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Wanting to be Bad

Old 09-05-2018, 04:18 PM
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Wanting to be Bad

Hi all,

My first post, but Iíve been reading the forums here forÖ years? 24 days sober after 34 years drinking (etcÖ).

Anyway, Iíve been working on identifying my triggers, and had something of a revelation. I was having lunch with my alcoholic boss, and watched her put away 6 drinks in an hour--basically, a normal eye-opener for her. In the past, I would have kept up (free drinks while Iím getting paid!), but despite my very early sobriety, I wasnít triggered, and stuck to coffee.

I went home smug in my sobriety, and then that night watched ďThe ShiningĒ with my son. Thereís a point in the movie (sorry if this is a spoiler) when Jack Nicholson says screw it to his 5 months of sobriety and knocks back a glass of bourbon. Itís the precise point when he shifts from just an abusive jerk to a full-blown axe murderer.

And THATíS what triggered me. If I hadnít dumped all the booze in the house, I would have hopped up and poured a glass right then.

It dawned on me after the craving passed that the reason ďmoderationĒ has never worked for me is that I drink specifically to be immoderate. I drink to ditch my responsibilities, to rebel, to BE BAD. Whether it was dropping acid and smoking crack as a teen, or swiping cognac off the food cart on last monthís flight home from Paris, substance abuse has always been an eff it to the world--my family, my ex-wife, my crazy jobÖ

Does this desire to simply be bad resonate with any of you? Iím not sure how I can even follow a recovery plan, if that little 13-year-old rebel in me is just waiting for the moment when he can be bad again. All the positives of sobriety (and there are MANY) arenít a defense when the whole reason I drink is to mess everything up like a teen vandal.

Thanks for letting me vent.
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Old 09-05-2018, 04:27 PM
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I really, really enjoyed reading that
and please posts lots more. Great writing style!!
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Old 09-05-2018, 04:33 PM
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Hi AintDeadYet

Now that you are aware of this... how about you ditch that 13-year old rebel inside of your together with the booze? I don't think listing to him will lead you anywhere good.

I mean we all have those struggles. Where our short term impulses lead us the opposite direction where our long term goals are.
Just ask yourself, how will your life look if you behave like a revolting teenager? Will it get you where you want to be? If yes, then go for it. If not, then don't act on these thoughts. Most people have thoughts like that sometimes, where we feel like giving our boss the finger, quitting and walking out the office to never come back. The trick is to not act on those thoughts.

Another thing you could do is to try and find our WHY you want to rebel. What against? Do you feel uncomfortable in your role in life? Maybe if you change something, you will no longer feel like you want to rebel.
My ex had similar thoughts sometimes, where he wanted to be a "badass" so that people would find him cool enough and have respect. So in the end it was only his fear of seeming boring and others therefore looking down on him and not taking him seriously. Not saying that this must be true for you, but it can be interesting to have a look at why we feel the way we do.
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Old 09-05-2018, 04:37 PM
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The Rebel!

Been there, done that.
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:08 PM
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Its interesting you bring up The Shining because Stephen King now admits that story is a bit of an unconscious allegory to his battle with addiction.

My problem with being a bad boy was I had no control over what happened....

I never knew if I'd be 'cool bad' or HEERES JOHNNNY bad...and as the years wore on it was mostly the latter.

You can be bad all you want sober...tho if you're like me you probably won't be bothered with that so much once you get sober.

Being the bad boy was just another manifestation of me not thinking I or the life I led was good enough.

Sober, I rediscovered the real me - he's not a bad guy really.
I like me. Room for improvement sure, but basically sound

I have no need to escape from my life anymore either cos I've built it back up just the way I like it

let your inner 13yo grow up

D
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:18 PM
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Thanks for the replies!

kevlarsjal2--I think you're on to something about my fear of being boring and feeling uncomfortable in the role I play in my life. Although, my life has changed drastically (for the better!) in the last few years, and I need to update the mental image I have of myself.

I work in a creative field, and playing the rebel has actually paid off in the past, and still pays off in terms of getting hired to do work outside of the mainstream. But I'm at a point in my life/career where I have the potential to do things I could only dream of a few years ago--I just can't do them drunk.
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:23 PM
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Dee74--For years I knew I could hold it together drunk, but in the last year or so, I just get sloppy... and embarrassing. Definitely need to let my inner 13-year-old grow up.
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:25 PM
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Aint,

I relate. I was a drinking mofo at 5 years old. I drank to get drunk at 5. That is crazy.

When I hit 38, I retired from the military and decided it was time to turn it up.

Rock star!

Soon I was having paranoid feelings and balance issues when sober. I was 50 lbs overweight and running BP of around 170/100 all day long.

Deadman walking.

I decided I didn't want to go down like that.

I put down the booze and started working out.

SR and the internet clued me in on all the hell involved with getting clean.

I made it 8 months clean when I was 27. The crave and a lack of awareness tricked me back.

Never again.

