Notices

Do you see recovery as a "fight" against alcoholism?

Old 12-09-2022, 02:10 PM
  # 21 (permalink)  
nez
Member
 
nez's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 2,909
Originally Posted by mns1 View Post
So I view sobriety (for now at least) as needing to stay several steps ahead of my enemy at all times. I need to remain vigilant, stay prepared, think strategically, and at times improvise on the spot in order to prevent my addiction from ever getting the upper hand again.
Preparation and practice makes things become second nature so that we do them without noticing or consciously thinking...like breathing...or Michael Jordan shooting a free throw with his eyes closed in an NBA game back in 1991 (In the dying moments of the game, MJ stepped up to the free-throw line. He turned to the big rookie, said, ďHey, Mutombo, this oneís for you,Ē then closed his eyes and entered his shooting motion. Unsurprisingly, he hit nothing but net.)
nez is offline  
Old 12-09-2022, 02:55 PM
  # 22 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2022
Posts: 28
Hi Colin1, thanks

I saw it as "I have to stop" and we've been working on changing my mindset to "I've chosen to stop." At the start of everyday I tell myself "Today I've made a decision not to drink and I am in total control of this."

It's really worked to date!
kes2 is offline  
Old 12-09-2022, 10:11 PM
  # 23 (permalink)  
bona fido dog-lover
 
least's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: SF Bay area, CA
Posts: 97,615
I too went from "I have to quit" to "I want to be sober". . Big difference.
least is online now  
Old 12-10-2022, 02:32 AM
  # 24 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2018
Posts: 107
I absolutely see it as a fight but I'm a warrior type individual and this is the approach that works for me. You have to do what works for you.

I will say this - as I got more sober time, the fight becomes much much easier.
BornToBeSober is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 03:19 AM
  # 25 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2022
Posts: 28
Thanks BTBS,

We're all different, I'm really glad you've found your way and it works!! Keep on!
kes2 is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 03:24 AM
  # 26 (permalink)  
~sb
 
sugarbear1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: MD
Posts: 15,880
I surrendered and stopped fighting. I know for me to drink is to die. Simple.
sugarbear1 is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 05:15 AM
  # 27 (permalink)  
nmd
Member
 
nmd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Western New York
Posts: 2,257
I don't know if it's a fight, though early on dealing with cravings, and undesirable thoughts and feelings is a real thing and can feel like a fight

Getting sober was a process of building new boundaries in my own head. From the rational recovery perspective, it's separating the undesirable addiction and addictive thoughts from the you that you want to be. Change can happen the second you decide to make the change, but it can also take time to reinforce your own goals and figure out exactly what you need to do. The "fight" fades with time along with old habits because you've learned and practice healthier and more effective coping mechanisms

Sending my support!

nmd is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 05:29 AM
  # 28 (permalink)  
~sb
 
sugarbear1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: MD
Posts: 15,880
nmd, try Urge Surfing
sugarbear1 is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 05:37 AM
  # 29 (permalink)  
nmd
Member
 
nmd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Western New York
Posts: 2,257
Thanks sugarbear1, urge surfing is great tool

My own "fight" is something of the past thankfully, I'm sober 2 and half years
nmd is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 07:11 AM
  # 30 (permalink)  
Member
 
Pondlady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Midwest
Posts: 8,076
For me, sobriety was a return to my true self and allows me to live to my potential.
Pondlady is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 07:54 AM
  # 31 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Mid-Atlantic states
Posts: 115
For me, the "fight" phase was to "not drink"; the peace phase came with recovery, which is far more than just not drinking.
Oglsby is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 08:00 AM
  # 32 (permalink)  
Member
 
Join Date: May 2019
Posts: 2,903
Do people really white knuckle it for months or even years? If so, I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. In my first few weeks, I really thought each day would be a battle against cravings for the rest of my days. That wouldn’t be sustainable for anyone, and thankfully I was proved wrong as the cravings gradually faded. But that’s just my experience. I’d say if (after stopping drinking 100%), the big cravings drag on for several more weeks or months, further support is needed. I can see how this is a tough one to crack, and maybe I got off lightly, but it’s well worth the effort.
Hodd is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 08:20 AM
  # 33 (permalink)  
nez
Member
 
nez's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 2,909
I struggled and fought for 10 years to not drink. When I changed my focus to how to stay sober, amazing things began to occur. It was still hard, but much more doable. It was no longer a fight, just obstacles encountered. Obstacles are not the enemy, they teach us about ourselves. Obstacles don't block our path, they are the path. Improvise. Adapt. Overcome.
nez is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 08:30 AM
  # 34 (permalink)  
Member
 
