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Should quitting alcohol be so different from quitting smoking?

Old 01-29-2013, 09:19 PM
  # 81 (permalink)  
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I was one that loved to read about others just having enough and stopping their addictive behavior. People stop addictions all the time and without the recoveryisms that are so typically applied to alcohol.

Smoking kills more people, and cost more in healthcare dollars, than all other recreational drugs (including alcohol) combined. That is from a NIH study that one can find by googling. I think the damage of smoking is downplayed especially in recovery circles. And how any medically approved threatment would allow or even encourage (one addiction at a time don't ya know) people to continue to smoke is appalling. Ever see someone die from emphysema? I have.

To me I stopped both these behaviors when I decided I was done. And I am so very thankful that I didn't believe I was powerless and that I chose to put the bottle down.
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Old 01-29-2013, 09:40 PM
  # 82 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by ru12 View Post
I was one that loved to read about others just having enough and stopping their addictive behavior. People stop addictions all the time and without the recoveryisms that are so typically applied to alcohol.
As important as this was for you, it is equally important for others to read about people who couldn't just stop. I was one of those people who couldn't just stop. In fact after my relapse, I was caught in deadly cycle of drinking and hospitals, which lasted for 10 days. Yes, people stop all the time, but some of us need something extra, for me it was rehab. In the end, if we're all sober, that's all that counts.
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Old 01-30-2013, 03:42 AM
  # 83 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by BillyWeaver View Post

Originally Posted by Fandy
and it's a simple effective method....just don't drink...that is all there is to it for me also.

it's a beverage, rather nasty tasting at this point.....i took a sip of what used to be my favorite white wine this past summer and it reminded me of the nail salon smells. icky, no thanks.

it's not really spiritual, i'm not a different person in my life (except i have more $$, am thinner, healthier physiclly and have brain cells that work).
And not letting alcohol control your life?

Seems so easy when you put it that way. "Just dont drink" Have you told other alocholics this? Seems like a legit way to assist those who want to take back control of their lives.

Who needs forums, AA, AVRT, Smart etc when all you have to do is "not drink"


Words of wisdom
Since BW mentioned AVRT self-recovery (stuck in between two programs that make quitting a group project), I thought I'd chime in.

First, from an AVRT point of view, I think BW's post is correct in calling into question the simplicity of "just don't drink" or "not drink" as an adequate decision to any given drinking opportunity. The element of time is not dealt with, which requires the person to repeatedly make the decision to "not drink" every time the opportunity arises. The element of time must be included somewhere in the plan about future drinking to take full advantage of having a human neocortex which has the capacity to beat the problem once and for all time. "NEVER" is the word that takes that full advantage.

I think Fandy's post reveals that "...just don't drink..." has some conditions attached when one sentence later we read "...i took a sip of what used to be my favorite white wine...". If, before last summer, Fandy had decided "I will never drink again," then that sip would not have been possible. The Big Plan of AVRT removes the ability to even consider a decision to drink.

With a Big Plan, I no longer have to decide "just don't drink" each time the opportunity arises; it's already been done. Smelling a drink and sipping a drink are at opposite ends of the universe in my playbook.

BW also mentions "forums" in the "Who needs..." question. And since Fandy has averaged 12 posts per day for the past three years, my question is "Does your not drinking include "stay involved with SR" along with "just don't drink"? Or are you truly managing with "just don't drink" and posting on SR for other reasons?

About there being so many posts here about AVRT? I chalk that up to the immense entrenchment of the institutionalized Addictive Voice in our society at large, which of course gets expressed in many ways here on SR; and each and every time the AV pops up, a pristine AVRT perspective requires a full disclosure of how that AV supports the future use of alcohol. The AV can be devious, but the RT is laser-focused.

I'll begin to conclude with an impossible request - Please, right now, do NOT think of drinking alcohol. This is why it doesn't make sense to me to have to keep making the same decision "to just not drink" every time the opportunity to drink comes up; because as an adult human being, it would be a piece of cake for me to make ANY TIME an opportunity to drink.

