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Post Info TOPIC: Share Your AA Story Here


MIP Old Timer

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Share Your AA Story Here
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This thread is an archive for members to post their "Story" in a collection in a convenient location for others to read.  Please be sure to include the post sobriety portion.  Please create an original thread for your story, so that others can reply.  After your thread is a few days old, cut and paste it in this archive.  You may also place a link above or below the story, so that others may find your original thread to reply to it, if they wish.

Please don't leave  comments  in this thread, so that it will be easier to read.





-- Edited by StPeteDean on Friday 23rd of October 2009 06:53:28 AM

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jonijoni's story
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Hi all.

Where am I coming from?

Only child, now late 30's, mom died in an alcoholic car accident when I was 4. Me and dad moved in with my grandparents, as he worked long hours and I needed a stable home life. Dad had stopped drinking 6 months before she died, and he found religion afterward. He became very fanatical out of fear for my future, and exposed me to church experiences where they hollered and laid hands on, which scared me as a kid. He was extremely militant with his punishment (the belt-- spare the rod and spoil the child was his favorite verse), and was one minute furious, and the next, very loving. He bought me show horses to compensate for his temper, and also so he could keep an eye on me. We did have wonderful times together though. I was an artist and into music, and would spend a lot of time alone studying science books and magazines.

Once highschool came and went, I was "outta here". Started college intending to do nothing there but party, and so I did. I went to school 5 minutes from home, yet did not visit or call my dad for over a year, and within 3 years had blown through a huge trust left to me by my mother on alcohol, drugs and frivolous stuff. In my late teens/early 20's, I dropped out of school, hit a pedestrian while drunk driving, got hooked on another substance which would keep me up for days so I could drink for days... and attempted suicide in a very serious way, with no warning to those around me. I ABSOLUTELY wanted to die, at age 19.

The thing about alcohol that "hooked me", was that I didn't feel lonely or angry any more. I did not feel self pity and my self esteem problem melted away with the drinks. Alcohol helped me get "in" with the "punk" crowd which I admired for their "creativity". I still had a place to lay my head at grandma's, but I would spend days if not weeks living out of my old car, wandering from flop house to flop house, drinking and drugging. The highlight of every evening was seeing a band play out somewhere locally. Dying my hair colors that are not ever found in nature, hanging out and using at a tattoo shop, punking out to the max.

Eventually my additional addiciton to another substance, which was taboo even in the croud I was hanging with, took me away from that crowd and onto the streets of the inner-city, where I did anything a woman could do to get a bottle and another "hit". I got into trouble with the law, went in and out of the county jail on misdemeanors for a few years. I started moving aorund to other cities, other parts of the country far away, to try and get control. I did not find the "drug crowd" in these other cities (because I wasn't looking for them), but the alcohol use was sooo out of control, it is a miracle I did not die. I landed back home, and was given an ultimatum, as it was discovered that I had stolen family money to get high and drunk. I went into an outpatient program, located directly in the center of where I did all my using. As soon as I got out, back to the streets.

Throught the years of my hopelessness, I was beat up, knocked out when someone grabbed my hair and slammed my head down onto an iron steam-heating coil, and when a strange man tried to kidnap me, I had to jump out of his moving pickup truck and get knocked into a ditch. And I went right on doing what I was doing that night. Female using associates had been stabbed, shot, and one of them was found dead, floating in a river in another city. I kept going though, all sense of reason and sanity completely gone from my being.

I had a few bouts of sort of "forced" recovery, and swore off the hard stuff, but the moment I would take another seemingly harmless drink, I was off and running for whatever the mean streets had waiting. I was always led back to the alcohol, which always led me to even more trouble. It always started with alcohol, every single time.

I got serious about recovery for awhile, then relapsed and ended up in a field, assaulted and "invaded" by a stranger my own age, fighting for my life. I ran and crawled after he ran off, defecating myself in my pants, and once I got to a house and beat on the door, screaming for help, I blacked out. I woke up almost a week later in a psych ward, where I was interviewed about the incident by the police. I had a severe case of PTSD from the incident, and not only could I not move the muscles in my face (I was in total shock), but I could not "see" correctly even after I was released and sent home, for several weeks. It was all physical symptoms of severe trauma and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. I was taken back to an apartment a family member had been keeping up on the rent for me, and I could not sleep right for months. I would wake up in the night screaming my head off, looking in closets and behind the sofa for a predator, and even in the oven. I was insane. I certainly did not want to ever pick up a drink again. I could not function though at all, and I obsessed about suicide. I was afraid to live, as I feared going back to the drink. I felt that I would never be able to stop, even in the midst of all the horrors I had faced. I was at that "jumping off point" they talk about.

I had to get psychological help. My family and new AA sponsor helped me get into a county program for people who had been victims as I had, and also were alcoholics and addicts. I had a great psychiatrist who specialized in treating people with medications that would not become addictive or interfere with a person in recovery.

Eventually, through very hard work, a great sponsor, and the support of my family in Al Anon, I put together some good sobriety. I eventually began to truly love myself and care for myself and my future. I began to truly appreciate the life that I had almost lost to the alcoholism. I made wonderful sober friends, and I stayed away from men for about 18 months. The rape I had been through surely helped me to stay out of a relationship, for sure!

Eentually I did date a few guys from AA, but ultimately I met a man who was spiritual, and non-judgmental, who was not an alcoholic. I married him. I fell down when we first got married, and used, but something was diferent. I no longer "belonged" in that environment, and could not go to the lengths I used to go to to get drunk and high. I was gone for weeks though. My family shared Al Anon with him, and my sponsor helped him like a mother. I did come back to him, and he vowed to do whatever it took for me to have the space I needed to get better. I had something at home this time that I didn't want to lose. Not only a marriage, but a sense of peace when sober, and a love for myself and a concern for my family and for my own life that I was not willing to gamble with again.

I went back to doing the things in AA I had to do to maintain sobriety. I went back to counseling and therapy, which I had discovered I still needed, even though from the outside everything looked "complete" wiht the picket fence and all. I was still very sick and discovered then that I will NEVER be completely "well", and I will always need AA and outside medical help. But I am ok with that today. I embrace it.

I worked some good jobs, finished college with the help of my husband and family, and now have a job that I always dreamed about. I get to work almost full time doing what I love, and still have a couple of afternoons off during the week, and never work on weekends. My boss knows I am in recovery, and applauds me for that. He trusts me at work. My family trusts me. My husband trusts me with money and credit cards, and he trusts me to head out for dinner on occasion with girlfriends from work who are nOT alcoholics, yet not in a program. I see and sepnd time wiht people who can "take it or leave it", and I am no longer threatened by it, nor haunted by the presence of alcohol. Wherever I go, I go for the right reasons. If I am feeling cranky or angry or sad, I do not tread where I might be tempted. But for the most part, if I feel spritiually fit, and am practicing my steps and also taking care of my mental health, I am not bound by my disease, I am free to open my life up and have relationships with non-alcoholic people today.

The only constraints in life I have now, are the ones that my mental health creates for me. I have to treat PTSD and physical depressive tendencies simultaneously while treating my alcoholism, or neither will work. I consider myself an alcoholic, who, through drinking, suffered the consequences of other addictions, and also mental health issues created by events that alcohol took me to. That is how serious I believe my alcoholism is. That if I had not drank myself to the places I had, some of this would not have happened. It is a consequence, and I am ok with this today, because I can't go back, and there IS remission for all of it, through doing the work and a daily reprieve.

Thanks for those who read and can relate.

Love and hugs, and continued recovery,
Joni


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Aquaman's Story
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The Big Opening Share
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My math was off a bit...my 90 days is Friday.

I've noticed that it seems to be MIP protocol to introduce with The Big Share. I'll try to keep it short enough to read but complete enough to be relevant. My hope is that my experience will help others stay sober and maybe provide me with some insight in the telling.  

I'm the last of four kids. I'm 1/2 Spanish and 1/2 German (so I figure that there isn't a civilization in the world that some of my ancestors haven't screwed over). I'm not including them in my Step 8 list. I can't make amends to the entire Aztec Empire.

Dad died when I was 7.5 and Mom did her best to raise her only boy without a Dad. Shortly afterwards I was raped by a teenage neighbor kid. Never told Mom. Nobody in my family knows to this day. Being fat, brainey, slow and insecure I made a great punching bag for the angry sons of the working class Italian & Irish Catholic dads that made up most of my East Coast town. When I was 8 some kid said I killed my Dad with my "ugly" and I beat him with a school book badly enough to require plastic surgery. They kicked me out of Cub Scouts for that.

Being the target of violence from my peers became a way of life. I lived in constant fear of getting beat down. Mom put me in kiddie therapy. I didn't know why, so I got nothing out of it except a couple of fishing trips and a really poorly made toy boat.

We moved around a lot. Mom tried to make a living while being single Mom to a 9 year old boy. Mom worked the 3pm - 11pm shift, so I got my first apartment key when I was 9. My first arrest was for B&E when I was 9. We moved again. I did 4th grade in three different schools. I found trouble if it didn't find me. I was a shoplifting & B&E machine. I stole anything that wasn't nailed down.

I exercised the sociopathy that only a pre-teen boy is capable of. Somehow my morals stayed in tact just enough that I never raped or killed. Sure, I thought about it, but the male role models in my life wouldn't have approved. The adult men in my life were Mister Spock, Superman, Batman, Iron Man, Daredevil and the Flash.

I forgot to mention that I did believe in God; just enough to hate, loathe and scorn him for taking my father from me and letting a Big Kid laugh at me as he left me sticky, sore, cold and ashamed in a pile of pine needles with my pants around my ankles.

Repeat above 2 paragraphs until age 14.

Summer of 1980. John Lennon was still alive, but not for long.  

My cat got run over in front of me. My sister, ten years my senior, decided that what I needed was a drink. She fixed me a stiff vodka and orange. It went down easy, and as the gossamer oblivion descended on my senses I felt as though a part of me I never knew was missing had been replaced. I felt whole. I felt happy...for the first time since I was 7. I had another, and another and began chasing that dragon every chance I got.

Alcohol was my gateway drug, and my sister fed my habits so that she wouldn't be lonely. (I just realized that. Holy Dysfunctional, Batman!) The teenage years that followed were a blur. Alcohol led to (umm, protocol moment) lots and lots of drugs. I tried anything once and if I liked it I did it as often as I could afford it, trade for it or steal it. Alcohol was a staple. A shrink diagnosed me as alcoholic when I was 16 after I wrecked a couple of cars, got kicked out of school and got us evicted from our apartment. Somehow I graduated high school and got into the USAF in my early 20's. The Coast Guard was my first choice, but when the recruiter asked me "when was the last time you used marijuana?", I looked at my watch. In hindsight....not a good move.

My 20's were still a drunken blur, but being young and resilient I was able to function. I still ended up doing some time in Air Force jail for alcohol related offenses like contributing to the delinquency of a minor, assault and drunk & disorderly. I got kicked out of the USAF for smoking dope and not having the sense to lie about it. I was tired of England anyway (no offense, but how the heck do you folks survive without direct sunlight!?)

I went to school, got a degree in Interior Design, my fiance left me and I got drunk. For two years. My degree hung on my wall next to my Pizza Hut uniform. I hated me. I hated her. I dated recklessly. The ex-fiance got married, so I slept with her sister. Nope, still no closure. Back to the bar. Who's next? I'll have a chilled shot of Jack, a Guiness and an STD, please.

As my 20's wound down I met a woman, not in a bar, who wouldn't sleep with me on the first date. Wierd. So I saw her again. Still no action. I found myself strangely attracted to this woman with morals obviously at least slightly better than my own. I was confused. She called me, wanted to hang out with me, but didn't drink like I did and wasn't a slut. Huh!? They still make women like this? 

So I moved in with her. We took a trip to meet her parents. They liked me (I was NOT the kind of guy a girl's parents are supposed to like!). I heard her play Mozart on her mom's baby grand. I fell in love with her. I smelled her skin while she slept and she smelled the way my kid's Mom should smell. I decided to marry her. She said yes.

That was almost fifteen years ago and during that time we had three wonderful kids and she made it clear that I drank too much. But so did her Dad, so I figured I had a pass (duh). That was until my first DUI. Man, was she angry. I did my court mandated classes, lived without a car for three weeks, payed a lawyer too darned much money and saw a court-mandated shrink who told me "I'll sign off on this report, but you're an alcoholic." 

I wish he didn't call me an alcoholic. I preferred "heavy drinker", as that implies a certain degree of skill.hmm

Every dumb-arse thing I did eroded at my wife's tolerence for my boozing. We had a cycle. She'd say "you're drinking too much" and I'd either hide it better, or slow down. Then an excuse for a wicked bender would pop-up (lost my job, got a job, Mom is sick, Mom is better, the dog ran away, the Home Team won, the Home Team lost, it's a party, I'm fishing.....). My garden-variety depression became full-blown and I feared losing my life to my own hands. I saw a shrink and got meds. Stable enough to function. Then, two years ago Mom died.

I was hungover and high when they buried my Mother. I felt empty. I drank more. I started drinking at work. I got warned about it, and then, a little over 3 months ago I got caught making an arse out of myself at a company function, on company time. Friday night I was told there would be a meeting the following Monday. Saturday morning I took an old guitar string, made a noose and fastened it securely to the ridge-beam of my shed. My plan was to go to work Monday, get fired, bring my crap home, compose a text-message instructing my sister to call the fire department and recover my carcass before my wife or kids could get home to find it, kick out the chair and press "send". I spent Sunday fishing with my kids, sure that it was the last time.

Monday came. "Rob", they (boss and owners; all family) said, "We love you. We value you. We want you to get help." I was stunned. These people LOVED me? These people VALUED me? Once I saw that even as I was ready to throw myself away, and others valued me, I knew that I had hit bottom. I stood at the turning point. I recognized that I was powerless over alcohol and my life had become unmanageable. We cried together. A lot.

I agreed to 90 days probationary employment terms and opened the phone book to "A". Ya know what's right after the first "A"? Another friggin' "A". "AA". First listing in the yellow pages. All these years it was right there and I never saw it.

So I went to my first meeting. I looked at the sign and said to myself "who the heck is Bill W. and why are his friends squatting at this AA meeting?" I was early. I didn't know what to do. Before I could say a word a man bounced out of his chair with bright eyes, stuck out his hand and with a toothy grin said "WELCOME!" I'm a sales guy, and I can read body language pretty well. His handshake wasn't dominant, his other arm was hanging peacefully at his side, he was leaning into me and best of all, when he said "WELCOME!", his pupils got bigger. This guy was comfortable. He was at ease. He had nothing to prove and most important of all - he was genuinely pleased to see mePupils can't lie!

Well, that scene was repeated four or five times, and then the meeting started. Praying. Guidelines. Preamble. How It Works. Traditions. Reflections. Then came the Sharing. By the time they were halfway around the tables I realized three things;
1) That podiums aren't neccessary, like in the movies and on TV,
2) The coffee didn't suck and
3) That I wasn't alone. That if God could find these people; these ex-cons, these orphans, these rape victims, these ex-soldiers, these confused kids, these fallen angels JUST LIKE ME then I could leave a light on for God, as I understood Him. I could have the life I wanted when I was 7. It wasn't too late.

The guy to my left said "I'm just grateful to be sober another day and I'll pass."

"Hi. My name is Rob, and I'm an alcoholic."


That was almost 90 sober days ago.



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MY ES&H
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Just felt like sharing this morning..........


In 2004 the love of my life said to me " I don't like you when you drink."  I had known for quite a few years that I had a problem. What I didn't know was that I'm an alcoholic! I stopped using drugs in 1992 when I made that decision. Looking back, I thought I could / would eventually do that with alcohol.  By  2005 my life was so unmanageable and I didn't even know it. I thank my HP for my love giving me a choice, "Me ? or alcohol?"  It was then that I realized I could NOT stop no matter how hard I tried. I had lost control. What had been my friend for 25+ yrs had stabbed me in the back.  I had been betrayed and my heart was breaking! I had come to what is known as the jumping off place. I could no longer drink but didn't know how to NOT drink. Alcohol was killing me, in more ways than just physical. It had taken over my life and I didn't even know it. That's where the 'cunning, baffling, and powerful' comes into play for me.

In late June 2005 I came to this website after Googling "alcoholism" about 1000 times. I guess I thought educating myself would be a start. I laugh at that one now! Little did I know that I couldn't do it alone. The folks here, on MIP back then, supported me, sympathized and empathized with me and most importantly they encouraged me to try an AA meeting.  I attended my 1st meeting on Sunday, July 2nd. It was a speaker meeting and I identified with EVERYTHING that guy said. WOW! I really wasn't alone.

It took me another 3 yrs of binging from time to time to finally ACCEPT that I am an alcoholic, that I will always be an alcoholic and the only thing I can do about it is don't drink, just for today. Acceptance and one day at the time finally sank in, and the craving for alcohol was lifted.

On March 22 of this year I somehow managed to put together 18 months of 24 hours. I attend meetings regularly, I have a sponsor, who has a sponsor, I am involved with AA. I no longer ride on the edge. I'm right smack in the middle of it all.


Life is good today! No matter how hard things get, can be, I know there is NOTHING that a drink will make better.


Thank you all for being here. And for letting me share from my heart.


