The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

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MyNameIsBetsy
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The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by MyNameIsBetsy » Thu Oct 17, 2019 2:24 pm

"The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death."

My name is Betsy, and I am an alcoholic. The above quote is from our Big Book, from the chapter "More About Alcoholism." I had some fun drinking. I did some stupid stuff and made some funny memories. There's no denying that.

But - and this is a BIG BUT - the times between my good times were long and painful. Mostly I drank because I needed to drink. At the end of a day, the first thing I wanted was to wrap my hands around a glass. The first went down fast, and the second quickly chased it. Once again, my drinking was off to the races. The good times became fewer and fewer. I didn't understand it, and didn't want to think too much about it either.

I wanted to drink like other people - to have fun, to laugh, to relax after a day's work. I wanted to remember in the morning what had happened the night before!

I didn't like what I had become. "Liquor ceased to be a luxury; it became a necessity.", (Big Book, Bills Story)

I knew I needed help and sorta knew where the experts were to be found. Screwing up all my courage one day I called Alcoholics Anonymous and found out where meetings were located. I practiced saying, "My name is Betsy, and I'm an alcoholic." I listened, but was scared.

Slowly it all started to make sense. One Day at a Time. The steps. A sponsor. The chance to make friends with sober people. Reconciling with my Higher Power.

Life started getting easier. It wasn't so scary. Little steps at first. Bigger steps as time went on. No more worries about remembering what happened the night before. Life on life's terms. Being honest, honorable in business, admitting mistakes, making amends.

Life now is pretty normal and enjoyable now. I can never safely go back to being a drinker again, and I'm okay with that. The little bit of occasional fun was never worth all the pain it caused. I've found my tribe. Found my peeps.

What's your story? Register to post on these forums, and let's talk. Have you ever desired to drink like a normal drinker???

Tonyc
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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by Tonyc » Thu Oct 17, 2019 4:19 pm

My story is very much like yours In the end I drank to get drunk and to pass out. No hurt no pain and no worry. . It got to the point I was scaring myself. Something bad was going to happen and I would be responsible for it. I asked a friend for help. We went to a meeting that day. That was 24 days ago. Strange thing is my problems don't seem that bad after being sober since then. I have a sponsor and start my steps Monday. Next week I get my 1 month coin :wink:

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MyNameIsBetsy
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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by MyNameIsBetsy » Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:28 pm

That was 24 days ago. Strange thing is my problems don't seem that bad after being sober since then. I have a sponsor and start my steps Monday. Next week I get my 1 month coin
YAY, Tonyc! Congrats on your 24 days sober! Those are hard earned days. And YAY on getting a sponsor!

As each sobriety milestone approached, I asked myself when was the last time I had 30 days sober? 60 days sober? 90 days sober? It helped reinforce that I am an alcoholic. Normal drinkers don't have to go back too far to find long stretches of sober time!!! It was great reminder that I have an illness, and this AA is the right place for me to be!

AA hugs,
Betsy

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by PaigeB » Fri Oct 18, 2019 11:24 am

MyNameIsBetsy wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 2:24 pm
"The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing.
"... the great obsession of every abnormal drinker."
"... The persistence of this illusion is astonishing."

THAT is some strong language. I find all the language on page 30 of the Big Book to be strong. Indeed it says,"We learned that we had to fully concede to our innermost selves that we were alcoholics." I took those words and meditated on every one... I took them deeper and deeper ~ to the place where the Shame lives. I told my innermost self that I had a disease... that I needed to stop drinking for good.

Then I had this... from BB, also in More About Alcoholism, but on page 42
But the moment I made up my mind to go through with the process, I had the curious feeling that my alcoholic condition was relieved, as in fact it proved to be.
Curious indeed for an atheist, but I was willing to continue on with the process.

THAT was The Key for me and my New Obsession ~ recovery in Alcoholics Anonymous.
Step 6 is "AA's way of stating, the best possible attitude one can take in order to make a beginning on this lifetime job... with most of them we shall have to be content with patient improvement." 12&12 Step Six, p.65

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by MyNameIsBetsy » Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:12 pm

I took those words and meditated on every one... I took them deeper and deeper ~ to the place where the Shame lives
Ooooh, great idea!!! Thanks for the inspiration!