I believe everyone here is perfectly capable of making a once in a lifetime decision "I will never drink again", at which time every imaginable opportunity to drink quickly morphs into an external suggestion that is easily recognized as alien. "Oh, yeah, I decided that one long ago."
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Old 01-30-2013, 04:21 AM
  # 84 (permalink)  
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Staying connected here and being grateful for remaining sober are my methods of recovery.
I try not to overthink it. As for the sip of wine, it didn't worry me as i didnt enjoy it, i was mostly marveling at how my tastebuds were affected/changed.
I can also smoke 1 cigarette once or twice a year....if i immediately run to brush my teeth.
Thank you for checking up on my posts, .....some months i only average 10 or 9 per day, depends how busy i am.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:43 AM
  # 85 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by GerandTwine
I chalk that up to the immense entrenchment of the institutionalized Addictive Voice in our society at large, which of course gets expressed in many ways here on SR;
So entrenched that it is impossible for some to fathom that one can indeed decide to never drink again. So entrenched that when I said it out loud to a group, you would have thought I just said I was planning on drowning kittens.

Originally Posted by BillyWeaver
We are just arguing in circles now for no reason
I agree with your post though. We are just arguing sematics now.
Arguing? Not the word I would use here, but regardless...I often post what I post with the thousands of lurkers/guests in mind. Meant nothing personal toward you....that's not how I roll.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:46 AM
  # 86 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by GerandTwine View Post
The Big Plan of AVRT removes the ability to even consider a decision to drink.
Well, of course 'I' can still consider drinking with my BP well in place. It would be classic AV for 'me' to 'think' about drinking. AVRT is all about technique, it's not itself a form of selective lobotomy which in effect 'removes the ability of consideration of drinking any alcoholic beverage.'

I'm a free agent to think as I please, including my normal AV, and there are no conditions on my now not ever drinking again. To not have the ability of consideration of my past or (possible) future drinking would be a useless and impossible condition, and so my BP would simply call BS on all that conditional crap. The idea or suggestion that the ability is removed is pure Addictive Voice in my playbook.

But that's me.

Addictive Voice Recognition Technique is a simplistic tool, and nothing but a tool. it's not magic, its not wholly science, its all about the person simply deciding to now not ever drink again, and not ever changing their mind. These BP's have been made by persons for centuries before AVRT proper came onto the scene.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:54 AM
  # 87 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by ru12
Smoking kills more people, and cost more in healthcare dollars, than all other recreational drugs (including alcohol) combined. That is from a NIH study that one can find by googling. I think the damage of smoking is downplayed especially in recovery circles. And how any medically approved threatment would allow or even encourage (one addiction at a time don't ya know) people to continue to smoke is appalling.
EXACTLY! That's why I believe that an addiction is an addiction, regardless of DOC. The OP asks "Should quitting alcohol be so different from quitting smoking?" I still say no, and I think many from benefit from the approach most use to quit smoking being applied to drinking. Believing it is a vastly different process keeps many people drinking on and off for years.
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:00 AM
  # 88 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by ru12 View Post
I was one that loved to read about others just having enough and stopping their addictive behavior. People stop addictions all the time and without the recoveryisms that are so typically applied to alcohol.

Smoking kills more people, and cost more in healthcare dollars, than all other recreational drugs (including alcohol) combined. That is from a NIH study that one can find by googling. I think the damage of smoking is downplayed especially in recovery circles. And how any medically approved threatment would allow or even encourage (one addiction at a time don't ya know) people to continue to smoke is appalling. Ever see someone die from emphysema? I have.

To me I stopped both these behaviors when I decided I was done. And I am so very thankful that I didn't believe I was powerless and that I chose to put the bottle down.
I've actually had several doctors, in several different areas of practice, over the last 14 years tell me NOT to quit smoking ~ and to not even try. There are some actual health benefits to it, though of course those are downplayed hard. My father died from COPD. It was an slow and ugly thing.

Do you also consider caffiene a recreational drug?
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:04 AM
  # 89 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by EnnuiStasis View Post
I've actually had several doctors, in several different areas of practice, over the last 14 years tell me NOT to quit smoking ~ and to not even try. There are some actual health benefits to it, though of course those are downplayed hard. My father died from COPD. It was an slow and ugly thing.

Do you also consider caffiene a recreational drug?