VikingGF's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: New England
Posts: 3,590
Itís not a fight anymore. It was, thatís the truth, but then it just wasnít.

I know taking one drink will lead to catastrophe, but thatís the same as knowing stepping blindly into traffic could kill me. I have no desire to do either thing.
VikingGF is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 08:38 AM
  # 35 (permalink)  
Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Dec 2022
Posts: 28
**,

Until recent days Hodd, I'd say I white knuckled through 80% of my days until rehab taught me that it wouldn't work for me and I had to adopt a totally different approach. I had to see it as my choice and the right one. My key worker said you can go out and get a drink anytime, day or nigh, nobody can stop you but you make a positive choice each day not to because you're in control - not the drink

To put it in perspective, I've heard people say they white knuckle through c. certain days/situations after 30+ years of being sober. A chap at my home AA fellowship (who worked in the addiction field as a counsellor) attended for the first time in years last week as he;d relapsed after 32 years of sobriety. It's just how we face it Hodd. We find a way and stick with it. Some serious long term members still white knuckle through difficult situations after decades of sobriety. I've heard it.
kes2 is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 09:32 AM
  # 36 (permalink)  
nez
Member
 
nez's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2017
Posts: 2,909
To me there is a big difference between sobriety and recovery. For me, sobriety was a fight and eventually the result would be that I would inevitably lose. Recovery for me is about coexistence rather than fighting. Alcohol and I peacefully coexist in the same place on this planet. The peace is maintained by me recognizing that alcohol and I have different goals and so we don't intermingle because those goals don't align. Alcohol gets to remain as alcohol, and I get to remain as me. As long as I don't fight, there is no fight That is a coexistence, I can live with!
nez is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 11:23 AM
  # 37 (permalink)  
Member
 
MesaMan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Colorado
Posts: 3,439
.
I weigh in on the nez POV side of the Universe.

Decades ago, I watched a Sumo Wrestling Match in Tokyo. Quite the ceremony. This ~325 lb. Vet faced off against a ~225 lb. Noob. They throw Salt around the Ring, and do all the prerequisite moves. Then, these two burst up from their kneeling start positions. Smaller Dude deftly stepped aside. Big Dude flies right by him, and out of the Ring. Match over in ~2 Seconds in favor of the smaller Dude. Funniest, and most insightful Match I'd ever seen. Loss-by-inertia. And, due to thinking you *have* to do things - like get Sober - in some certain way.

Although this wasn't it, there is a Martial Art where you tire out your opponent by making only defensive moves while he flails away, tiring himself out. Ki Aikido, mebbe?

By not fighting Alcohol after about ~3 or ~6 Months in, I kinda did that. I strived to remove myself from all the turmoil, and inevitable failures/relapses. You can't 'miss' something you genuinely no longer want. This didn't mean it wasn't an extreme challenge. The challenge morphed into more a defensive set of deft Social moves over time and experience, and in altering the direction I steered my Life toward [Effortless Sobriety]. 'No' is a complete sentence. And, that was my rare reply to situations I was not yet ready for, or interested in anymore. Like, a youthful, sotted Wedding and Reception, or a Power Drinking Weekend/Sports Playoff.

I viewed my Alcoholism much like my fair Skin that sunburns. I was born with it. No need to sit around and fret either Genetic predisposition. Shrug. Just roll with them, and play the hand I was dealt without regrets.

