What was your final straw?

Old 09-09-2017, 05:47 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
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I had a moment I became aware of my self talk about drinking. I heard myself say: "I don't care about anything I just want to get drunk and stay that way." Before then I didn't realize how much trouble I was in. At the moment I figured it out I became very afraid. Afraid enough to try and break free. It still was a lot of work and I could have screwed up many times. I took it very seriously and spent countless hours on here each night keeping it foremost until I was stronger.
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Old 09-09-2017, 06:46 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
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U realize you're very possibly killing yourself. Our society pushes alcohol way too much like it's nothing. Deaths due to alcohol (accidents, health, abuse etc.) Are dramatically increasing.
Your creator has better plans for you than this.
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Old 09-09-2017, 09:34 PM
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My Final Straw

Drank half a bottle of Macallan at night and then took an ambien to sleep. Then woke up at 3am and made a deal with myself that I could take another ambien to go back to sleep, but only if I had one dram of the scotch to relax.

Woke up at 2pm later in the afternoon to discover that same bottle was empty. That was me at my worst. I am lucky to have escaped. And that then and there, I decided the gig was up.

Knowing how close I had come to the other side makes me grateful for sobriety and the fight to maintain it. Day 35 for me? Have to look at calendar to really calculate, not caught up in that. I learned that although I might not be an alcoholic in the sense I was brought up to understand it (absolutely needing to drink and dependent), I am an alcohol abuser 100% of the time when I drink. So best to avoid.

Might also add, have lost 12 pounds in a month and focus all my energy on work and fitness.
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Old 09-09-2017, 11:05 PM
  # 24 (permalink)  
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It actually was a accumulation of events and health issues that forced me to take action. My drinking had really gone through the roof in the last 6 months. It was clouding my judgement at home and at work. I'm 14 days sober now. The first few days were very hard. Had trouble sleeping because I used to drink until I passed out. Weekends are the hardest just today I thought about buying a 12 pack and hanging out with my friends. But I played the tape through and I thought about driving impaired and I knew if I did my drink my next stop would be the liquor store. So that's what stopped me. Sorry if I rambled. Good luck to you and remember don't drink no matter what.
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Old 09-10-2017, 01:29 AM
  # 25 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by sobersolstice View Post
For those who have relapsed many times and have managed a year or more sober, what was the breaking point, or mental shift that gave you the 'confidence' and steadfastness to remain sober?

I feel like I need to restructure my life completely to stop drinking due to the fact that so much of my recreational life is part of it. I just hate the lack of freedom to drive, go do things on a whim with friends, feeling I need a drink before a date, or even meeting with people. I'm late to time sensitive things because I feel I need to chug a few beers before going to some event.

How did you configure your life and mental state in order to say "I'm done for good"? I've said this on many a hangover day, but then I begin feeling better and repeat the vicious cycle.

I'm eating healthier and getting out more; I'm drinking less, but still find it a problem, which could get out of hand at times. I'm better at limiting myself and am rarely hungover anymore, but I still feel cloudy and dull. I'm drinking 5-6 light beers a day on avg. This is a problem because I know I have an alcohol addiction, and it's catching up to me on a health level. I used to be far worse and was hungover everyday, so it's a step in the right direction (maybe), but I know I need to cut it out to be the strongest version of myself.

What was your breaking point and what methodologies did you employ to make it work?

Yesterday was my birthday, and friends (who drink occasionally) that couldn't make it are offering to take me to bars over the weekend. I have the hardest time saying no, because I'm honestly lonely quite a bit. Just turned 40, no family, no gf... a little bummed out.
Nice to read all the replies, really good to understand everyones story.

For me, there was lots of issues that were dragging me to the realisation that things had to change. After a few periods of sobriety ranging from a few weeks to a year I knew life was good without drink and worse with. But i was stuck in the rut of drinking to manage emotional hurt and numbing stuff which obviously compounds that pain. I was tired, broken and health was showing warning signs. Family worried. That wasn't really enough as had carried on before knowing that anyway. Selfish, but as we all know, not deliberately so. Divorced from wife a few years back which prompted the year off, longest since i was 18, but started up again. It was the break up from my latest relationship that brought things to a head. Not only did i feel the regret of beer causing such a loss, but i knew that I'd reached a watershed. Beer had caused enough pain and damage to me and those who love me. I'm 8 weeks to the day today, which has been tough as I'm having to really feel the emotions of my break up. But I'm moving forward and feeling stronger (though fragile in some ways), making amends and learning. That's the big change. Education and focus.

I met me ex yday and i felt good. Nearly 2 months clean. I think she could tell, esp as i have lost weight and look better.

We might have lots of straws or one final. But it's keeping it as the last one that counts. That's my focus.
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Old 09-10-2017, 08:48 AM
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Thank you for all of the replies. I was just wondering what other's experiences were that prompted a strong and unwavering decision to abstain all together; not necessarily an external event that one should wait for in order to quit. I'm sure it can happen, but I'm more looking for the mental fortitude type last straw when you said "I'm done."

"I'm done" (sigh)... I've said it too many times, which makes it hard for me to say it in the mirror. I haven't been accountable for myself and be a man of my word, and that is frustrating. I am learning, and currently feel I have and want what it takes to stop.

