1. #4721

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    Wow! I am very appreciative and all the suggestions and tips. Was not real sure if this would be much help but I was wrong.

    Beth - Thanks for the suggestion of "meetup". I believe you are correct boredom is a big problem for me.

    ToddE - Thanks for the suggestions on the online meetings.

    I am only 2 days sober, but feeling better everyday. Tomorrow at 5pm is when my real temptation raises it's ugly head. I did start walking this weekend. I walked for 45 minutes yesterday and an hour today.

    Again thanks for the support and I will keep all of you in my thoughts and prayers. I know I can use all the help I get. Thanks again and hope you all have a great week.

  2. #4722

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    Duplicate post. First stated failed...then appeared.
    Last edited by WillOvercome; 03-25-2012 at 03:42 PM. Reason: Duplicate post, Sorry

  3. #4723

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    Nice to see you Mel, and Billy- Willovercome, planning ahead is key. If you know a trigger is coming, plan for it, bring your own beverage, think about how much you want to disclose about whether or not you are drinking, etc. Usually a simple "no thanks" works just fine, though a white lie (diet, on antibiotics, whatever works) is what some choose. For me, I would make sure to have a drink in my hand (water, soda, coffee or whatever) and just say "no, I'm fine, thanks" and that was that. It is amazing how little people really care about how much others are drinking! Who knew??

  4. #4724
    Takes massive action daily

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    Well, four months have come and gone...122 days sober to be exact. I'm continually learning how to live my days without adding alcohol to it. Lately I will admit have been struggling with thoughts of giving in, but those thoughts are not nearly as strong as the mind set I have of cherishing these past four months of sobriety, and continuing on each day forward.

    I am truly amazed on the alcohol culture I/we live in. For me that's the tough thing. Soooooo much alcohol influences in our daily lives. You can't get away from "IT" you just need to learn how to live with 'IT" all around you... Wherever you turn...there "IT" is!

    Like others have said and I agree, business trips or gatherings are brutal. For me that has been one o my biggest temptations by far. Every battle I get through without giving in gives me strength to win this war. It truly is a battle of attrition. Slowly breaking down and weakening the urge of 'IT" until your true self rules over "IT" Now that's freedom!

    Anyway, for me to continue on with this life of sobriety I must dwell on all the positives to this point... which are plenty. The emotional wrestling and pain associated with this commitment far out weight the real physical and emotional pain related to choosing to drink.

    Thanks for all of you who post...I can honestly say I would not be this far along on my journey if I didn't connect to this site on a regular basis.

    Stay Strong All!!!!

  5. #4725

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    James !!!! That is an amazing feat - congratulations. I really look forward to the point when I can get that many days strung together. Tonight I am grading papers, and the state of knowledge is sooooo depressing that in the past I would have given up and be drowning in gin. I am choosing to get my work done and look forward to feeling good tomorrow. For me it is having to trust in tomorrow and it being good . . . that has always been the hard part. But I'm trying.

  6. #4726

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    Quiet day today, hope everyone's doing ok. Mel, glad you're doing well on your recommitment and James, woo hoo on 4 months! Hi to Sylvane and Ruth and all y'all. bdog, we've got your back. It's so good to hear your job/boss are supporting you in this. Sometimes it takes the stakes being so high, so real, and so in your face to make it happen. I had finally told myself I'd go to rehab if that's what it would take to keep me from killing myself by drinking. Good luck!

  7. #4727
    hope's Avatar
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    Hi everyone - and welcome to willovercome. You will be able to over-come - just never stop trying. I have been falling and getting back up for about a year, but I have had enough of falling. Had a good night on Friday - yoga class at the witching hour (good advice from y'all), and up early for a hike on Saturday. I was all raring to go to finish off 2 days on Saturday night, when just when I was about to serve dinner, my hubbie decided he had to go to the hardware store for something that just couldn't wait. By the time he got back home, I had finished off a bottle of wine and I can't even describe how upset I was with myself on Sunday. Way more than my usual upset and I think it was because I was sure that I could quit this time and bombed after only 1 day. I know I can't blame him or anyone/anything for setting me off - so I am back at it - day 2 today - yoga class again tonight. I was almost going to quit posting because I felt like such a failure, but for so many of you the posting - and the being honest to others - seems to have worked, so... sorry for my keyboard ranting - I hope that by doing this, my journey will help someone else out there - so many of your posts have helped me so much!

  8. #4728
    Midwest Sue's Avatar
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    Hello,
    This weekend was a tough one for me and I'm not exactly sure why. I made it through ok but Mabel was doing her best to capture my attention and lead me to the bottle. Is it because I was celebrating 3 months of sobriety? It's like the evil voice was saying, "Ok, fine, you've proven that you can stay sober, but you KNOW that deep down you really WANT a drink! Come on, give in and just DO IT! What's the worst that could happen?"

    Fortunately, the reasonable voice in me (aided by all of the experienced voices in this forum) was able to ignore Mabel and I stuck with my diet Dr. Pepper.

    Today I decided to make an appointment with a counselor. I realize that there is a lot of resentment I'm carrying that I may need to bounce off of a neutral 3rd party.