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by PaigeB » Fri Oct 25, 2019 11:20 am

Tonyc wrote:
Thu Oct 17, 2019 4:19 pm
My story is very much like yours In the end I drank to get drunk and to pass out. No hurt no pain and no worry. . It got to the point I was scaring myself. Something bad was going to happen and I would be responsible for it. I asked a friend for help. We went to a meeting that day. That was 24 days ago. Strange thing is my problems don't seem that bad after being sober since then. I have a sponsor and start my steps Monday. Next week I get my 1 month coin :wink:
How's it going Tonyc?
Step 6 is "AA's way of stating, the best possible attitude one can take in order to make a beginning on this lifetime job... with most of them we shall have to be content with patient improvement." 12&12 Step Six, p.65

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by PaigeB » Fri Oct 25, 2019 11:22 am

MyNameIsBetsy wrote:
Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:12 pm
I took those words and meditated on every one... I took them deeper and deeper ~ to the place where the Shame lives
Ooooh, great idea!!! Thanks for the inspiration!
There is always inspiration to be had when 2 or more alcoholics get their minds together - no matter how far apart they are physically! This Forum has been a life saver to me!

What are some other 1st step experiences?
Step 6 is "AA's way of stating, the best possible attitude one can take in order to make a beginning on this lifetime job... with most of them we shall have to be content with patient improvement." 12&12 Step Six, p.65

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by Theo50 » Fri Oct 25, 2019 2:28 pm

"The idea that somehow, someday he will control and enjoy his drinking is the great obsession of every abnormal drinker. The persistence of this illusion is astonishing. Many pursue it into the gates of insanity or death."

My love affair with alcohol started in my last year of high school and really took off when I went to college as there was easy access to alcohol and no real concern about under-age drinking on the campus. The joys of alcohol continued for over 30 years before it started becoming a problem. The persistence of the illusion for me is that for more than 90% of my entire life from 17 to 54, alcohol was the absolute constant that surrounded almost every enjoyable memory for me. Alcohol was involved in almost all of the fun things I did during my adult life. Alcohol was also involved in making those not so enjoyable times, much more bearable. Alcohol could make even the most mundane tasks seem to pass quicker. It has been very difficult for me to disassociate alcohol from enjoyment. All fond memories of friends and family were surrounded by alcohol and that has continued throughout my sobriety with the only difference being that I am one of the few, if any that alcohol is no longer the constant in all of the friends and family social events in my life. Alcohol is still the center of the fun enjoyed by the majority. When I think about it, I really don't have a good idea what an enjoyable holiday or other major social event looks like without the majority of everyone indulging in alcohol (or other substitutes).
I have 2 1/2 years of sobriety now but that is a very short time in relation to the amount of time that alcohol was not a problem in my life. I think at about age 47 or 48, things started to turn ugly and 2 1/2 years ago I finally gave in to the fact that I was out of control.
Do I still wish that I could enjoy the social aspect of alcohol, yes. If someone found a way for me to get back to how I was with alcohol 10 years ago, I would be all in. Do I think that will happen in my lifetime, probably not.
We can get a rocket ship to the moon but we still haven't found the the cure to prevent the return of the craving of alcohol (or many other addictive drugs).

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by avaneesh912 » Fri Oct 25, 2019 7:04 pm

Do I still wish that I could enjoy the social aspect of alcohol, yes.
I wish you good luck my friend. Hope you find peace and have the willingness to completely surrender to this program.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by Theo50 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 9:05 am

