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Old 07-26-2012, 06:18 AM
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Secular Newcomers' Discussion Thread

If you're new in any way--to recovery, or just to secular approaches, we welcome you. Please post any questions, comments, experiences, etc. here.
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Old 07-27-2012, 09:26 AM
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No particular questions at the moment, although I'm sure many will come! I just wanted to say thank you for starting this thread OTT. I've been reading the forum, have read all of the AVRT discussion thread and... this will probably sound daft... I didn't feel like I had enough knowledge to post on it, it's very in depth and seems quite hardcore to a newcomer like me, I'm still waiting for my RR book so didn't want to dive in asking silly questions until I had more comprehension.

Super! I know where I can ask my 'silly' questions now
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Old 07-27-2012, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by MyTimeNow View Post
No particular questions at the moment, although I'm sure many will come! I just wanted to say thank you for starting this thread OTT. I've been reading the forum, have read all of the AVRT discussion thread and... this will probably sound daft... I didn't feel like I had enough knowledge to post on it, it's very in depth and seems quite hardcore to a newcomer like me, I'm still waiting for my RR book so didn't want to dive in asking silly questions until I had more comprehension.

Super! I know where I can ask my 'silly' questions now
There are no silly questions...there really are not! And...this forum isn't limited to AVRT, although AVRT is certainly one secular approach. So are SMART Recovery, LifeRing, SOS, Women For Sobriety, etc. although they all have their own websites. Plus, some people don't necessary use a program or specific approach, or they will mix and match concepts and ideas from here and there, from books such as Alan Carr's, etc. The main thing we in the secular forums tend to have in common is the belief that we, rather than God or some outside force, have the power to quit our addictions.

So, the idea here is to open up a discussion for people who are new to recovery or perhaps new to using a secular approach.

Personally, I'd love to know more about what's going on with you and if there's any way we can all support you!
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Old 07-27-2012, 02:14 PM
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MyTimeNow, everyone can learn from your experiences, not just the dozens who feel as you do about posting on that beast of a Beast thread. Let 'er rip!
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Old 07-27-2012, 08:41 PM
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I am reading The Small Book and using my passion for Buddhism to get through this. I am only a week in this time but have tried countless times to quit alcohol in the past. I am finding that this forum, The Small Book and taking personal responsibility for my actions is working much better.
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Old 07-27-2012, 08:46 PM
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I've heard it said that it is not the program that keeps us sober, but the quality, depth and sincerity of the commitment that makes it work. I think that accepting responsibility for our actions and dealing with the consequences is an important part of that decision.
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Old 07-28-2012, 06:20 AM
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Originally Posted by freshstart57 View Post
I've heard it said that it is not the program that keeps us sober, but the quality, depth and sincerity of the commitment that makes it work. I think that accepting responsibility for our actions and dealing with the consequences is an important part of that decision.
Yep, I tried every thing - meds, counseling, RR, SMART, CBT, rehab, AA, and more - all multiple times over a lot of years. I finally got sick enough when I drank that I truely no longer wanted to use alcohol. Now I find it easy to continue to take Antabuse. No "program" other than some of the things I learned at Brattleboro Retreat and some of the common knowledge aspects. I didn't have a chance till I really, desperately wanted to quit.
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Old 07-28-2012, 10:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Charon View Post
Yep, I tried every thing - meds, counseling, RR, SMART, CBT, rehab, AA, and more - all multiple times over a lot of years. I finally got sick enough when I drank that I truely no longer wanted to use alcohol. Now I find it easy to continue to take Antabuse. No "program" other than some of the things I learned at Brattleboro Retreat and some of the common knowledge aspects. I didn't have a chance till I really, desperately wanted to quit.
Yes...somehow, no matter what path people take, success always seems to come down to the sincere commitment to quit.

One of the things that puzzles me is why one person will get to that decision after a few hard knocks, while another person never gets there, even after losing everything.
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Old 07-28-2012, 03:02 PM
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Originally Posted by onlythetruth View Post
One of the things that puzzles me is why one person will get to that decision after a few hard knocks, while another person never gets there, even after losing everything.
Me too. The only thing I can think of is being able to (being forced to) face reality as opposed to clinging to delusion. I was unfortunate to not have lost much while drinking. I ended up with a Masters degree, a career, home, tons of stuff, and a couple of really great kids. It was easy to delude myself into thinking I was OK, functional. It took physical illness to make me realize how bad alcohol was for me.