Thanks.
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:38 PM
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I can totally relate AintDeadYet! I felt like my whole identity was the crazy badass jackwagon putting on a show. I wanted the frat party to last forever and was always willing to go ham to make that happen. Watching Animal House is a trigger, so is pre- and post-game/concert tailgating. The difference is now I fast forward to the morning after and as much as I want to go back to the frat party, I REALLY donít want to go back to the hangover!
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:45 PM
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Originally Posted by AintDeadYet View Post
Thanks for the replies!

kevlarsjal2--I think you're on to something about my fear of being boring and feeling uncomfortable in the role I play in my life. Although, my life has changed drastically (for the better!) in the last few years, and I need to update the mental image I have of myself.

I work in a creative field, and playing the rebel has actually paid off in the past, and still pays off in terms of getting hired to do work outside of the mainstream. But I'm at a point in my life/career where I have the potential to do things I could only dream of a few years ago--I just can't do them drunk.
Thinking more about it: You can still be a rebel without being drunk and without being bad. A bad guy is just a guy with bad intentions or bad manners. Who likes that really? I think it's only some teenage boys who find that impressing or cool...
A rebel, someone who has revolutionary ideas, those are most often the inspiring characters. It doesn't mean you'll have to be the bad boy though. Revolting against the norm, thinking out of the box,... all of that is possible while being respectful to others and sober. It won't make you boring but probably just more pleasant to work with.

And I've yet to meet a person who's more interesting when they are drunk! (Although this is a common misconception drunks have about themselves, that they are more interesting when they drink)
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:45 PM
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Great post & responses Thanks, AintDead.

I didn't think of it as wanting to be bad, but I definitely didn't want to be ordinary. I had a fear of being the boring, typical person I was surrounded by. Years later I would look longingly at these people's nice, normal lives. I turned mine into chaos. Not quite my intention.
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Old 09-05-2018, 06:02 PM
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No question about it. I can very much relate. Self-destruction, ruined relationships, teetering on the edge etc. All the things that the adolescent mind finds to be so fascinating and full of depth. In the end I think it's really just an addiction to avoidance. When you're "bad" all you're doing is really avoiding the responsibilities that are required make this world go round.

I'm only speaking about myself, I don't mean to suggest anything about you as I don't know you. But I know that that sort of permanent adolescence is what kept me drinking for years as well. It feels good to have finally grown up. It feels better than any of that b******* ever really felt. I like paying my debts, I like being responsible. There's piece, satisfaction and wisdom on this side of sobriety.
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Old 09-05-2018, 07:44 PM
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Very relatable post for me! Iíve struggled with loosing the being bad aspect and high/release I get from saying eff it- then usually drinking. I even adore the grit and edge of a perceived ďbadĒ lifestyle. You know, that arthouse punk stuff.
Also, I was never allowed to do anything as a kid and as soon as I broke free I felt like I was entitled to whatever I wanted after years of suffering. Iím still working on figuring it all out so I donít have much advice- just that youíre not alone in that feeling. Iím am trying to feed that need in my art and more traveling adventures. And one thing I know for sure is that being sloppy drunk and losing myself isnít very cool. Sober is getting better and better for me every day. Good luck to you and keep it up!
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Old 09-05-2018, 09:28 PM
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Grrat post. And Yep.

When I first started drinking at 13 it gave me a massive relief from the feeling that whatever I did could never be enough. Not to please my parents, not to be successful, or popular, or fit in. (Usual teen angst mixed with people-pleasing codie behaviours that helped me survive in a bit of a toxic environment. And it seemed to work so well that I never bothered developing any better tools for living. Such as self honesty, living with integrity and self-love and making safe boundaries. Learning that i am so much more than the worst thing I ever did. I suppose by adjusting my expectations and perspective, so I didn't feel the need to act out and float away from my Self in a red bubble.

I grew up in sobriety. Thank goodness. The teenage rebel was getting tired (and a bit boring), and the shame when sobering up was getting more consuming.

BB
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Old 09-05-2018, 10:51 PM
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Great post . Got me thinking and reached the conclusion that I drank to ditch responsibility. I homeschooled my son till his final year , last year, and since then ( Dec 17 till Aug 18 when I joined ) , I just thought - what the hell - I deserve this , and started drinking all day , every day . I - just- didn't -want - ANY -responsibility. Thank God I joined and have regained a semblance of adulthood and responsibilty again.
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Old 09-05-2018, 11:31 PM
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I’m not going to hurt you honey......
Great film.

I used to get that feeling too.
And the feeling of stop the world I’m getting off.

Just a trick my beast used to use on me.
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Old 09-06-2018, 01:57 AM
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I didn't drink wanting to be bad, rather, wanting to be numb.
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Old 09-06-2018, 03:43 AM
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They always say how Satan is the most charismatic and appealing character in Milton's Paradise Lost. It can seem very cool to be bad, especially when you're young. I had more than my share of that I'd say.
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Old 09-06-2018, 03:45 AM
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I may actually enjoy breaking the rules more than I liked being drunk.
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Old 09-06-2018, 04:13 AM
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Gear thoughts above. I will just add a question that popped into my head.

How old is your son? I know that my inner 16 year old- though she wasn't an alcoholic yet- would have a lot of "stuff" I would hate to share with my 16 year old step daughter when I need to be behaving like a sober adult.
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