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Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Rockdog, Jan 2, 2020.
Winner, winner chicken dinner.
@telemnemonics - I hear you about the laughter! When I first got to rehab, I thought “What the &$@% are they laughing at?!?”.
Now, I know.
I have to remember that in meetings, that some feel deadly serious and find no humor in their predicament.
A few weeks ago I asked one of the patients at a local long term program that attend my home group if he was a Vet.
He looked a lot like a gentleman I'd met maybe a year earlier who had shared about nightmares and sleeplessness associated with PTSD. Many who find 12 step meeting at the end of the road suffer from PTSD, depression, anxiety, ADHD and BPD.
That man had left a mark on me and I had asked him if he had access to VA mental health care, because it's pretty much an outside issue that 12 step programs cannot really help with aside from members offering their experience with getting outside help for such problems. He was on a VA appt list, and later left that rehab early, so I didn't know how he was doing and hoped he had found what he needed. He was respectful like a soldier and just as serious.
Anyhow, the guy I asked recently was not that Vet, but really wanted to talk about his recent use of a whippet!
He was deadly serious about that whipped cream can in the fridge at the rehab, and wanted to know if he should get a white chip and lose his clean/ sober time.
I answered that either choice could work, and if the program felt that he had relapsed he should follow their direction.
If nobody thought the whippets in the fridge at the rehab were grounds for relapse, and as long as he didn't get into the habit I thought his "having some clean time" held value that helped him hang on to it by not giving it away in exchange for a drink or a drug.
The following week he picked up a white chip and started over, but was not kicked out of the one year program for using, as the rules state. He looked at me as if a new brother, happier to be heard, respected and understood.
For me I had just gotten my third sponsor and was coming up on my two years, already scheduled to celebrate and get a "medallion" at my home group the following week.
A long discussion with my sponsor brought up the fact that I had used a little of this and a little of that at the start of my clean time, but not returned to my old habit. He asked me several times if in that case using was the same as not using.
I finally saw that I could not really say I didn't use back then, and at my home group (a college classroom with 144 chairs always filled) I admitted that I could not get my two years because I'd been lying from the beginning, even as I thought I was being truthful.
Oddly to me at the time, everybody thought that was great???
Anyhow, the other thing my new sponsor strongly suggested was that I needed to lighten up!
His assignment was that I stop lying and start laughing!
The guy that got a white chip for a single whippet smiles more too...
...so you replaced the devil (alcohol) with Lucifer (sugar) ?
Only some years around Halloween does the demon rise again in my soul...
Many years I went with no alcohol/ drugs/ nicotine/ caffeine/ sugar/ stealing/ credit card abuse/ gambling/ or regrettable romantic activity.
Back on the caffeine since meeting my wife, getting off the sugar yet again!
Thankfully I've never gone over 160lbs at a little over 6' tall, FWIW.
With peanut butter cups I can stop at three.
Then later I can stop at three again...
The fact your posting about it here on a public forum tells me you think you might have a “problem” and want some help. That speaks volumes and isn't an easy thing to do. You’re definitely not alone. I can relate to where you are coming from 100% "One is too many and 1,000 never enough" - I was always the dude who keep drinking way after everyone else, or drink way more than everyone else...I've had many embarrassing moments at parties/bars where I ended up being the blacked out drunk a-hole...
I've struggled my entire life with alcohol and drugs...
All I can say is that life is WAY easier sober, for me at least...it may be hard at first, but IT DOES get better. I can promise you that absolutely. That is one thing that always kept me from stopping for good. The fear of being sober. "What am I gonna do on Fridays?" " Can I still go to parties?" "What am I gonna do with my free time?" " How am I going to go to concerts?" all that stuff...
I was destroying my mind body and spirit with booze, and I hit a point where I had to make a choice. Either keep going down this destructive path (it's not going magically get better) or stop for good. Because for me (and possibly you) I can't stop once I start. It's just in the way I'm made.
I've tried controlled drinking, or only drinking wine, or only beer or only liquor lol I've tried every variation of drinking. Eventually I would just end up drunk on the ground somewhere or making and a$$ of myself.
If you think you can relate or might have a problem, considering quitting. Meetings help some for sure. AA is a great tool. For me I treated my drinking like a health issue. I did a complete overhaul. Quit smoking, quit drinking, eating better, started with some light exercise a few times a week etc...now the last thing I want to do is drink. I like waking up in the morning feeling great. I never want to go back to that feeling of "what happened?" and feeling like I'm dying...
Quitting drinking won't hurt you I promise
Good luck man, obviously there a bunch of us gear freaks who can relate to you and willing to reach out. You are not alone my man!
Coin Exchange this morning - next step: drill out XVII to fit in my key ring
Peace - Deeve
As the founder of a lay organization often referred as the Misanthropic Nihilistic club , or the club and best of all, not at all.
anonymity really makes it, trust not others, the philosophical orientation,and the motto is: Solum Melius, Caveat Emptor , loosely translated means.
alone is better, buyer beware.
"Ask any judge about a man ,
that puts his faith
in his fellow man,
and any judge will tell you,
there goes a pathetic creature"
lyric by Allen Price
After almost 5 years sober, my life is so much better I never really feel tempted to drink, although I play bars all the time. I know I have to remember what I am though and 1 drink is all it would take to put me right back in the gutter.
Remembering where I once was, and knowing that just one drink will put me right back on that roller coaster, is what has kept me on the right path for fourteen years.