    So far, massive change has meant doing whatever it takes to not drink, but as time goes on I can see that I really need to work on healing and inner growth in order to be balanced, happy and sober.

  9. #4729

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    Ruth thanks for the encouragement and suggestions. I took you advice and planned ahead and avoid that first drink this evening.

    Hope, I know how you feel. I can't tell you how many times I have been in your shoes.

  10. #4730
    hope's Avatar
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    willovercome - we are in this together - starting the journey at the same time - and anyone else out there who is 'lurking'please join us in the daily struggle. It is 4:30 pm here on the pacific west-coast, so the other woman should be showing up soon - I have my strategies planned out - so please send your prayers/positive energy and I will do the same for all of you. Thank you Mid-West Sue for sharing your struggles - and how you overcame them. Congratulations on your success - and everyone else out there who is celebrating freedom - I am not very good at remembering names when I am typing my message so please don't feel that I haven't paid attention to all of your postings.....Morgan - are you o.k.?

  11. #4731

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    Hope, I have added you to my daily prayer list. It helps me to know that someone else is or has struggled with the same problem. So many times I have had the best intentions only to open the door and let the other woman in. Hang tough. I know WE can do this.

  12. #4732
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    Hello everyone,

    Welcome back to Monday. Two week so far, for me.

    Sue,

    Glad to hear you made it through the weekend, even if it was a struggle. If your your thinking about a counselor, it probably is a good idea to at least try it out. I have a number for one myself that was recommended by my doctor, but haven't got the nerve up to call and make an appointment yet.

    Hope,

    Sorry you fell down. Glad to hear you got back up. Considering your here, you probably have a lot more experience drinking than being sober. Try not to get down on yourself for a set back. My opinion only, but I think it is actually the part of ourselves that wants to drink, the "drinking voice" if you will, that gets down on us the hardest. Not to play junior psychologist but, if beat yourself up about something and have bad because because of negative self talk, alcohol is there to make the bad feelings go away. I am trying to avoid all negative self talk anyway.

    James,

    Congratulations on a good run so far. Hope you keep it going strong for a long time. I like what you say on temptation and our alcohol culture is always going to be there. Hopefully we all build the tools within ourselves to keep drinking always at bay.

    Take care,

    Todd

  13. #4733
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    A quick reflection

    For me, one thing I liked right off on the site articles is where it talks about the need to give up the fantasy of ever being able to drink again. I was never a moderate drinker. I have rarely had a drink or two (unless you count by fives). I really never want to have just a couple (never even understood the point).

    Last year I went almost eight months sober. I had in the back of my mind that I would drink again someday though. It wasn't like I was thinking I'd go a year or two and then try to see if I could drink once in a while. I know I can't do that. I was more like thinking like when I retire (which is 20+ off for me) that I would start up again. Kind of like an ex-smoker, that starts up again at 70 or so.

    This wasn't like an active fantasy or anything like that. Just something in the back of my mind as a vague idea more or less. I think now that was part of the chink in my armor, if you will. One of the site articles talked about if you have thoughts of drinking or remembering the good old days, drive them out of your mind quickly. Kind of like it's the drink voice trying to plant a seed and you need to stamp it out, not let it take
    root.

    When I fell off last time it's taken me six months, to get back here. I had 30 days or so sober in there in spurts, so I don't just mean being sober. I mean more the mental state of being able and willing to work hard at recovery.

    This last period of drinking I was averaging probably 15 or more a day. I was sick more mornings than not. I would have a couple almost every morning. This was to keep just to keep the shakes off. Some days it wouldn't stop at a couple. It would roll into lunch drinks a lot of times if that happened. A few before I got home and maintenance dosage all evening. I never really even got a buzz. It was mostly just to keep from feeling sick. I was still pumping a lot of alcohol through tough and was in a constant withdrawal/drinking to keep the withdrawal at bay cycle. On days where I managed to only have a few in the morning and nothing at lunch, I'd slam 4 to 6 before I got home. On an empty stomach, so that I might could feel it. I would maintenance does from there if I could, but sometime I'd take to much. If I was lucky I'd just pass out. If I wasn't I'd keep drinking and the next day would roll into a worse cycle on the withdrawal scale. There were some missed days of work and worse in there too.

    That is just a shitty way to live. I don't want it. I don't need it. I never want to go back there. If I drink that is exactly where I will go back though. I can't turn back time and drink again like when I was younger and it was still, fun at least some of the time.

    I am sure I have a lot to learn and a lot I need to rebuild myself as to stay on this path. One thing for sure for me though, I don't need any fantasies that I will ever drink again. Not even vague half formed ones.

  14. #4734
    Midwest Sue's Avatar
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    Todd, thank you for sharing your experience here. Bottom line: zero tolerance! If we are here, we know that's what's needed. Whether it was 15 a day or 5, if we're honest we know that we did not have control then and we won't tomorrow.
    Send the fantasies packing as quickly as they appear. No means no. Done means done.

