Alcoholism

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Phrygian77, Sep 11, 2019.

  1. Toto'sDad

    Toto'sDad Telefied Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    41,214
    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2011
    Location:
    Bakersfield
    You know, like everything else in life, it all boils down to money. The people selling alcohol tell you it will make you feel good, and you need to buy all of it you can. The doctors selling treatments tell you it'll make you feel good and you need to buy all of it you can.
     
  2. Phrygian77

    Phrygian77 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,740
    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2016
    Location:
    Crawfordville, FL
    This is a song that chokes me up every time I hear it.

    "Guess I've been drinking away
    To keep the wolves of my mind at bay
    But if you run
    You die
    I'm just to tired to care"




    FYI, I didn't post the video version of this, because this song needs no distracting video.
     
  3. Mike Eskimo

    Mike Eskimo Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    19,678
    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    Location:
    Detroit
    If anybody ever got any relief from their demons from booze? Even just a little bit? I am jealous of them.

    In my heavy drinking days, which was my 20s, (which is when they are supposed to be) ,I was always running from something and booze sure as hell didn’t help me get away from it.

    My sister is in a psych ward right now from a combination of booze and losing two of her kids within the last five years. She’s 66.

    Lord knows I don’t blame her for the dozens and dozens of empty wine boxes in her backyard these days , but when she was just drinking out of boredom , prior to losing them , well, I never saw the sense in it...
     
  4. muchxs

    muchxs Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    11,772
    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2004
    Location:
    New England




     
  5. WilburBufferson

    WilburBufferson Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,905
    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2009
    Location:
    Canada
    Remember this guy?

     
    Fiesta Red and uriah1 like this.
  6. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    10,513
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    there's a Northern wind in the Southern sky
    never got the chance to say goodbye
    but the waves still break up on the shore
    just can't care less when you can't take no more
    the night is cold, the stars are clear
    I had to wonder why I'm still here
    with a hundred dozen rainbows left to find
    Let's just take it one beer at a time.


    - all due respect here to those who have suffered. The only one who can help you out of that ditch is yourself. Sure, it's great to have friends, family, fellow alcoholics to offer support and encouragement, but it really is up to you. My 2 cents anyway.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2019
    drlucky, william tele and Keefsdad like this.
  7. Phrygian77

    Phrygian77 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,740
    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2016
    Location:
    Crawfordville, FL
    My fiancee lost her adoptive parents a few years back. First her mother, then her father. They, and her adoptive sister, were all she had as far as family. This all happened before I knew her. The most heartbreaking thing was that her father had dementia, and would call her or her sister and say things like, "your mother's run off!" Because he didn't remember she'd passed away. Hell, it hurts me just thinking about it now. She turned to the bottle for a while to cope, but she somehow managed to come out of that hole. As I've said though in a previous post, she can walk away from it, unlike me.
     
  8. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    60
    Posts:
    17,420
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    Maine
    Sadly, this advice is given often, to those who die shortly thereafter.

    Ironic, the two phrases above.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
  9. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    60
    Posts:
    17,420
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    Maine
    I certainly don't blame those who tell the alcoholic essentially to get their act together, pull themselves up by their boot straps, man up, grow a pair, etc.

    But while plenty of drunks and druggies are just lazy folks of low moral character who could stop any time they wanted; there are also those who cannot stop and stay stopped without help.

    At the same time I think there are those that tell the alcoholic/ addict that the rehab, the therapist, the meds or the meetings will cure their problem.
    The idea that an outside entity can fix the problem is just as misleading as the idea that the individual who is truly sick can self cure with will alone.

    We get into the argument about what defines truly sick, but I'm not sure why one would put effort into arguing that drinking yourself to death is not sick.
    Peculiar for certain!
    But addicts and alcoholics are not well, we/ they are sick, however one chooses to label it.

    Mental health problems like addiction/ alcoholism, depression, anxiety; those are not really illnesses the afflicted can self cure largely because curing ones self requires a fairly sound mind, which the addict/ alcoholic lacks.
    The pivotal mental defect that makes self curing unlikely is the obsession and compulsion. Add to that depression, hopelessness, and a growing shame over failing to self cure, as well as over letting down loved ones etc.

    Those who can make and act on rational choices to stop poisoning themselves, cannot really imagine or simulate the inability to make and maintain such choices day after day.

    When our friend here say he has tried various approaches and cannot seem to stop and stay stopped, I'm not sure why we would not take him at his word.
     