Thanks for the reply avaneesh912. I don't think luck will help me, but I do plan to continue working the AA program to the best of my ability.
Since you keyed in on that single line in my reply I will try to elaborate as taken out of context, that single statement alone could be misinterpreted.
While I did state "Do I still wish that I could enjoy the social aspect of alcohol, yes."; you forgot to add the following statements; "If someone found a way for me to get back to how I was with alcohol 10 years ago, I would be all in. Do I think that will happen in my lifetime, probably not."
My statement has no bearing on my understanding that I cannot drink in safety. I should have stated that if someone found a way for me to be able to drink in safety, I would be all in. You, I or anyone else in AA cannot foretell the future, be it if any of us may relapse or never have a drink of alcohol before we die. We cannot either foretell if the symptom of alcoholism, (drinking alcohol) will ever be a non-issue. I think we can all agree that working on our alcoholism is a separate issue than drinking alcohol.
We as humans should never attempt to speak or write in words of “absolutes” such as always and never. I sometimes find it difficult to accept some of the closed-mindedness of the AA program. “Do it my way or die”. The AA program is not that old, and humans have existed for thousands of years or more and the consumption of alcohol has yet to wipe out the human race.
I am in AA program as it is working for me, but I am not so closed-minded to think that others may in the future make changes or find other alternatives. I just may not be alive to see them if it ever happens. I feel that it is almost considered taboo to even discuss anything that does not fit inside of the AA predefined box. I have stated before that I never understood the meaning of the face-2-face AA discussion meetings as there is never any discussion, only one-way dialogue. The main difference has been if the person speaking is sitting down or standing up. I am planning on starting a new topic but will post it on the closed discussions group as to not cause any offense.

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by avaneesh912 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:06 am

it wouldn't matter. my point is you are still hoping for some miracle outside of AA. Its a slippery slope. Life at times could be frustrating. Your mind may rebel and seek other options. thats all i am saying.
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by Theo50 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:48 am

Actually I am hoping for miracles in AA. Isn't that what we are all hoping for?
I am trying to have an open mind so I can find my understanding of a HP. I considered turning my life and will over to a HP as a miracle. If the BB states to have an open mind for that must I close my mind to everything else?

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by avaneesh912 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 11:00 am

i am confused. miracle within AA to continue drinking safely?
Show him, from your own experience, how the peculiar mental condition surrounding that first drink prevents normal functioning of the will power (Alcoholics Anonymous, Page 92)

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by PaigeB » Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:53 pm

We are like men who have lost their legs; they never grow new ones. Neither does there appear to be any kind of treatment which will make alcoholics of our kind like other men. We have tried every imaginable remedy. In some instances there has been brief recovery, followed always by a still worse relapse. Physicians who are familiar with alcoholism agree there is no such thing as making a normal drinker out of an alcoholic. Science may one day accomplish this, but it hasn't done so yet.
Bottom of page 30-31

I actually checked in with science for several years. However, I heard early on - and laughed with this diddy...

IF I COULD DRINK LIKE A NORMAL PERSON I WOULD BE DRUNK ALL DAY LONG!
HAHAHAHAAHAHHAAHHAHAHAHAAAAAHAHAHAAHA :mrgreen:
Step 6 is "AA's way of stating, the best possible attitude one can take in order to make a beginning on this lifetime job... with most of them we shall have to be content with patient improvement." 12&12 Step Six, p.65

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Re: The great obsession of every abnormal drinker

Post by Theo50 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:02 pm

NO, a miracle to not drink on a daily basis for the rest of my life. I consider it a miracle that I have been sober for the last 2 1/2 years. I am not expecting any miracles to happen to allow me to drink in safety. I think you are confusing my posts.

My point was regarding my mind's association between alcohol and socialization/ fun. I am surrounded by friends and family on a regular basis that drink alcohol for socialization and fun. I never enjoyed socializing, so without alcohol, I enjoy it even less. I attended a birthday/ going away party for a friend of my wife's family yesterday, late afternoon/ evening. We all spent most of the time watching the Patriots play football. I have no interest in watching sports either, so add that to my lack of social enjoyment. Just about everyone else I know enjoys watching sports on TV. Most everyone over the age of 12 was consuming alcohol. The one guy that hasn't had any alcohol for a couple of months was having a non-alcoholic beer.

I also still eat at the local sports bar with my Wife every Thursday night for our "Date Night". She drinks alcohol, I don't. I imagine most if not all the other patrons are consuming alcohol at the bar as well. We have been going to the same place for many years prior to me being sober.

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