This made me LAUGH!
Out loud even!! hahaha
Thanks, Ennui.




p.s. Sorry about your father passing.
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:11 AM
  # 90 (permalink)  
 
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Do you also consider caffiene a recreational drug?
Yes.

There are some actual health benefits to it,
Please share...
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:25 AM
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Role of smoking in inflammatory bowel disease: implications for therapy -- Thomas et al. 76 (895): 273 -- Postgraduate Medical Journal (Role of smoking in inflammatory bowel disease: implications for therapy)

Parkinson's Disease: Numerous studies have identified the uncanny inverse relationship between smoking and Parkinson's disease. Long-term smokers are somehow protected against Parkinson's, and it's not because smokers die of other things earlier. [10 Easy Paths to Self-Destruction]

The most recent, well-conducted study was published in a March 2010 issue of the journal Neurology. Far from determining a cause for the protective effect, these researchers found that the number of years spent smoking, more so than the number of cigarettes smoked daily, mattered more for a stronger protective effect.

Harvard researchers were among the first to provide convincing evidence that smokers were less likely to develop Parkinson's. In a study published in Neurology in March 2007, these researchers found the protective effect wanes after smokers quit. And they concluded, in their special scientific way, that they didn't have a clue as to why.

Mental Health & Brain: The most fascinating and widely recognized health benefit of smoking is its ability to seemingly alleviate symptoms of mental illnesses, including anxiety and schizophrenia. According to an article published in 1995 in Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, schizophrenics have much higher smoking rates than people with other mental illnesses, and appear to use it as a method of self-medicating. The article postulates that nicotine found in cigarettes reduces psychiatric, cognitive, sensory, and physical effects of schizophrenia, and also provides relief of common side effects from antipsychotic drugs.

The treatment of schizophrenia isn't the only positive effect that nicotine has on the brain. A series of very interesting studies from multiple academic sources confirms that the risk of Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease is surprisingly higher in non-smokers than in smokers. Doctor Laura Fratiglioni of Huddinge University Hospital in Sweden states, "Cigarette smokers are 50% less likely to have PD or AD than are age- and gender-matched nonsmokers [...] cigarette smoking exerts an undefined, biologic, neuroprotective influence against the development of PD and AD."
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Old 01-30-2013, 08:45 AM
  # 92 (permalink)  
 
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That's interesting. If the benefits of nicotine are in fact significant, then it would make sense to deliver it to the brain in a safer way... sans the tar and other chemicals that are drawn into the lungs via smoke...
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Old 01-30-2013, 09:28 AM
  # 93 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by EnnuiStasis View Post
Mental Health & Brain: The most fascinating and widely recognized health benefit of smoking is its ability to seemingly alleviate symptoms of mental illnesses, including anxiety and schizophrenia. According to an article published in 1995 in Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, schizophrenics have much higher smoking rates than people with other mental illnesses, and appear to use it as a method of self-medicating. The article postulates that nicotine found in cigarettes reduces psychiatric, cognitive, sensory, and physical effects of schizophrenia, and also provides relief of common side effects from antipsychotic drugs.
Yeah, smoking cigarettes is well known for its properties to enhance stimulation and relaxation experiences. Certainly I found smoking to ring both those bells for myself.

Still though, nicotine is poisonous, and causes cancer, so it will not likely itself be used medicinally in its pure form just yet, if ever. As for how it effects the brain chemistry, this too is problematic because nicotine is very powerful and can easily cause desensitisation which then leads to tolerence, which makes its use therafter unpredictable and risk-filled as to which proper dosages would be effective and healthy.

Interesting for sure.

Me, I'm glad I quit nonethless, because the known possible health benefits are not worth the known fatal risks which accompanies smoking.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:07 AM
  # 94 (permalink)  
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This has grown to be a very interesting (and surprisingly respectful) discussion. I originally posted this question as I had quit smoking relatively easily. My "program" had been to stop putting cigarettes in my mouth and lighting them. It took many, many attempts but finally took. I suffered through the uncomfortable withdrawal and period of establishing a new habit, but eventually made it and never looked back.

As to quitting drinking, I was first introduced to AA and could never get it to work for me. I prayed as hard and as sincerely as possible but the obsession and compulsion was never lifted. Eventually, I started to look elsewhere for alternative approaches. However, the more approaches I examined to more confused I got and the easier it became to keep drinking while investigating the next method. I was trying to cobble together bits from several programs and find the magic formula.