  10. Teleguy61

    Teleguy61 Friend of Leo's

    Posts:
    2,808
    Joined:
    May 17, 2010
    Location:
    Eastern Massachusetts

    I am sorry to read so many responses to your heartfelt posts that re basically saying, "Toughen up! Suck it up! Walk it off!"
    A person asking for help should be given help.
     
  11. Boubou

    Boubou Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

    Age:
    60
    Posts:
    10,964
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2005
    Location:
    Montreal, Quebec
    Chemically induced illusions, that’s all it is.
    As for making someone feel better, that’s a load of crap. Drinking prevents you from solving the problem, whatever the problem is, just fix the problem, problem solved.
    But not fixing the problem is great it gives you a reason to drink and feed the monster.
    I know, it’s real easy to say.
    My sympathies to those who struggle and I tip my hat to those who stopped
     
  12. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

    Posts:
    10,513
    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2011
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Thanks for your in depth response. I realize the problem and processes for treatment, and for the weeks, months and years involved in different aspects of addiction are far more complex than my experience.
    I've lost friends and family. I'm glad that there are thoughtful folks like you who can help explain the issues involved.
     
    william tele and telemnemonics like this.
  13. ndcaster

    ndcaster Poster Extraordinaire

    Posts:
    7,630
    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2013
    Location:
    Indiana
    I'm 52 and have come to respect alcohol in a way I hadn't before.

    My two elderly aunts lived together in DC for decades. One in the Pentagon, the other at Ma Bell. Every day at 4:00 pm, in their immaculate Crystal City apartment in Alexandria, with their bosses and friends, these gals had two martinis. They also smoked like chimneys. It was the normal thing to do.

    They each lived well into their nineties, and it was the smoke that killed them both.

    My cousin J was not so lucky. Her dad, a good-looking successful man and at times heavy social drinker, fell off a balcony at a party and died when she was thirteen. She never got over it. I knew J very well. She was beautiful, smart, talented, self-destructive. Lots of male attention. In the mid to late 70s, she could have been a pinup model. Ran around with wealthy good-looking men who got her started on coke. Soon it was booze, pills, parties, and trouble with the law, even the FBI. Cleaned up her act for a while and married this one fella who went on the straight and narrow. They had kids together, a house in the suburbs. Everything seemed fine for five or ten years, and then she started drinking again. She got fat. The husband may have been playing around. It's all unclear. She'd call at odd times and sob uncontrollably. Everyone tried to help, but the claws of addiction never left her.

    They found her one day lying in bed, dead, with bottles and an empty bottle of sleeping pills on the nightstand. With it was a note to her dad.

    It never seems not to be a struggle. Years ago, my boss also checked out of work for six weeks to dry out in rehab. He lived the gay life. Over a drink or two, he said his dad died early, his mom was a tough old bird (a doctor), and he got lonely. He was a great singer at one point, singing with symphonies, and with that kind of exposure got really good at hiding his alcoholism. When I knew him, no one at work (and his was a fairly high position) knew that he kept a gallon of vodka in the bottom drawer. I worked closely with this guy and never smelled it. He was exceptionally intelligent, and he kept himself together for the work week and then go on private benders on the weekends. The alcohol had him in a grip he simply couldn't free himself from. Last I heard, he retired early. I don't know what happened to him after that.

    It seems to me that alcohol, like all sustained drug use, changes your body. You can tell it to do one thing, but your body demands another. The mind/body relationship is complicated. It's hard to tell where one stops and the other begins. Certain decisions sound easy to make, to those who have bodies not soaked in alcohol. It seems to me that once your body is pickled to a certain point, your mind has some inner spring that permanently relaxes and prevents you from taking action, or sticking to it.

    I have enormous respect for alcoholics who develop the mental strength and tautness of will to keep the drink away. It looks like one of the hardest things a human being can do.
     
  14. Lonn

    Lonn Friend of Leo's

    Age:
    57
    Posts:
    3,158
    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2007
    Location:
    Indiana
    Fair number of alcoholics in my family tree. Get yourself straight no matter what you have to do. As you well know it's a bad road to travel so take the nearest exit.
     
