Not sure why I'm here

New to AA? Got questions? Here's the place to ask. Note that no one person speaks "officially" for AA. AA meetings in your local area are always the best source of information. Note that anyone may post and reply to messages in this forum.

Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby curtis s » Mon Sep 06, 2004 9:03 am

Someone who wants to stop drinking but is unable to, and is secretly hoping things will get worse so they will have a stronger reason to stop, in my opinion has a problem with drinking.

Don't feel like a fraud. A great many of us came here thinking that we were not as bad as the "real" problem drinkers. But that is not the point. It was bad enough that we wanted a change.

There are plenty of quiet alcohlics out there who never bother anyone and live unobtrusive lives. Lots of us did not drink every day. In my opinoin you are here among friends and are where you belong.


By the way there are plenty of folks in the homeless shelter who think that they ar enot that bad yet and who know people who are much worse.
"What a long strange trip it's been."
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Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby Blue Moon » Mon Sep 06, 2004 11:09 am

"The alcoholic at certain times has no effective mental defence against the first drink. Except in a few rare cases, neither he nor any other human being can provide such a defense."

This is a direct quote from the book Alcoholics Anonymous, written by AA's co-founders.

It is this mentality that sets alcoholics apart from other people. It's not the quantity drunk, nor the physical impact booze has on their lives. It's the thinking that precedes the first drink, followed by the inability to stop after just a few.
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Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby ann2 » Tue Sep 07, 2004 5:25 am

Hi Sean,

Ann, alcoholic here. My parents and my sisters and my late grandparents, all heavy drinkers. With such training in early life it certainly seemed like drinking was not going to be an issue for me. I would just drink, like them, and take the life that came with the drinking.

Problem was there was something in me that wanted more. Something like that void you are talking about that I was using alcohol to fill. I had a spiritual emptiness, I had a physical craving, I had a mental obsession. I didn't think I could function without that occasional escape.

Like you, I didn't drink "that much really" . . . but it still brought me to a realization that my desire for the booze was conflicting with what I visualized my life could be like.

I'm not trying to convince you that you are alcoholic and you might want to consider A.A. I'm just relating to what you're saying and sharing my experience around that with you.

In that respect I really agree with what you said about not thinking it was right for me personally to drink. What brought me to A.A. in fact was the realization that I was dependent on alcohol, and I didn't want to be.

Today my life is a lot closer to what I wanted it to be when I was a kid. I have opennness, honesty, support, and more support :) instead of secrecy, pretence, and a vacuum of resources.

The drinking is only a symptom, as we learn one day at a time away from alcohol. Without it I have taken tiny steps into dealing with many many other issues that lay under the surface of me torturing me. Today I can face them with the help of the program and my friends in the fellowship.

I can only tell you how it's been for me, but it has been worth it. I wish you the best in making your decision.

thanks for sharing yourself here,

Ann (ann2)
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Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby curtis s » Tue Sep 07, 2004 5:32 am

The void that you speak of is for many alcoholics 90% of the problem, both as it related to drinking and everything else that we struggle with.

Opinions vary but some of us consider alcohoism to be alcohol addiction-emotional and spiritual if not physical. Others like to use differnet terminology, such as an intolerance or allergy to alcohol. Perhaps your definition of alcoholism is caught up in behavior-arrests, domestic strife, homelessness, job loss, and so on, however for many of us these problems come under the category of "not yet".

It is really up to you. You are the one who will decide if you want to continue as is, attempt incremental change, or attempt a major change in your life. None of us can know what is right for you.

It is not required that you be an alcoholic, or consider yourself such, to participate in A.A. I did not consider myself to be an alcoholic for a while after I joined A.A The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking at this moment in time, and only yuou can be the judge of that desire.

Hope this helps a bit

"What a long strange trip it's been."
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Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby Oliver » Tue Sep 07, 2004 10:21 am

Hi Sean,

Great to have some more UK-blood here on the forums :) Please, do become a regular!!

Let us know how the meeting goes and whether you make it through the door or not. I too stood outside the door at my first attempt to get into an AA meeting :) From my experience, the fear related to going into the meeting disappears after the end of the first meeting that you go to!

Every meeting has its only little differences but there are two things that are the same in every AA meeting: firstly, there are people there who don't want to drink today and secondly, they are working the programme of AA as outlined in the Big Book.

Do you have a copy of the Big Book? If you don't there a number of places where you can view the book online, that might be helpful to you - it certainly was for me!

I hope that you have a good experience of the meeting, and that you keep sharing with us!

"In exchange for bottle and hangover, I have been given the keys to the kingdom."
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Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby jvboden » Tue Sep 07, 2004 10:46 am

Hi Sean, glad to hear you are going to a meeting. Hope you do make it thru the door, it may seem scary, but don't worry, a lot of us have felt that way, and laughed about it later.

I have heard more than one sober member of AA whose story was like yours, or even milder. One lady I know only drank one glass of wine every night at a certain time. One day she realized that it wasn't just a nice habit, that she HAD to have that one glass, so she came into AA and got sober and is happy today. Our drinking histories are different, but you have made it clear that alcohol is a problem for you. You may or may not be an alcoholic, that's for you to decide, and there's no pressure in AA for you to come to any conclusions about that. If nothing else, by going to a 'live' meeting you will see that there is loving support there if you need it, or ever need it.
And don't worry about giving up alcohol forever. We don't stop drinking forever...just for one day.
Please continue to let everyone here know how you are doing, we love you and besides, you help us as much as we may help you.

Warmest wishes, Jesse B.
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Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby Clark » Tue Sep 07, 2004 5:04 pm

Hi Sean,

Here is a quote that may be appropriate to your situation:-

"The danger is that you might think that you don't have a problem is because you almost don't."
(Jan. 1980 Grapevine)

Good luck friend,
Clark E.
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Re: Not sure why I'm here

Postby Secko » Wed Sep 08, 2004 3:17 am

Sean, I'm new to this whole thing too. Just got on about 2 days ago, and have really done alot of thinking. I read myself in your posts. Especially about not being able to imagine ever drinking again. For the past year, I've told myself that I can slow down and become like everyone else around me, and only drink once in a while, or when it seemed "Appropriate" such as a family gathering. However, the most enjoyable drinking time for me has always been when I get home from work and I am able to drink all alone - so no one will judge me. I would pray all the way home that my husband and daughter would not be there so I could walk right in and open that bottle and drink without guilt. Even if they were there, I would still drink, but I would wait about 20 minutes, thinking it would make me look less dependent.

When I came to this place this past weekend I was alone at home, I was very drunk (can't even remember my first post) but for some reason I was drawn here.
I went into a chat room and talked to some of these great folks and I remember saying that I couldn't imagine ever not drinking again - and the woman I was talking with said in reply - none of us can. That really made me wake up - I realized that if I was ever going to get over this addiction and feeling of helplessness, that I had to forget about finding that feeling that said, "ok, today I decided to never drink again" because I have realized that feeling will never come. I will always want a drink. I will always crave and wish for the life I have imagined of "normal drinking". That wish and that fantasy will always be there, and I can't wait for it to be gone before I quit.

So, whatever happens to you, my recommendation is that you keep coming back here every day for a while. Read a lot, come to the chat rooms, listen, talk and just hang out. Don't pressure yourself right now.

I am on day 3 of my sobriety! Last night was very tough, but I am proud of myself! I am here, as a newby, if you want to talk.

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