(((hugs)))

Jen



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Sobrietyspell's early recovery musings
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Early Recovery Musings
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I found this dated November 2006. I'd joined A.A. in the August & was weeks away from my last drunk. I love where my head was & how so much it has changed today lol The Program has given me clarity & freedom these days & life does seem simpler thanks to my HP,  fellowship & all the gifts that come with perseverance. I don't know if anyone here may relate to the funny thoughts I had in my head for so long but if this helps some & interests others tis worth a post. Thank you for always being here & allowing me to share..


I've felt worried by the efforts I've been having to put in with my steps & my recovery. I have to face the shame of my responsibility. The mistakes I've made being of my own doing despite my ineptitude. I've been stupid in my conducts & reasonings. I've held onto my grudges & resentments for what seems like an eternity & I knew all along I was ill of some sorts but somehow couldn't make the insight & objectivity to see it all, sidestep & break free. I've been trapped in this cage of my own making for a long time & I'm now barely making my way out. I don't want imagination to be lost on me. When we suddenly bear witness & admit the falsehood of our ways then suddenly know we don't have to continue in such a way ever again. I can taste freedom but first I have to swallow my pride & then spit it out.

I'm scared of this purge. I'm scared to admit I was wrong for so long. How can one let that go & forgive our errors! What a mammoth task & challenge! I'm shocked by what I'm about to give up, let go & be free of. I have to admit all I did that was wrong. That's the only way I can disown it. What a Push~Through. I'm scared of becoming unrecognisable to myself. I have a scream & tears inside me & I can't wait to let go & be free. I'm just terrified of what I'm going to have to do to get there. It means one day ~ I really will have no excuses to be unhappy & that's a terrifying thought. I've needed to be unhappy for a long time. It has served to protect me; to stop me being brave & achieving my wants. Have I been afraid of wanting things? Did I think all this time I didn't deserve them? I must have done. I think I've been terrified to be a person. A person with demands & expectations; legitimate wants & needs not clouded in neurosis.

The child in me had her ideals. God, my ideals were HUGE. I ran around the world thinking do you know what? I know best, the world should be this way. Why are people being cruel to each other? I had such an immature view of the world. What I couldn't have known as a child was the better reasons for what would seem like injustices. I had no idea of the bigger picture. I had no idea that in order to serve the few you had to begin with the many. It was all about getting the big things right so that you could then fine tune & get the little things right. I was simply fucked off with the whole thing because I'd never had enough experience to teach me this wisdom & then when I did, I guess my spirit had all but died & given up. I shouldn't have turned such things inside & onto myself. My patience lacked because of my resentments. I wanted everyone to see my needs & give to me first. I should have waited & had some kind of faith in knowing that things would come out right.

Everything seems aboutface. I learned selfishness from resentments. My heart couldn't stay pure because all I ever wanted was healing & my family could never do that for my contempt. I turned into a witless beggar. Help me, you bastards. You stupid, ignorant, backward bastards, no wonder you couldn't get it right. How could I expect you to & then how am I even better than you so therein lay the crux of the paradox. My hate & lack of forgiveness for them turned upon myself. Ridiculous. Just souls trying the best they could with the particular hands they were dealt. I grew up thinking everybody else had the answers & they were holding out on me. Really. An old belief of mine was that everyone else knew what was going on & I had no control. I should have known I had an influence. Maybe I'd have been kinder & more compassionate, like what I had was worthy too. I never shone with this innerlove. Not truly. I hated myself. Had the height of contempt for what I thought I knew. I felt I had no right.

Stupid really. It has to be about how much you can serve the world. Not be holding back for your own redemption. I just thought I was ridiculous all along & that people could see through my stupidity 'the way I saw though theirs'. I should never have been so judgemental. That's were humility has its place & bravado no more. I've lots of faults to own up to. I'm so scared of realising how what I based my reality on could be wrong & how can I ever trust my truth again; this handing over to a power & the conscience of this collective. I'm scared of how giving into & releasing into this power may lose me myself yet it promises to recover this! So strange!

I'm glad you're with me on it. I'm glad I found this & that we can always help each other to understand it inside our bonds. I'm scared of letting you down, giving up & turning away from this because it's too hard. I know this is early day talk. Im new in my recovery. I won't give up. Don't worry. I know I've barely begun & how can I ever possibly know what's to come next as sobriety deepens if I don't just keep on stepping! I've many days ahead. They say it takes 1 year to dry up, 2 years to sober up & then the rest of your life to grow up. I want that.


There it is.. Some difficult days gone by. It all passes. I'm very fortunate not to have suffered more than I did. God bless you all. Keep coming back & growing up ;) It works if you work it & you are worth it, Danielle x



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RE: Share Your AA Story Here
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I basically started out sort of drinking at an early age--My dad was a Military person and had monthly planning meetings at the house, and various beer, wine and other drinks were served--my job after the meeting was to clean up, so of course tried some of the liquids in the cans and glasses--every once in a while would find cig butts in the cans, this was in the 60's early 70's.

Next comes the High School years 76-79, when us youngsters were into trying things out--cigs, cigars and of course drinks besides seeing how far we could push our selves and how much trouble we could get into.  Went to a friends house and they had you name it there, including wacky weed, well I started out having wine and then someone else started giving me whiskey sours, not knowing the extent of content was drinking them like water--ended up wrecking a bunch of stuff that was on a big wire roll table, then was thrown into the back of a pickup to chill out.

Now the college years 79 to 84 to start out at--got involved with the cross-country ski group and went out with them a lot--of course when skiing they had those bota bags and most of them were filled with various drinks, ski a bit, drink a bit.  Also during this time met some people who were into some of the bar hopping time.  Was drinking from about 5 pm til closing at 2 or 3 then went to breakfast then to school or work and start drinking all over again.

85 to 93 not too much drinking done here at this time--no time to, was involved with a family franchise.

But after, started getting into all sorts of trouble, but could hide it very well, was back to college classes and work--needed a release at the end of the day or sometimes to calm the nerves before the day got started.  Mostly was drinking at home ie closet drinking, there were a few times got to work and then the effects would hit and had to be escorted home.

In between some of these events would not drink for months at a time though, either the taste was not right or no money or time to think about it, or things were going great and felt did not need it then.

My real down fall came in the time 97 to 2002, had a pretty well paced job and needed all the release I could get, was up to about a gallon of wine a night or 2 quarts of whiskey,  now during part of this time the folks were spending 6 months out of the year in Florida--could not wait until they left in Nov to start drinking heavily most every night until they got back in April.

Then got the 2 Dui's in 2002 the first in April and the second in June--before that happened I had kept telling myself I needed to stop and get help before something happened.  Well the something happened before I did anything.

Of course there is more--but that can keep for now.

I have now been sober 7 Years 3 months and some days since 29 June 2002.

Thanks for letting me share.
Karen D.


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In and out, in and out.......32 days today
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Hi there, Tex here, in Australia,

started binge drinking as an older teen, and can now see that it was almost always out of control to the point where I would not remember parts of the night. I now know that this is called a blackout, but back then I thought it was normal and when reminded of what I had done or said, would feel shame, but cover it up by laughing, or just trying to ignore it.

This ignoring events in my life was a big part of my drinking, and once I had escaped some dangerous or stressful situation I simply laughed about it or ignored it, trying to move forward, but never quite seeing that many of these events were extreme risk taking which could have resulted in death of myself or others, and other events were emotionally devastating. So of course I kept on repeating these sort of things while drunk or sober.

I have always had a job during my drinking, but this has simply been a way of getting enough money to drink, and my deep fear of becoming materialistic was a way of giving myself permission to spend whatever I got on alcohol, toys, clothes, women, justifying that "you only live once", or "money is the root of all evil".

I have been in car accidents, lost my licence once for drink driving, and I used to think this made me smarter than others, but in actual fact I was just lucky, having driven thousands of times while over the limit, including driving to work the morning after many times. I have been pulled over three times while extremely drunk, but somehow avoided getting tested, and I also once avoided a breathalyser station by parking illegally and walking home, even avoiding a parking ticket, picking my car up the next morning.

There have been two marriages, another engagement, and a few other failed relationships, and yet I still never say alcohol as a problem.

Slowly, inexorably, I began to drink more, but the rate of change was so slow that I didn't actually notice, and always I rationalised that it was okay, because I now had a job where I earned a lot and had a lot of time off, so if I wanted to drink during the week one or two days, it was like my weekend, and if I wanted to drink during the day, well why shouldn't I?

I began smoking cigarettes when I drank, because being a non smoker when not drinking meant that the combined effect of alcohol and nicotine gave me a slightly stronger feeling of escape from reality.

All the while, I have known that my behaviour is unhealthy and that I would eventually cause myself to suffer from some sort of self induced illness such as cancer, ulcers, malnutrition, brain damage, liver damage, kidney damage, or just causing any disease or illness I got to be much worse due to my regular and heavy alcohol consumption, but I could never stop.

Whenever I drank too much and woke up feeling ill I would say to myself that I would start to take it easy, but always when I drank again I found an excuse to drink too much, "just today, then I will slow down a bit".

Finally, I came to AA three years ago and have had up to fourteen months sobriety, during which my second wife left me, and the fact that I didn't drink for six months after she left meant I actually went through grief for the first time in my life without numbing myself to it by using alcohol.

This in itself was a miracle and an amazing experience, because I learnt to cry, sobbing my eyes out in AA meetings, and after a week or two I noticed that I was not so down all the time and had periods of happiness, and gradually the grief subsided and I grew. I learnt to not hold a resentment toward her, to pray for her, and to wish her the best in my heart, and I now feel that way toward her.

But I drank again. For five months, every second week on payday I drank, gambled, smoked and then stopped for two weeks, still attending AA, but not menitioning that I was drinking. Finally I talked about it, and it stopped for 120 days, but then I didn't go to meetings for two weeks and somehow decided that I could drink "just one or two every now and then" and didn't need AA. I drank one day, not too much, then the next, not too much, and again on the third day, only had three beers, but it was every day, not 'every now and then', then on the fourth day I spent a lot of money on gambling, stayed up drinking till 7am and smoked a packet and a half of cigarettes.

It was time to admit and accept that I am powerless over alcohol, and despite my desperate ability to hold some parts of my life together, many parts of my life do become unmanageable.

Since then, in the last 32 days, I have experienced a new way of feeling. I have a number of personal growth experiences happening to me, and it is only through not drinking and attending AA that I have been able to hear the messages I need to hear, and to have the ability to do something about me.

I am dealing appropriately with anger for the first time in my life on a regular basis, I have gained the ability to listen to criticism, see where it is valid, but most of all not react with anger, and especially to retain some boundaries around what and who I am and what other people say or think.

What they think of me is none of my business, and most of the time what I assume they think of me is not even true.

Today I feel calm, empowered, gracious, able to surrender to what is, without needing to attempt to control everything in the world to be the way I think it should be.

I can see the desperate fear present in that need to control things in order to make sure I am safe and nothing bad happens, but the bad state of mind I can create by trying to ensure perfection and safety is far worse than any of the things I hope to create security around.

Today I am grateful to be able to just do the right thing, stay calm, exercise, eat properly, communicate with friends and family, attend meetings, meditate and pray, and know that if I just do those simply things, the big things will take care of themselves.

Most of all I am grateful that I am learning to listen, which is a gift I have, and one I can freely give every day, and which costs me nothing.

Wish all people well,

love to all.

P


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Day 7 - Sobriety! My sobriety birthday!!!
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This is it. A very spiritual week ends - with sobriety. Thanks for reading and letting me share a week that started in hell and ended on a path of hope.

**********************************************

Made it - sobriety! The date was 9/4/94 a little after 10 AM I had my last sip of alcohol. I woke up and went to town to unlock the church. There was going to be a rare Saturday morning funeral. I got there pretty early and made sure the windows were cleaned, the church was cool, the grounds were presentable, stuff that those at a funeral wouldn't recognize, unless it wasn't done.

I got done a couple of hours before the funeral and went outside to my car. It was 8 AM and on the front seat I still had two cans of beer. Should I drink them? Or pitch 'em? I thought a bit and opened the can and it didn't taste the same. That AA meeting was starting to make me think. But I drank it anyway.

I got out of the car and sat on the bench outside the church and began thinking about that second can. What would I do after I drank it? Would I quit or would I go to town and buy some more? As I thought about it, one of the church secretaries pulled in the parking lot and started towards the building. She seen me sitting there and she just had the biggest smile and said, "What a beautiful morning to be alive!" I really didn't want to talk, but her words sunk in. A great day to be alive.

She went into the building and I walked out to the car and opened the second can of beer and took a couple of sips. I got out and went for a stroll around the building making sure everything was set to go, when I looked up and saw my ex-wife carrying a MacDonald's bag filled with breakfast. We talked for awhile and my emotions went up and down quicker then a ride at the carnival.

We ate together sitting on that bench and I finally got her to leave. I sat there for a moment and thought to myself, that this was nuts. I'm done! I walked out to my car and grabbed the can of beer which was about 2/3 full and I dumped it on the ground.

That was it. I surrender - no more - please Lord no more. I struggled through the rest of the day and as I drove home part of me kept saying, "get some beer we'll start tomorrow." But I didn't stop. That night I locked myself in the house by myself and begged for another 10 minutes of sobriety. That whole weekend my sobriety was based on ten minute increments. "Please Lord, just ten more minutes."

Sunday morning was nasty. I was sweaty, cold, and uncontrollably shaking. "Please Lord, just ten more minutes." It was a very long day. By Sunday night, I was still not feeling the best, but I had enough sense to begin trying to find an out-patient program to help me.

Monday was Labor Day and I remained locked in my house. I needed that weekend to go through the withdrawals - 10 minutes at a time. But by the Grace of God, I made it through that weekend.

Tuesday morning arrived and I was fortunate enough to see a counselor right away. It ended up being a two hour session. It was the first time in a long time that I felt a natural high. And that night, I returned to AA. This time sober.

Today is 15 years. I am so grateful for a second chance at life. Thank you for letting me share a very spiritual week in my life with you. Tonight, I'll receive my 15 year chip and I'll be asked how I did it. And I'll say I did it through Love - His Love.

I can never say it enough, how truly grateful I am for a second chance at life. It was through this gratitude that I was able to look at my whole life. Just short of my one year anniversary, I began working on my co-dependency issues and a month after that I began to understand how my life was almost "scripted" because I was raised in an alcoholic home with two alcoholic parents.

Don't get me wrong, I don't blame my folks for my alcoholism - I did that to myself. But when I combined all three AA, CODA, and ACOA... my life changed from just "being here" to one of adventure. An adventure that started in 10 minute increments... but now I do it one day at a time.

Besides the chip I'll get tonight... I've already got my first gift 15 white roses. Every year we've been together my wife honors me with roses. We started dating shortly before my second birthday. That year she gave me two roses, the next year three, and so on. Over the 13 years we've been together she has given me 102 roses. I can honestly say that she has given me a lot more roses then I have given her.

I usually write poetry for other people or other events. The video below I wrote for myself. It's entitled "An Attitude of Gratitude."

 

Links to my final week of insanity

Day Seven

Day Six

Day Five

Day Four

Day Three

Day Two

Day One

 



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Hello Dave, et al.

I'm back after a brief stint. Starting a new job is always stressful - but so is life. My goal is to eliminate the unnecessary stress - and the wisdom to know the difference.

Alcohol destroyed my life. AA saved my life. Its good to be here and to be sober!

Celebrating 60 days and counting :) Christmas will be my 90 Day Anniversary mile mark. A long road ahead yet - but there's nothing me and H.P. can't handle together :)

Thanks for being the "Hand" of AA reaching out to Alcoholics!

-PJ

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Wow,P. I thought, I'd never read a story (like yours,)so much like mine.

I am new to this forum, but I am certainly not new to AA. I became
stuck in the program,rather with myself and my unhappiness,after my mother died a year ago. Then my second husband of 19 yrs. decided to have an affair.

I found myself not coping again. Kidding myself into thinking I could have one beer here and there. Then further kidding myself, when I found myself reading the label of
my bathroom mouthwash. I thought,wow! 21.6% alcohol! Three or four shots of that and no one would ever suspect. I was insane again! Except now,drinking listerine to fool others and myself.
This was after having 2 yrs.and 9 months sobriety on one occasion in my life,and 2 yrs.and 2 months this last time.
How quickly we can forget the hell, that our alcoholism can dish out.

I did not gamble as you(not saying I'm above that,)but I sure could smoke and drink and often come out lucky as you many times)with being pulled over by the cops. I had one DUI many years ago though. I never lost my job,and had worked over time in overachievement to compensate for my lack thereof. Control? I think so,just another crazy way of doing it.

I am back in AA and hope to put my heart and soul into it, more than ever. My husband and kids do not understand it; they just say quit, or she quit. They tell me I better never drink again, and that I'm nothing but an damned drunk...to the point of almost abusiveness. This is one of the hardest things for me to handle. I wish I had more understanding and support from them. Yet, I do not. Acceptance needed on my part.
Maybe I should be grateful to have something to worry about. Too many people out there have nothing or no one.
Here I am again at seemingly square one...trying to start over,uh. Frustrating. Lucky that I can, though. Someone once told me in AA,that I may never have another recovery...I almost thought that about me (I did not.)
Shame and guilt and fear are very much a part of my life again...I hate those guys, because they have almost caused me to commit suicide, a few times.
I just could not go on living as I was (alcoholically.)
Yet, as long as  I have a breath in me...I hope to give sobriety another shot.

Thanks.

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I have not improved, dean.

