Advice needed

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MDSMITH
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Advice needed

Post by MDSMITH »

Wow, where to start. I'm a 31 year old male with a wife, 2 year old son, and a good union job. I haven't lost any of this to alcohol. I have however always thought that my drinking was out of my control. I have quit drinking for periods of time, and even hit up a few meetings. The problem is that I'm never sure if my drinking is really a problem, or if I'm just over thinking it. The things that make think it may be a problem are the I hide some of my drinking from others(ie. stopping and the liquor store on my way home from work for a couple singles), that I have trouble stopping once I start, and that I really don't like who I become after a few drinks. Don't get me wrong, I'm not a violent drunk, but I tend to say things that I regret the next day, and know I'm not being a great dad or husband. The things that make me question if I'm over thinking it are that I have kept all of the important things in my life, no one else has mentioned my drinking as being a serious issue(every once in a while my wife gives me a hard time, but nothing serious), and every time I hear other AA stories, I feel like I'm nowhere near as bad as them. I just don't know what to do. I have tried to just control my drinking, but that never seems to work. My biggest eye opener was today. It was my dad's bday, and I took him out to the bar for lunch and a few drinks. Once I dropped him off, I really wanted a single from the liquor store. I didn't have any money on me, so I stopped at a pawn shop, and sold a cd I just bought last month for 15.00. I got 1.00 for it, but was totally contend, because it was enough to buy me a shot. Anyway, I'm just venting here. I really apprecite you guys and gals listening to me. Thanks.

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avaneesh912
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Re: Advice needed

Post by avaneesh912 »

what you are experiencing is one piece of the puzzle. the phenomenon of craving after you put the first drink in the body. please visit http://www.aa.org/bigbookonline/en_tableofcnt.cfm and read the doctors opinion and the chapter more about alcoholism.

But the main problem of an alcoholic is the mind. it tricks him into taking the first drink. And then the phenomenon of craving kicks in.

And when he/she is not drinking he is miserable. Restless, irritable and discontented. Some call it the spiritual malady, some call it un-treated alcoholism.
Show him the mental twist which leads to the first drink of a spree. We suggest you do this as we have done it in the chapter on alcoholism.(Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

MDSMITH
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Re: Advice needed

Post by MDSMITH »

Wow, this really hits home.

"They are restless, irritable and discontented, unless they can again experience the sense of ease and comfort which comes at once by taking a few drinks—drinks which they see others taking with impunity. After they have succumbed to the desire again, as so many do, and the phenomenon of craving develops, they pass through the well-known stages of a spree, emerging remorseful, with a firm resolution not to drink again."

"Then there are types entirely normal in every respect except in the effect alcohol has upon them. They are often able, intelligent, friendly people."

Thanks for pointing me in the right direction.

I guess that I've always thought that since I haven't really lost anything in my life, I might just be over thinking my drinking.

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LadyByrd
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Re: Advice needed

Post by LadyByrd »

Hi there and welcome

I should say that I am very new here and inexperienced but I wanted to say hello. It sounds like your situation has a lot in common with mine.
avaneesh912 wrote:But the main problem of an alcoholic is the mind. it tricks him into taking the first drink. And then the phenomenon of craving kicks in.
Absolutely.

Good luck MD

LB

Mike O
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Re: Advice needed

Post by Mike O »

Hi MD,

I also can totally identify with your story there. I read some of the stories in the book and elsewhere and I also think I have nothing in common with much of this. I still have my family, my job, my house. I've never been in jail, detox, rehab, in debt, etc. etc....

But, I reached the point where I could see many of these things up the road ahead if I didn't do something.

You're in the right place here, MD. Stick around.

-Mike

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Layne
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Re: Advice needed

Post by Layne »

Two questions for me were simple ones.

Once I started to drink, could I regulate how much I would drink?... NO

Could I decide when I was going to drink?... NO

The third question was equally simple but baffled me for years.

How could I not see this as a problem?

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leejosepho
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Re: Advice needed

Post by leejosepho »

Layne wrote:How could I not see this as a problem?
Our ego thought it could resolve it.
=======================
"We A.A.s do not *stay* away from drinking [one day at a
time] -- we *grow* away from drinking [one day at a time]."
("Lois Remembers", page 168, quoting Bill, emphasis added)
=======================

MDSMITH
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Re: Advice needed

Post by MDSMITH »

Thanks for all of the responses. I guess I really do know the answer to my question, otherwise I wouldn't be here. I guess in a way, I like to compare myself to the other people's stories. It makes me feel like I'm not really that bad.

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ann2
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Re: Advice needed

Post by ann2 »

Welcome --

It's not so much what you've lost, it's what you have to lose.

If you can never be sure what will happen the next time you take a drink, then you cannot drink in safety.