    Fiesta Red and lammie200 like this.
  15. L.A. Mike

    L.A. Mike Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,101
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2014
    Location:
    somewhere over a rainbow
    Alcohol itself isn't the problem. There are lots of other things people get addicted to. Like drugs, nicotine, food, cell phone, texting, Porn, computer games, etc.
    Realizing this is important. Once that is acknowledged, then the problem becomes a bit more complicated.
    Why do some people abuse things and others don't? Why do some people's lives fall apart due to addiction? Why can't they just stop and never use again? Why do people relapse after getting sober?
    Lots of experts have opinions. Some say it is hereditary, some say it is environmental, some say it is a lack of morals or inner strength, lots of opinions floating around.
    There appears to be no easy answer. Each individual is different.
    Treatment A may not work as well as treatment B, while sometimes neither work at all. Sometimes the addict dies from their addiction. Sometimes they just stop on their own.

    Humans enjoy pleasure, it is programmed into our genes. We seek it. Sex, food, games, drugs, alcohol all make us feel better for a brief period. Then we return to normal. Some people exist there just fine, while others crave a repeat of the pleasurable experience as soon as they are introduced to it. They become obsessed with it. The experts aren't sure why that is. It exists, but is a mystery.

    I posted a video earlier in the thread that explains addiction and the brain. It talks about things like endorphins and Hedonic levels in the brain. It is probably the best explanation of addiction I've come across.

    As a society of civilized, humanitarian beings we need to remember that the people who are ill with this affliction are suffering. They aren't the enemy, they are sick and need help. We must make available all resources possible to assist their recovery. That's what a civilized, caring society does. If they choose to continue using rather than get help, then we are left with no choice other than not enabling them.
     
  16. Otis Fine

    Otis Fine Tele-Holic

    Posts:
    832
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2016
    Location:
    Chicago, Illinois
    AA works for me.
     
  17. lammie200

    lammie200 Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,949
    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2013
    Location:
    San Francisco
    Alcohol and mind altering drugs (caffeine included) distort time. The sooner you can cure your addiction the sooner you will recognize what you have left of your life quality. It’s not about having a relative that drank like a fish and smoked like a stack and lived to be 90 years of age. It’s about feeling every minute of that 90 years so that you can enjoy them.
     
    LKB3rd and telemnemonics like this.
  18. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Age:
    60
    Posts:
    17,420
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2010
    Location:
    Maine
    It gets very interesting and also very complicated when we step back and look as you are here, at the wider range of seeming addictions.

    The short list you wrote at the top is indeed all stuff that has been identified by doctor's as legit addictions that harm the individual and essentially control the individuals actions.
    By "control the individuals actions" we mean that the individual chooses to go left but their body then goes right.

    You ask (for the purpose of making a point/ furthering discussion) "why do some people abuse things and others don't?".
    One might struggle to find a large number of individuals who truly have complete control over all their own actions, and never go further than they planned, or exhibit patterns of choices made that are inconsistent with their life planning and values.
    But in most cases, compulsively buying more guitar gear etc, over eating, or any of the excesses popular in Western society; do not get us fired, divorced, homeless and dead.

    Then you ask "why do some peoples lives fall apart due to addiction?".
    Hard to say and maybe simply a dysfunctional question in the sense that there can never be a single explanation for all the behavior patterns people exhibit.

    An interesting thing about 12 step programs is that most are for the individual who abuses one particular thing, and the program is named for that thing.

    There is however one program that is not designed around the abuse of a thing as much as designed around the core of human behavior associated with abusing any and all things.

    In AA we are powerless over alcohol, in CA we are powerless over coke, in OA we are powerless over (food but as they define it more specifically:) flour and sugar, in GA we are powerless over gambling, in Alanon and Naranon we are powerless over our loved ones who abuse alcohol or drugs.
    Funny that one finds the family develops habits around the loved one who is drinking or drugging themselves toward early death.
    We (the family) lie for them, we make excuses for them, we learn to expect certain things from them, and we become more and more rigid from steeling ourselves against the pain of watching them suffer, and enabling them by "helping".
    Essentially we are powerless over our compulsion to try to control the nightmare that is a loved on in the grips of an addiction, and that compulsion to control something -that is at the core uncontrollable- becomes an addiction of its own.

    So back to that one program that isn't about a thing outside us, but is instead about the core problem inside us.

    Because at the founding in 1953 it was named after the legal term Narcotics, which incorrectly included both narco/ downers and also non-narco uppers like coke and speed, many or most assume it is a program for those with a drug problem, and that is basically true.

    Until you begin WORKING the program.

    Once one starts working the (NA) steps and looks initially at being powerless over addiction, those deep inside the program see that it is about all addictive tendencies, while in a paradox we only get clean time for staying off all mood or mind altering substances used for recreational purposes.
    Working those particular steps with total honesty to the best of our ability illustrates the exact nature of our patterns of behavior.