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I took the first drink I recall taking when I was 12. I was never very good at fitting in and I'd just met a great bunch of guys, the local street gang. I think they were called the Hell Cats. Hey, it was the sixties. Anyway, I felt a need to impress these guys so I busted in to an apartment in my building, stole a pint of Newfie screech rum and downed most of it in front of my new found friends. For about ten minutes, everything in Bernie's world was just the way Bernie wanted it. All the guys were afraid of me and all the girls loved me. Then, I passed out in some bushes and puked all over myself.

For the next 29 years I chased after that ten minutes and I didn't just look for it the bottom of a bottle but since this is an AA story, I'll stick to AA talk. Needless to say I never found the moment I searched for. I can sum up how I drank in one phrase. The only time I turned down a drink was when I misunderstood the question. I could tell you about the lost jobs, the failed relationships, about the businesses I built up out of nothing and then drank into the ground, about the lonliness, the despair, the frustration, the fear of not remembering where I was or what I'd done, blah blah blah.

In 1994, I came to AA for the wrong reason. I was in trouble and I figured it would look good on a pre-sentence report. I was right. I didn't have to serve any time. I wasn't crazy about AA so I didn't stay. Well I was a lot smarter than you guys anyway. After 3 weeks I figured my problem wasn't alcoholism, whatever that was. I was drinking the wrong stuff. So I tried non-alcoholic beer. Looks like beer, tastes like beer, smells like beer, but it ain't beer and all it did was make me thirsty for beer.  After I came back from that drunk, I tried AA again. Stayed a month, then I figured if it wasn't what I was drinking, maybe it was where I was drinking. So, instead of hanging out at the local pub I tried a high class jazz bar. How much trouble could I get into in a place like that? After I came back from that drunk, I tried again. This time I stayed 90 days. I joined a group. There was this group I heard of that gave away key chains instead of chips and I didn't have a key chain so I joined that group. I got a sponsor. They told me to get a male sponsor so I got a female sponsor. I got involved. I worked at the local club cooking supper and on the AA answering service. Eventually I spoke to my wife whom I was separated from and said hey look how sober I am now. Maybe we should get back together. She said she didn't care if I was drunk or sober I was never coming back. So, I got drunk.

I did that song and dance for about 4 years. A few weeks, a few days, a few months. All in all I had 39 slips. My sponsor said I was a chronic slipper and later told me he worried many times that he would read about me in the obits someday. He almost did. I remember being at the jumping off place they talk about in the book. I, too, stood on a stool with a noose around my neck, looking for a place to put the rope.

My last drunk was late 1997. I remember I was about 6 weeks without a drink and I was starting to feel lonely. So I told my sponsor I was lonely. He told me to get a cat. I said I don't want a cat. I want something like a cat but taller. He said something I won't repeat and said get a cat. Well there was a woman I met on the internet and one day she said she loved me. So I did the only thing I could think of. I moved to Montana. That's where she lived. My sponsor was against it. He said it was a geographical cure, that changing my location wouldn't change my situation. I didn't listen. I remember I was on the train and back then the only place you could smoke on a train was in the bar car. I smoke a lot so I was in the bar car a lot. I saw the waiter go by with a cart and on the cart was a tall boy of Keith's India Pale Ale, a little water droplet running down the side of the can. I remember thinking I bet they don't make Keith's in Montana. I should have one. Just one. And that's when I became insane. To think after everything I'd been through that I could take one and stop. But, I had exchanged clear thinking for alcoholic thinking and I had my one beer. And about 30 more. Three weeks later i was hitch-hiking through a snowstorm on the trans canada highway with 5 pieces of luggage going the wrong direction looking for an AA meeting. Because that's how I drink.

Just outside of Meductic NB, when I knew that one more hour in that storm would mean death from exposure, I made a decision. I went to church. I got down on my knees and surrendered my alcoholism and my life into the hands of a God I barely understood. I'd like to tell you there was a blinding flash of light. angels singing and all that. But, that's not what happened. But something did happen. It was like someone put their hands on my shoulders and said Its gonna be ok. That was December 4, 1997. I never looked back. I was broke and homeless for two months. I spent that time sleeping in a box under a bridge, too proud to ask for help. I wound my way to a transition home, spent a few months there, to get some structure. I went to meetings two or three times a day, every day. I got in touch with my sponsor and did whatever he suggested, up to and including getting a cat. Together, we took the journey of the 12 steps, the 12 Traditions and later during Service I took the 12 concepts. My sponsor eventually passed away; he was a lot older than me. I have a new sponsor now and I am a sponsor now. I belong to a group. I remain active within the Fellowship. I do as much as I can to be of usefulness to God and to others in the hope that someday I may be able to repay the debt of gratitude I owe. Every now and then, when its really cold outside, I go back to my old home under the bridge and remind myself that if I took a drink today by the end of the week I would be sleeping there again. There isn't enough space here for me to tell you the gifts I have been given since that day in Meductic, but don't worry. I'll be posting again. And again. And again. Thanks for allowing me to share this with you. And have a great day....unless you have other plans.


-- Edited by Wolfie on Friday 12th of February 2010 10:55:47 PM

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My alcoholic story...


For years I was in denial of my drug & alcohol addiction. I'm going back way further than most showing how I grew up & what life dealt me. My father was an alcoholic & my mother had quit having relations with him. After about 3 months he came home drunk & raped my mother. I was born 9 months later. My mother always looked at me seeing my father & hating me. At least that how I always viewed things. They divorced when I was 2 & my mother was abusive. She became addicted to prescription medications & went to several Dr's getting the same pain killers, sleeping pills, & nerve meds. I ended up molested by the time I was 11 & afterwards my life just went further downhill. I started drinking at the age of 12. Got in a bad situation & raped at 15 & ran away from home for 3 months. Coming back & hooking back up with the BF I'd left behind when I left. Ended up pregnant at 16 & too scared to get married & we split up. My oldest son was born shortly after my 17th BD. I straightened up for awhile. Quit dating & met my husband & married when I was 19. We stayed together for 21 years & I left him the day after our 21st anniversary. During that time I was a closet addict (pills) & my family didn't know because I kept it hidden & pretty much under control. After awhile I started back drinking shortly before we seperated & couldn't hide my addiction anymore & my husband became an enabler. Buying my alcohol for me & always keeping it in the house. He encouraged me because he said I was more like the person he'd married & more like myself when I drank. Go figure! lol Anyway within 2 weeks after our split I was living with a friend from work & I met her brother. We became involved staying wherever we could until we wore our welcome out & he was abusive & I stayed in the relationship for 7 months before we ended up robbing a store I used to work at for drug money. I'd became addicted to crack & cocaine by that time.  I ended up pleading to conspiracy & got 2 years probation. He had other charges against him in NC & is in a NC prison & I was released from jail in 3 months to a drug & alcohol abuse rehab. I continued my contact by mail with the BF for 5 months after our arrest. Finally the rehab convinced me that he was abusive which I also denied & I finally ended the relationship. I've been clean & sober since 02-27-08. Basically I had a poor me attitude & now am starting to find the happiness I've always thought I could never have sober!! Although the law no longer requires that I go to AA meetings or the rehab group. I still attend both on my own. I was released from jail on 06-02-08 & have maintained AA & rehab since then. Living in a transitional house setting for over a year before moving out on my own last October. I realize now it's not all about the life you grew up with. It's how you choose to live your life today!

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Courage to change the things I can,
and the wisdom to know the difference.
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SoberSteve

Heres my story


I am 28 years old (born may 1st 1981)  and here is my story leading up to today.  I remember my first drink being 15 years old.  It was champagne in Canada on New Years.  My family was visiting relatives there and once I took that drink I was hooked.  I never drank a lot but it was always there.  When I was 17 I was smoking pot saily heavily I continued this for about 9 years when for some reason it started making me really paranoid.  I tried quitting and substituted drinking alcohol daily instead.  This is where it began going downhill.  I remember a few months after quitting the pot and drinking heavily I checked my heart rate and it was beating very fast.  I went to the hospital and they said I was dehydrated, I had two doctors actually tell me if I was to quit anything it should be the alcohol not the pot.  I didnt listen and ended up in detox in July of 09 for alcohol.  I need to now mention that my girlfriend at the time (whom I was with for 9 years and we have a 6 year old son together) worked and still does at a liquor store.  Even though she never drank nearly as much as me she did drink (and continues too) and told me that this was my last chance to quit drinking, so I reluctantly went to detox and emerged 4 days later feeling great.  During this time I never been to AA or anything.  I quit on my own and felt I dealt with my problem.  I went 9 days and figured I could drink normally.  That was a big mistake also.  I ended up drinking daily again.  I had a part time job during this time and my drinking was so bad that even though I only worked 4 hours in the evening, I still drank before and took 3-4 shots of vodka mixed in my gatorade to get through the shift.  Fast forward to October 30th 2009, my ex gf and I were drinking a half gallon getting our preHalloween party on when we started arguing and she called the non emergency police line.  I didnt believe that she did so I hung up the phone, they called back and I said shes fine and hung up.  They called back and sent 2 cops to my house.  The cops arrested me for "interrupting a police report"  I had to detox again in jail and it was bad.  I was on 23 hr lockdown for 3 days and this was my first and only time ever in jail.  For the first time in my sons life I did not get to take him trick or treating.  I waited til monday when I was supposed to see the judge and sat in my cell praying and crying when a officer came in and told me to get my stuff as I was being released.  There was no charges and basically no further action would be taken.  Once I got home my ex told me to get out.  I agreed and moved about 30 mins away to my parents where I am staying now.  I started going to AA meetings and did real good.  Got my 30 day coin, got a sponsor, almost went 60 days but I ended up at my exs on new years and I dont know what I was thinking but I took a shot and ended up going on a month bender.  It got so bad that I would tell my parents I was going to a meeting but I would just go buy some beers and walk around town for a hour and come back and say it was a great meeting.  My ex still didnt want anything to do with me but I would always weasel my way back to the house etc... 21 days ago I was drinking and had 2 beers stashed in my backpack, my ex was coming to pick up our son (i get him here every weekend) and I lied telling her my parents were having a fight and asked if I could stay there the night, she reluctantly agreed but said she had to use the restroom.  While she was in the bathroom my parents came home and heard I was leaving, she said I told them they were fighting, they all pretty much had a intervention and looked in my bag and found the beers.  My ex left mad, and my parents almost kicked me out.  I had finally hit my true rock bottom, facing being homeless I begged and pleaded for them to let me stay the night.  The next day I went to 2 meetings and confessed what happened there and told my sponsor who thank God remained my sponsor.  So fast forward to today (2-21-10), I am 20 days sober and have been to 26 meetings.  During this time I have spent the best weekend days with my son ever.  It sucks that I dont get to see him everyday like I did but I figure its better to see him the 2-3 days a week sober then everyday drunk like I used to.  I finally got a good job with benefits and start monday and hope to get my own place by the summer.  Things are finally looking up and I am taking this program very seriously.  I have lost any desire to drink though I know it can creep up anytime.  My only problem now is that I miss my ex so much and we were together for 9 years.  I cannot believe she kicked me out because of my disease but I do understand.  Last I heard she was starting to "see" someone else but i am not sure if shes just saying that or what.  I would really love any advice on what to do here.  The only thing I can think of is keep striving myself and if it works out then let God take care of that end.  Thanks for reading and any advice would be great!


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i started drinking when i was 15...it was to fit in then and slowly turned into drinking high amounts for no reason, i would black out and wake up wanting to just forget that i could not remember the night before. Now this day i am crushed looking back on people i have hurt because of my drunk nights. My boyfriend doesnt even want anything to do with me, i told him many times i would change, it would only last a few weeks, then i was worse then before. i feel now finally ready to admit i have a problem...just because i dont wake up needing a drink doesnt mean i dont have a problem. but that is what i used to tell myself. i am ready to grow up and live life, not hide from it. i dont want to feel like i need alcohol to have a good time, for the last 6 months when i drank it wasnt even fun, i would start fights and make a fool of myself and the man i love more then anything. i took him for granted and that kills me. i would chose alcohol over him, never again - this is day 2 of being sober.



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My story would take up this whole site and bore most to death.....but I will give a glipse of my last relapse. My hopes are that for those of you who may still get that glimmering occational thought that they can have just one drink will remember my story and smash that thought to hell. I won't go into what lead up to the drink, but just start with that I thought I would just have a glass of wine. I drank that glass in one gulp. It lead to another since one just didn't take the edge off. Before I knew it I was stopping at the liquer store. I bought a 5th of vodka. I drank that over a period of 10 hours. By the time I was ready for bed I was at pass out stage. I woke up at 3am and realized that the obsession was back. Since I work at a hotel which has a bar and in which I had a key to the liquor room, I drove to work, snuck past the night shift and into my office, went through the kitchen and into the basement and got another 5th. I took this back to my office and drank it slowly throughout the day. By the time I left I had about 8oz left so I poured it into a water bottle and drank it staight on the way home. I got home and passed out, waking again in the middle of the night. I once again drove to work and snuck into the liquor room. I was shaking so bad by the time I got to my office I just chugged straight from the bottle. I must have drank about half the bottle within an hour. My boss found me passed out on the floor behind my desk. He took me to one of the hotel rooms and called my family. They were going to let me sleep it off. I woke again in the middle of the night and went back through the ktichen. I searched the kitchen until I found a gallon of cooking sherry and drank about half of that. Then I went back to the basement and got into the maintanence room, got a pair of wire cutters and cut through the wire cage in the walk in cooler to the beer and wine. My boss found me hiding in the closet of the room with about 10 bottles of wine. The next thing I remember is waking up in the ER.

There is no such thing as just one drink for this alcoholic.

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Hello,
My name is Barry R and I am an alcoholic.   Here is my last drunk story:

My last drunk was January 25th 2008.The night began around 5pm with the vow, I am not going to drink tonight.This undertaking was uttered in the presence of a friend, Anna, who then responded something to the effect of, why do you have to be so black and white about it?Why dont you just have a few drinks like me?

Honestly, the idea of having a few drinks had never really occurred to me.I rarely wanted to or tried to drink like everybody else.It never really seemed necessary because I had so fully accepted my condition -- I liked to get drunk.I liked to get ****ed up blackout drunk loser drunk .

When I was 16 years old I had been arrested for shoplifting, and part of the penalty was to do community service.My alcoholic (recovering) mother, who noticed all-too-familiar tendencies in her son, brought me to my first AA meeting so I could complete some of my CS requirement.

I remember hearing old people talking about their drinking and I knew exactly what they meant.Throughout the meeting, I had that sinking feeling in my chestlike when you see the flashing lights in the rear-view mirror and you know youve been caught.I knew I was an alcoholic and it was only a matter of time until I would be in AA.On our way out of the meeting, I looked up at my mother and said, I feel like I know these people.

Of course, at age 16 I was nowhere near ready to give up drinking fuck that.But I knew.I knew I liked to drink like alcoholics liked to drink.I knew I drank for the same reasons that alcoholics drank.I knew I felt the same loneliness and hopelessness I had heard expressed in that meeting and would later learn is a common experience among us folk.

So back to the night of January 25th.

Well, first let me tell you that back in October I had totaled my car.I was on my way back from Dennys at 3 in the morning, had half a bottle of whiskey in me and was getting a rise out of watching my buddy panic as I sped through intersections intentionally ignoring the stop signs. All of a sudden, on this perfectly clear night, the car started spinning.I still cannot explain that.It was as if I were driving on ice and had slammed the brakes but the pavement was dry.

We came to a stop, got out, and the two front wheels were about a block down the street.We didnt crash, nobody was hurt, and nobody even saw.We called a friend who picked us up and I went home, continued drinking that whiskey, phoned the police and told them that the wheels came off my car, and I would take care of it in the morning.Funny thing is, they didnt even question it.That was actually my only interaction with the Police regarding the accident.I talk about the car because it didnt stop me.I drove drunk very often, actually looking forward to it at times, and figured this was bound to happen sooner or later.

That happened in October.I think around December I had a very lonely drunk.I came home from the bar, grabbed my guitar and started playing and crying myself to sleep.Anna, who lived close by, called and suggested I come over because I sounded so upset.I showed crying at her door and said, Im killing myself and I dont know what to do.She told me she would help me find help, but she didnt have to after that.I had admitted my problem to another person.

The next day, my words were left echoing in my head as I felt the typical shame, remorse, and guilt I would also later find out is common among us folk.As I sat on the stained carpet of my dark basement suite, I felt the world closing in on me.This was a common feeling thoughnothing new.I felt the pressure of schoolworried I would fail my upcoming assignments and impending exams.I felt like a shitty student, a shitty musician, and an overall shitty person.Life was ****ing tough.

Then it clicked.What if alcohol was my problem?And I didnt just mean, what if I had a problem with alcohol?That was clear.I meant, what if that was my problem?Like my only problem -- and the other problems/stresses were feeding off of the alcohol?I instantly pictured the scene in Independence Day when the mother ship gets blown up and the small ships drop to the ground.What if alcohol was the mother ship and all the other problems in my life would just disappear if I tackled this one?What if as bad as I feel now, I could feel that good?What if AA could work for me how Ive seen it work for my mom?

I shit you not, my whole attitude changed at that moment.That was my mustard seed.I felt the hope and faith that I was accustomed to feeling only through my drinking.I picked up the big book my mom had conveniently given to me and began reading the forward.

The similarities were all there.Every word of that goddam book made sense to me and I knew it.I did not really fight the fact that I was an alcoholic at this point, but I was hesitant to go to AA meetings.I decided I would stop drinking on my own.Hah!Pretty standard move, dont you think?

