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Old 09-21-2014, 05:19 PM
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New to Secular Recovery

Hello All,
My name is Bill (Billy), and I am pretty new to this forum. I started my path of sobriety in a 90 day treatment facility couple with 12 steps. I worked the steps with a sponsor and after 11 and a half months, I find my self with a new life. The 12 steps and fellowship helped me get to where I am today. With that being said, I never really saw myself as a big 12 stepper. There is a lot that I can take from it, but I feel that I can relate and use ( have been using) a lot of what RR, AVRT has to offer. I never really felt powerless and I feel more empowered each day with the decisions and changes I have made during this time. I don't drink and I don't use anymore,. I have been reading a lot in this forum the last week (secular is all new to me) and I really love what is going on here. I look forward to 'meeting' you guys and sharing in what's going on here. Thanks for listening......Billy
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Old 09-21-2014, 07:40 PM
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Good to have you with us here in Secular Connections, Billy. Coming up on a year sober- that's awesome!
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Old 09-21-2014, 08:12 PM
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Welcome Billy. Well done on almost one year sober. There has been a lot of AVRT discussion in this sub-forum. I hope you have time to check out some of the previous threads.
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Old 09-21-2014, 08:13 PM
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Hey there, Billy. Nice to meet you.
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Old 09-22-2014, 04:48 AM
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Welcome!

Glad you found this very supportive Forum Section. FTA, here: 'Free Thinkers Anonymous'.

The transition to discovering you intrinsically have what you need inside yourself is a phenomenal one.

I have ~3/4ths of a year in myself, and I look forward to learning from you.
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Old 09-22-2014, 09:59 AM
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Hi Billy, welcome to our mess! We have lots of great discussion about non 12 step stuff here, and lots of support for you. It's wonderful
what an empowering statement and realization that one is - I just don't drink anymore. Get that one past you, and then all sorts of other things become possible. Self knowledge and growth, spiritual, physical and mental health, hobbies and pastimes all become possible once that irreversible and unconditional vow is made for lifetime sobriety.

Over three years sober here, and I am happy to say that I no longer smoke and am not changing my mind about that one either.

I hope you join in the discussion here and, if you feel inclined, let other newcomers to SR know that we do really have inside us already what we need to have to remain sober for good. Onward!
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Old 09-22-2014, 10:08 AM
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Welcome, Billy! Glad to have you here
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Old 09-22-2014, 10:57 AM
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Welcome Bill!!
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Old 09-22-2014, 08:00 PM
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Thanks everyone! I am excited to broaden my new path in life. I think it's super important to see all of the different perspectives and gather as much positive supportive information as possible and there is a lot of it here. Refreshing! Thanks again and nice to meet you all
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Old 09-23-2014, 04:25 AM
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Welcome Bill..nice to meet you
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Old 09-23-2014, 04:24 PM
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Hi Billy
Glad you are here. I look forward to reading your perspectives on things. The AVRT method just makes sense to me, and it works! The book Rational Recovery arrived today
and I look forward to reading that!
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Old 09-24-2014, 05:38 AM
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Welcome Bill and Don!
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Old 09-24-2014, 08:03 PM
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Welcome aboard! Different perspectives in this sub-forum, including that many of us don't consider ourselves to be in "recovery," we simply don't drink anymore. Not drinking is the cure and the path to freedom. We have made no sacrifice by quitting booze, we have given nothing up. There are no benefits to drinking, life is better without it. Congrats on your sober time.

If you're interested in another non-12 step perspective, I would recommend Jason Vale "Kick the Drink... Easily". It will completely change the way you look at alcohol and society's relationship to it.
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Old 09-24-2014, 08:40 PM
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I am going to read some of these books that I have seen recommended. I have been pretty programmed in recoveryism by going to treatment and AA/CA for my first attempt at quitting. The problems that I have now,looking back, are the ideologies of being 'in recovery' forever, identifying myself as an 'addict/alcoholic' , being powerless, and relying completely on others or a hp, as I no longer drink or use narcotics anymore and it is a decision that I made and follow for myself. The daily struggle that I encounter (not as much now) is the Beast voice in my head that I have to identify and keep at bay. There is a lot that I can take away from all the things I have learned and am learning. I think the group support aspect is helpful and it's great to share ideas and experience. I think SR is a great place for that. I am constantly adding things to my plan and it's nice to get to a point where I feel confident in life sober. I look fwd to bouncin things off you guys as I explore more of the secular side. Thanks!
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Old 09-25-2014, 05:51 AM
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Indeed- they teach simple and basic bad decisions to be life-long afflictions from which one can never fully recover. Strange premise- always waiting for that dreaded "relapse." IF you can decide to pick up the glass, then it only makes sense that you can decide to NOT pick it up. The decision is yours to make- sobriety is a decision, short and sweet. Seeing the warm, happy smiles of those close to me is all the inspiration I need. They are sooo happy to see a cork placed in the jug.

