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6 months - a life reclaimed

Old 10-14-2018, 01:43 PM
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Congratulations, well done!
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:32 AM
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Originally Posted by lessgravity View Post
I've often tried to identify exactly what is different for me finally. And the truth is I can't say for certain that it's just one thing. I think most generally I can say that I just grew so sick and tired of the same horrid, self destructive cycle. The level of being fed up with that life became just too much for me to deal with anymore.

Maybe it's age, I'm 41. Maybe it's the fact that I just had my second child. But then again those things don't necessarily stop other people, nor did having my son or a life of high responsibility and stress cause me to stop previously. I think that I had in place a number of things which needed me to be at my best. I think I have the tools via meditation, fitness and this website that I was able to fully put into place to carry my sobriety forward. I also just think that I finally after all these years grew up. I can't say for certain why I grew up, but I feel like an adult for the first time in my life. And it turns out it's a pretty terrific feeling.
Thank you for your introspective post.
Sounds to me like your values trumped your addiction. That's what happened when thousands of Vietnam Vets came back to the US having been previously addicted to heroin. That's what happened with 40% of people quit smoking when the Surgeon General put a cancer warning on cigarettes. That's what happened even with rats (Rat Park) when the preferred company of other rats and objects to play with instead of isolation and drugs.

Dennis Prager, at Prager University, summarizes what is most important in life. "What is the most important thing in life? Money? Happiness? Love? Those things are certainly important, but what matters most is good values. What are values? They are what we consider more important than our feelings. For instance, just about everyone feels like eating junk food, but if you eat whatever you feel like eating you will end up obese and unhealthy. So then, what stops people from eating all the food they feel like eating? The answer is good values. Indeed a lack of good values is the root of virtually everything wrong with the world. We should act based on values rather than our feelings."
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Old 10-15-2018, 06:59 AM
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Originally Posted by CRRHCC View Post
Thank you for your introspective post.
Sounds to me like your values trumped your addiction. That's what happened when thousands of Vietnam Vets came back to the US having been previously addicted to heroin. That's what happened with 40% of people quit smoking when the Surgeon General put a cancer warning on cigarettes. That's what happened even with rats (Rat Park) when the preferred company of other rats and objects to play with instead of isolation and drugs.

Dennis Prager, at Prager University, summarizes what is most important in life. "What is the most important thing in life? Money? Happiness? Love? Those things are certainly important, but what matters most is good values. What are values? They are what we consider more important than our feelings. For instance, just about everyone feels like eating junk food, but if you eat whatever you feel like eating you will end up obese and unhealthy. So then, what stops people from eating all the food they feel like eating? The answer is good values. Indeed a lack of good values is the root of virtually everything wrong with the world. We should act based on values rather than our feelings."
Completely agree. I forget when I read it but I've heard this and it's on point. The line I read was 'when your values trump your addiction, there is no addiction'. I think this is true, at least in my case. Still requires work, sacrifice and effort, but so does living a good life.
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Old 10-15-2018, 07:51 PM
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Originally Posted by lessgravity View Post
Completely agree. I forget when I read it but I've heard this and it's on point. The line I read was 'when your values trump your addiction, there is no addiction'. I think this is true, at least in my case. Still requires work, sacrifice and effort, but so does living a good life.
Thanks you for sharing that values and purpose are the main navigational tools in life!
It's great when people post success and look inside and determine and share what made them change and to choose a better life.
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Old 10-15-2018, 08:09 PM
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Congrats on 6 months I also just celebrated 6 on 110/11~
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Old 10-15-2018, 10:32 PM
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Congratulations. So good to see you reach that 6 month mark.
Keep on keeping on.

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Old 10-16-2018, 09:11 PM
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Good job Less! Great post, thank you for sharing
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Old 10-16-2018, 11:51 PM
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Yikes, I greatly dislike any parallels of morality and addiction....that aside, love hearing the introspection LG and what is working for you.
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Old 10-17-2018, 03:36 AM
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Originally Posted by August252015 View Post
Yikes, I greatly dislike any parallels of morality and addiction....that aside, love hearing the introspection LG and what is working for you.
​​​​​​

​​​​​​Im curious to hear why. I suppose that part of it could be the addiction model that motivates and inspires some to quit. For me that model never worked. I suppose hesitancy towards framing the giving into alcohol as a morality play could lead people to continue drinking? On the other hand I just don't see that happening.

I see the choice to drink in the face of life's responsibilities as a moral decision. And that is what motivates me at my core each and every day.
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Old 10-17-2018, 05:03 AM
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Congrats LG! I hit 5 months on the 5th of October, and it honestly feels like so much longer. My life has been a bit chaotic as of late, yet being free from the vice of alcohol has made it so much easier to tackle.
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Old 10-17-2018, 10:31 AM
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Originally Posted by August252015 View Post
Yikes, I greatly dislike any parallels of morality and addiction....that aside, love hearing the introspection LG and what is working for you.
I see some semantic ambiguity here--morals are beliefs--something you are taught from an external source as a belief system which has a good / bad valuation

But I see values as more internal, and it is more connected toyour own emotional response in determining if something is good / bad for you personally.