Now this really was the first time I had made this vow.Surely, during a brutal hangover I would swear never to drink again but those times were different.At times like that, the motivation behind my decision never to drink again was to avoid pain.This time, the motivation behind my decision to not drink again was to feel pleasure as bad as I felt after drinkingthats how good I wanted to feel.I was actually getting excited not to drink because I was holding on to this idea that things were going to get better.I had seen it happen to my mom.

I did pretty well not drinking on my own.I smoked a lot of hookah, ate a lot of chicken fingers from Safeway and slept an average of 12-14 hours a day.This lasted two or three weeks until I went to Seattle for Christmas vacation.I went to a bar and saw old high school friends.They offered me beers and I proudly refused and told them I didnt drink anymore.Then I was hanging out with a small group of people at a friends house, and I decided to have one beer.Actually, I think I had a drink of whiskey and two beers.All the same.Oh yeah, and there was really good pecan pie there.That was actually delicious pie now that I think about it.No car crash, no crying, I had managed to control it I was in the clear.

Fast forward one month January 25th.We are in the car before the party and I know how I drink.Anna suggests I only have a few tonight.I know that wont be any fun for me but I tell her I think that sounds good to me.Ill just have a few.Itll be easy I will only drink when she drinks.

We get to her friends house and I politely accept my first drink of the night.A few minutes in, on my way to the bathroom I pass through the kitchen, see the bottles of vodka with nobody else around and I help myself to a few pre-piss shots.I do my business, and help myself to a few post-piss shots.

The next thing I remember is getting into a taxi with Anna who was kind of upset at my inability to control my drinking like we had planned at which point I demanded we stop by my place so I could grab my hookah.After making the stop, we got to her house, and she got some ice cream out of the freezer.I got a peek of an unopened bottle of tequila in her freezer.I waited until she fell asleep, snagged the bottle, crept outside and threw myself a party in her front yard.

I was drinking her tequila, phoned my buddy in Arizona and told him how shitty I felt about my life.I took a taxi and bought a pack of smokes at 7-11.Took a different cab back to Annas house.Got the bottle of tequila and took a third taxi to my friend Jeffs house.He rented the basement suite of a house down in Kitsilano. I went around the side of the house to his bedroom window.I slid it open, jumped onto his bed and told him to wake up and drink with me.This was around 4:30 am and he had to wake up and go to Cypress Mountain for work at around 5.I convinced him to phone in sick and hang out with me.

We walked down to Jericho Beach and I remember lying between two logs, chain-smoking and drinking warm tequila out of a plastic cup.That would end up being my last drink.

When the bottle was empty, it was around 6:30 or 7am. I figured I could either go buy one of those $10 lumberjack sandwiches from Safeway, go home, eat it in bed and wake up tomorrow or I could get an early start on the day.So, Jeff and I bussed to my place, got my car, loaded up my guitar and I drove to Granville Island to busk for the tourists, and try to make some money.I was about to begin playing and my head felt like it weighed a hundred pounds.I phoned Anna and asked if she wanted to come listen to me play music at Granville Island.Then I apologized for taking her whiskey and told her I would be happy to reimburse her for it.She was speechless.

My name is Barry and I am an alcoholic.



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The Promises Are Real!

As of today, 6.8.10, I am 2 days shy of having 8 months sober. I went to treatment in the summer of '07, so it took me about 2 1/2 years to finally hit bottom, or as I realize now, to fully concede to my innermost self that I am an alcoholic. On 10/10/09 police arrested me at 3 am, crashed in a ditch on the side of the road and charged me with OVI (DUI). I recall none of this, as I was in a complete black-out. My drinking had taken a turn for the worse, as I recall now, around 2000-2001, then really started to slide downward in around '05. In that time, I spent every penny I had from a 10-year sales career earning 6 figures + per year. The OVI was my bottom. I had to sell the house, my wife left, took my 2 year old daughter, the same old story - no friends left, out of touch with family, almost homeless, anxiety and depression were crushing. I surrendered, I prayed, I asked for help, I worked the steps with my sponsor, i got a home group, studied the big book, the 12/12...all starting in October. In December an old business friend offered me a commission position with his firm, knowing of my disease. By March I was working the biggest deal of my career. I had 3-4 great AA friends. I stayed on the beam through the leanest of times. I experienced serenity, at times, in the face of calamity, which was the first miracle I took note of. Hope. In April that deal closed, in May two others closed. I found a great home to rent - my "recovery pad." My wife and I are divorcing amicably and my little girl loves spending time with her daddy. I just received the first check and I'm out of the woods. There has been such a dramatic change in my life, my emotions, the healing that has taken place already...all after I surrendered and asked God to help me do the next right thing. Over and over. It's all true newcomers, and it is an incredible way to live. I've got a long way to go, but hope has returned and its the best "buzz" I've ever had. Thank you to the fellowship and all that it entails. I'm so grateful and proud to be a part of it. And - I'm going to Akron this weekend for Founder's Day - perfect timing! Best to all - 
Todd W  

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I'm now age 33 going on 34.  I'm from Kenya and at age 10 my parents moved to a rural place in a southern state.  This was a move I did not agree with.  Anyway, I resented the way the children treated me, so I worked really hard in school.  I reasoned, if I did well then I could go to any college I wanted, which I did.  I got into a top school, but it wasn't long that I was there before I discovered alcohol.  

I'm very responsible, so I did manage to graduate in a major that was not so challenging.  During college I did not go home very often on vacations because I prized the freedom I had living at college.  In my senior year I started using cocaine which lead to heavier drinking.  At the end of college, I didn't want to give up my partying lifestyle, so instead of going back home and finding ajob, I made a reckless move across the country to Washington state, with a bunch of other alcoholics.  They weren't very nice people either, but we shared a common interest in drinking.

So I worked in various offices on a temporary basis, while committing most of my off time to drinking.  This is not the healthiest lifestyle.  I suffered from depression and social anxiety as a result.  This went on for three years.

Things became quite low for me and my parents finally convinced me to move home.  I wanted to continue drinking, not realizing I had a problem.  I thought drinking was just something I liked to do.  Finally they put enough pressure on me that I agreed to stop for their sake.  I didn't adjust well to not drinking and spent about 6 months lying in bed thinking negative things.  Finally God brought me out of that.  I read Bill W's biography and confessed my wrong doings.  I didn't really know the 12 steps at that point, but probably followed them intuitively.

After that I did very well.  The Lord really blessed me.  I went into a job training program and enjoyed that.  I got psychiatric treatment for depression.  Then I got a job in a restaurant and experienced a great level of well being.  I didn't even think about drinking.  I started writing about sports, which I love, for a hobby.  That kept me really engaged.  I have a good relationships with all my family members.

Then a five years later (many of you can relate), the Enemy started attacking me.  The enemy likes to attack your mind with lies.  I started believing I was not good, and not successfull, and alone, and that my future was bleak.  Anyway, to make a long story short, I thought my situation was so bleak I started drinking again.  I used to spend all day drinking at my parents home, alone and feeling depressed.  Then I would go out to bars for hours looking for people to talk to.  I couldn't control my desire to drink.  I did this everyday for about 9 mons when finally I couldn't take the guilt I was feeling about drinking anymore.

God has been so good to me however.  Then I looked up the twelve steps on the internet.  I went through them in a few minutes.  The only thing I cheated on was confessing my wrongs to another person.  I figured my parents already knew what I was doing wrong, so that covered that step.  (A couple years later I did finally confess)  I tell you, that very hour I lost my desire to drink.  The Lord set me free.

That was three years ago and I'm doing very well now.  God has me on a new path.  I will be applying to graduate school next year.  I'm studying for the GRE now.  I volunteer at a nursing home, and in a psychiatric research to gain experience for grad school.  I think my new career will suit me very well (psychologist).  I still have some challenges, but I have no desire to drink.  Maybe I'm different in that I don't go to meetings or counseling for drinking.  I consider drinking a thing of the past; just a blip in my young life.  The Bible says, "Whom the son sets free is free indeed."


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hi i found this site looking for part in BIG BOOK  about ,,,running the show , lights etc part in big book . i have no big book in years . its been over 10 years now no drugs no alcohol . in short my story goes .. was homeless did shopping cart gig for cans/bottles for beer money / smokes every day . got to point i hated the booze controling me and ashamed of pushing shopping cart in city . i tried lots of times prior AA inpatient etc etc etc . anyhow i was so mad i took my 40 ounce and smashed up against a rock .  thought to myself thats it . i prayed my ass off  for weeks for the lord to take away the cravings . amazing he did one day ...... beautifull i quit drinking and got total faith in god .  now its still not easy from that point . one HAS  to keep there gaurd up you see booze in a store imediatly just turn your head / eyes away dont even think about it , advertisement same quickly turn the page . dont dwell on what if , ah looks good etc etc etc .  i now have a roof over my head a car etc etc , i know ONE drink will take me down .    i still pray every night now its mostly for others and thanking him for another day in this life through the trials and tribulations .only the strong survive .. lonnie fehrsmileconfuse

-- Edited by lcalarea47 on Sunday 27th of June 2010 05:41:10 PM

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Lexie's Story

Kinda long, because it has a couple of other people's stories intertwined with it.  It takes what it takes, for all of us:


I  grew up in a military household.  Strangely, we were stationed in the same place from the time I was five until my dad retired from the Air Force when I was in junior high, and we stayed in Colorado after that.  My dad enjoyed a cold beer if he was working in the yard, occasionally had a beer after work or with his poker buddies.  My mom's idea of "drinking" was serving Mogen David concord wine with a holiday dinner.  To my knowledge nobody in my family--even extended family--has ever had a drinking problem.  I once begged for a sip of my father's (rare) martini, and it was disgusting.

I went to high school ON the U.S. Air Force Academy, and at the time there were no women admitted.  It was GREAT for my social life--four thousand young, single guys, all clean-cut and in uniform.  In Colorado they had at the time something called "3.2 beer," which you could legally buy at 18--anything else you had to be 21 to buy.  They served 3.2 beer at cadet functions, and there were clubs for 18-year-olds that served only 3.2 beer.  I got myself a fake ID, and immediately liked the buzz I got from drinking.  There were squadron parties every weekend, and my girlfriends and I (if we didn't have a date) would call around to find out where they were.  The parties were where the REAL booze was, and I took to that immediately.  Rum and coke, seven-and-seven, Southern Comfort--all the sweet stuff that would give you a good buzz fast.  I always overdid it when I drank--and I would often drink myself sick--nothing like getting known as the girl who would wind up with her head in the toilet by the end of the night to make you popular.  And I DID want to be popular--I'd spent most of my life up until high school being one of the "outsiders"--I always had friends, but we were definitely on the lower rungs of the social ladder.  Nerds who were in the school band.  But once I was partying and drinking, I felt comfortable and seemed to fit in with other people who were in the same drunk, silly condition I was.  I could pick up guys when I was drinking.  I LOVED to party.

After a broken engagement that broke my heart while I was still living at home and going to college, I went away to school for my last year and a half.  I met my first husband when he was 18 and I was 20 and we lived in the same dorm.  I think the attraction for him was that I still had my good fake ID and could buy booze.  He was like the most utterly INSANE drinkers you read about in the Big Book.  He could be incredibly self-destructive when he was drunk, which was almost all the time. I couldn't compete with the way this guy drank, though I certainly tried.  When I graduated, he dropped out of school and got a job working for the university, while I moved back to my home town.  We still saw each other every weekend--I would drive up there or he would ride the bus down.  I got a good job and settled down and stopped drinking so much.  It was starting to upset and worry me that he didn't seem able to make the bus ride down to see me without downing a pint of brandy on the bus ride. 

One day I was telling someone at work about how worried I was about my boyfriend's crazy drinking, and she reached into a bookshelf and said, "Why don't you show him this book?"  I'd heard of AA but knew nothing about it, and I took it home and read it cover to cover.  When he came down for the weekend I told him I was worried about his seeming inability to stop drinking, and gave him the book to read.  He read some of it and thought it was interesting, but he wasn't interested in a meeting.  He said he thought he could do it on his own, but promised that if it didn't work out he would go to a meeting.  After a few unsuccessful attempts at quitting, he finally agreed to go to a meeting with me at a rehab.  He thought the people seemed nice enough, but had no interest in going back.  Eventually, I had enough of the craziness, and told him I needed to take a break from our relationship for awhile.  While we were apart, he finally went on his own to a meeting.  That was thirty years ago, and he hasn't had a drink since.

We got married after he was sober for a year, moved across the country because I was going to law school on the east coast (which I now appreciate was a huge sacrifice and risk on his part), and he got involved in AA here.  I didn't stick with Al-Anon because I was in my own little world with school.  For years, I rarely drank, mostly out of support for him.  We didn't keep it in the house, and I would go out for a drink now and then with my friends, but I didn't have the money to buy more than an occasional drink.  I graduated, got a job, we had a couple of kids, and eventually the marriage disintegrated.  I started going out drinking with my friends after work at least a couple of nights a week, and I was feeling very "trapped" in my marriage.  I started to think all my problems would be solved by getting out of the marriage.  I still cared about him, but didn't want to be married to him.  (I still need to examine how much of that was the self-centeredness that is at the root of my problems.)  He was very hurt by my leaving, but he turned to people in the program (as well as a good counselor) to help him through it.  We managed to handle the divorce in an amicable way--the boys stayed with him during the weekdays, and I was able have the "freedom" I thought I wanted.

A few months later, I got involved with another alcoholic (big surprise), and we started drinking together on a daily basis.  I wasn't the worst mother in the world, but I certainly was far from the best--my new relationships--with the man and the renewed one with alcohol--took priority over my involvement with my kids.  I rationalized it that they were better off with their dad--which was true, no doubt, but I underestimated how much they needed me.  Eventually, my new partner became ill with pneumonia and went into acute withdrawal in the hospital.  He literally hung at death's door for a couple of weeks.  His liver and kidneys shut down.  He called me from the hospital, hallucinating that there were cameras and microphones in the wall.  He had to be put into restraints because he became violent in the hospital, and slipped into a coma.  The doctors told me IF he lived, he would need a liver transplant.  When he woke from the coma he was yellow from head to toe.  His eyes looked like they had been colored with yellow food coloring.  He developed ascites (distended abdomen filled with fluid).  After a few days in the hospital's detox unit, where we went to a few meetings, he was discharged.  I had called my first husband in a panic when all this started, and he located my old Al-Anon book for me, and got one of his friends to make a twelfth-step call at the hospital.  I clung to Al-Anon as I desperately tried to maintain my own sanity through this terrifying experience.  Gradually, my new partner got better, and when they were finally able to do a liver biopsy, he was found to have EARLY cirrhosis--as long as he didn't drink he should make a full recovery.  We both went to meetings.  There were a couple of slips, but he seemed to be committed to recovery. 

When my first husband had an opportunity for a company move back to Colorado (which he desperately missed), we all (me, the ex, my new partner, the ex's new partner) decided to move back west.  In a burst of unwarranted optimism, I married the new partner, figuring he was solidly on the path of recovery.  Back in Colorado, though, my second husband soon lost his job and went back to drinking, while I desperately tried to hold things together.  Eventually, I decided I couldn't stand the prospect of another deathbed vigil, and I left the second husband.   I hated my new job, I hated my life, and when I got the chance to move back to New Jersey and go back to my old job, I jumped at it.  My kids were at the age where being with their friends on the weekends was more important to them than spending time with mom (I lived an hour and a half away in Colorado), and we decided that they or I could travel for holidays together.  I'm very fortunate that my first husband and I have remained such good friends--I stay with him and his wife when I go out to be with the kids.  I don't think that would have happened without AA.

When I came back, I started buying booze and drinking at home, by myself, for the first time.  That was the beginning of my "pickle-ization."  I met someone and we moved in together.  He was a winemaker by profession, but seldom drank.  He is a naturally moderate drinker.  There were a lot of stressful aspects to the relationship.  I continued to drink on a daily basis, and soon started hiding my drinking.  I hid bottles around the house, lied about what I was drinking, and basically began to drink in the hallmark ways that alcoholics do.  When he finally got disgusted enough to insist that I "do something" about my drinking, I joined a support group to achieve moderate drinking habits.  Even though I was grateful for the miracles I had seen in AA, including my first husband and many of his friends, I thought that AA was the absolute last resort.  I was sure that I wasn't as "bad" as people in AA, and that I was smart enough to get a handle on my drinking through my own efforts.

I spent four and a half years telling myself I was "working" on my drinking problem.  Even though I could reduce the number of drinks for periods of time, I was still drinking on a daily basis, and not making any real progress.  When my relationship with the winemaker ended (for reasons unrelated to drinking), I was completely on my own and unable to blame other people for my continued drinking.  Eventually I had to face the fact that what I was doing wasn't working.  I could not seem to get a handle on my compulsion to drink, no matter what I did.  I was physically addicted--I would binge-drink on weekends, go through withdrawals on a daily basis until I got home and could get my "dose" of alcohol, rinse and repeat.  I was starting to get some other scary physical and mental symptoms, and I was beginning to suspect I had passed the point of no return so far as drinking went.  My "moment of clarity" came after a weekend binge, following which I had shakes, dizziness, and nausea so bad that I had to have someone drive me home from work.  I no longer had classic hangovers, and this scared me. 

