Long time listener, first time caller.

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Rebhan17
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Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by Rebhan17 » Thu Jan 24, 2019 7:47 pm

Hey Guys and Gals,

I’ve followed along to these boards for almost 3 years now, knowing that my drinking isn’t normal, but in the last 8 months it has taken a toll for the worst. I am 23 years old. Graduated college last May, and have the job Of my dreams (which was some of the reason I drank heavily at times in college, I was worried about getting a good job out of college) and here I am with everything I could’ve wanted and still drinking hard. I’ve struggled with anxiety (especially social) my whole life, and most recently depression. I’ve stalked these boards long enough to know that drinking because of anxiety/depression is not uncommon. In fact being around here has helped me not feel so crazy for what I’m doing. But I want to change. I come home from work everyday now and drill a 12 pack of beer into me almost daily, Then I wakeup the next morning and am fine, no hangover, but I’m gaining weight fast. I try to hide the bottles/cans etc from my girlfriend, but she notices. She’s grown apathetic to the situation, and I think for me that’s the hardest thing. I truly to do want to go to meeting and change my life, but to be honest I can’t envisions my life without alcohol. I’ve used it to get through so many hardships and tough social situations in my life, that being without it seems unmanageable. I guess I just want some advice, not just about the steps, but how you personally felt working through each one of those steps, and what the turning point was in taking away the feeling of living life without alcohol being impossible. I really do appreciate any feedback. I hope to be where you all are at some day.
Last edited by Rebhan17 on Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:45 am, edited 2 times in total.

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avaneesh912
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by avaneesh912 » Fri Jan 25, 2019 4:50 am

I totally relate to what you said. I used alcohol as medication. It gave me that lubrication but there came a point, it was running my life. A moment of clarity came to me about 12 years ago that this way of life will only lead to more pain. I did not know what alcoholism is about then. Even after few months in the fellowship, I didnt realize what step one really meant. It was during that struggle I ran into a talk where the gentleman was talking about how he would be pissed off in the mornings and when he gets to a store in the afternoon, just by picking a six pack and standing line to pay for it, would ease his pain. Just that thought that we have the fix in our hand fixes the problem. Of course we will make several trips back to the package store/gas station for more beers.

Thats the time I dug deep into the book of AA, man those stories especially Bills and the stories in More about alcoholism, drives home the fact how the un-manageability of life leads us back into that state of insanity around alcohol/other alternatives.

If you have an opportunity get to a rehab or some detoxing for few weeks that will give you time to physically remove alcohol from your body and mind but then, you have to start working on the mind immediately otherwise alcoholics go right back into the old way of living.

Good luck. Plug in Big book workshop in Youtube, there are many which can help you. Keep listening, also try to go to a f2f meeting. Believe me there are so many like this who can help you.
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)

D'oh
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by D'oh » Fri Jan 25, 2019 6:01 am

I like the saying "I didn't drink the first day of kindergarten, But I sure could have used one."

Meaning, The problem wasn't that I Drank, but Why I drank. Social Anxiety, Fear, Stress, just some of the reasons. But as an Alcoholic, I didn't control the Drink, the Drink controlled me, and I got into troubles from the Drink.

It is hard to judge "What a Normal Drinker thinks" being an Alcoholic, but my guess is "They don't snoop Forums like this one for 3 years. Stick around, "More will be revealed.

Another thing I saw Normal Drinkers do, is put down their drink and walk away from it for awhile, (maybe ever) "That's Abandonment"

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PaigeB
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by PaigeB » Fri Jan 25, 2019 11:50 am

In the Chapter "A vision for you" reads this:
He cannot picture life without alcohol. Some day he will be unable to imagine life either with alcohol or without it. Then he will know loneliness such as few do. He will be at the jumping-off place. He will wish for the end.

We have shown how we got out from under. You say, "Yes, I'm willing. But am I to be consigned to a life where I shall be stupid, boring and glum, like some righteous people I see? I know I must get along without liquor, but how can I? Have you a sufficient substitute?"

Yes, there is a substitute and it is vastly more than that. It is a fellowship in Alcoholics Anonymous. There you will find release from care, boredom and worry. Your imagination will be fired. Life will mean something at last. The most satisfactory years of your existence lie ahead. Thus we find the fellowship, and so will you.
We here at AA can offer you HOPE. You can try it - try it for 30 days, or 60 or 90... we have a misery back guarantee!

Don't listen to the FEAR in your head... Let your feet do the walking! Let your fingers do the dialing!
https://www.aa.org/pages/en_US/find-aa-resources
Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have - the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. page 124 BB

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PaigeB
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by PaigeB » Fri Jan 25, 2019 11:52 am

I like the saying "I didn't drink the first day of kindergarten, But I sure could have used one."
I LOVE THAT!
Cling to the thought that, in God's hands, the dark past is the greatest possession you have - the key to life and happiness for others. With it you can avert death and misery for them. page 124 BB

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Tosh
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by Tosh » Fri Jan 25, 2019 2:45 pm

Rebhan17 wrote:I truly to do want to go to meeting and change my life, but to be honest I can’t envisions my life without alcohol.
I once heard a lady sharing "I can't trust my mind, I can't trust my mind" and I just thought she was crazy, but with a bit more insight I know what she meant.

