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Old 03-14-2014, 07:09 PM   #61 (permalink)
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Absolutely this forum has been such a big support. Of course I don't want to take anything away from myself, I decided to take the sober path but still you guys helped keep me on that path. This is why I never liked the standard 12 step thing, to give it over to a higher power felt insulting to me, it removes the achievment of those who suceed, that's why I just could not gel with that idea.

At the same time I triedso hard to quit before I finally found this community and I managed some short term success. The reality is you guys have helped me simply by listening to my nonsense, you have challenged some of my older ideas, you have provided me with experiences that mimic my own and made me realise the stupid excuses I was giving. Ok yes I have terrible physical pain but with proper treatment and support from you guys I can stay sober, reduce my pain and stay off the demon drink.

I owe a great deal to this forum, and no matter what happens I'll never forget the wonderful people here who helped me.

To anyone who reads this and wants to try to sober path, please give it a go, the people here are just so fantastic.
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Old 03-17-2014, 04:40 PM   #62 (permalink)
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Well said! I sometimes get busy and miss a day posting but I try to pop in at least once to keep up. SR was there when I reached out in the darkness, and many hands reached back. It's really overwhelming when I think about it now! Like you I don't want to minimize my own responsibility for my sobriety but sometimes I think with all you folks at my back I can't fail.
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Old 03-18-2014, 12:18 PM   #63 (permalink)
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Glad to see your messages Davey. For me, taking the prescribed dose of pain medications actually helps keep me sober and clean. Self medicating my physical and emotional pain was a default mechanism for many years.

By working my tools more often SMART and SR helped me from using my pain meds off label.

It's always good to see you post.
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Old 03-19-2014, 12:38 PM   #64 (permalink)
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Glad to see your messages Davey. For me, taking the prescribed dose of pain medications actually helps keep me sober and clean. Self medicating my physical and emotional pain was a default mechanism for many years.

By working my tools more often SMART and SR helped me from using my pain meds off label.

It's always good to see you post.
This is one of the things I've learned, taking medication to deal with pain due to a medical illness is not shameful. I was just self medicating with alcohol but at least the pain meds I'm on won't cause the type of damage that alcohol was doing. I guess sometimes we just dont' want to ask for help, so instead of seeing a doctor for the pain I told them I was fine and drank myself into a stupor.
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Old 03-19-2014, 01:26 PM   #65 (permalink)
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Yeah, it's a big difference taking meds that are prescribed and necessary to function vs getting drunk. It's wise to be wary but if you take them as prescribed I think you should be fine. Obviously keep an eye on it but don't torture yourself with chronic pain for fear of taking pain pills.
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Old 03-19-2014, 04:46 PM   #66 (permalink)
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Huge difference between being dependent and being addicted. My doctor had to drill that in my head for years before I finally got it, accepted it and participated in a plan with my doctor which involved some medication in order to enhance the quality of my life.
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Old 03-21-2014, 05:06 PM   #67 (permalink)
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Today is one of those days. Nothing going on to cause me to drink but for some reason I have the craving. I really hoped after this long the cravings would no longer happen but I guess they will raise their evil little head every now and then. 00:05 here so all shops are shut and no chance of buying alcohol but even if it was 2pm I know I would not be buying it.

Still it's not nice having such cravings after so long. If anyone with really long term sobriety can chime in here I would be grateful. Do these cravings ever go away? Or even after 10 years do you get the occasional severe craving?
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Old 03-21-2014, 05:30 PM   #68 (permalink)
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Sure enough, the cravings and or obsessions do go away, but do so in imperfect ways. Cravings for me were a physical hurt that only occurred in withdrawals. Obsessional ideations were mental and emotional wants and desires that hounded me in early sobriety. As the years progressed, such obsessions left me alone. I have to be under extreme stress to even begin to have ideations of drinking, and even then, I have plenty of tools to again rid myself of such trashy noise.

The withdrawals eventually solved themselves out. The obsessions are another matter. When ideations are allowed to sit with us, they reduce our enjoyments of the sober moment, they become a distraction, a nag, etc,

When we discover we are building up the ideations into serious wants, we reach a crossroads of sorts. For me, I knew all that kind of noise was my alcoholic minded delusions. AV if you will.

Davey, I recall you don't practice AVRT?

Would you say your having any physical wants? or our you dealing with emotional and mental desires?
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Old 03-22-2014, 02:24 AM   #69 (permalink)
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I'm only at about a year and a half, but I suspect some level of craving might (might!) be permanent. My dad smoked for many years but quit when I was young. He told me once that even 25 years after quitting he'd occasionally crave a smoke while he was having his coffee. 25 years!

For my own part I rarely have cravings, and then usually just in very specific situations. Walking down the wine isle at the store will sometimes trigger soft pangs of longing to sample some of the new labels.

The oddest trigger for cravings for me is movies; if I watch an actor I especially like having a drink onscreen it really makes me yearn for a drink, too. Really strange.
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Old 03-22-2014, 12:32 PM   #70 (permalink)
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Hey Davey.

I've had a beyond stressful month and my AV has been up roaring in my ears like crazy. Obviously, given what I'm going through I am not surprised. But, yeah, those seemingly sneak attacks, where things are going along yippy skippy and then all of a sudden BAM, in steps AV...yeah they can be a bit WTF'ish. Sometimes I take a cursory look at my thinking but most times I just have a bite to eat and if possible, take a nap or read a book. It takes the edge off and usually by the next day I'm good to go.

There is one person I text when the [email protected] hits the fan. Keeps me balanced and helps me not feel so alone.
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Old 03-23-2014, 05:00 PM   #71 (permalink)
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Thanks guys. I had worked myself up thinking I was failing because of these cravings. It might seem really odd but it's nice to know I can expect these cravings. Until now I really thought maybe I had some other stuff going on but if cravings can last for years I know I'm normal (relatively speaking) and that makes things a lot easier.

