years - and kept drinking.
It was only when I stopped drinking - and my perspective changed a little -
that I was really able to get insight into my condition.

It might sound counter intuitive but stopping is the fundamental step.

If you're worried about withdrawal, consider seeing your Dr?

D
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Old 05-29-2017, 06:49 PM
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I just turned 26, but drink the way you do. 'Weekend warrior' as they say. It's taking its toll on me, and I had 6 months sobriety from august till february this year. I am trying to get back to that, so stay strong it gets a lot better, moderation never happens.
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Old 05-29-2017, 06:53 PM
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I'm very happy to meet you, Husky. This is the best place for encouragement and friendship. You never have to feel alone. I'm glad you've made the decision to reclaim your health.
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Old 05-30-2017, 12:09 AM
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Thanks for replys, its good to know other people have got a grip on their lives and health and sustained them.

GP appointment booked for 9.30am. Hour and a half away. Going to tell them what I have been drinking and ask for advice.

Pins and needles are still with me but the shakes are less today.

Still feeling very up and down which is pretty normal for me after 14 pint plus binge.
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Old 05-30-2017, 02:07 AM
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Hope your appointment went well Husky.

BB
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Old 05-30-2017, 02:24 AM
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Seen GP.

Now booked for full round of blood tests on Thursday morning to check liver, blood sugar and vitamins.

Advised if that is normal he will refer for nerve conduction tests.

He feels that as I only binge heavily on a weekend and I eat generaly well it would be unusual for the pins and needles to be neuropathy but he does think repeated withdrawal potentially explains symptoms.

I'm also going to step back the coffee. I binge that 7 days a week, often 4 double shot flat whites during the working day to keep myself going and sometimes a energy drink in evening to get work done. I even sneak in espressos during pub crawls. Pretty sure thats not helping my body much either. Coming off caffine is horrid in its own right so i'll slowly reduce that. Probably wont need as much if im not hanging sunday through to Wednesday every week.
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Old 05-30-2017, 02:36 AM
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Glad that appointment went well Husky.

Ut might be worth bearing in mind though that alcoholism doesn't only affect our bodies. It affects the way we think and feel as well. That's why, when we talk about recovery, it's not just the physical side we mean. It may well be helpful to think about not only what you intend to stop and cut out of your life (alcohol and caffeine ) but also what you can add in to it to help you. Weekends especially can seem amazingly long when we're sober, so you have this week to start making some plans around what you can do with that time. Believe me, sitting at home white-knuckling it is dire and just opens us up to getting overwhelmed by self-pity and resentment, which are an open invitation to our AV talking us into taking 'a' drink.

Dee's thread about making a plan could be a good place to start... http://www.soberrecovery.com/forums/...y-plans-1.html

Also it's worth taking the time to make a list of numbers and times of support cafes, meetings, etc. When we get to the stage that we most need this information we are least likely to look it map, so if we do it before we need it and just slip it into our wallet that 10 mins of preparation can save us a slip further down the line.

Take care Husky. BB
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Old 05-30-2017, 02:57 AM
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Thanks. I will start to think about fillling up the weekends with active things again. Its sounds awful but i need to avoid my friends for a time. All our activities centre around getting drunk.

Ive recently distanced myself from one good childhood friend who couldnt accept I wanted to reduce drinking and, for want of better terms, tried to bully or goad me to drink. He is now a very heavy daily drinker and looks awful for it. Sad but also cautionary to me. Other friends, even ones who drink heavily on the weekends, have also distenced themselves for the same reason because this chap cant see the issue or accept other people cant routinely drink 15 pints in a session. I wonder if he does have insight but cant bring himself to try to change, but he would never say.

In the winter I used to mountain walk a lot, this has suffered in recent years due to the drinking, my fitness has dropped and weight has gone up. I'd like to start walking more again.

Days arnt so hard. Friday and Saturday evenings are going to be really hard.
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Old 05-30-2017, 03:26 AM
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Last edited by Husky1605; 05-30-2017 at 03:27 AM. Reason: Double post
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Old 05-30-2017, 04:14 AM
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hi Husky. I suggest you have a plan for Friday and Saturday nights involving soda water or other non-A drink and eating early.

You don't mention your wife much in your posts. She and the children must have missed out if you were drinking heavily on the weekend. I can understand if you want to keep your recovery to yourself, but she might be able to support you. Have you confided in her.