The "alcohol doesn't exist" approach didn't work after a while, but a few of you noted something I found in myself, even though I'm not drinking like crazy.... When I was younger, I felt energized and invigorated by drinking. I wanted to go do Steve-o type stuff. Now I have a few beers and get tired, stare at the tv, and zombie out. Hangovers are worse if I chase that ever elusive buzz that just feels 'ugly'.

I don't like the effects of drinking while I'm drinking. I don't like the day after... so what am I doing? Right?

I was going to call yesterday my last day and get wasted (why do we think like that?). I just drank a few light beers and put some thought into it and dumped out the rest of the 12 pack. I've never done that in the middle of a planned binge.

I finally want sobriety; more than ever. Just wondering what others have experienced that motivated them to push forth and stay the course day to day. Thanks.
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Old 09-10-2017, 10:31 AM
  # 27 (permalink)  
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The I'm done moment? When I realised that my life was going down the drain in a constant fug of drinking. When I realised that (ever so gradually) my drinking had got up to a constant 3 bottles of wine a day. When I realised that it was affecting the relationship with my daughter. When suddenly I thought I needed to come on this forum to talk about it because of the realisation that it was only going to go one way.

Good luck with making the right decision :-)
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Old 09-10-2017, 10:45 AM
  # 28 (permalink)  
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My therapist told me the final straw for her was realizing her life wasn't going anywhere. For some it is less dramatic but quitting can still really turn things around. She was drinking about 6 oz of whiskey a night and her life was just stagnating. Her therapist asked her a question that made her realize she had a problem. She asked "what would be your first reaction if I told you the world's supply of alcohol has dried up?" She felt panic and that's when she knew she was an alcoholic. 6 months after quitting good things started to happen for her and she never looked back.

Fast forward 30 years and she made me realize I needed to quit. It took 8 months of weekly sessions but it finally happened.
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Old 09-10-2017, 07:15 PM
  # 29 (permalink)  
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Sounds like you're making a good start SS by thinking it through and dumping the booze.

Dee often posts about the importance of having a "plan" for staying sober when the going gets tough & shares a nice link with helpful information about how to make your own plan. Perhaps someone will come along to share the link, but if not I suggest doing a search/browse through newcomer threads and giving it a good read.

For me, HALT and AV were two tools that I found very helpful in the early days. For others it's having someone to call instead of picking up, or a meeting to go to.

Alcohol had less of a grip hold on me once I found other, better ways to address my needs instead of picking up. This was my first big shift that kept me sober.
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Old 09-10-2017, 07:47 PM
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My daughter and son-in-law were expecting my first grandson and I knew they would never trust me with the baby if I continued to drink the way I was.
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Old 09-10-2017, 07:50 PM
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My best friend died of cirrhosis and I had supplied lots of the booze. I also have a fatty liver. Thankfully I found out I really like to be sober! Saves money, lots of it. And to not need to vomit.......well worth any effort.
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Old 09-11-2017, 06:42 AM
  # 32 (permalink)  
Giving up is NOT an option.
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My final straw was pretty dramatic - third DUI. But there is no reason to wait for something like that to happen. There were any number of things along that way that should have been enough for me to want to quit. I just wasn't ready, until suddenly, I was. What it comes down to is, when you get to a point when you realize that quitting is not punishment, but rather a way to live a longer, healthier, and simpler life, without shame and regret, you're ready.

As far as what to do to help it "stick" - have a plan. The plan can include AA, treatment, other support groups, therapy, honesty with friends and family (for accountability purposes, and the beginning of living an honest life, coming out of the shadows.
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Old 09-11-2017, 07:09 AM
  # 33 (permalink)  
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There are a couple happening for me right now. One is having a conversation with my boss on Friday that has me worried I might be on the path to getting let go from my job. The other is I turn 43 tomorrow and like you, no family, gf, etc. Even though I haven't been sober I've been seeing a therapist for the last 8 months, and its been bringing up stuff which has also been making me feel really down and lonely lately.

Both of those are weighing pretty heavily on me at the moment, so I'm only on day 2 but I'm feeling quite motivated.
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Old 09-11-2017, 11:44 AM
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While I posted earlier that my injuries were the springboard to taking action, something that has kept me on the straight and narrow is that it was high time I grow up. I don't want to be remembered as an irresponsible drunken fool. Not that I need people to respect me, but I would like to earn their respect and have normal people think I at least have my act together. I would not be able to achieve that by being a drunk.
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Old 09-11-2017, 03:19 PM
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For me, I should have had ALOT of finals straws like:

Getting a DUI
Ruining relationships and being a mean drunk
Driving drunk even after DUI
Peeing the bed probably 7 times over my drinking career
Drinking at work multiple times a week
Actually wanting to kill myself and having relief it would be all over
And the list goes on....

But the real moment for me, was a small voice of clarity and I saw a glimpse of the future and I did not like it... I knew if I were to continue drinking I would die, and probably kill someone I loved with me. And I stopped.
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Old 09-11-2017, 05:17 PM
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Making my son feel like my mother made me feel really did it for me and making myself feel sick... every time I drank...especially after 40.
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