The term used here is values, not morals, though I agree August morals really isn't helpful to many in a discussion about addiction.
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Old 10-17-2018, 10:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Hawkeye13 View Post
I agree August morals really isn't helpful to many in a discussion about addiction.
Why?
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Old 10-17-2018, 12:17 PM
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I'm a new member and thank you for sharing your success. It means alot to read. Hope you are proud of yourself.
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Old 10-17-2018, 01:35 PM
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Congrats on your 6 months. Very inspirational.
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Old 10-17-2018, 01:38 PM
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Originally Posted by lessgravity View Post
Why?
Because historically - and still, in many circles- addiction/alcoholism has been widely considered a moral failing on the part of the individual. Use whatever words you like, values/morals/character/ so on.... addiction framed as a choice or a value-based flaw has long contributed to the stigma, secrecy, lack of seeking help, on and on.

Yes, I believe in the disease model of addiction. Yes, I believe both genetics and environment/habits/etc play a part.

No, I do not think morality or any way of describing right and wrong has anything to do with someone being an addict. We all make choices based in our moral code, whether cultural, religious, what have you, and addicts are not free from the responsibility or consequences of the often heinous things we do, but I absolutely reject the idea that I am an addict by choice, or any kind of moral election one way or the other. I am sober and in recovery by choice, as that is the best solution in everybody way to the condition of alcoholism.
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Old 10-17-2018, 05:38 PM
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Originally Posted by August252015 View Post
Because historically - and still, in many circles- addiction/alcoholism has been widely considered a moral failing on the part of the individual. Use whatever words you like, values/morals/character/ so on.... addiction framed as a choice or a value-based flaw has long contributed to the stigma, secrecy, lack of seeking help, on and on.

Yes, I believe in the disease model of addiction. Yes, I believe both genetics and environment/habits/etc play a part.

No, I do not think morality or any way of describing right and wrong has anything to do with someone being an addict. We all make choices based in our moral code, whether cultural, religious, what have you, and addicts are not free from the responsibility or consequences of the often heinous things we do, but I absolutely reject the idea that I am an addict by choice, or any kind of moral election one way or the other. I am sober and in recovery by choice, as that is the best solution in everybody way to the condition of alcoholism.
​​​​​​Well for me it is a very different way of thinking about addiction, alcohol, choice and sobriety. For me the moral character of my decisions when I was a drunk and the results of those decisions helped drive me to be the person I am now.

I believe that it's was and always will be a choice to place the bottle to my lips. While I certainly do not think that I chose to be a person who could not control his alcohol consumption, it was a choice that I made, over and over again, to continue drinking.

The values that I have wihin me were always injured and stifled by my returns to the bottle. Those values are the same ones that today I am able to access and elevate as a sober person.

Above all, you and I and many people similar to each of us are sober. In the end of course, we both agree that sobriety is all that truly matters. The means by which we got here are different. And I certainly don't mean to disparage your technique and lense on what it is to be a person who cannot control their alcohol consumption. However I do think that my voice and those like me, who reject the addiction model and do not believe in permanent recovery, are also important voices for those of us out there who are still struggling to win the battle against the Beast.
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Old 10-17-2018, 08:32 PM
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Chemical Addiction doesn’t just happen to people because they come across a particular chemical and begin taking it regularly. The booze doesn't fly off the shelf and into your mouth. You can't get addicted if you don't learn that the drug (or behavior) helps you do something! It's always a choice.
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Old 10-17-2018, 09:07 PM
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It's an interesting debate.

Intuitively, I would agree with the hybrid approach of genetic contribution (in many, but not all) to addiction and the individual's ability to make a choice for him/herself (especially after learning of the possible genetic addiction).

However, I read an interesting article last month in Nature about how it is theorized that alcoholics/regular drinkers accrue what are called "silent synapses" in the part of the brain associated with episodic memory formation, and that these synapses are theorized to be correlated with how people respond to future cues to drink again. The more synapses you've accrued, the more sensitive you are to these alcohol cues (and thus the more likely you are to relapse).

Of course, this is all still being studied and nothing conclusive has been reached, and it doesn't remove moral agency or individual choice, but it does highlight just how stacked the deck can be on a chemical level, which does take some agency away.

I do think the moral choice paradigm is valuable, because it can be extended to almost every aspect of your life and help you make the sort of "backend" changes that can help you maintain sobriety. But of course it's also good to be open and aware of how others who suffer through addiction respond to that paradigm and what works for them.
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Old 10-17-2018, 09:25 PM
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Well done lessí your doing great.
Being a kidult grows tiresome, welcome to adulthood
Itís a good place to be, donít know why I resisted it for so long.
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Old 10-17-2018, 11:06 PM
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I also just think that I finally after all these years grew up. I can't say for certain why I grew up, but I feel like an adult for the first time in my life. And it turns out it's a pretty terrific feeling.

And this

I believe that it's was and always will be a choice to place the bottle to my lips. While I certainly do not think that I chose to be a person who could not control his alcohol consumption, it was a choice that I made, over and over again, to continue drinking.

The values that I have wihin me were always injured and stifled by my returns to the bottle. Those values are the same ones that today I am able to access and elevate as a sober person.



Totally agree on both points-- what is it about lawyers that keeps us in second grade? Maybe its all the judging and back stabbing we do of each other, who knows.. but it stinks.

Glad we "grew up."

On the values point, I am with the love the addict hate the disease school, but I am sure we can all agree on that!

Congrats,

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