I kept drinking till I was forced to face the fact that if I drank even a sip I lost control of my drinking and the drinking would escalate till I made myself sick. I would feel ill for two or more days. That was reality and I couldn't deny it. I finally decided that drinking wasn't worth the after-effects. Now I take Antabuse so that even a sip would immediately make me deathly ill. I would need to stop taking it for 12 days in order to drink without the effect. It's a way for me short circuit the stupid urges and cravings. I won't say I'm not tempted at times but I have to remember the evidence - I simply cannot drink anymore without serious discomfort.
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Old 07-28-2012, 03:31 PM
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I had a question OTT...Do you have to pay to go to SMART meetings?

I noticed that I couldn't buy any of their literature online but I can't really see why that would be the case unless you had to pay for meetings or a course or something. I was going to ring up the person who runs my nearest meeting and ask about it but it's a bit late over here now
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Old 07-28-2012, 04:44 PM
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Hypochondriac, I hope that OTT will correct me as needed, but SMART meetings are free. Materials are available for purchase fromSMART Recovery Bookstore, Discover the Power of Choice!. There is also a recommended reading list at SMART RecoveryŽ - Recommended Reading List

There are free materials online too, but they take a bit of digging to find, and I am not talking about the peer to peer filesharing sites. I found this SMART affiliated site SMART New England - Tools that might be helpful to you.
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Old 07-28-2012, 10:33 PM
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Originally Posted by freshstart57 View Post
I've heard it said that it is not the program that keeps us sober, but the quality, depth and sincerity of the commitment that makes it work. I think that accepting responsibility for our actions and dealing with the consequences is an important part of that decision.
This makes so much sense to me. I started trying to get sober in Jan but only lasted 6 weeks-looking back,my commitment was not truly sincere. I feel truly committed this time

I've read the RR book and now thinking of getting the Allen Carr book.Just wondered if anyone has read both.When I look on Amazon it comes up with'how to control alcohol' Not sure this is a good idea! I think I need the 'how to quit alcohol' one

thanks
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Old 07-29-2012, 06:53 AM
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Amazon:The Easy Way to Stop Drinking, by Allen Carr.



Yep, I have read them both, and they are the mainstay in my library. I can pm you my other favourites if you like.
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Old 07-29-2012, 07:46 AM
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hypochondriac,

freshstart has it right--SMART meetings are free. A donation is suggested, but not required--in that respect it's the same deal as with 12 step programs. We pass the hat, that's it.
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Old 07-29-2012, 07:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Charon View Post
Me too. The only thing I can think of is being able to (being forced to) face reality as opposed to clinging to delusion. I was unfortunate to not have lost much while drinking. I ended up with a Masters degree, a career, home, tons of stuff, and a couple of really great kids. It was easy to delude myself into thinking I was OK, functional. It took physical illness to make me realize how bad alcohol was for me.

I kept drinking till I was forced to face the fact that if I drank even a sip I lost control of my drinking and the drinking would escalate till I made myself sick. I would feel ill for two or more days. That was reality and I couldn't deny it. I finally decided that drinking wasn't worth the after-effects. Now I take Antabuse so that even a sip would immediately make me deathly ill. I would need to stop taking it for 12 days in order to drink without the effect. It's a way for me short circuit the stupid urges and cravings. I won't say I'm not tempted at times but I have to remember the evidence - I simply cannot drink anymore without serious discomfort.

I was a lot like you in that I was actually quite successful for a long time while I was drinking. I got a professional degree and had a nice career going, got married and had two healthy kids. It all looked so perfect that it was easy to convince myself nothing was really wrong. Even when I lost my ability to work, I rationalized that I was just sacrificing my career to raise the kids.

In the end what got me was the shame. All those years (25 years) I flew under the radar and people didn't know I drank. But I got caught in a most embarrassing way. And that was what it took. Ha, maybe pride isn't such a bad thing after all, eh?

In any event I am glad you have found that the Antabuse is the ticket for you. A question: is this something you intend to do long-term?
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Old 07-29-2012, 09:18 AM
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Originally Posted by freshstart57 View Post
Amazon:The Easy Way to Stop Drinking, by Allen Carr.



Yep, I have read them both, and they are the mainstay in my library. I can pm you my other favourites if you like.
thanks freshstart. yes please,I'd be grateful for other recommendations too

thanks

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Old 07-30-2012, 02:07 AM
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Hello, I'm not really "new" in any way. I come and go when I feel the need for support, however it's true that I tend to "go" because the secular section isn't as active as the other sections, and for the same reasons as most of the others I do not cross over to the other side. I hope maybe this time there will me more action around here. I'll check in more often maybe...
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Old 07-30-2012, 05:31 AM
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Be the change, Poppy. Nice to see you here. Don't be a stranger!
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Old 07-30-2012, 06:53 PM
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I have just bought that Allan Carr Book... my first ever Amazon purchase ever!
Looking forward to reading it! x
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Old 07-30-2012, 07:31 PM
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i agree totally...blessed be...
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