Having seen what my second husband had gone through when he stopped drinking abruptly, I decided to carefully attempt to detox at home.  I allowed myself one drink every several hours for three days.  I planned to have my last drink on Thursday night.  Wednesday I poured out every bottle in the house (I had accumulated a lot of bottles of wine from my years with the winemaker--even though it wasn't my drink of choice, I didn't think it was smart to keep them in the house).  The day after my last drink, I went to my first AA meeting for MYSELF.  I remember I said something like, "My name is Lexie and I think I'm probably finally ready to admit I'm an alcoholic."  On my fourth day sober, I had a sewer back up into my basement, completely flooding it.  At 10:30 that night, four days almost to the minute from my last drink, a neighbor knocked at my door, and put a cold beer into my hand, saying, "I figured you could use this."   After a three-second panic, I politely refused it.  Something told me it wouldn't be a good idea to take it, even if I poured it down the sink the way I did the wine.  My obsession to drink was lifted, and I haven't had a serious urge to drink, since.

I went to 90 meetings in 90 days, joined two home groups, in which I remain active with service.  I got a sponsor, and am finally working the steps with her.  Even though I don't struggle with not-drinking, I know I have a lot of work to do for my life to look the way I want it to look.  I'm grateful that I am no longer enslaved by my addiction to alcohol.  I'm grateful that my life holds possibilities again.  I've been sober for close to two years now, and I love going to meetings.  Life is not all peaches and cream.  I have some big problems (unrelated to alcohol) that I am currently facing.  I know I can deal with them much more effectively sober than I would have if I had continued to drink away the pain of facing them.

I just want to remind everyone that sometimes you carry the message when you don't even know it, simply by living this program.  When I was breaking through my final mental barriers to coming into these rooms, what I kept coming back to was the miracles I have seen AA work in the lives of people I've met.  Thank you for being living examples of the miracles that happen.

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Hi all, just reading through stories of my fellow AA'ers and am so grateful. we lost the last of 10 italian aunts and uncles today - we grew up w/very close cousins, all the cousins would run to one of their aunts/uncles when they were fighting w/their parents. It's like we all had numerous parents! Unreal grace. So, Aunt Mary Louise is the last to go 7 of tthem in the last aa years. We're all so tired of funerals. I am home alone, looking around realizing - the compulsion to drink has not crossed my mind. That is a miracle. It HAS NOT crossed my mind, until I wrote this realizing it. What a safe, grateful feeling to be present for this with my family and not burying it in a bar with drugs, alcohol and fake friends. AA is God in action to me. Thank you all for the strength you give me, some directly, some indirectly by just sharing your stories. I hope this story gives someone a glimmer of hope and the knoweldge that they are not alone. The promises are real.

Peace,
Todd W

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My story!!!...where do I start? Never drank in my teens or early 20's....then it was: one drink to relax after children were born. Then it escalated  to 2 drinks, 3 drinks!....I come from an alcoholic family...not my immediate family but from my grandfather who drank daily!\  I had twelve years sober when I decided to quit. Then in 1995 I developed breast cancer (which is usually attributed to alcohol use!) and started radiation treatment. It also started my drinking again....sporatic but still using!....have been drinking on and off ever since. Getting to a point no where I cannot quit. I try and try with no positive results. I wake up each morning swearing that I will quit because my grandkids and husband need me. (and that's the truth!)......blood pressure was up at te doctor the other day and I'm scared but not scared enough to quit!.....Please, please.......anyone out there.....can you help me???? I swear every day that its the last day but come nighttime........I drink!!!

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My storys not interesting enough to start its own thread but I thought I would post it here since Im procrastinating at work today...

In some ways, I often dont feel like I fit the mold of a typical alcoholic. I never drank when I was younger, I didnt start until my mid-20s. I never had that wow moment some alcoholics describe when they had their first drink. I was never a binge drinker -- until last year, I always lived in the suburbs, so Id only have 2-3 drinks when out with my friends because I knew Id have to drive 20 miles to get home.

But Ive always had problems with anxiety and insomnia. 12-13 years ago, Id come home and have a drink every night to help me calm down after work and get ready for bed. Alcohol dependency being a progressive thing, I began to drink more and more. In 2007, when I was 32, my husband, who I had dated since we were 19, left unexpectedly, and alone and despondent in our suburban house (and without anyone to provide a check on my drinking), my intake accelerated.  Eventually, after more than a decade, my one drink after work had turned in two bottles of wine per night. Id have that one drink after work, then another 3-4 glasses while reading in bed, wake up at 2am, have another 3-4 glasses to fall back to sleep...

In the year before coming to AA, I tried several times to stop drinking for 30 days... then a week... and each time I couldnt last beyond a day or two. When I got laid off Thanksgiving week in 2009, my drinking again accelerated -- Id do my job search stuff, a networking lunch, then it would be 4pm and Id be sitting at home and I figured, why not have that first glass of wine now? I dont have anything better to do. I was able to be in denial about my drinking levels because Id go once every so often to Trader Joes and get a case of two-buck Chuck, and I didnt really notice (or decided not to notice) that I was actually going every weekend.

My real aha moment came when I got in a fender-bender with my car. Due to various screw-ups with the wrong bumper being ordered, my car was in the shop for a month. Suddenly, I could only buy at the grocery store what amount I could carry home walking several blocks, which meant that I had to go to the store pretty much every day to get my two bottles of wine. I started obsessing over it and planning around it -- if I met friends for dinner, would I be home before the store closed? Because I cant do without my wine. I rotated stores so the checkers would not recognize me. I realized this was not normal. After a three-day weekend in which I stayed home the whole time and finished 7 bottles of wine by myself, I called my boyfriend (we were at that time long-distance, he was in Chicago for grad school) who had gone through a 12-step program many years ago for a drug problem, and told him I thought I was an alcoholic. He stayed on the phone with me for 4 hours and answered all my questions about AA, helped me find a meeting to go to, and helped me line up a friend to go with me. Im so grateful she said yes, because I would have bolted before walking in the door the first time if she hadnt been there encouraging me.

Ive now been going to AA meetings pretty much daily for 5 months. I have a sponsor and am working the steps. Ive had two one-night relapses during that time, but I have reason to believe the last time was really the last as those relapses have helped me identify patterns of thought and behavior that AA is helping me to change -- for example, both were during PMS, which gives me really erratic mood swings and high anxiety -- Ive marked those days on the calendar and now am scrupulous about meeting attendance, contact with my friends in AA, and attention to recovery during those times. To me the most significant part of my recovery is having my everyday anxiety levels diminish significantly -- while alcohol might smooth over anxiety at first, over time it just increases it. My therapist had told me that more than once and I dont think I really believed it while I was drinking, but it is definitely true.

My biggest problem in sobriety so far has been the insomnia coming back. But after a few weeks of erratic sleep (almost zero for the first 3-4 days after I quit drinking, it was awful), I am sleeping better than I ever did. I think the alcohol interfered with my sleep a lot more than I realized -- passing out is not the same as restful sleep. I had also tried melatonin many times over the years, unsuccessfully, until I recently read that it is much more effective when allowed to dissolve under the tongue rather than being swallowed (there are special sublingual formulations for this purpose). Now I take it every night and it really helps. I also take valerian and cut out caffeine a couple years ago. Occasionally I have a night of poor sleep but I think thats just called being alive!

A couple of weeks ago my boyfriend and I broke up. Completely amicable, we love each other but we just cant keep the long-distance going for another 2 years until he finishes his program, especially since he now thinks that in order to find a job doing what he wants to do he may not be able to come back to our home city. But I am going through the breakup of a serious relationship for the first time in sobriety -- when my husband left, I got through it by drinking a lot. Now that I dont have that option, Im having to learn other strategies for the first time! Im grateful to have the support of my friends in AA, who have been wonderful.

So in summary, I was never a binge drinker, never blacked out (I dont think), didnt start young, never did other drugs, never got a DUI, never suffered professional or financial consequences due to my drinking -- but Im still an alcoholic and am so grateful I found my way to AA. I hope my story strikes a chord with someone who might be out there thinking they cant really be an alcoholic. If youre dependent on and obsessed with alcohol, you just might be, even if you dont have a low bottom and everything looks good on the outside.

GG

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Hello everyone...My Name is David and I am a recovering alcoholic. Honestly... I don't know what to say... Moments like these are so difficult to define by words alone, and for this alcoholic were few and far between as well. I walked into AA 11 years ago, with a heavy heart and a bruised ego, shameful of my past and not so optimistic about the future. As you all know, No alcoholic can achieve any success, in sobriety, on their own terms and conditions and if my disease were left unchecked, either would I as well. So, it came as no surprise, that I remained in a state of limbo for so many years, never staying focused long enough to experience any lasting sobriety. You see, I never fully grasped the intense struggles and inner turmoil that defined this alcoholic. The blessings, promises and reassurances afforded to recovering alcoholics were nothing more than a silly pipe dream to me. Thank God, though, his ways aren't my ways and his thoughts my thoughts. By letting go and letting God, I began the sobering up process once again, far away from the comforts I was accustomed to for so long. Though, I came back, this time, for all the wrong reasons, I sobered up, surprisingly, for all the right ones. One of my greatest fears have always been, the prospect of living life on lifes terms void of alcohol. When trials and tribulations would rear its ugly head, there would be no other possible choice, for me, in dealing with these frustrations, other than drinking. However, through the sobering up process, I began to acquire the tools necessary to maintain a comfortable sobriety. What I've learned and experienced in the past 11 years, has given me an immense sense of gratitude for today and promising insights for tomorrow. I've been given a second chance that so few alcoholics can enjoy, one day at a time. The friendships I've forged in sobriety are priceless, and the insights I've gained as well, have helped me immensely during this sobering up process. The Shred of hope I've clung to throughout my 9 years, have been, for me, a Foreshadowing of the grace to come, and a greater glimpse of my probable future in sobriety. Of course, none of this would be possible for me, if Sobriety doesn't remain my priority. It has for today, and for that, I thank my higher power, whom I call Jesus Christ and all of you.
God bless.



-- Edited by Mr_David on Saturday 20th of October 2012 09:32:27 PM

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My AA story so far...

I am 27 years old and from Nottingham, England. I am currently over three months sober thanks to the support of AA.

Drinking has always been a problem for me. From the moment I first got drunk aged 14, my relationship with alcohol has never been healthy. I used it as an escape from life, from myself, from others, from reality. Later I used it to function in day to day situations - anything frmo socialising to getting on a bus, making a phone call or leaving the house in order to get more drink. Eventually I used it in order so survive physically and I couldn't stop without help.

My alcoholism was steady in its progression but spiralled out of control during a year living in Prague. I drank every day, often in the mornings. I lost my girlfriend and my job and returned to England where I went into a rehab. I had my fiest sober day for years. I clearly wasn't ready yet to fully admit my problem and went out for some more pain. The next year was a nightmare. I was hospitalized 6 times, once for vomitting blood uncontrollably. In the days or weeks between hospital detox and relapse I did nothing to help my recovery. I thought AA was for someone else.

3 months ago I was a broken human being. I was drinking 5 bottles of wine a day and if I had any less I experienced terrifying withdrawals. I was physically declining and mentally and spiritually shattered. I considered, quite seriously, my own death. I had nothing left in me, I was broken, a dead man walking.

I then went into a clinic for the second time and was introduced to AA. At first I was still reluctant and cynical. I was fixed physically but not mentally or spiritually. But I kept coming back. After a while the routine of the meetings begun to help and the messages I was hearing made more sense. I got to know other AA members - those I thought were too old, too boring for my time. I was accepted. I got a sponsor and started doing service.

The fog begun to lift. I looked forward to meetings, in fact I realised I couldn't survive without them. I admitted that alone I am powerless over alcohol and always will be. The clinic fixed me physically, but AA has begun to heal the deeper wounds inside my head. I have learnt a new way of life that I never thought possible. I have gained true grattitude and humility and I live my life according to the simple principles of AA.

That I am not drinking today is a miracle. I don't know exactly how it works but AA is the sole reason for the quality of my life today. After all, it's not just being sober that is important, it's the quality of that sobriety.

AA saved my life and for that I am eternally greatful. If I follow the advice given, one day at a time, then I can live my life free from the misery of addiction.

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My name is Wiley and I'm an alcoholic. I am a 54 yr old white male, married, with three children, of which two are adults, 28 and 31, and the 'baby' is 15, a junior in high school.

I was born in Detyroit, Michigan, the third of five 'natural' kids, plus two more were later adopted when I was about 14 yrs old. My mother was a housewife and my father was a career Detroit police officer after serving as a US Marine in WWII. Both parents immigrated to the US as children, my mother with her parents from Ireland, my father with his from Scotland. Both my grandfathers were alcoholic. My maternal grandfather was unknown to me, having died drunk when I was a year old. My paternal grandfather drank until age 70, then quit after embarrassing everyone at my sister's wedding. He remained sober till he died 7 yrs later. My father said he refused promotions in the police department so he could stay on precinct patrol, the better to 'keep an eye' on his drunken father, my grandfather. Alcohol had great negative effects on me and my family even before I took my first drink.

When I was about 12 yrs old my family moved to a small farm town in central Michigan, population 1800, when my former school in Detroit held 2400 students. From inner city to working farm brought on culture shock to say the least, but we adjusted and it was an overall good thing. I learned the meaning and worth of hard work, and developed a love for animals and nature I carry to this day.

I did well enough in school, got mostly As, and played on various sports teams - football and wrestling mostly. I took my first drink in 1970 at age 15 after accepting a ride with some 'older' boys (16, 17, 18) who were out 'cruising' town on a Friday night and gave me a couple beers. I mostly pretended to drink the horrible stuff, spitting it out surrepticiously when I could. I got mildly drunk on the equivalent of two beers. Within 6 months I became more and more a part of the local teen crowd, all of us newly mobile with driver licenses and cars, and began to drink more and more often. By age 16 I would drink up to 6 beers on a given night, usually on the weekends as it was hard to get away from parental oversight, especially since my father left the Detroit PD and became the town's chief of police. It was during my 16th year that the 'party mode' got fully implanted in me. By the end of that year I could drink as many as 8-10 beers, though it made me stupid drunk to do so. I also began smoking marijuana, but had not yet begun other drugs. None of this had any noticeable negative effects as yet. I kept my grades up and continued in sports.

By my senior year - 1973 - I was probably drinking alcoholicly. I was always the 'last guy standing' at a beer party, the guy known to drink the most, an 'achievement' for which I was notorious. I typically drank 12 beers or more, smoked unknown amounts of marijuana, on a given party night. Throughout high school, most of us poor boys 'knew' we were going to Viet Name upon graduation and didn't make many plans beyond having a ball before we went. The draft was ended however, and I did not have to go. I quickly made a plan to attend school at a small Michigan state college. I went to do two things: play ice hockey and party. My program of study was chosen with this in mind. I took a technical program because most of the work was done in afternoon labs - no homework and no getting up early. My drinking got worse and worse, marijuana always present, and I added new drugs: amphetamines, mushrooms, hash, and hash oil. After a year, I settled on alcohol as my drug of choice, though marijuana was always present. I slacked off the other drugs. After two years of college, a knee injury cost me my walk-on scholarship as a hockey player, and I never made it back to school for my junior year - no money and too irresponsible to save it or secure a student loan. My father had retired and bought a bar where I went to work as a bartender and weekend bouncer. Already an alcoholic, the fox was now in charge of the henhouse.

To forestall a drunkalogue, let me state simply that the next 7-8 years were a foggy haze of ever-increasing drinking and carousing. Where my previous antics had been in line with typical teen alcohol-induced rowdiness, an ugliness began to settle in, and I became a constant bar-brawler and violent trouble-maker. Legal problems forced me to leave Michigan, and further drinking wherever I went led to further legal problems and additional moves to stay ahead of John Law. I went from Michigan to Ohio to Oklahoma to Texas to Oklahoma to North Carolina before age 28. From age 18 to 28 I was arrested over 30 times for the expected charges: DWI, drunk and disorderly, failure to appear, asaults, assault & battery, etc. From age 18 to age 31 - 3 yrs after I got sober - there were bench warrants out for my arrest somewhere in the US. I'd been shot twice and cut too many times to count. I left behind two broken marriages, with a child left behind in each. I owed $17,000 in back child support and hadn't even filed taxes in over 7 yrs. Though I knew at about 21-22 that I was an alcoholic, I did nothing about it until age 28. Anyone who voiced to me their belief I was an alcoholic was verbally or physically slapped down. When I began drinking in earnest at age 16, it took all noght to drink 6 beers and get drunk. I spent the last two years (26-28) drinking at least 12-16 beers every day, and at least twice weekly up to 30 beers, smoking grass all the while. To quit drinking meant to go into physical withdrawals within 12 hours: sweats, shakes, vomiting, etc.

I spent the last six months of my drinking homeless in Oklahoma City. I 'lived' in an abandoned garage behind an empty house. I had to wait till dark to sneak in or out, so close were the neighbors. I finally ran out of the ability to keep the alcohol coming and went into hard withdrawals. By ways still unclear to me I ended up in a local ER where a sister living in North Carolina was called by the OKC police and ER staff. The next day after medical detox I went by one-way ticket on a bus to North Carolina where I stayed with that sister and her husband whom I'd never met because I was in a drunk tank somewhere when they got married. I arrived in NC in Oct 1983, supposedly to make my stand, quit drinking, and start a new life. This attempt at sobriety lasted less than two weeks - my sister's husband became my new drinking, grass, and party best buddy. By summer of 1984 I had racked up 6 new charges in NC and was at the very end of my rope, too sick and tired to make another dash for the border and greener pastures. I ended up in a government rehab detox ward for two weeks and upon my discharge was handed over to local police. My charges were combined and I was given a 7 yr prison sentence. I appealed it and somehow got 10 yrs intensive probation instead.