    While outsiders and even many working programs assume steps 4,5 & 6 are making a list of crimes, looking at it and saying a little prayer to some cosmic entity; truly working the steps around addiction is far more than that, and really covers your questionss in ways that years of psychotherapy seldom reach.

    The newer cognitive behavioral therapy gets closer to and may perform the same basic functions as addiction step work, but a large difference is that in CBT you do not need to surrender to CBT.

    All this talk of God, and how we can't deal with the God stuff is greatly diminished when we discover that the primary "power greater than ourselves" that we must surrender to in order to proceed; is the 12 step program, not some dude in the sky.
    Finding comfort in some dude or lady in the sky or whatever other belief we find comfort in may be helpful, but it is not required for the program to work. Opinions vary on this of course! Yet it works for those not "dude in the sky" based.
    In fact it's easy to get lazy and expect A BELIEF to do the work we as individuals must do with a sponsor who has done a lot of the same work and can identify our sneaky little avoidances and denials.

    And should one choose to work one of the programs about only one particular thing, be it gambling (GA) sex (S&LA), or alcohol (AA), we can get more narrowly targeted results and still live happier healthier more fulfilling lives for our efforts.
    Worth noting that many individuals in substance specific programs have created sort of sub programs that dig much deeper than the name of the program defines.

    I sometimes find it infuriating to read debunking stories about 12 step recovery, invariably written by those with only a casual understanding of that which they condemn. (Many who spend years "in a program" only gain a casual understanding.)
    Infuriating because because pretty much every week a friend or acquaintance dies of some addiction, and in general it is not because the addiction was too powerful to overcome, it was because the individual could not surrender deeply enough to work a program for a long enough to experience deeply tangible results.
    The many many friends I've watched die while "working the program" were doing one of many half hearted versions that generally involves doing only certain selected parts of the program when convenient.

    To my observation it is like driving a car that only has certain selected parts installed.
    But we can't see this clearly until we take a long road trip in a car equipped with all the wheels, all the brake parts, all the engine parts, all the steering parts, and maybe even all the suspension parts.
    While one might think it would be immediately obvious that driving with half the wheels or half the engine simply doesn't work, enough find a sort of comfort among other sick individuals, to get a little better for a while without actually assembling and using the vehicle.

    My feeling about the importance of prayer is that it is more than 50% simply to keep us from thinking we can go back to doing it "our way", instead of continuing to assemble and use the vehicle of the 12 steps.
    If we end up in 12 step programs, generally it is because "our way" is consistently a bad way.
    Many or most of us arrive broken but with the paradoxical sense that we need to control our out of control lives, and that "this time it will work!" as we repeat the same mistakes.

    Surrender is to a different way, to a new process.
    That process is in the case of a 12 step program, the 12 steps.
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
    Harry Styron likes this.
  19. L.A. Mike

    L.A. Mike Tele-Afflicted

    Posts:
    1,101
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2014
    Location:
    somewhere over a rainbow
    deleted by poster
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2019
    Teleguy61 and telemnemonics like this.
  20. Mike Eskimo

    Mike Eskimo Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Posts:
    19,678
    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2008
    Location:
    Detroit
    .



    My worthless dad lived in Singapore for 10 years. Running a couple foundries. Lived the rich ex-pat lifestyle. Big houses ,big lawns, servants , partying constantly. This was in the 80s.

    One night he and his second wife went to a big oil exec’s party. Looooong driveway.

    The valet drives his Aston up at the end of the night , he and the little woman get in and just then his best buddy was in his own Aston Martin with his wife and they decide to race to the end of the driveway. To the street. Halfway down, they both end up slamming into each other and running off the driveway - my dad into a tree and his friend into a ditch.

    All of a sudden he hears his wife’s voice saying “Jack are you all right? Are you all right Jack? “

    He said, “what? Where is that voice coming from? How are you speaking ? You look unconscious !”

    It was his wife Sue leaning into the car from outside - looking at my old man and some broad neither of them knew in the passenger seat that he thought was Sue.

    Everyone was fine and my old man lived to the ripe old age of 70 !:lol:

    With his pantry closet in California stacked with bag after bag of empty Safeway gin* plastic gallon bottles waiting to be recycled... :rolleyes:

    *only the finest !
     
    drlucky and telemnemonics like this.
IMPORTANT: Treat everyone here with respect, no matter how difficult!
No sex, drug, political, religion or hate discussion permitted here.


  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.