I too never thought I could live without drinking, that if I did make the struggle to put the drink down, everything would be grey and miserable; so was it really worth it?

For a good few years I didn't think it was, so never seriously tried. Eventually the consequences got worse and I thought about suicide more often. Then I ended up in AA, I found a sponsor and did the steps, and now I know living sober is just so amazing (okay, I've made that bit sound easy).

My point is, our brains are going to tell us some lies; it may say "You will never enjoy anything ever again if you stop drinking". That's a big dirty fibber.

Don't trust your thoughts, especially the negative ones. There's no need to over-think this either; I've found just going to a meeting is a great way to start.
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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tblue818
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by tblue818 » Mon Jan 28, 2019 8:57 am

Rebhan17 wrote:Hey Guys and Gals,

I truly do want to go to meeting and change my life, but to be honest *I can’t envisions my life without alcohol*.
(Bold mine.)

For me, the misery of alcoholism became greater than my dread of the misery of 'doing life straight-up'. The monotony of alcoholism finally made me willing to go to any lengths to escape it. The future without alcohol didn't look rosy, but just the thought of not *having* to drink was a lighter shade of black. It was enough to give me the gift of Hope.

I was still drinking when I entered an online AA group. Three days later (holding off drinking until I'd read the 100 or so emails), I wanted what they had...freedom from the compulsion to drink over anything or nothing. People were actually *angry* in that group - and didn't drink over it. Truly amazing, to me.

I had a lot of questions but was told that until I made the decision to stop drinking, nothing they would say would be beneficial. One can't 'get AA' from the sidelines. It isn't a spectator sport - I had to join them on the playing field. I had to do the hard part first....stop drinking, one day at a time. Or, in the case of many of us, one minute at time by watching the minute hand on a clock while the compulsion to hit the liquor store passed. It would, they said. It did, many times. I came to trust that if I didn't give in, I could get on with staying sober one more day. It *did* get easier...but it came from actively looking for tools for my new 'AA tool kit' - and using them.

I could tell you that doing life without alcohol is the "easier, softer way", but you won't KNOW that until you make the decision to see for yourself if what I say is true.

When I complained about the trite (heh) slogans or argued stuff in the BB as a newbie using 'logic' (haha), one really wise person had my number. She wrote, "If you're looking for a way out of AA, there are hundreds of them. The object to look for a way IN, and don't let go." So, I refocused my sight and found #11 of the Promises as my 'hook'. I wanted that more than alcohol, and was willing to do whatever it took to have the experience. I never seemed to 'fit' in this world, like I was missing a 'life gene' that others had. Even before discovering alcohol, something as simple as going to the grocery store took steely resolve and dire necessity to accomplish.

AA, for me, is still an adventure like no other. I gave up reading sci-fi long ago now because I no longer wanted to escape. To discover in early recovery that "I" was not singular knocked my socks off. That my desire to stay sober had to be strong, and then I could hear the 'other' voice telling me things like, "Getting sober is hard! A drink will take the edge off.' I learned that it isn't alcohol that is 'baffling, cunning, and powerful', but Ego within. And then things got even more amazing than that.

Alcohol is a *thinking* disease. Ego had no desire that I get sober, and even encouraged me regularly to commit suicide as the solution. Right desire is very powerful. It was greater than the power of ego to drag me back into its clutches. Getting the sober part down allowed me to start working on a host of other things that there are marvelous tools for.

AA rocks, still.

"We didn't say it would be easy...we said it would be worth it." Right on both counts, from my experience.

Pamela
dos 8/98
Never let a problem to be solved become more important than a person to be loved.

"Life becomes easier when you learn to accept an apology you never got."

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johnd
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by johnd » Wed Jan 30, 2019 2:24 pm

Hey Rebhan,
Glad you had got something out of the forum. 23 years old ,, I can understand where you are .. I was still going strong in my alcoholism ... Life without alcohol is definitely the hardest thing to imagine for sure. Although, the concept isn't focusing on the lifetime without alcohol it's basically suggesting just one day without a drink .. Took me awhile to grasp that idea. I had my last drink at 27 years old. Like yourself I had no idea what was going to happen. I just showed up and reached out then AA took it's course, Or should I say I got a course in learning how to live one day without a drink. Was I full of fear and anxiety ? Absolutely!!