I did not drink or smoke dope, but only because I was giving urine samples every other day. I attended very few AA meetings, only when pressured by my PO. However, after about 9 months of this white-knuckle, torturous, forced abstinence, I noticed something on my walk to an AA meeting, still attending only to please my PO. I noticed that after many months of thinking about taking a drink constantly, I now couldn't recall the last time I'd had the urge. It had only been a day or two, but that seemed a lifetime after constant hourly cravings. This was my first awareness that yes, sometimes the things they promised in these damned AA meetings do come true. It gave me strength and a more honest, internalized motivation to stay sober took root. I began taking the Antabuse I'd earlier refused. I began attending meetings more often, because I wanted to rather than was forced to. I began listening, even sharing once in a while. Still too willful, I continued in AA for another year before obtaining a sponsor - but I luckily chose a good one.

She tore me up, seemed to understand my street tough, jail rat personna wouldn't be dented otherwise. I'd heard I should get a male sponsor and truly cannot recall how I ended up with a female sponsor, but we joked it 'counted' because she happened to be a lesbian. But yes, she tore me up, never let me float any bullsh*t, or displace blame or responsibility on anything or anyone but myself. She corralled me into and through the hard work, the tough stuff, the Steps, but always leaving it up to me whether to keep going. She explained how it is no good to think about shovels or look at pictures of shovels when I want to dig a hole, that the hole doesn't get dug until I pick up the shovel and start digging - her way of teaching me that you can't think yourself sober, that you have to work yourself sober, i.e., Don't Think...DO. I didn't know until another year that she was a counselor at a local treatment center. She'd suggested I accept requests to be a sponsor to others when they first came up when I was 2 yrs sober. After another year she said I showed the makings of a good counselor if I was interested. At 42 months sober I became a substance abuse counselor and remain so to this day, a 24 yr career and still going.

AA made all the difference. Immersion among other alcoholics - recovering alcoholics this time - was invaluable. I didn't have to make all the mistakes, alone, by trial and error, if I could only trust their experience, strengths, and share in their hopes, if only I could follow the AA steps method. I did, and it paid off, big time. At first I attended AA about 5-6 times per week. This leveled off to about 2-3 meetings per week after 5 yrs or so. Now I attend 1-2 meetings per week. I still use a sponsor (though my original, life-saving sponsor died many years ago), and I serve as a sponsor to several young men, most of whom with violent drinking histories. I could not bring myself to take from AA when I needed and not sticking around to give back. I don't lie and cheat, fight, etc., anymore because I don't have to.

I am now married for the 4th time, but this time for over 16 yrs. We are happy, living in rural North Carolina on a beautiful, slow-rolling southern-style river. I met my wife when I was already over 10 yrs sober. She cannot conceive of a drinking me. I am peaceful in my heart and soul and serenity graces all. I have long since forgotten what a hangover feels like.

I have not had a drink since August 16, 1984, and I intend not to drink today. As for tomorrow - I'll worry about tomorrow in the morning.



-- Edited by Wiley on Monday 16th of August 2010 04:35:13 PM

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Where do I begin? 

Well I'll start with the present.  I'm a 27 year old woman.  Wife and mother.  I've been married 5 years and we have 2 children, 3 years and 6 months.

My life growing up was just about what anyone could ask for.  Not very much money, but my parents are very strong and still together.  My grandmother was an alcoholic from about 15 to 66 when she died.  Her drinking was so bad I only met her once.  My dad has told me horror stories about his upbringing involving her drinking.  (That's probably why they were so good to me.)  My dad drank during my childhood (and still does).  He has struggled for years, quitting and going back, quitting and going back and so on.  He was always okay when he drank.  We got into a few fights but I was equally to blame.  I'm a little different in my alcoholism than my father and grandmother.  She drank day and night (never knew the difference between the two), my father drinks everyday after work until dinner.  Me, I drink occasionally.  Once or twice every month or two.  When I do, however, its bad.  I drink so much til I can't even lift the glass to my lips any longer.  I think the only reason I don't drink more often is because of my family.  Before I was married I drank like this and did it again as soon as I started feeling better a few days later.  I really don't know where to begin, this is my first post and I'm scared of failing.  I've been in denial for so many years and this is the first time of me admitting to having a problem.  I've almost killed myself in the past with drinking and driving and getting into fights and putting myself out there for men (all the things I would never do sober).  I hope and pray and I can get through this, my drinking has affected so my of my relationships in the past, but my husband and children are my world now and I can't lose them.  My husband has talked to me in the past about my drinking and he sees it, but I always denied it because I never drank that often.  He saw through it, even though it wasn't very often, when I did decide to have a drink, it turned into bottles of wine or bourbon until I blackout.  I hate when I do it, I hate the way I act, I hate the way I feel the next day, I hate the shame!  I've had my light bulb moment and if I never put one sip of alcohol in my body for the rest of my life, I'm ok with that and proud of that. I love myself more.  I pray everyone who reads this and beyond a smooth outcome on whatever road you're traveling.


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My 'story' as I see it, 3 months into accepting my disease
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So... how did I get here?  Not sure... I think I was 'here' all along... as far back as my first drinks as a high school Junior.  (My 25th reunion was last night -- I could not go... just not at all ready or stable enough to do so).  So here I sit this morning feeling sorry for myself, as I get emails from old friends giving me grief about why I was not there... little do they know...

I get down and start judging myself for having this inherited disease and feeling like a 'bad' person even though I know deep down that my attempts to face this head on (my choice), is a GOOD thing.  It's not so much a MORAL failure as much as a disease that I am not able to fight alone.  I have to keep reminding myself that I am not a LOSER because I am an alcoholic - this is a disease... just like cancer, or diabetes or any other disease that nobody wants.   I am a WINNER because I recognize it and am not giving up my fight against it, even though I have not been so successful at truly remaining sober yet.  I still slip when I am alone and sad sometimes.  With two teenagers and a busy husband... my life is changing so much and I find myself alone at home a lot and I'm doing my best to make that NOT happen since I know this is when I struggle the most...  So many of us can't face the truth.  I have come to the fork in the road where there is no other choice for me.  The other options are not options.  Period. 

I am an alcoholic who is has slowly accepted that this disease is NOT going anywhere, ever... and I have to be diligent, aware and committed to the fight and to the recovery for the rest of my life.   There is no going back to 'normal' drinking... there IS no normal drinking for me. 

I only realized that I had crossed the line from drinker to 'heavy' drinker, to daily drinker to admitted alcoholic this past Summer, at the age of 42.  Yes, alcoholism certainly IS a progressive disease.  I had a psychiatrist 'label' me as an alcoholic 4 years ago, 10 minutes after meeting me at an appt. I made just to get some antidepressants and/or anxiety meds (I NOW am dually diagnosed with an anxiety disorder and depression, but due to my alcoholism... anxiety meds are not really an option for me, so I am learning coping skills - ever so slowly and painfully).  I was completely horrified and insulted at that time... I was mad as hell;  How DARE she so quickly label me.  What an idiot, I thought... I think I even wrote her a letter telling her how out of line she was.  lol.   So a few more years passed and things got worse.  Back then I was not half as bad as I came to be a few years later, and yet she knew...

Fast forward a few years from that day... things progress... my denial progresses... my life goes downhill a day at a time, picking up speed as it goes...

and I quietly admit myself into an outpatient program in early September of this year when I had no choice but to admit that my life was spiraling way out of control... My drinking (mostly alone and hidden) was getting harder and harder to maintain.  I was not enjoying any part of my life even things, people and places that last year I loved...  I couldn't remember the last time I felt happy... and I was falling down drunk on an almost nightly basis for the last few weeks/months of my drinking; hurting myself... embarrassing myself in front of my two young teenagers and my husband (mostly)... crying all the time... getting really close to suicidal.  My relationships were going bad, I was isolating, I stopped working out completely (which I LOVED)... All I wanted to do was have a drink and take a nap, have a good cry and start all over again.  ALL the time.   Two years ago, I was a runner... completed 2 half-marathons, took great care of myself... fitness was my life... and I managed to do it while drinking.  At that time I also embarked on a new education in a new career and things were going great in that direction.  I had opportunities that I quickly ruined due not to drinking on the job (I never did that) but because my drinking had me insane and miserable... that began to show in my work and my attitude.  

'Suddenly' my alcoholism reared it's ugly head in a way that I could no longer deny.  

I continued to self medicate all my pain regarding family situations and my past...  (lots of 'stuff' there but basically I was self medicating for 10 years - it took me that long to progress to this level of disease where denial was no longer working).  I stopped seeing my psychologist for a while and all hell broke loose.  My drinking took that progressive downhill turn, and as it worsened, I gained 15 lbs, stopped running, stopped caring about myself, started hating myself... stopped caring about ANYTHING and stopped dealing with any emotion other than the hunger for a numbing drink... I was just absolutely no longer someone that I knew.  I would look in the mirror and didn't recognize myself.  I couldn't remember things... I would literally blow off my son's baseball games in the summer the one night I wasn't working because I'd rather stay home and drink in my yard alone.  I made excuses... but I only fooled myself... until I couldn't even fool myself anymore.  I hated me and what I had become. 

Most mornings,  I couldn't remember anything... I was waking up with black and blues all over my body - the last one was over my eye... Thank GOD I mostly drank alone and at home.  I always kept my drinking under control when out with friends and rarely drove drunk but alone... I let loose...  Thank GOD a coworker who also has a problem and has done the steps before with regard to another addiction - recognized this in me after a night of drinking together by the pool while my daughter had her friends over.  My friend and I got rip roaring drunk...  Luckily, she was less out of it than me... I fell, broke glass... smashed my head on the cement floor and didn't feel it (til the next day)... and she - this friend - offered to show me the way to AA the next day, even though she herself was not ready to put down the drink.  Since then, I lost my job... and we lost touch... I was not good to her and I made a fool out of myself with my coworkers and employers because of my anger and defensiveness... but God put her in my path for a brief time for a reason.  This much I know and am grateful for.
I can never repair that damage to my reputation but I can move past it and move forward...

So here I am, three months into acknowledging my problem... and slowly accepting that a drink is something that I cannot have ever again, (although I am hardly 'recovered'... I am fighting, doing all the 'right' things... but struggling to not pick up and still sometimes losing that struggle).  I guess I am a stubborn, slow learner... But every time I fall, I am more disgusted and determined... so I keep going...

I am now starting to truly map out my week around AA meetings - and this is a challenge.  By the grace of God... things are starting to turn around... I have a new job even better than the last one... good people are coming into my life... my head is clearing up and I am not in a bit of denial about the disease, as much as I hate that I have it because it requires me to dig deeper to find out who I am other than an alcoholic and who are my real friends?  Who is going to judge me (many... and hwo needs those kinds of friends) and maybe I will earn my own self respect back.   What is going to happen?  Things are changing and that is scary...  The amazing part of all this is that I was never a person of great faith and I am now able to see a higher power at work in the way some things happen - I am finding my faith... Funny little coincidences that I notice - sooo many of them.  For instance, as during my last slip when I had a drink in my hand and was despairing about that a few days ago, I turn on the TV while I'm feeling alone and sorry for myself and isn't there a show on disovery health about alcoholism and the stories of two people who died from it and detailed information about how alcohol slowly kills... God at work, I believe...  Many things like that have been happening since I have begun to immerse myself in this new world of AA.  I'll get to the liquor store and my wallet is gone... I'm on my way and my daughter calls for a ride... so many things - My higher power is on my side and is showing me that I need to keep on this path to recovery... I believe that with all my heart.

While I am far from 'recovered' or even truly 'sober' (as I have had slips every 2 weeks since I started), I know that it is meant to be for me to find my way through this disease... too many chances I have been given... Too many good things put in my path since humblingly acknowledging that I am not ok, that this disease has a hold on me.

Although I am usually not one to drink and drive... toward the end, I did start to do that when I would run out of alcohol at home... My last bad drunk, I realized after the fact from looking at my debit statement that I had made not one but two trips to two different liquor stores that night.  Oh.  My.  God.  No recollection.   There but for the grace of god... I could have killed someone, been arrested (never have thank God) or killed myself.  

I have so many nutty stories that go along with my awful drinking... like falling through my glass shower door not once but twice last year... falling down the stairs, and worst of all at the end of this summer, my husband almost had to call someone to take me away because I was out of my mind drunk, infront of my kids... telling them, him and my father (who he had called for help with me) all about him being married before me, cheating on me (10 years ago), his drunk driving accident when he was 16 where 2 friends of his died... (he no longer drinks)... and all kinds of other stuff like being raped in a park when I was in college (and drunk, shocking right?).  Nobody knew these things, least of all my kids... I never wanted my kids to know about their father's history... or the fact that his ex lives in our town - I protected them fiercely for years from this... and then I did this to them, to him and to myself in a drunken rage... I have to live with this.  Nothing will ever undo this.   Horrible...

Yes, I am an alcoholic.  Yes, I have done things to damage my kids and their view of me (although up until that awful night, I had myself convinced that neither they nor my husband really realized how bad I was... because nobody ever complained about it to me).   Maybe they DIDN'T know... or maybe they did.  No matter.  I knew... and now that I know and accept... I am trying to do better.

My greatest hope beyond finding my own peace and serenity is that by showing them a positive role model now... it is not too late to redeem myself, just as they are getting to an age where they will be confrontinting issues about drinking, drugs and relationships.  Maybe they will learn from me and not repeat this pattern that runs through my family and their father's.  I pray that I get well and that they don't ever fall victim to this disease.  I always knew it was in my family, but I never thought I would fall victim to it.  Nobody does, I guess.

Well, if it could happen to me, a smart, relatively put together kind of woman who does anything she sets her mind to... it can happen to anybody... and so it has, over and over again...

Wow, I have a hell of a lot of work to do... one day at a time.  I'm so glad I found this website, have myself gonig to meetings, becoming more involved in the AA community, and confronting my issues...  but it is such an overwhelming task.  I need to slow my mind down and take it a minute at a time.  I got to my morning meeting today and will head to yoga in a bit and maybe another meeting tonight...

I recently read: Drinking, a Love Affair, by Carolyn Knapp and continue to read the steps for women, the big book and several other books on topic to keep my mind engaged in the reality that is my alcoholism.  It is the only way I know to start this journey and not stray from it. 

Jeanne


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I'll always be grateful for MIP, I've been here since 2006 on the al-anon board/chat room. It was there that I found my way into face to face recovery. I've been waiting to tell my story.... I fear being judged, because I have been. ("God, please spare me from the desire for love, approval or appreciation...") Here goes......

My story:

It was obvious that my husband had a problem with alcohol and the MIP family here literally located the al-anon meeting for me to crawl into on Labor Day 2006. I eventually found a sponsor there, who sat in both programs... I wanted what she had, but dang, I sure felt sorry for her, for being an alcoholic. She occasionally suggested that I might be one too, so I'd just stop calling her for a few days. I was more direct with her once, insisting that I had quit drinking on my own, had never even vomited, never really got "drunk" because I would just get "too sleepy" (I was on anti-depressants at the same time) and I just didn't look anything like my husband! Please understand!!!

Five years earlier, my husband had accepted a job as President/CEO of a friends company, a friend he had shared a drug habit with in the early years of our marriage. I had an instinctual fear about it, those early years were pure hell... but the offer was soo financially attractive, that I agreed. I believed him when he said, "This will be the best thing that ever happened to our family."

Within days of the move, he was MIA and I was feeling abandoned again. Literally, I said to myself... "if you can't beat em, join em." I also reasoned that they were all millionaires, so how could there actually be a problem?? (I wanted what they had, hehe.) Thus began the Margarita Years. A margarita (or two) every day until I would "get sleepy" and go to bed. But.... we were now together (picture bluebirds and hearts floating around our heads) ... I was now included! I had gained their acceptance! He was now coming home on time and we would sit together with our margaritas on the backyard swing... bitch about all the assholes in the world.... and then I would take "my nap" and he would watch TV until bedtime.

Things got out of control eventually, I became very depressed, I went to see an alternative doctor, went on a cleanse which excluded sugar in all its forms, including alcohol. So I quit drinking, joined al-anon, eventually my husband moved out, and the divorce proceeded.... I began to get more stressed. One day, I confided to my sponsor, that as I walked past my husbands scotch decanter, I decided to smell it. In my opinion, she seemed to waaay over-react and suggested that if I truly didn't have a problem, I probably wouldn't mind emptying all the liquor in the house. It felt like a dare, so I invited her to come over and help me empty it all (Eventually I had to buy some brandy to make the cherries jubilee, and some whiskey for the bread pudding, some wine for the risotto........)

I eventually decided to move back to my home state. I began to have nightmares that I would drink again when I moved home because... I come from an alcoholic family, that is what my family does!!!! Plus, I was beginning to feel enormous anxiety. I didn't understand why I was so frightened. Two weeks before the actual move, I got Bronchitis which made me sooo effing angry at God, how could I get sick NOW, at this critical time when I had so much work to do... I had not been sick for at least 3 years, my immune system had become so strong, why now??

well...... it gave me more time to spend in the al-anon chat room where I met someone who had recently realized he was an alcoholic... and he started suggesting I was too. What?!! Just because I use Bach Flowers Rescue Remedy? (27% alcohol) Well, the relationship was waaay too much fun to log off for good, so I stayed, and we chatted every day. One day, he described alcoholism as a "sickness of the soul," and I sooo understood that. Probably that same day, my sponsor phoned and asked if I wanted to join her by going to "one of those crazy AA meetings." I said, " You know what? I feel crazy enough to do that!"