  15. #4735
    hope's Avatar
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    Hi, Is anybody out there......help

  16. #4736
    JeffR1's Avatar
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    Hi everyone. I think ToddE has hit upon the crux of the dilemma faced by most people addicted to alcohol - and other drugs.

    Alcoholism can be a slow and painful death. But, because we often start out with getting some pleasure from alcohol, we don't always understand the negative consequences it can have. And, we don't see the incremental and often hidden damage it is doing. Then, one day we find ourselves completely overtaken by alcohol and seem powerless to do anything about it!

    If you're lucky you can get out early, but the longer you drink, the harder it is to be free. It seems there are those people who can drink and not get addicted, but then there are those of us who do become addicted and it takes over our life. Like ToddE, I never drank for the taste, I only drank for the effect! Alcohol was my ticket to oblivion, a place where I didn’t have to think or worry about life – one or two was never enough.

    The fantasy we hold onto is that - hopefully - one day we will be able to drink 'socially' like those other people do! And, of course it is a fantasy - but we tend to hold it in the back of our minds in hope.

    The problem here is that we are not congruent with our conscious plan to be sober and so our ‘other’ mind conspires to sabotage our efforts - the 'IT' voice. It's like a person with coeliac disease holding out hope that someday they will be able to eat gluten again!

    So we resist the thought of never drinking, not being able to fully accept the proposition. I would go so far as to say that unless and until we fully accept we can't drink, we may well be doomed to go down that inexorable path of alcoholism till death!

    Some may recall I mentioned my dad almost died from alcoholism over 30 years ago. He has said that even to this day - 30 years sober - he knows with complete certainty that his next drink will kill him! He has fully accepted this fact, and in doing so, he is fully congruent with being sober.

    My dad told me of a guy in AA who retired at 60 and took up golf. He never drank alcohol throughout his life, but decided to have a beer with his golfing buddies to be sociable. Five years later he was dead! Some say he had been an alcoholic his whole life, it's just that he never drank before retirement and so never knew he was one of those people who becomes addicted to the substance. It all happened so quick for him.

    But, those of us who do know now that we have a problem tend to think 'that won't happen to me'. Why do we think this? Because we still hold onto the illusion that one day we can drink like 'social' drinkers.

    So, being abstinent is simply not enough to be truly sober! Therefore, at a thinking level we must completely let go of any notion that one day we might be able to drink.

    The mind is a powerful tool; but, with it we can just as easily succeed as we can fail! I believe we have to change our mind about who we are and how we see ourselves in order to achieve and maintain lasting sobriety. To this end, we have to move on from seeing ourselves as alcoholics and see ourselves as sober people – people who understand and accept that alcohol can no longer play a part in our lives. If we can change our minds, then we can be free.

    Have a great sober day everyone. Best wishes. Jeff

  17. #4737
    Midwest Sue's Avatar
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    Jeff, you have profound insight and express it with such intelligence. This post is a gem. Thank you.

  18. #4738
    Beth's Avatar
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    [/QUOTE]

    The mind is a powerful tool; but, with it we can just as easily succeed as we can fail! I believe we have to change our mind about who we are and how we see ourselves in order to achieve and maintain lasting sobriety. To this end, we have to move on from seeing ourselves as alcoholics and see ourselves as sober people – people who understand and accept that alcohol can no longer play a part in our lives. If we can change our minds, then we can be free.

    Have a great sober day everyone. Best wishes. Jeff[/QUOTE]

    Jeff, thank you for your post.....

    I am having difficulty understanding the concept of changing my mind. It is so depressing knowing all I know and not being able to practice what I am learning.
    The struggles seem so unnecessary. My heart goes out to everyone struggling here. At times it is unbearable to think that this could be my fate. The statistics are stacked against us. My excuse to self medicate is not even a great one. Yes, I have problems but when I look at how bad things could be for me, I again get depressed that I am so selfish.

    I wont quit quitting but can't understand why it can't be permanent. I never want to drink again. I truly mean that. I just need that magic mind changing weapon.

  19. #4739
    bdog's Avatar
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    Good Morning all,

    some great posts the last day or two. I finally was given permission to come back to work for half days this week and back to full time next week as long as I am able to function without showing any signs of partaking. talk about scared straight. not the way I planned it but its going on two weeks now and being outside of work for days wondering if I would be able to come back is very scary and lonely. I have worked for this company for 24 years and did not want to lose one of the best things I have in life. but if it took that to get me to stop drinking then I guess it was a blessing i never knew about.

  20. #4740
    Kip's Avatar
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    Jan 2012
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    hi friends.... i hope you are well... life has been quite busy and i have a lot of catch up reading to do here.... combination of work, family things, etc... unfortunately, a pile of social activities have left me bouncing back in/out of relapses. clearly i am not ready to face the experience of interaction, nice spring weather, beer gardens, etc.. not to mention having to endure some annoying family activities. it just all came at once and feels out of control.... i really don't enjoy the complexity of drinking integrated into my life; as some of you have wisely said, it starts to become part of your whole thought process. then there are the health issues and feeling crappy. i have not been awake at the wheel, so to speak.

    so, back in the fold..... hi to my old friends, welcome to newcomers... this place is where I need to be.

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