The first time I've said this

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The first time I've said this

Post by BackToLife »

I need your help.
I drink a lot. A lot... as in, 20-30 standard drinks per day, most days. When I’m not drunk, I’m trying to find a way to get drunk. I do every stupid trick for sneaking alcohol along with me when it’s very clearly going to frowned on; when it’s not, and it usually isn’t, then I make a joke of it – but if I’m honest, all of my friends have usually been bigger alcoholics than myself. It’s only over the past 6 months that I’ve so clearly outpaced them all. They still drink too much, so me being 15 drinks in for the day in the early afternoon is funny rather than messed up.
I work drunk. But then, my job involves directly dealing with alcohol. I run a business on the side, that produces alcohol. I drink at work, and it’s mostly accepted. It’s more about the quality of my work, than what’s going through my system at the time. Still, I’m aware that this is a recipe for disaster.
The problem is, wherever I go, I’m either supplying alcohol just out of good nature, or as PR, or people are supplying me with free drinks. Most of what I drink is free, and I still spend a couple of times more on alcohol than I do on food.
I can throw my alcoholism right in peoples faces, and for the most part, no one cares. They probably judge, but just don’t see much point in doing anything about it. And I’m friendly, and generally good to be around, and really valuable professionally, so everyone just lets it go and gets along with me just fine.

Someone made me stop and think about this as a way of life, the other day. Well, that’s happened a lot of times, but it happened a couple of days ago, most recently.
I don’t want to destroy my health. I don’t want to be this absolutely dependent on alcohol. But... I do want to be the person I’ve been for these past few years; they’ve been the best of my life, so far. It’s a lifestyle that I thoroughly enjoy. I just don’t like the fall that it pretty much guarantees.
I stopped drinking about three days ago. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not going to zero alcohol long term. That’s just not feasible given my life; career and personal. But, I want to drink a normal amount.
For the past three days, I have drank nothing.
I have reverted back to everything about myself that I hate. Suddenly I’m socially awkward; I think of clever or nice or funny things to say and I just can’t fit them in anywhere, hell, “good morning” is a challenge. I stammer and I throw in doubtful, apologetic lines for no reason. I’m also slow – and I don’t understand why, but I did used to be like that. I’m really very sharp, but there’s this delay of a split second or more that people notice; they ask me if I’ve just woken up, or if I’m unwell – and that’s just people I don’t know.
People who I do know are asking me what’s wrong. Something’s up and clearly I’m doing very well. I’m not mentally present, I’m not talking very much, I’m not smiling. Someone said that to me yesterday, and I felt like saying that he’s just never seen me sober; someone I’ve known for years, and he’s never seen me sober.
I have to admit that even if this isn’t just some withdrawal issues, and it’s more long term; I’m still ok with that. I’m terrified of the idea that me, without the assistance of alcohol, is not good enough, and is not able to function in society with appearing mentally disabled. It’d be a challenge if that were the case, but it’s one I’d have to face. I can’t be that pathetic.
I do wonder how much damage I’ve done to relationships and just not known or cared about it. I know it cost me a girlfriend late last year. And I know my parents judge it harshly, even if they don’t say anything. I know it’s bad for my work. Still, a lot of this stuff that bothers me about who I am sober... how much of it was there when I was drunk?
I really am beginning to think I may not have been completely sober for a very long time.

All I’m saying is that I’m scared of getting sober.
I love my life... I have done every negative thing I can in regards to alcohol, but it has still enriched my life. I like who I am when I drink, I like the way people treat me. I have lost things, but I have gained bigger things.
But I know I’ll lose everything if I keep going; so I have to change something that I frankly enjoy. I’m scared of being without it.

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Re: The first time I've said this

Post by Tom S »

Hi, thanks for telling us a wee bit about yourself and your experience thus far with alcohol.
I doubt if anybody here is gonna try and convince you to do anything; what we do is simply share our experience and to let you know we are here when you are ready.
Most of us would say that alcoholics of our type were in the grips of a fatal progressive disease. Most of us eventually reached what we call a "bottom". We had lost the power of choice over alcohol and our lives had become unmanageable.
We found our will power, so effective in other areas of our lives, of no use when it came to alcohol.
So, we had reached a point where we were powerless over alcohol and believed that to continue to drink meant death or institutionalisation. We watched others come to that point, continue to drink and then die, go to jail or become institutionalised with wet brain.
You say you need our help; unfortunately we have seen that isn't enough.
But millions have found that when we wanted it sufficiently, we could recover.
When you become ready, and become willing to go any lengths to get free of alcohol, we are here.

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Re: The first time I've said this

Post by Tosh »

BackToLife wrote: But I know I’ll lose everything if I keep going; so I have to change something that I frankly enjoy. I’m scared of being without it.
I can relate. I even considered suicide because I thought a sober life would just be meaningless, long, boring, empty and glum.

How wrong I was!
Come, come, whoever you are. Wanderer, worshiper, lover of leaving. It doesn't matter. Ours is not a caravan of despair. Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times. Come, yet again, come, come.” Rumi (No sniggering from the sex addicts)

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Re: The first time I've said this

Post by shunpiker »

BackToLife wrote:I need your help.
But, I want to drink a normal amount.
So did I, but I found out the hard way that normal drinking for an alcoholic is impossible. It was hardly the end of world however, it was just the beginning. We have a program that is almost always successful if you are 100% ready to invest your heart, mind, and time. Please keep us updated.
"But I thought it was just to damn big of a mountain to climb" Joe Walsh/One day at a time

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Re: The first time I've said this

Post by ann2 »

Hi and welcome. You're one of the few who come to AA that I've heard (read) mention the idea of being dependent on alcohol. That word brought me to AA. I applied that word to my drinking, and then asked myself, "was I created missing an ingredient?"

Then I tried to stop, but couldn't. I rebelled against my powerlessness and came to AA to get help. I got the help, which included learning enough about me to accept who I was, my skills and eccentricities, various helpful designations that explained my awkwardness. I believe I had tried to live up to a certain image of myself using alcohol to build a fantasy and escape various facts. In sobriety, I was invited to explore who I really was, and to use that person instead of hiding her.

I wasn't at complete bottom when I made the decision to stop drinking. I was however acutely aware for a moment that my plans -- what I really wanted to happen in my life -- would be constantly ruined by my dependency on alcohol. I would have to adjust my life to my drinking, in other words. To me, death was preferable. So I didn't mind losing the apparent benefits of drinking. Because drinking in order to keep up the front seemed dishonest to me, and once I saw that, all I wanted was to get real.

"If I don't take twenty walks, Billy Beane send me to Mexico" -- Miguel Tejada

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Re: The first time I've said this

Post by kjay »

I too was scared to be without alcohol. I was a daily drinker, and what I called a functioning alcohlic, but it turned for the worse over time. By surrounding myself with other sober alcoholics the fear subsided, and today I can smile and laugh when in social situations. I owe it to the fellowship, and practicing what was suggested to me.
Live Easy But Think First

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Re: The first time I've said this

Post by HOWman »

It sounds like you are having problems with step 1: We admitted we were powerless over alcohol, that our lives have become unmanageable.

The 2 questions you need to ask yourself are:

Can I go an extended amount of time (1-2 years or so) without drinking on my own willpower?

Can I stop drinking after I have started? (only have 1 or 2 and be content)

Alcoholism is a disease of the mind and body. You have an obession to drink and an alergy of the body. You can't stop thinking about drinking and you can't stop when you've started.

Answer these questions honestly and truthfully with yourself, and if you don't know the answer to one of them, try it.

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