It was not at all what I expected, I didn't feel different from "them." I felt a wonderful connection. So I kept going to that noon meeting, in that little church room... I will never forget the warmth and love in that room. (And, I much preferred these meetings to al-anon, these people actually worked the steps, hehe.) I would introduce myself as " ------, I have a desire not to drink today. And, I just kept going back.

One day, "Chuck" the old guy with 30-plus years of sobriety, turned directly to ME after my share and said, "ya know, I've been around a long time and when someone introduces themselves like that.... it pretty much leaves the door open to drink again."

OMG, I was insanely furious. How dare this SOB cross-talk and humiliate me like this!!! It wasn't until that evening that I recalled something my sponsor said to me, "if I have that kind of reaction, there may be some TRUTH to it." I calmed down, knowing that in truth....... I could not imagine NEVER drinking again. (Chuck died a few months later, I am grateful to you, Chuck! xx)

On October 31, 2009, I took the suggestion of my MIP friend and wrote about what I could recall about my drinking history, which ended 3 years earlier. I can't say I hit "rock bottom" that night, I don't even know the date of my last drink. All I can say of that night is....... I experienced a "sacred moment." I will never, ever forget how different it felt, just to walk. I'll never forget looking at myself in the mirror, laughing and crying at the same time, the "scales" had fallen from my eyes... I understood now. Suddenly, my life made sense, I was an alcoholic. And I could now see, how God had been reaching for me from every direction, indeed I believe it was the reason I got sick, so that I would have this time to KNOW MYSELF before I went home to be near my alcoholic family.

The following week, I packed up my belongings, said goodbye to my gorgeous home in the exclusive gated community, and made the move back to my home state. God was so gentle with me that week... everything had fallen into place so beautifully.

It is so important for me to include this little story:   During the 8 hour drive home, I began to think about everything, and I began to feel tremendous grief. Suddenly, I noticed a cop in my rearview mirror. He pulled me over, walked up to my car and asked, "Where do you have to get to so fast?!! Do you have any idea how fast you were going?"

I guessed, "75?" And he motioned that I should guess higher.

I said, "85???" And he motioned yet again... higher!!

And I started sobbing, thinking, "How could I be so unaware?!!" (not to mention, "this sounds effing expensive!") Tears began spraying from my eyes.

With a comforting voice he asked me, "What's going on?" I don't know how long I bent his ear as I cried, but he responded to me with the most gentle voice, saying,

"You know everything is going to be alright, don't you?"

The sobbing subsided, and I told him, "I know I should know that."

He said, "I want you to slow down and get there in one piece." And he let me go. I know I deserved a big fat ticket. As I drove away and resumed the trip, I knew that it was God who wanted to tell me... everything is going to be alright. I drove the rest of the way in gratitude. I was feeling His grace again.

I began to attend AA meetings, began introducing myself as an alcoholic. But, it didn't take long for this AA suit to feel "itchy." I began to have doubts as I compared my story and have often wondered if I am actually an alcoholic. It doesn't help that my family and kids do not believe I am an alcoholic.... And it didn't help that at one of my early AA meetings, a man celebrating his 16th Birthday turned to me after my share and said, "AA is not al-anon. (dramatic pause) And al-anon is not AA (and he looked directly at ME with another dramatic pause.) It is wrong to get them confused. We are here to talk about our drinking problem."

That was the day that I actually drove home from a meeting in tears, imagining that I could get kicked out of AA.... imagining myself hanging onto an AA table leg for dear life. So I phoned my sponsor, and she said, "------, you have a every right to talk about ANYTHING that threatens your sobriety." But, I sometimes still feel judged.  Sometimes I don't know where I belong.

This is getting long but...... I decided to join in here at MIP because my brain still wants to doubt that I belong in AA. I've had two sponsors, the first one chuckled and said, "well dear, I am not a gambling woman, but if I had to place my bet...." and she smiled at me sympathetically and put her arm around my shoulder. My current sponsor asked if I can identify at all with the fellowship, the feelings, the BB... and there is no question, I do. I know that the only requirement for membership is the desire to stop drinking. This doesn't help either.... I wish Bill W. didn't describe alcoholism the way he does. I do not have the compulsion or the "allergy" that is described. During the Margarita years, I certainly couldn't wait until my husband came home, and sometimes I didn't wait! So, okay there was a compulsion there. But my last drink, in fact, my last several drinks... I never finished.... the waiter took away half my drink.

I understand why I drank during those years. I didn't want to be here anymore. I would imagine, no.... I would WISH that any effing truck that drove anywhere near me, would just effing hit me. Whenever I drove through the cemetery going into town, I longed for the peace that I imagined was there, I just wanted to lay down and be at peace too. At a time in my life when I had every material thing I had ever hoped for, the American dream come true....... I was full of despair, I was empty. It felt like my soul had already left me and I just didn't belong here anymore.

Some might describe my story as "high-bottom," but I don't know how much lower it gets.

Thanks for listening.

Namaste (((my friends))))




-- Edited by gladlee on Sunday 30th of January 2011 03:02:06 PM

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Hi Everyone, I'm Dave. An alcoholic.
As with so many in this program, I started drinking as a youth.  Small town with nothing else to do.  I got married when I was 19, joined the service, and we started popping out kids.  We were married 8 years, and through various circumstances, I ended up with custody of my kids when the divorce was said and done.  By that time, I was out of the service, and a cop.  I was in a high profile position, a lot of contact with the public, and was involved in the community, and raising my kids on my own.  Through it all, alcohol was taking a stronger and stronger hold on me.
In the spring of 1990 I was involved in a criminal trial where 3 airline pilots flew their commercial jet liner from Fargo ND to Minneapolis while intoxicated. (See "Grounded" page 522 in the big book.) I remember that case particularly well for reasons i will get back to later on here.
I continued my downward spiral into alcoholic "bliss".  In August of 1998 I had a heart attack at 43 years old.  I nearly died.  I stayed off of alcohol for a few months, but was soon back to my old ways.  I could no longer function in my profession because I could not pass the physical, and left law enforcement.  I worked as a carpenter, a car salesman, and finally ended up driving semi for a living.  My kids were grown, and gone by this time, and didn't have much to do with me even then.  They were sick and tired of being sick and tired (as I look back on it now of my drinking and abusive ways). 
In 2005 I got involved with a married woman, and had a tumultuous affair that drove me crazy with alcohol, lust, and sick thinking.  I would drink each night after I parked my semi, and covered my trail so I would not get caught.  Eventually, I left the first company I drove for, started with another, and was caught with alcohol on my breath by the owners wife.  I lost that job, and the affair was in a downward spiral as well... My solution was to run off to Colorado, to another crazy affair.  That thankfully lasted only two months, and I had to call and borrow money from my Mom to get back.  I moved to an eastern South Dakota town, got another truck driving job, and continued to drink.  On June 14, 2009 I went to a bar after work one night, and drank to oblivion... On the way home I was arrested for DWI.  The cop was nice, and let me go home that night.  I drank heavier after that for about a week.  The night of my last drunk, I bought 3 half gallons of cheap vodka, and was going to drink myself to death.  I tried.  I really tried.  Needless to say, I came to the next morning, with a hangman's noose tied neatly around my neck, my 3d story window open, and the rope tied to my bed frame.  There wasn't any vodka left, and it was too early to buy more.  I was at the bottom.  Something in me clicked, and I called AA.  A man showed up and 12 stepped me.  Hauled me around all morning and fed me.  He took me to an AA meeting at noon, and spent the afternoon with me.  He started talking to me about if I thought I needed treatment.  I did. I had nowhere else to turn.  I went to Keystone Treatment Center In Canton SD.  A few days there and I knew this was not for me.  I surely was not as bad as the other patients who were there, was I?  One night, I packed my bags and was going to leave treatment the next day.  I skipped the evening meetings, and was sitting in my room.  I started paging through the big book, and came across the story i mentioned earlier called Grounded.  I was in shock.  There that guy was that I had known, right there in the big book.  son of a B****h I thought... This is real.  Not just a bunch of old guys from way back that stopped drinking that I could not relate to.  If this guy can make it maybe, just maybe I better pay attention. 
The next morning I went to a discussion group and related what had transpired the night before.  When I left that meeting, I walked out into the hallway, dropped to my knees and asked God to help.  I gave my life, and my will over to His care.  I asked HIM to take away my compulsion to drink.  I started listening to my counselors, and the AA meetings we had to go to each night. I did a 4th and a 5th step at that treatment center, and a burden was lifted from me.
When I got out, the fellow that 12 stepped me took me home, and became my sponsor.  I did 90 meetings in about 65 days.  I listened. I heard.  I came to believe.
My DWI sentencing finally came up in November.  I had drawn the "hanging judge" and figured I was going to jail.  She listened to my lawyer, my sponsor, and several other AA folks that showed up at my sentencing.  I believe the hand of God was there that day as well.  She imposed a stay of execution.  If I remained alcohol free, did not get arrested again, and attended AA, for one year,  the DWI never happened.. She sealed the record that day.  I could keep my Commercial Drivers license, and thus my job.
I no longer believe in coincidence.  I do believe in miracles. 
Today, I speak at AA meetings.  I go to Keystone Treatment Center to share my experience, strength and hope.  I sponsor 3 men.  One who celebrated his first year of sobriety two weeks ago after being in the program for years, never being able to make it past 60 days.  None of this is my doing.  Not one lick of it.  The hand Of God guides me today. I ask His protection and care with complete abandon.
Three months ago I attended an AA conference in Rapid City SD.  The guest speaker that night was Lyle P, the pilot from the story Grounded.  I was able to meet him again after these many years, and we shared.  We became friends in our fellowship.  Again, the miracles of AA and the grace of God showed me that we cannot do this alone. 
I heard early on that you need to do 3 things to stay sober.  Go to meetings, read the big book, and call your sponsor.  I do so.  I go to meetings as often as I can.  I read something in the big book daily.  I call my sponsor, "Mad Jack" daily.  For me, the 12th step helps more than I could have ever believed possible.  As a cop, I was always "in control of myself, and others." lol.  Ya, right.  Today, I know without question that as it says in the poem "Footprints" that in my times of despair it was God that carried me.
I didn't understand early on when I would hear people say that they were "Grateful alcoholics".  Today, I am grateful.  I am grateful for the miracles this program offers, for the love God has for me, and us.
Go to meetings.  Read the big book. Call your sponsor.  Sometimes, that is ALL we can manage.  Read the promises.  Sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly.  They will always materialize if we WORK for them.
God Bless

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My name is Jen and I am an alcoholic. I have been an alcoholic for many years now, but never really believed it. This is my first post here, so bear with me, I'm a little nervous. I had a bad night last night and if I can't stop drinking, I'm afraid I will loose my family. I've been on a good stretch, but I blew it last night. I "snuck" a few drinks last night, but I only managed to fool myself, again! I'm good at that. From the beginning, here is my story. I come from a middle class family from Georgia. It was a normal enough childhood. The only real bad memories I have are of my sister, who I believe was also an alcoholic. I say was because she passed away last Thanksgiving from melanoma. She liked to party....a lot. I remember her coming home at night totally drunk. I used to help her into bed, and pick up everything she knocked over as she tried to walk to her room. I would always hope and pray that my folks wouldn't find out, but they always did, and then the fights came. I hated listening. I have 4 sisters, all older, the closest one 7 years older than me. I did the high school party thing, but I had good grades and didn't get in much trouble. Alcohol didn't seem to be a problem, yet. I graduated and went off to college. Drinking started to become a problem. I went to parties every night of the week and missed many classes. Needless to say, I ended up back at my parents house. I went to school part time and worked part time. I think the only reason I didn't party all the time then is because my parents were pretty strict, so I just didn't have the chance to go out a lot. That probably was the only reason I didn't get into a lot of trouble. This is when I met my husband to be. About a year after we started dating, I got pregnant and we got married. We did quite well for the first year. We drank, but could still manage our lives. He worked and I worked part time. My evenings became what I considered perfect. I would get all dressed up and make wonderful dinners. But, you can't really cook and enjoy yourself without drinking a bottle of wine. I would have already drank one bottle by myself, while my toddler happily played. It was wonderful to "play house". Why, I'm still "playing house". The drinking got more and more, but I never missed work or neglected my household duties. So, to me, everything was just fine. That is until my husband had to go out of town on a business trip. I was home alone with my son, late afternoon, so of course, it was time for wine. By the time 9 o'clock rolled around, I suddenly became bored. The baby was asleep, so, in all my glory, decided I could run out to the neighborhood bar, just for a few minutes. Well, the evening didn't turn out so well. I ended up arrested, my husband had to come home, and my neighbor went to my house and took care of the baby. That didn't end up being rock bottom for me. We got through that situation, but the drinking still continued. We ended up moving to Texas, pretty close to my husbands family. This became an unbelievably rocky road. I actually get along with my in-laws very well. We did all the usual family get together things, but I usually ended up drunk, making an ass out of myself and my husband. We started fighting a bit more by this time. Everything was an occasions to drink. Easter- get drunk. Christmas- get drunk. Halloween- get drunk. After a few drinks, that seemed like a good time to fight- in front of anyone who happened to be around. My in-laws have heard more dirty laundry than they ever wished they knew. So, the time to move came again- transfer from work. We ended up in California this time. The drinking continued, followed by the fights. I don't know how he lived with me- I went out of my way to be difficult. But only when I was drinking. He tried a lot to get me to stop, at least slow down. I became pregnant with child number 2, and miraculously, I did not drink a sip.
Things were good for a while, but they did go back to the normal drink too much. get in a fight, and round and round we go. Then things at work got bad. He got a double dose- me and work problems. Money got tight. But, "play house" was still how I chose to live. All I wanted to do was to make up for all my craziness. I was spending money like crazy on expensive wines for my husband and made meals fit for a king. At least that made me feel better, right? So to the surface our money problems bubbled to the surface. Of course I could not have worried him with our money problems- those should be ignored as long as I felt I was being a good little wife. The house was clean, he didn't have do anything for the kids at all. All he had to was come home from work and enjoy the lovely life-style I created. If ignorance is bliss- I was queen of the blissful! I started going to AA meetings. I'd listen. I'd feel like I was doing the right thing. I was changing. Until the next drink. By now my husband could barely stand to look at me. He wanted nothing from me, but sobriety. I even went to a shrink to show how serious I was. But that was pointless. Because I manipulated that and made everything his fault. It felt better that way. My husband is a bit of a perfectionist. He just has a way of things working out for him. He educates himself on everything. But he is very vocal. He understands my alcoholism, and can't figure out why I can't. He believes it's not that I can't, but I won't. He has emotionally shut down from me. He doesn't believe a word I say, with good reason. I feel devastated most of the time. Which leads us back to my vicious cycle. I don't drink as often as I did. I'm real good for 2 or 3 months. Then blam! Toasted! I believe I have hit bottom. I don't know even know how to deal with my husband anymore. Everything I say is wrong. Everything I do is wrong. I have built a wall between us and don't know how I can break it down. I have for many years believed I could do this alone. I honestly believed I could do it - I thought I was superwoman. Now I am alone and scared. I have taken the love of a beautiful man and spit in his face. I really hate myself right now. My son, who is now a freshman at college, I'm afraid is walking in my shoes. He's had a couple of bad run-ins due to alcohol. I feel like I did this to him. I don't know what to do, I can't even fix myself, how can I possibly help fix him? I will find out where the meetings are close to me and start going. If anyone has any tips or advice for me, I would love to hear it.

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Okay i will share my story and yes everyone has been completely blunt and honest with me and i wouldn't want any less. what i meant was people in my real life.  i don't get any treatment. i was hospitalized for trying to kill myself a few years ago.  i was on anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds. i went to a few aa meetings.  i quit that and eventually started drinking again. i can stay sober for a few weeks or months, but then i go on binges where i drink every other day for few months. i've never had serious physical withdrawls. but then again every time you have a hangover it's a withdrawl. but i've had plenty of instances where i wake up feeling panicky, shakey, sweaty. usually i crave food and something to drink from not having nourishment for so many hours, i will drink and eat anything that will make me feel better. non-alcoholic. i never cured a hangover with more alcohol. but i feel manic the next day and will do anything for more alcohol and can't focus on anything else. i guess most of you have been sober enough long enough to forget the ugly little thoughts that consume. or maybe not i'm not trying to judge anyone. i think i have depression, anxiety, borderline personality disorder, avoidance personality disorder, OCD.  it's much more than i could ever handle on my own. plus there is physical medical care i would like to take care of. HOW in the WORLD DO YOU HANDLE ALL THIS MESS YOU CREATE PHYSICALLY AND MENTALLY WHEN ALL THE DAMAGE IS DONE? i need like 50k to 1 million to fix it all. i drink because i'm done with it all. i'm so out of control i can't even pick a date. i hope i do die sometimes and i'm only 27.



