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What are the signs of trouble?

Old 08-30-2007, 02:39 PM
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What are the signs of trouble?

Different people define things different ways. yet people use use the same word to describe a different idea in their head.
This leads to confusion.

For example, there is disagreement on the word 'alcoholic'.

Here's my definition:
"Alcoholic: A person who is unable to stop drinking after two
ounces of alcohol (two 'drinks') in one hour, or three drinks
in one day".

So, someone who drinks 3 ounces or less everyday is not an
alcoholic in my definition.

My 2nd definition: "Relapse".
As in "He had a relapse last night".
What is the definition of 'relapse'?
If a person hasn't had a drink in one year,
and then has 3 drinks, was that an 'alcoholic relapse'?
What if he didn't drink for a year, then one night drinks two bottles of wine?
He wakes up hung over, and didn't drink again for the rest of the week?

Should he seek professional treatment and
make an appointment at the outpatient center?
Is the relapse a guarantee of out-of-control behavior
that will result in terrible life situations occurring?

When is a 'relapse' an indication that you're on an uncontrollable bing,
a raging, out of control substance abuser (think crack house addict).
And when is a 'relapse' just a one time mistake (think of a
dieter who gorges a half-gallon of ice cream in one night)?
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Old 08-30-2007, 04:37 PM
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I like your definition of alcoholic. I feel the same way. I am an alcoholic because I can never just have a drink or two. It's like they say, once you start you can't stop.

As for relapse, well, I am not so sure how to define that for other people. In my experience though after any amount of time with out drinking if I give in and talk myself into "just one more night of fun" its all over. Back to the drawing board.
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Old 08-30-2007, 04:59 PM
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Thanks EasyTiger.
You said "...it's all over. Back to the drawing board."

What's 'all over' mean?
Will you drink a few every night then?
or will you go on a blackout binge?

Thanks.
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Old 08-30-2007, 07:06 PM
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Its all over means one of two things. Either I will slowly start drinking more drinks more often all the while telling myself that this time I have it under control until I finally admit that I don't. Or I will just tell myself that its to late I drank again and now I don't wanna stop and go head long back into it.

Worst part is that I know this will happen and yet everytime so far whether I have made it 6 months, 3 months, or even less there comes a time where that little voice in the back of my head starts to convince me that this time it will be different.

And every time I stop drinking again I tell myself I won't listen to that voice anymore.

All part of the "fun" of being me

One day I will get it right. Hopefully this time I will get it right. I am at a week right now and have no desire to be drunk. The memory of how it destroys my life is still fresh.
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Old 08-31-2007, 11:47 AM
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thats interesting; i posted this 'issue' just a few days ago, in the thread concerning the 'differences' between self-esteem and self-acceptance. any conversation is always contingent on what the 2 conversers have defined the word at question to mean, and that normally is dependent upon their understanding, experience, and teaching of the words. though why do i think experience plays the larger part?
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Old 08-31-2007, 12:32 PM
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I have considered for myself that a “relapse” is to mean that I have returned to continual drug use with no immediate end in sight. And a “slip” for me indicates that I have an intention to remain in the recovery process, but my program needs some adjustments.

I have heard from some people that in there opinion, there is no difference between a relapse and a slip. So for me the difference is my intentioned course of action during and after drug use.
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Old 08-31-2007, 05:33 PM
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Thanks for your replies.

Zencat, i tend toward your viewpoint.
Originally Posted by zencat View Post
I have considered for myself that a “relapse” is to mean that I have returned to continual drug use with no immediate end in sight. And a “slip” for me indicates that I have an intention to remain in the recovery process, but my program needs some adjustments.
And i bring this up, because in some posts, people really get agitated if there is a 'slip'.
Both alcoholics in recovery, and Friends and Family.
And i'm trying to understand their rational for getting so angry/fearful
at what is a 'slip'.
I'm assuming the alcohol drug can really be addictive for some folks, in that
once they have a little, they really can't stop.
I'm not judging, i'm just trying to understand.
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Old 09-01-2007, 09:07 AM
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My own understanding of "alcoholic" is this:

Someone who is dependent on the mind and mood altering effects of alcohol and for who alcohol is having life harming consequences.


I use the term "life harming" to include members of our family and friends because very often we tend to overlook the psychological effects drinking can have on children in our family.

My uncle Ken( not real name) was a jovial drunk.He was the life of every party. He was a successful businessman and a good provider for his family. Everybody loved him. He would never hurt a fly and no one would say that Uncle Ken's drinking was a bother to himself or anyone. Ken just had one problem, he always drank too much at family gatherings and would pass out for a few hours and go sleep it off on the back porch or in the guest room. Nobody seemed to notice that his eight year old son was always trying to wake him up to go home and that he always seemed very worried about his father.

We sometimes excuse our drinking by saying we are not harming anyone but sometimes we dismiss the worry and anxiety we cause to our family and friends when we don't show up when we are supposed to or we forget to call.

Very often our drinking harms people in ways we don't even realize.Deep self scrutiny and honesty is required when examining our drinking.

I would not use the above definition to define my own alcoholism......

"A person who is unable to stop drinking after two
ounces of alcohol (two 'drinks') in one hour, or three drinks
in one day".

......because there were many times i was able to stop myself after a couple of drinks when circumstances dictated it. Funnily the fact that i was even able to do this was one of the main things that perpetuated my drinking because it created the "illusion" in my thinking that I was somehow in control of my drinking.

As for "relapse" I have some very strict rules where my definement of relapse is concerned:

Relapse means: "To stop recovering"

I stop recovering when I knowingly and intentionally put alcohol into my body.I stop recovering because it means that something in my thinking has changed which is causing me to think that there is some reason for me to drink alcohol.

After accepting a life of complete abstainance for myself there is no Spiritual, social or biological reason to ever put alcohol into my system again.

My "disease" of alcoholism resides primarily in my head. It is my thinking which got me into trouble in the first place and ultimately it is my thinking that will keep me on the path to recovery.

A relapse begins in my head with my own little voice telling me it's okay to have a drink.
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