But enough "you's". I didn't think I was so bad either. I thought I was a high bottom drunk when I got to AA. I had a place to live, work, never been arrested, committed or accused. But there was a hole where my heart was, and I was attempting to fill it with alcohol -- and when I tried to stop, realizing that I was endangering my future, I couldn't.

When I saw that the alcohol was stronger than me, I almost gave up hope. If my own willpower couldn't fix this, then I figured I was lost.

But instead thanks to some help I found a meeting of AA, and discovered that not being able to fix this was the key to finding the answer that worked for me.

And after a few years of sobriety, I was able to look back and see how much I had lost, risked, and damaged, and how far off the road I had gone. I have since changed my estimation of being a "high bottom" drunk.

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

RustyS
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Re: Advice needed

Post by RustyS »

Hi MD,

I read your story and I can totally relate. I have a good job, I never missed a rent payment, I haven't crashed my car, I haven't been arrested, I haven't been to rehab, I haven't been violent when drunk. But reflecting back over the past 9 days that I've been sober I honestly can only say that it was by the grace of God that most of that hasn't happened to me yet. I've driven drunk, I just haven't been caught. A few weeks ago I almost got in a fight at a bar, but my wife pulled me out of there before anything bad happened. I've shown up to work hung over most every day, but I tried my best not to let anyone know, and if anyone asked I blamed my haggard look on insomnia. I've tried to quit drinking before on my own, but failed.

Really, what got me to realize that my life had become unmanageable and go to AA was when I checked my 17 year old daughter into rehab. She's watched me get drink almost every day of her life. I set a really bad example for her. We were always close, and we still are. Now we have recovery to share.

--Rusty

rosco9058
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Re: Advice needed

Post by rosco9058 »

thanks ann for the post i too have that hole u described im just retired no family only 2 sober good friends i went to a f2f meeting and felt like i belonged there im going to try to spend more time in meetings i know if i stay alone i will keep drinking thanks

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Layne
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Re: Advice needed

Post by Layne »

And after a few years of sobriety, I was able to look back and see how much I had lost, risked, and damaged, and how far off the road I had gone. I have since changed my estimation of being a "high bottom" drunk.
Ain't it the truth. The only thing high in my case was the level of denial that I was in. For years, even in sobriety, another way I described myself pre-recovery was as a functioning alcoholic. Whew, what a laugher to me today. My opinion has changed a bit with distance, but even so I still have things come bubbling up every now and then that tell me that I am still peeling the onion of denial. I love the enlightenment of hindsight.

happycamper
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Re: Advice needed

Post by happycamper »

Welcome to eAA group, happy to have you here :D .

I believe that you answered your own question wondering if you have a drinking problem or not.

When I was early in sobriety I remember hearing a guy in a meeting share that he drank every day. I heard other ppl share that they had a glass of vodka on their nightstand by their bed to get a couple drinks when they woke up in the middle of the night.

This made me think ... hmmm... Im not THAT bad. I never drank every day, and I never had booze by my bedside.

I am SO glad that my sick thinking didnt drag me back out there to the madness of my old drunken life. I could be dead right now, seriously!
Faith without works is dead

Lali
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Re: Advice needed

Post by Lali »

I always passed out with my bottle of wine and my solo cup next to my bedside. If I awoke at 3:00 a.m., I always felt like that was a bonus 'cos I could drink some more before time to get up for work. Thank God for the rooms of Alcoholics Anonymous because I don't think I'd be alive today otherwise. Or worse, I'd be dying a slow death...
Step 1: I can't
Step 2: He can
Step 3: I think I'll let him

MyNameisVictor
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Re: Advice needed

Post by MyNameisVictor »

Welcome, MDSmith, and thanks for posting. Your post reminded of a quote from the 12 & 12:

"Alcoholics who still had their health, their families, their jobs, and even two cars in the garage, began to recognize their alcoholism. As this trend grew, they were joined by young people who were scarcely more than potential alcoholics. They were spared that Last ten or fifteen years of literal hell that the rest of us had gone through..."
- 12 & 12, pg. 23

I, and I think many people on this site can assure you that those last years of drinking literally were hell. We call it "the yets." I don't know you personally, but what you describe in your post is stuff that I can definitely relate to, and all I can tell you is that if you keep on drinking, things will only get worse. It's kind of like having a credit card with a large spending limit. We alcoholics want to spend every last penny with it before we realize that we have to pay it back. Don't run your life's card all the way up to the limit, my friend. The solution is right in front of you.

"First you take the drink, then the drink takes a drink, and then the drink takes you..."
-F. Scott Fitzgerald

Good luck my friend, and try seeing this AA thing through.
"They said a miracle would happen on my 90th day of sobriety, and it did happen...I was sober."
-Anonymous from the Trinity Group of AA in NYC

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