I have to say for a while I thought maybe I was suffering a relapse that isn't normal and just means I should end up in a bottle. Relating your experiences has been very helpful. I guess I'll just have to accept the fact that I can stay sober for ages but occasionally I'll have some cravings I need to deal with.

Thanks to everyone who offered me some advice. You have no idea how much this has helped me. I have to say I'm still wanting to drink right now but I know it's a want, not a need.


I can't remember who asked me about emotional need and physical need. I'm not sure I can separate the two. All I try and think is that need is a stupid word for my addiction. I want alcohol, I don't need it.
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Old 03-23-2014, 09:41 PM   #72 (permalink)
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Thanks guys. I had worked myself up thinking I was failing because of these cravings. It might seem really odd but it's nice to know I can expect these cravings. Until now I really thought maybe I had some other stuff going on but if cravings can last for years I know I'm normal (relatively speaking) and that makes things a lot easier.

I have to say for a while I thought maybe I was suffering a relapse that isn't normal and just means I should end up in a bottle. Relating your experiences has been very helpful. I guess I'll just have to accept the fact that I can stay sober for ages but occasionally I'll have some cravings I need to deal with.

Apropos of nothing this makes me think of the notion of free will. The entire universe seems to run like a very complex clock; gravity is the same in our galaxy as it is in a neighboring galaxy. If everything is material, is it reasonable to think we aren't? Of course, many scientists think there is genuine chaos in the universe, things that are beyond merely complex but truly random. Quantum mechanics does seem to have some odd randomness thrown in with the general weirdness of it. But even if there is true randomness, and therefore no hard predestination, that doesn't necessarily mean we're in control.

Ultimately it feels like I have free will. The only practical way to live is to live as though the choices we make are important.

Why as I babbling on about freewill vs destiny? Because I refuse to acknowledge the idea that our fates are beyond our control. You absolutely aren't predestined to relapse, at least I don't believe that. Many things in the universe are out of my control; I could get hit by a bus or a plane could land on my house while I sleep. I guess I'm okay with that- I don't like it but you can't go crazy worrying about stuff that's out of your hands. However, that just reinforces the importance in making the most of the decisions that are in our control. If I did ultimately decide to drink it would be my decision, not one I have to make. And I have decided not to drink anymore.
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Old 03-25-2014, 10:38 AM   #73 (permalink)
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I've never accepted the idea of a predetermined reality, partly because of quantum mechanics and partly because the idea of my life being planned out is simply awful. It would also take away responsibility for wrong doing, I mean if a serial killers life is planned then we can't blame them for their actions, that isn't right to me.

I mean if something random happens and I get killed I consider that bad luck rather than fate. But I know there are entire philosohy books about this very thing.
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Old 03-25-2014, 01:31 PM   #74 (permalink)
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Quantum mechanics rock. Einstein called quantum entanglements "spooky physics at a distance" Still though quantum continues to be proved out again and again. Very surreal stuff when we apply it to our everyday "known world".

Good to hear your good to go again, Dave, from your recent experiences. Have a great day.
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Old 03-25-2014, 02:00 PM   #75 (permalink)
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Thank robby, I'm ok righ now. I just had this moment of doubt where I thought that after so long having these cravings meant I had failed. Now I know it's stupid to think that way. I'll have to deal with cravings fora long time but those craving are not a failure, giving in to them is.

It seems cravings are normal, even after years of sobriety. It just makes me feel a lot better to know that's normal.


I'm ok today, actually I've started on a new course of pain medication. It's stronger than what I've had and frankly I don't like how it makes me feel but I need it right now. I've asked my doctor to assess it as I go along because when the amount of cysts are low the pain will be less than usual. My doctors are great, they realise I need constant assessment and changes with pain meds. Sometimes I will need more, other times I need less.

So I'm in good hands.
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Old 03-26-2014, 03:13 AM   #76 (permalink)
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I'm glad to hear they're on top of things. Chronic pain makes life a lot less fun, that's for sure. I hope they can make it manageable.
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Old 03-26-2014, 04:43 AM   #77 (permalink)
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Ultimately it feels like I have free will. The only practical way to live is to live as though the choices we make are important.
Awesome statement. I think for me one of the AV justifications was how it wasn't a big deal to drink at that moment, just thenz or for that day, or weekendend or whatever. Some individual moments are really big, but even the small ones stack up building the direction of my life in a very big way. I guess I've always known that on an intellectual level, but maybe not really believed it, or maybe just discounted how powerful it really is. I'm starting to get it now I think and take this into account as I move through the decisions of the day.
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Old 03-30-2014, 05:23 AM   #78 (permalink)
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Hey everyone, just checking in again.

Today is a good day, I have a rare day sometimes when the pain leaves me alone a bit, I've been able to drop my medication to 1/3rd of the usual. These reduced pain days never last so I'm just enjoying it, it's a sunny day so I'm sitting in the garden, looking at the flowers, watching the butterflies and birds and generally just trying to stay positive. Have to enjoy all the little things you can in my situation

I hope everyone else is doing well.
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Old 03-30-2014, 12:38 PM   #79 (permalink)
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Nice! You have to enjoy it when things are good.
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Old 03-30-2014, 12:59 PM   #80 (permalink)
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I just had this moment of doubt where I thought that after so long having these cravings meant I had failed.


It seems cravings are normal, even after years of sobriety. It just makes me feel a lot better to know that's normal.

Hi Davey,

I was feeling this way the other day--doubting the success of my sobriety b/c I was experiencing cravings during a stressful week.

I think we just have to accept the random craving for what they are--a learned response to that developed over many years. I still get the odd one and I haven't drank since Nov. 2012.
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