The breakthrough came when I was reading Allen Carr's book. I was several chapters in when I was suddenly overcome with the feeling that I just couldn't read one more poorly written book hoping it had the magic formula. Ultimately, my sobriety was going to rely on me making a decision to quit drinking and sticking to that decision. I still had to go through the withdrawal period and I am still going through the discomfort of adopting a new habit. There are a few tools I can learn to help during this period and beyond, which is why I keep reading posts. Mostly, however, it was helpful to see that there were many people who did get sober by simply quitting drinking and that that way was open to me as well.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by soberlicious View Post
That's interesting. If the benefits of nicotine are in fact significant, then it would make sense to deliver it to the brain in a safer way... sans the tar and other chemicals that are drawn into the lungs via smoke...
I've been switching back and forth between e-cigs and regular ones. I know the paper in the regular ones is chock-full of nasty toxins. I don't think the results are in yet whether it's the nicotine per se or something else in tobacco that is helpful.

Sad to choose whether to smother oneself to death or poop oneself to death. (I have severe malabsorption syndrome.)

TMI ~ TMI ~ forgive me!
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:46 AM
  # 96 (permalink)  
 
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Excellent post jazzfish. I too was realistic about the impending and inevitable discomfort in quitting and got through it. When I say I quit for good, it doesn't mean that I was skipping around sh*tting rainbows as some would like to imply. Neither was it the gut and soul wrenching lifetime process others report. The truth, for me, was somewhere in the middle. The initial part sucked azz pretty good, but I knew it was going to and was prepared for that.

I prefer ripping off a bandaid quickly, as opposed to slowly slowly pulling and ripping...each...hair...out...one...by...one. Using the latter approach in an effort to avoid the pain, I simply prolong it.
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:48 AM
  # 97 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by EnnuiStasis
Sad to choose whether to smother oneself to death or poop oneself to death. (I have severe malabsorption syndrome.)

TMI ~ TMI ~ forgive me!
LOL never TMI for me...I am not the squeamish type.
I am sorry those are the only 2 options for your problem. xo
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Old 01-30-2013, 10:55 AM
  # 98 (permalink)  
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i think that this is one of the most supportive areas of the SR family...i avoided visiting until recently, but i find everyone very thoughtful and helpful.
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Old 01-30-2013, 11:16 AM
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I find it difficult to compare the two. For a start I didn't go into a quit-ciggies rehab with support workers and random wee tests, and there wasn't any 'alcohol gum' either (prob'ly a good thing).

It's been a while sober now, and I don't ever think 'Wow I could murder a beer' - if only because I remember how destructive my life was with drinking.

But I stopped smoking for three years, then had six months back on them, then last year stopped again. But the only reason I don't have a smoke now is that it is such a damn ball-ache to quit.

I want a ciggie. Maybe because it's a 'safe' relapse of a kind - won't lose home and mind and family just for a few smokes. I don't want a drink. Drink would kill me, fast. Ciggies would kill me eventually. But quitting ciggies... damn it's just irritating. I hate quitting. So I can't smoke again, only because I can't be bothered having to quit again.

So... er... yeah, ciggies not so immediately and uber-massively break everything evilness... but in a way it makes them tricksier. I really really could MURDER a ciggie, most of the time. Tempted even now to go get a pack of baccy... (won't)... keep thinking I should get gum, but it's the slippery slope. Damn nicotine. Damn you!

/ramble ramble ramble

Originally Posted by EnnuiStasis View Post
<various beneficial effects of nicotine>
:|

Yeah. Thanks. Now I really want a ciggie!

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Old 01-30-2013, 12:57 PM
  # 100 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Fandy
i think that this is one of the most supportive areas of the SR family...i avoided visiting until recently, but i find everyone very thoughtful and helpful.
I agree. In fact, I joined SR because of the discussions in the secular forum. I had already quit almost 4 years prior. I didn't need support, but I was in need of some stimulating discussions. I found that here.

When I first joined I said in a post, "I really like that people in this section rarely get their panties in a wad." A member replied, "That's because we don't wear any." haha! I was like...see, now that's what I mean.
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