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I am two weeks into my 26 week break today. I feel better physically, and so much better mentally. For me, once I crossed the line in the sand that I was taking a break from drinking, all the pressure went away. Its like a load lifted off my shoulders. I don't have to worry about drinking and all the bad things that occur when I drink.
Have a great day!
Yes, many dont realize the depth of the issue. Many try to resolve the problem on their own. The main thing is misconception of the situation they are in. We believe we can control our drinking. But some have gone too far into the woods.
The book highlights 3 different kinds of drinkers. Normal, heavy and then the alcoholics. The heavy drinkers can recover on their own. But the alcoholics, because of the untreated alcoholism, will always go back to booze after a period of abstinence. The stories of the man of thirty, the car salesman and the accountant stories in the chapter More about alcoholism are there to illustrate this theory.
In my own drinking career, I could see several periods of abstinence. But they were never pleasant. I didn't know then that it was un-treated alcoholism. That condition always took me back to the first drink. It could be a day or week or months. But it always did. Eventually after entering the fellowship and reading the book it all made sense. But the realization whether we are hard drinkers or alcoholic has to be done by our own self. We cant go by what others say. That realization will help us take the right course of action.
Regarding friends; you don't owe everyone you know an explanation on why you don't drink. When I stopped drinking the first time, I always made sure I was DD if we went to an event. if someone offered, I could easily say "No thanks, Im driving." I also said "No thanks, Im on a diet." "No thanks, I have an early day tomorrow." "No thanks, Im watching my blood sugar levels." Whatever worked. I think we need to have responses ready when offered a drink. Don't get caught off guard by not have a response prepared. Thats my opinion anyway.
A week into my first time quitting, I had to attend a birthday party with alot of my friends, and they were all drinking. I told everyone I was DD. I was worried about how it would go. Honestly, I had a great time. Shortly after that, I had to attend a big family wedding. Everyone was drinking. I was DD and drop home a bunch of drunks at 4AM. And I had a great time. Those two events gave me a big boost of confidence.
The longer I got away from it, the better I felt. Our confidence slow builds, the longer we move away from the last drink.
Have a great weekend!
Thanks for your reply Fox and Gus. I’ve never done hypnosis but at this point, I’ll try anything that will help. Fox, yes, I was a member of aa for a while. It didn’t work for me for the long term but I do realize part of that is because I really wanted to drink.I feel like I have a clearer head now, perhaps because I almost lost my marriage and the respect of my daughters and a few close friends, but in any case, I am thankful. I’m thankful for the friends that put me first and my family first, over their need to have their buddy drink with them. Some friends and family have not done this. They’re not all to blame , I know this. They ask me to join them because they don’t really know the depth of the problems my drinking has caused. They probably think I’m like them, but I’m not. All I know now is that I cannot make everyone happy . They will find others to drink with and I need to put my health and the happiness of my girls first. They deserve that. I won’t take that first drink. I won’t.
If I have a thought on thinking about drinking, I now want to go immediately to thinking about the bad things that have occurred when I drink. My friend who is quit now 2 years uses this as a strategy, and it works very well for him. The Michael Sealey Youtube video called Overcoming Problem Drinking uses this strategy as well. Maybe this strategy could be one of the tools you use? We need to have 2 or 3 tools in our "toolbox" to use when we start having those thoughts.
Can anyone give me some ideas on what worked for you when you were about to take that first drink? I really don’t want to go down that road again.
Hello Jonathan. Interesting question. I assume, since you mentioned the word sponsor you are part of AA, have a copy of the big book. True powerlessness is that one does not have the capacity to overcome the desire to stop from taking the first drink. On page 24 it takes about the obsession that takes you over. We get blind-sighted. Then then substantiate that theory with those short stories in the chapter "More about alcoholism". The man of thirty, the car salesman and the accountant story.
So what is the solution? To become aware of those mental twists. Just one, mixing alcohol in milk, only beer, only wine...........Underlying cause is, not recognizing our nature and also being spiritually bankrupt. At this point, we feel hopeless, so we get depressed, bored, anxious... very natural, we are so vulnerable at this point that our mind seeks that solace by taking a drink or two. So to overcome these internal discomfort, we start working the reminder of the steps. Writing down the causes and condition that lead us back into that 1st drink.
So try to find a sponsor who will help work the 12 steps and experience the position of neutrality as the 10th step promise talks about. We will have a clear idea who we are and that we shift our attention to something else other than alcohol.
I had a good day. Thanks Lynn123 and gusa. I kept myself busy and tried to stay in the moment with gratitude. Advice from my old sponsor! I have a lot of fear about letting my family down again. My therapist has been talking me through this and using it for good. I’m not sure if anyone here has kids but that part has been very difficult for me. My wife and daughters are my life and I want a sober me as much for them as I want it for myself. I’ve been very depressed when I think of the me they have seen in the past. My therapist is helping me come to terms with that. Can anyone give me some ideas on what worked for you when you were about to take that first drink? I really don’t want to go down that road again.
Thanks everyone. You are all very encouraging. I don’t have a lot of confidence right now so thank you. I’ve been down this road much too frequently. Im very blessed that I still have a family that supports me and I have much guilt around what I have burdened them with. In a strange way, this is what helps me not to drink today. It’s an uncomfortable feeling as my therapist would say but necessary. I have spent so much time asking myself what leads me back to the bottle without any real and truthful answers. It’s the alcohol in the bottle that leads me back there. I plan to banish it from my life once and for all and right all the wrongs it has caused me and those I love. Thanks for the book idea. I will seek that out. This time, I will take action and stick to it. 4 days without a taste!
I am back into using this website recently. I used it very successfully in quitting for about 3 years. I went away for awhile, but now I'm back.
You sound just like me - like you need a break. Posting here can help. I post here, and I can then go back and read my post later - sometimes weeks and months later. Its like I'm coaching myself, in a way.
I also listened to Allan Carr, Easy Way to Control Alcohol. It costs about $10 to download onto you phone. I listen to it when I go for walks, or even sometimes when I'm going to bed. This book helps you breakdown all the fallacies surrounding the benefits of drinking.
I also listen to Michael Sealey. He has a Youtube hypnosis video on overcoming problem drinking.
For me, deciding to have a break has made the biggest difference for me. Its taken all the pressure off. Its like the weight of the world is lifted off my shoulders. When I do drink, I'm always worried about it. How much will I drink? What time will I start? What pace will I go with? Will I go overboard again? What will I say or do? How will it look to my family? How hungover will I be? How depressed will I feel the next day? Who will I have to apologize to? All those problems magically disappear when I give myself a break. And my body and mind feel so much better, now that I crossed that line in the sand.
I hope you can figure out what works for you too. Im sure you can if you keep searching.