That's terrific Deeve. Just goes to show, put one foot in front of the other, keep first things first and those 24's add up! Keep passin' it on.
Maybe so. I guess what I meant by not having a dependency is that I don't have any physical symptoms when I stop, nor do I need a drink first thing in the morning, stuff like that. That's my understanding of dependency, but I suppose there are other forms. At any rate, I'm on Day 6 of no drinking, and I feel great. Coming to work on a Monday morning with a totally clear head is a feeling I'd completely forgotten until now.
ah you know having said everything that is taboo-ski , loving alienation and isolation earlier
that was my personal prescription for being a miserable drunk drinking or no....
An example of all the crazy "good advice some of feel obligated to "share with the new comers to our little secret society.
First I'll say many people told me what I had to do in order to recover , "this really how it works". My old room mate went back to meeting when he went back to his original stomping grounds and sent me an email saying about the people in the rooms were really ****ing crazy,
to which I replied yeah buddy! They don't call it Sanity Anonymous for a reason. We don't get to the rooms because we just won the Guggenheim endowment for Clearest Thinking Person of the decade.
I'm crazy. I take the meds everyday and see a great shrink once a week and work with a social worker on my P.T.S.D issues and other family of origin issues. With out the caring kindness of others, I'd have been down for the dirt nap a long time ago. I do all kind of things to avoid going back down in that hole, and I never, ever want to go back.
The miracle of my life is not that I'm clean and sober today , the miracle is the fact that I still draw breath.
That is so awesome. You are around my dad's age. He is on the other side of where you are now. I know his time is running out, and I know hope is not a strategy. All I can do is be the best version of myself, and maybe the lights will turn back on up in his head.
Now it is clear to me:
If you take part in this “alcohol-free January” and you notice any physical difference and/or feel markedly better ? *
Then you drink too freaking much the other 11 months of the year.
There it is.
So maybe it is worthwhile? A wake up call for those that have the soggy brain but don’t realize it...
* especially less than halfway through it
You're a good lad watching out for your old man and just being there for him, with out judgement about how his skein is rolled.
It was not Meth, or booze or heroin or reckless risk taking Cancer, or broken bones that will lay me down for the dirt nap, yet , it's out there, a ticket with the strip on it and someday it'll get called in and the charming guy with the brass slide on his finger will lay down an tune no more, just like everybody else.
I watched it happen to others when I was in the cancer support group, for 4 years,
80 to 85 % give or take, and I learned everyone really is mortal and everyone dies.
What kinda shape do I want to be in when I die?
You are in DENIAL, my friend, and that ain't no river in Egypt! If you're unable to stop, then you're dependent, Rockdog!
The first step in recovery is to ADMIT that you have a problem. There is no shame in admitting the truth, Rockdog.
The next step is DOING something about it! How? Go to an AA meeting. Try several, then choose the one where you feel most comfortable, AND, get a sponsor, someone who will hold you accountable.
The program works if you work it, one day at a time.
You can do this, Rockdog.
I find a few people’s response of “you may not be an alcoholic” to be somewhat strange and very irresponsible.
There’s no single definition of “alcoholic.” There’s binge drinkers who can’t stop once they start. There’s functional alcoholics. There’s non-functional alcoholics. There’s violent or quiet or nice or mean or stupid or angry or happy or funny or philosophical or sloppy or cautious or...the list goes on on the types of drunks there are.
Just like depression, anxiety and other mental health issues can have different symptoms in different people, there are different symptoms and different problems that people show publicly (or privately).
I was completely functional. Never missed a day of work, never missed a car/house/utility payment, never got fired due to drinking. Never got a DUI or PI. Several people—including people who knew me well didn’t know I drank, or didn’t know I drank a lot.
But I knew and my wife knew (Thank God we didn’t have kids yet)...the dog didn’t care.
The last six months of my drinking “career,” I stayed 75% lit...the problem with that, is sometimes I could drink three or four or five drinks and be fine, and sometimes I’d drink just one (for real, not the lie we tell ourselves) and be blasted out of my mind.
I had my reasons for staying that way...none of them mattered and none of them were legitimate, but I had my reasons.
Now, am I an alcoholic or was I just going through a bad and/or emotionally immature period of my life?
I quit drinking cold-turkey and had to learn how to do certain things (play guitar, yard work) in a sober state...a little bit of white-knuckling-it at the time, the discovery that I had social anxiety (which was part of the reason I drank), and the realization that my wife liked me more when I was sober.
Twenty-One years in, could I try to drink again?
A year and a half ago, I was in a bad emotional state, and was hanging on to sanity by a thread. My wife, worried about my physical health (she thought I was going to have a heart attack or a stroke) and seeing that I couldn’t sleep or relax or slow down, and she asked if I thought a drink would help...
...it took less than a millisecond to answer her—“HELL NO!”
She laughed and said, “I don’t know why I even suggested it—but you HAVE to relax and get some sleep! Otherwise, you’re going to die...”
The next day I went to the doctor and was put in two meds, both of which I took for about a year to get through that spell.
Knowing my personal habit of being an extremist and having an addictive personality, I’m not taking the chance of drinking. Plus, the way things work for me, the drink would have helped that day, and the next day I would have thought, “Well, just one more time...”
I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing right now...it seems to work ok.
I see. Based on experience, when I hear someone describe what you did, and I've heard countless variations on that theme over the years, I inevitably see these fail to come to a good end. Perhaps you're an exception, but you can experiment with this and report back to us in another six months or a year. I'd be interested to see how this develops.