For me, I had to either map out and take the route I did, or I would also be White Knuckling it Decades on. That's one form of Sobriety, but not the optimum type of Recovery for me...
MesaMan is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 11:33 AM
  # 38 (permalink)  
Member
 
DriGuy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Posts: 4,097
Originally Posted by kes2 View Post
**,
To put it in perspective, I've heard people say they white knuckle through c. certain days/situations after 30+ years of being sober. A chap at my home AA fellowship (who worked in the addiction field as a counsellor) attended for the first time in years last week as he;d relapsed after 32 years of sobriety. It's just how we face it Hodd. We find a way and stick with it. Some serious long term members still white knuckle through difficult situations after decades of sobriety. I've heard it.
I'm with Hodd on this one. White knuckles are almost a forgotten history, and it's not just when it comes to drinking, because white knuckles about life itself are also gone. If it still happens after 30 years, someone is maybe still romancing the drink, or missing something important in their recovery, at least it seems to me that way, albeit with my somewhat limited perspective. My hat is off to these 800 lb gorillas. But like they say it's different for everyone. You seem to be on a path similar to Hodd and I. The whole attitude toward alcohol, it's culture, and its meaning in life just melts into oblivion, and there's nothing there to struggle against.

I don't know how to explain it. In retrospect, my attitude was not the one recommended in most recovery programs. I just wanted to stop drinking. I was set on removing alcohol from my life with a zero tolerance for monkey business. I knew early on that I wanted to get as far away from alcohol as possible. With that done, it cleared the way for the things that I needed to do to enjoy my life to the fullest. Maybe that was the part of recovery I didn't embrace from the start. Some of those things I made an effort to achieve, because they just made plain sense. The other stuff included in most recovery programs just happened, many while I wasn't even paying attention. Like Hodd pointed out. Maybe we were just lucky. On the other hand the book, Rational Recovery calls for making a pledge to never drink again, ever, and with that done you are free to decide whether you want to pursue loftier goals or not. That resonated strongly with me when I read it years after I had my last drink. It's kind of contrary, but something I agree with.

But deep down, in spite of me saying it's different for everyone, it grieves me to hear old timers saying it's still a fight, but then there are a lot of semantics in what people think when using the word fight. Maybe, they mean constant vigilance, and yeah, I do that too, but I think I'm a floater rather than a fighter, while that plays in the background.

Originally Posted by kes2 View Post
Until recent days Hodd, I'd say I white knuckled through 80% of my days until rehab taught me that it wouldn't work for me and I had to adopt a totally different approach. I had to see it as my choice and the right one. My key worker said you can go out and get a drink anytime, day or nigh, nobody can stop you but you make a positive choice each day not to because you're in control - not the drink
Someone in AA said at a meeting, "I used to have to drink, but now I have a choice." I puzzled over that for months, until I discovered the truth that it was always my choice whether to drink or not. But it was still an unsettling thought. Yes, by that time, I did have a choice, but if I always had to make the right choice (not to drink), how much of a choice is that really? But that was my AV trying to get me to overthink. In reality, even if it is always a choice, what's so bad about always making the right choice? Turn that around and ask, what's so bad about making the wrong choice (the one that leads you back into the nightmare)? Now that's a real "Well, Duh!??" question if I ever heard one. Maybe it wouldn't be a "Well, Duh!??" if it was so blatantly illogical and stupid.
DriGuy is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 04:42 PM
  # 39 (permalink)  
Member
 
dustyfox's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2021
Location: England
Posts: 1,793
What a great thread. The 'fight' not to drink was for me a doomed mission.

It was only when I realised that this was not a fight with myself over whether to go out every evening to buy my alcohol, not a battle I needed to have every night about whether I should drink or not. This is a choice to become sober, to choose health, mental clarity, self-esteem, and energy, not to mention better skin, hair eyes, over what drinking several bottles leaves you with.

Your key worker is right. Fighting is exhausting, but embracing change is not.

It is just a metaphorical page being turned over, once read there is no need to dwell on it, just on to the next chapter.
dustyfox is offline  
Old 12-10-2022, 05:26 PM
  # 40 (permalink)  
voices ca**y
 
silentrun's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: St. Paul Minnesota
Posts: 4,239
It took a couple of years but I can go months at a time completely unaware there even is such a thing as alcohol.
silentrun is offline  

Currently Active Users Viewing this Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off




All times are GMT -7. The time now is 10:36 PM.