I do not eat Mexican food because of the effect it has on me- I am not in recovery or wondering on which day I will relapse. I do not like the rather sudden and nasty effect it has on my innards- so I decide to avoid it all together. I do not think I am missing out on anything! I do not see myself as a recovering burrito-holic. I simply will never eat that food, and I will never change my mind!

Same goes for booze. Rather simple premise- and it works!
Good luck my man. Don't over-think this. It really is as basic as presented.
You make the decisions.
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Old 09-25-2014, 08:43 AM
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We have the ability to look at this whole thing in whatever way we choose, and it makes sense to frame the issue in the way that will let us succeed. We are individuals, and that success framework may be different for us than for others.

My sobriety is based on positive things I can have rather than negative aspects I can avoid if I quit drinking. I think this conversation will be more successful if we focus on the positive results of new choices, including sobriety methods, rather than the negative results of the old ones.

And DonnieB is right, we can make this simple or we can make it hard. I know which one worked for me. Onward!
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Old 09-25-2014, 02:16 PM
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Well said, FS57. I would think all of us know people for whom AA was their salvation. It does work miracles for many thousands of folks.
I just prefer the AVRT method for me.
Every day I awaken with this silly little smile- "I'm sober!!!!!!" Then I tackle the day with such positive energy, and get loads done! I am only 1 month in- but I am not even thinking about going backwards. As you say FS57...onward!
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Old 09-25-2014, 09:14 PM
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Originally Posted by DonnieB View Post
Indeed- they teach simple and basic bad decisions to be life-long afflictions from which one can never fully recover. Strange premise- always waiting for that dreaded "relapse." IF you can decide to pick up the glass, then it only makes sense that you can decide to NOT pick it up. The decision is yours to make- sobriety is a decision, short and sweet. Seeing the warm, happy smiles of those close to me is all the inspiration I need. They are sooo happy to see a cork placed in the jug.

I do not eat Mexican food because of the effect it has on me- I am not in recovery or wondering on which day I will relapse. I do not like the rather sudden and nasty effect it has on my innards- so I decide to avoid it all together. I do not think I am missing out on anything! I do not see myself as a recovering burrito-holic. I simply will never eat that food, and I will never change my mind!

Same goes for booze. Rather simple premise- and it works!
Good luck my man. Don't over-think this. It really is as basic as presented.
You make the decisions.
Along those lines, I sort of look at people who quit smoking cigarettes. Are they in recovery? No. Are they nicotine-oholics? No (there's no such thing). They used to be addicted to a harmful and addictive substance and now they are not anymore. Once the addiction is broken and you are free and clear of the drug, you are no longer recovering from anything, you're simply not addicted anymore.

Also it helped me to see alcohol for the addictive and dangerous drug that it is. If I equate it to something like heroin or crack, then I don't have to "try" or "restrain myself" from not doing it, I just know not to do it. I don't wake up every day and have to try to not do heroin, I just don't do it because I know it's harmful and I know it will ruin me. I view alcohol the same way now. That shift can be hard because alcohol is legal and most adults use the drug, but the perception of alcohol is based on a societal addiction to it on a macro level and a fair amount of brainwashing and conditioning towards the drug from an early age (from advertisements, pop culture, and other drinkers). Part of the issue is that the portion of society that tells us that there is something wrong with us because we cannot drink "normally" are actively using the drug themselves. Therefore, nothing they tell us about alcohol can really be taken at face value because if they continue to regularly drink (even socially), they are under the spell and illusion that the drug creates. These are Vale's ideas more than mine, but they really click with my mind.
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