It does seem strange to live without alcohol at first, but it soon becomes a way of life and one with less stress, self-reproach and regret. That alone is priceless.
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Old 05-30-2017, 04:14 AM
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Yes. Friday evening especially for me. That was always my light at the end of the tunnel for the week, and once it was removed I felt bereft. I now go to my favourite AA meeting of the week on Friday. It's out of town so I have tended to lift share so there's a chance for chatting and catching up with my lovely AA pals enroute. By the time I get home it's half ten so no problem to grab a snack then hit the sack so I can be up bright and early and make the most of the weekend.

The mountain walking sounds like a fantastic thing to get back into. I know AAers whose Higher Power is G.O.D. - the Great Out Doors, because it gets the out of themselves and right-sizes them, and there is so much power in nature. Some that we can harness as humans, but mostly it's where we learn to accept that we can't control everything. That we're just for a short time, and have limited importance or impact, and all we can do is the next best thing.

I also had to leave some friends behind. It sometimes saddens me to see them still doing the same old thing and wondering why their lives are still miserable, but we can't change others. Only ourselves. And I needed to stay away from slippery people and slippery places to get and stay sober. Now those people and places have lost their attraction for me, and have nothing to offer me that I want.

As well as leaving some friends behind, I did also reconcile with some who had never joined me on my decades long drinking spree. One, my best friend from age 6 to 16 (who I copped a strop with when she didn't ask me to be her bridesmaid - now I understand full well, why drunk and sloppy bridesmaids might nit have been in her wedding planning ) met up with me on Saturday night for a meal. I've also become a lot closer to my mum since dropping some long held resentments against her (also stemming from a lot of my own stinking thinking) and having time to give her at weekends now that I don't need to spend them either drunk or hungover. Plus, the friends I've made in recovery are true friendships. They're based on understanding, tolerance, and love / fellowship. Something I had no appreciation of in the past, and wouldn't ever let anyone get that close. There was a shiny facade and an invisible wall between me and the world that kept me very lonely, even when surrounded by drinking buddies.

Anyway. I know this time is tough. Really tough! But it does get easier, and eventually better than we could ever have imagined, if we stick with it and accept the rough days along with the smooth.

Take care. BB
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Old 05-30-2017, 04:17 AM
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Yes. Friday evening especially for me. That was always my light at the end of the tunnel for the week, and once it was removed I felt bereft. I now go to my favourite AA meeting of the week on Friday. It's out of town so I have tended to lift share so there's a chance for chatting and catching up with my lovely AA pals enroute. By the time I get home it's half ten so no problem to grab a snack then hit the sack so I can be up bright and early and make the most of the weekend.

The mountain walking sounds like a fantastic thing to get back into. I know AAers whose Higher Power is G.O.D. - the Great Out Doors, because it gets the out of themselves and right-sizes them, and there is so much power in nature. Some that we can harness as humans, but mostly it's where we learn to accept that we can't control everything. That we're just for a short time, and have limited importance or impact, and all we can do is the next best thing.

I also had to leave some friends behind. It sometimes saddens me to see them still doing the same old thing and wondering why their lives are still miserable, but we can't change others. Only ourselves. And I needed to stay away from slippery people and slippery places to get and stay sober. Now those people and places have lost their attraction for me, and have nothing to offer me that I want.

As well as leaving some friends behind, I did also reconcile with some who had never joined me on my decades long drinking spree. One, my best friend from age 6 to 16 (who I copped a strop with when she didn't ask me to be her bridesmaid - now I understand full well, why drunk and sloppy bridesmaids might not have been in her wedding planning ) met up with me on Saturday night for a meal. I've also become a lot closer to my mum since dropping some long held resentments against her (also stemming from a lot of my own stinking thinking) and having time to give her at weekends now that I don't need to spend them either drunk or hungover. Plus, the friends I've made in recovery are true friendships. They're based on understanding, tolerance, and love / fellowship. Something I had no appreciation of in the past, and wouldn't ever let anyone get that close. There was a shiny facade and an invisible wall between me and the world that kept me very lonely, even when surrounded by drinking buddies.

Anyway. I know this time is tough. Really tough! But it does get easier, and eventually better than we could ever have imagined, if we stick with it and accept the rough days along with the smooth.

Take care. BB
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Old 05-30-2017, 04:18 AM
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Sorry about the double post. Not sure how that happened. Bet I couldn't do it again if I tried to! Lol
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