I spent quite a long time in meetings and working with my sponsor and others. Kept me from thinking about me and what kind of a life I was living ... My sponsor encouraged me to get involved and study the BB and Steps. Changed my whole life around. I have been sober for over 32 years.... My life today isn't thinking about drinking . Instead I am living the life I never thought I would.. Was it easy? No just had to learn how to live one day at a time . I am grateful to all those who were here before me and especially grateful to those who came after me... Staying right in the middle of AA ... What it was like and where I am today.. Tomorrow is not here yet so I can't tell you what will happen then . I hope you find the path that a lot of us have found Freedom from alcohol . Freedom from self reliance.. Freedom from fear of the future .. Most of all a life that no alcoholic still drinking could ever imagine.. Good Luck I needed to read your post today cause I needed to be reminded of what my life could be as opposed to what it has turned out to be.. Thanks again
John D.
Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans- Anonymous

Rebhan17
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by Rebhan17 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 5:39 pm

[quote][quote="avaneesh912"]I totally relate to what you said. I used alcohol as medication. It gave me that lubrication but there came a point, it was running my life.

This is exactly where I feel I'm at now. Alcohol used to have more of an effect on me. Now I feel like I'm just using it almost to get by, and that's what's scaring me the most. I'm not even looking forward to getting drunk. It's not fun anymore. It just feels like it's something I need to do to get by and part of my daily routine. :(

I want to take a minute and thank everyone for their responses. You guys are incredible for taking time out of your days to give advice and help to people you've never met and I appreciate it. I have to be honest though, I haven't had a day of sobriety since I wrote my post. I'm not an all day drinker, but I'll go home after work starting around 4:30 and easily finish a 12 pack and a couple shots a night. I'll always wake up early though the next morning and be at work on time and be fully functional at work. From the outside, no one but my immediate peers and family would be even have a sniff of me having a problem. I've been rinsing and repeating this daily cycle for the past 8 months now. As I said in my last post, it's starting to affect me physically, but also mentally, my short term memory isn't nearly as good now.

Anyways, I'd like to ask your guys experiences on your first AA meetings. What were you thinking going into it? What were you expecting? How did it differ from what you expected? Did you drink before it? (I feel like I may have to ease the nerves). I'm just curious.

Thanks again guys!

Rebhan17
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by Rebhan17 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 5:40 pm

Also, I'm sorry I'm awful at trying to figure out how to quote what someone said. :cry: I'll get it down eventually.

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avaneesh912
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by avaneesh912 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 6:42 pm

I'd like to ask your guys experiences on your first AA meetings. What were you thinking going into it? What were you expecting? How did it differ from what you expected? Did you drink before it? (I feel like I may have to ease the nerves). I'm just curious.
I had no idea what alcoholism meant when I started my journey. I went there because my shrink advised me to seek a spiritual solution, after hearing my story and my family history. I had no clue what the meetings were about, didnt do any research and I think it was a Friday 8pm meeting, sat at the chair by the exit. They made me read the traditions and lot of people shared lot of things but all went over by head and at the end they offered a desire chip and some pushed me to pick it up. Didn't know what it is about either. Later going to few more meetings I understood what its all about. At the end of the meeting the discussion leader was kind enough to offer me a book Alcoholics Anonymous. They asked me to come back!!!! I felt at home because there were so many kind people at the meeting and it was a incredible feeling. It did take a few more weeks/months for the fog to clear up and started to take a deep dive into the 12 steps. That came to me through a talk by Chris R I ran into online that was so inspiring that I immediately found a local sponsor and started my journey through the steps.
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)

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Brock
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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by Brock » Tue Feb 05, 2019 4:58 am

I'd like to ask your guys experiences on your first AA meetings. What were you thinking going into it? What were you expecting? How did it differ from what you expected? Did you drink before it? (I feel like I may have to ease the nerves). I'm just curious.
Since I have been here posting on these forums, the question of what meetings are like have been one of the most frequently asked, our first meeting can be a scary thought, and one of the best uses of forums like these is to help put others at ease.

My experience is that meetings vary one to the other, and we should try a few to find where we feel most comfortable. But all have one thing in common, the folks are quite friendly and don’t try to push us into anything. I usually just describe it as nice people drinking coffee and talking about alcohol, we don’t speak if we don’t want to, perhaps just say my name is X and I just want to listen, some just say ‘pass’ if asked if they wish to say anything. I have heard several long sober members say they had a few drinks to ease the nerves of coming at first, and now and then we see some who are quite drunk at meetings, but the spirit of all are welcome providing they have a desire to stop, is something AA is well known for.
"Good morning, this is your Higher Power speaking. I will not be needing your help today."

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Re: Long time listener, first time caller.

Post by Db1105 » Thu Mar 07, 2019 5:00 am

I sobered up when I was 17 years old back in 1977. The only thing not drinking alcohol has kept me from doing all these years is not drink alcohol. Since I quit, I’ve never been arrested again, I’ve never been sent to a mental institution again, i’ve Never overdosed again, nor had to experience the insane places alcohol takes you.

I’ve lived my life using the 12 Steps to the best of my ability. It wasn’t easy at times, but the ride has been worth it.

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