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i have 2 brothers and a sister, none of whom have a drink problem.they don't even smoke!. i discovered alcholol at the age of 12, the queens jubilee.i woke up the next morning sleeping in a pile of sick,feeling like death.i loved the feeling alcohol gave me!. work that out.i guess i was the black sheep,i did drugs,got busted for drink driving, divorced by 2 wives,fractured relationships with my 2 kids,injuries but cant remember how they happened,lost job's and i still drink. i had a great childhood,happy parents who loved me,i am the middle child but i dont belive that makes a difference,we were loved the same.even when my mum died i was thinking how can i slope off and have a drink. my daughter was in hospital and i managed to make an excuse to go out and have a drink.i have so many bad memories that i think i drink to block them. how do you get over them. make ammends if you like.this is very disjointed but i have never put any of this on paper or mentioned it to anyone.i feel regret for many things.my life has been dominated by alcohol for 30 years or so. what a total waste.i want to go to places and not feel angry if they dont have drink for sale. my daughters never known me not have a drink in her presance.my son who is 17 is tea total,thank go for that.did not like what he saw growing up. i hit his mum in front of him,so im amazed he wants a relationship with me. the above may not make much sense but it feels good to let it out at last.  



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Hello I am new here. I took my 1st drink at age 14. Kept drinking until I became pregnant with my 1st child at 19. I managed to get out of a extremely abusive marriage by the time I was 22. By that time I had 2 small children. My divorce was very stressful and I started having a glass of wine at night. I felt like this turned off my mind and allowed me to relax and not think about all the things that bothered me. I was a single mom, in school full-time and lacked a good support system. I ended up getting 2 degrees and I have a successful career. Over the years, my drinking has increased substantially. I would drink till i passed out or I would blackout. Then I would feel so depressed about my excessive drinking that I would again turn to the bottle. My last drink on July 10th 2011, consisted of a bottle of red wine and a entire liter of Vodka. I woke up the next morning still drunk and when I looked at how much I had drank I was shocked and ashamed. I drank so much that it caused a intestinal bleed. I was also supposed to work which I would be unable to due and would put my career and licence at risk. I know at this point I have a severe illness and and am working on bettering myself, because I can see at any moment my life can be destroyed over my drinking.

God Bless

Titus



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Greetings death defiers! This is my 1st venture into AA cyberworld, and because I live in the beautiful but isolated hills of Northern rivers NSW, Australia, and without the privelege of a car, (high range DUI), I'm hoping to get a little strength and hope from this forum.

I began drinking at 11 (and got to know blackouts within months). My young friend and I stole his fathers substantial stash in the naive hope that it would prevent him from physically abusing his wife. Which of course it didn't! But why we decided to hide and consume those never-ending bottles of spirits is still a mind boggling mystery. I can now see that it was RESENTMENT BASED though. I soon realised that my own home was a treasure trove of booze and was pouring assorted liquors on my ice-cream. My parents only kept this booty for guests, and didn't seem phased by the dwinling supply. They didn't drink themselves, but mum has told me stories of dad's obnoxios drunken antics before I was born. Since 8 yrs old I was also a constant user of efedrine based nasal spray (which caused withdrawl after it was banned, and mum couldn't score it from Woolworths anymore!)

From then until 2000, my life was a rollercoaster of piss, pot, pills, powders and potions. About 19 insane years of it! It was then that I admitted my self into my 1st 9 month rehab program with the Salvos. It proved to be the 1st possitive turning point. I was introduced to AA, and the spiritual dilemma was shown to me. After, I stayed sober and involved in service work for 2 1/2 years. my best effort to this day. Then I entered a relationship and slowly drifted away from my support network....the beginning of the end!!! When that woman left, I went on a pity party on booze and amphetamines for 2 years. I couldn't believe I'd thrown away all I'd learned. And so, smashed to my soul by the metho and ice, I dragged my sorry arse into another long term program, baffled and broken.

I wish I could report that I've avoided relapse since then, but my illness won't leave me alone leading to several short but nasty binges. I just don't seem to have developed the committment to fully embrace step 3. I'm a stubborn man who has difficulty with surrender, not to mention an immature inability to accept life on life's terms. But I have AA to thank for every sober, cotented, and capable day of my life since I first put my hand up for recovery, so I'll KEEP COMING BACK and do my best to surround myself with the love and wisdom of this magic fellowship. Regards, Tony



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Hi all,

I'm Mike, a recovered alcoholic and new to this forum. I am sure I will learn plenty and hope I can contribute a little.

I was one of those hopeless cases, beyond human aid and at death's door when I crawled into AA. I was one of the stupidest people ever to grace the rooms, I had lost the ability to reason and could barely string a sentence together. I had no understanding of, and had never shown any interest in, matters theological or philosophical, relationships or how the world worked. My life from 13 to 22 was largely one of self gratification in a cloud of ignorance.

I was in AA about 6 weeks before I could say the serenity prayer without reading it. Memories of my first meeting are of a man called Joe with a bright yellow bush shirt and a big smile and he made me welcome -  a new experience for me. I felt little but shame and remorse as I sat in the back row looking at the floor and hiding from the chair, hoping I would not be asked to speak. If asked I declined saying I preferred to listen.

Somewhere I got the idea that I might learn by listening. I looked for the similarities and found plenty. I knew these people had been where I had been, so there wasn't much new or helpful that I could tell them. They'd been there, done that. But they had something I didn't have. They offered me hope of a better life, actually a life beyond my ability to imagine. And they told me the fastest way to get there - the 12 steps.

One small problem, the steps were beyond my understanding, I lacked the knowledge and experience. But they told me not to worry, that I needed only three things, honesty, open mindedness, and willingness, but these are indispensible. Well I was about as willing as only the dying can be, and I could manage at least some of the other two. And the miracle of my journey in sobriety began. It is amazing what a little honesty,open mindedness and willingness can bring.

Fortunately I landed amongst real alcoholics and they saw my desperation and took me through the steps quickly, before that "window of opportunity" had the chance to close on me. So in a few short months the drinking problem was solved, the desire to drink was taken away. But there was more to this programme. As I tried to live the steps my life just got better and better and within two years I was living a life so much better than my wildest dreams, I was starting to get what you have.

I guess I rejoined, or maybe joined for the first time, the human race. I became part of the community, I had a job with prospects, I had hobbies and interests on the outside, and I was part of this amazing fellowship, and the greatest joy of all was to be able to help in a small way, the still suffering alcoholic.

After a few years I married and have two beautiful children. We were married almost 20 years when my wife passed away after a long battle with cancer. In this and other perhaps lesser crises in my life I was able to cope, to instinctively handle situations that would have baffled me, without even the thought of a drink. That problem was solved by AA long ago, contingent on the maintenance of my spiritual condition, it does not exist for me. Working the steps to the best of my limited ability, and it has been very limited at times, enabled me to cope, with God's help, with practically anything that life threw at me.

I came to AA as an agnostic. This was based purely in prejudice and ignorance, I had never bothered to give the matter any thought you see. But through the steps I have been able to find the proof I needed of the existence of God, as I understand Him and have developed an abiding faith based on actual experience. I know I have nothing to fear and no matter what happens, it will be alright in the end. For me this is a fact, just as it is a fact that the 12 steps made it possible for me to develop this faith.

I feel grateful too that the oldtimers that helped me seemed, in hind sight, to be practicing the long form of the third tradition. When I arrived in the fellowship I was desperate alright but I hadn't the sense to know that stopping drinking was part of the answer. So I had no desire to stop drinking, infact quite the opposite. On the short form I would not have been eligible. But it was obvious to them that I was suffering (badly) from alcoholism, and they took me to their hearts.

Those oldtimers were wondeful to me. Although I was 22 and they were mostly in their sixties and older, our stories were very similar, and I learned so much from them. The principles that worked for them worked equally well for me, there was no genrational gap so to speak. To the openminded, the prinicples of AA's 12 steps transcend all ages. And these folks walked the walk. It always amazed me how they, and some of them were leading dignitories in our town, would spend time talking to me, who looked like the "Wild Man from Borneo" with no other motive than to help me get sober. What kind and generous men and women they were.

Now, about meetings. I went in for the 90-90 thing as it was suggested and, while I have heard some contrary views, I found it to be helpful. It gave me a place to be each day and let the fog lift enough for me to get a glimpse of what you had, and to make the decision to got to any lengths to get it. I also got the message about prayer and sponsorship and was blessed in both areas. But somewhere there my path diverged from many of my contemporaries. I took oh so seriously the requirement for rigorous honesty, and the need to be fearless and thorough from the very start, that the steps became the priority and as they worked their magic, balance began to come into my life for the first time. Family, work, social, AA. I felt I could face the world and didn't need to be hiding in AA every night.

I don't think I have ever come crashing into a meeting demanding to share some immediate life problem. Although I have problems outside like everyone else they just don't come to mind when I am in a meeting. Instead I listen and try and contribute something of the solution that might help someone. I heard a saying "take your problems to your sponsor and your solutions to a meeting" - quite good advice really. Besides all my life problems are minor when compared to the importance of the new comer hearing AA's life saving message (and not my trivial problems)

I have noted concerns about the current state of the fellowship and the dangers to alcoholics of my type when sponsored or advised by those who don't have the same imperative to live the steps. These days I would be less inclined to suggest 90-90 to a sponsee and more inclined to spend more time with them working on the basics and perhaps giving them a better idea of how AA works.

I mentioned my contemporaries earlier and as I write, four come to mind. This group has quite a few things in common. They all came to the fellowship about the same time as me or a little before, they all went through the same reputable treatment programme( I didn't), they all tried to help alcoholics, especially others who have been through the same treatment programme , they all helped me in different ways, they were all nice deserving people, they all attended way more meetings than me, they are all still attending meetings, they all have issues with the steps thinking they are out dated or not applicable in their entirety and they have all failed to maintain a continuous sobriety. Although we are all a similar age they all look a good 10 years older than me. They have shown me again and again that, for alcoholics of my type, there is no way around the steps. Meetings alone just don't cut it.

God bless you all

 

Mike H.



-- Edited by StPeteDean on Wednesday 27th of July 2011 06:03:20 AM

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My name is Carl and I am a recovering alcoholic as well as 1 year sober from narcotics. I will not tell my life story but I do wish to share a few facts just to get started. I love my wife and both my daughters more than anything in the world. The intense feelings I have toward my wife and daughters is mmuch more powerful than any urge to use. I will not let them down and I will be the husband/father they need. I am now committed to doscontinuing my use of alcohol and drugs completely. Thanks for listening.



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Hi all. My name is Jon and I am an alcoholic. I'm 26 yrs old and have had a rough past couple of years. I began drinking around 21 and had fun with it. But about two years ago, it stopped being fun. I became depressed when I drank and started getting into trouble. But, I kept drinking nonetheless. I figured that everything would be just fine. The definition of insanity is repeating the same thing over and over expecting different outcomes. If that's the case, I am insane. I am in trouble legally, mentally, and emotionally. Yet, part of me still wants to drink. I told myself over a year ago that I wasn't an alcoholic, I just liked to drink some and had other problems. I now see that I have problems, but it's BECAUSE I am an alcoholic. I'm in a rough state right now and just ask for your prayers. I cannot let my family down anymore and have to rise above what I am and become who I want to be.

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I'm new here. I've been in the rooms a couple of times but I can't seem to make up my mind if I really belong in AA, if I really have a drinking problem, or if I can handle it or find another program that is a better fit for me. I've been having a lot of anxiety about it today so I decided to read some of the posts. I keep tryig to get busy and clean my house or what have you, but I can't stay focused on it. I need to share some things but some of it involves more that just drinking or addiction issues.. so I guess for now I''ll leave it at this..

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My Story:

Ever since I was a child, I was always told about the Evils of Alcohol and Drugs, but starting at the Age of 17, I turned my back on everything I had learned, and dared God to prove me wrong.

Coming from a religious home, with two brothers, and two sisters, I was the youngest of 5. My father was a devote Christian, we attended church every Sunday, and Wednesday night. I was taught to Respect and fear the word of God. My parents never drank, or even exceeded the speed limit. They did everything they thought was right in raising us, but that didnt stop me from experimenting with Marijuana.

I remember the first time I tried a Joint at the age of 17, I had the feeling that I never had before, I was downtown at the McDonalds going to get a Bite to eat after smoking the Joint, not thinking it did anything to me, I started laughing uncontrollably, and thus started my addition to Drugs. Alcohol soon followed, and I found I loved the feeling of them both. From that point on, every chance I got, I would get stoned. I had a part time Job and going to high school, living at home in the basement of my parents house, I had access to the money necessary to buy drugs and booze, and a car of my own to get to the next party. Every weekend, I would pick up my friends, and look for the next party.

After some time, I discovered a new feeling on Marijuana: Paranoia. I would be driving my car when I got stoned, and suddenly I was scared, my heart racing, and could not wait to get out of the car. The feeling would pass after chasing it with a couple of beers to get me started. This should have been my first clue I was heading down the wrong path, but I usually shrugged it off as the case of the Jitters, and my friends told me that it was normal. Paranoia would happen more and more often, but I found that If I started out with a couple of beers, the feeling would not always happen. This started my love affair with Alcohol. It made me feel like I had no problems, always in control.

In my early days of drinking, I would often over Indulge, and have to throw up, but after some experience, I learned to control this by slowing down my drinking, and keep a slow steady buzz. I found there were times when I drank too much, and I would blackout, not remembering what I did the night before. Some nights I would arrive home after a party, not remembering driving home, or driving down the highway 100 miles per hour at 3am rushing home. At the time, this seemed perfectly normal.

Remarkably, I graduated High School,I quit smoking for a period of time after getting arrested for Possession of Marijuana at the age of 18, and got an Associates Degree in Computers at the age of 21. I got Married at Age 23 to my first wife Megan, and had a son Elliot out of the Marriage (I also had a son Jason out of another relationship that I never acknowledged until later in life). I managed to get my dream job of Computer Programmer still partying on the weekends with my wife at the time. The Disease was still progressing at this point to where I needed something Better, so I tried LSD for the first time. Nothing bad happened the first time I did it, but the 2nd time I had a Bad Trip in which I felt that Paranoia again, but this was 100 Times worse, I thought I was going to have a heart attack, and I started Hearing Voices. This started a Mental Illness that has never completely left me from that day on. Each time I tried to Smoke weed after that, I would be brought back to the Paranoia that I felt on that bad acid trip, so I stopped Smoking again, but this time I started to drink, and every day.

Somehow I managed to move to St Louis, and get a better paying Job, and was hospitalized probably within a couple of months of moving there with Psychotic Depression. The Marriage was starting to have trouble at this point, and instead of trying to work things out or see a counselor, because of the voices, I got a divorce from my wife. The Voices were my subconsciouss minds way of telling me I had problems I needed to face, but I never looked at them that way at the time.

Then I met my 2nd wife Denise, which I am still married to this day, we both liked to drink, and the party was on every night. I drank every day starting from the time I got home, until I passed out, while taking my medication for my depression as well. My wife quit drinking after almost dying of Pancreatitus, which most likely was caused by alcohol. I should have taken that as a clue myself, but I continued to drink, now being isolated, and many times drinking by myself at home. I continued to get worse, and drinking not only beer but hard liquor every night as well. I would go to work many mornings with a hangover, and go into full scale anxiety attacks, which later I learned as being my body withdrawing from Alcohol.

This continued for years, and several hospital room visits for heart palpitations. Missed days at work, Later Arrivals, and Leaving Early from work because of my Anxiety Attacks were taking their toll on my performance, but I had a good boss, and they never dismissed me for any of this. I started feeling really depressed, and didnt really care what happened to me anymore. I started smoking weed again, and then things really spiraled out of control. Drinking was becoming a necessity, but I lost that good feeling I used to like about it. Then the night came where I made the 911 phone call that changed my life. At the time, I thought my life was over, and had no hope, I called 911 and said I was going to hurt my wife, daring the police to respond. I took my 12 Pack of beer with me into the basement, and started drinking one after another until the police arrived to get me. By sheer luck, or my wifes good thinking, they sent me to the Hospital Instead of Jail. It was there that I wore up the next morning under observation, and not allowed to leave. I would spend another week, and two more weeks in outpatient treatment, and I started attending my first AA Meetings.

At first, I thought that I would just stop the Alcohol, but continue to smoke weed, I smoked once after leaving the hospital, and before my first AA meeting. But something happened to me in my first AA Meeting that I never expected. I starting telling other people how I felt, and I knew from that point on that I would stop everything. My problem was not Alcohol, but all my Addictions. The first 30 days was hell. I thought about wanting to drink every day, but I learned something in the program that I thought I would never do. I put my trust in God, and took one day at a time. I dont think I could have stopped drinking if it wasnt for God helping me.
Every day is has gotten easier, and I am starting to find that I can have fun without Alcohol or drugs. I am learning to deal with my problems instead of running from them like I did for all those years. I am realizing all that God has done for me in my life by blessing me with my Wife, Sons, Stepchildren, and even grandchildren. I have learned do deal with life on Lifes Terms, and not my own, and if there is a problem I cant handle, I will leave it up to God. I am learning things about myself that I never thought possible, but this would not have been possible if I continue to drink or drug. I do have problems, and my Mental Illness gets me down from time to time, but when it gets to be too much, I spend time talking to God in my own way, and things get better. I cant explain it, but God is doing for me what I would not do for myself. I have the feeling now that No Matter what happens in the future, I will be okay. Thats something that I could not have said before.






-- Edited by StPeteDean on Tuesday 29th of November 2011 07:36:29 AM

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John F. speaking at the Tri City Conference in Petersburg, Va on Oct. 21, 2011.

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Dan B's story


Hi Im Dan and Im an alcoholic.

I came from an alcoholic family.My father was an alcoholic and most of my siblings, there were 7 of them, could be in the program.Other than that my life to me seemed normal.I didnt do well in school I had friends and was involved on sports.But there seemed to be something missing.For as long as I can remember I wanted to drink.My use history is not important they are all basically the same so I will minimize the time spent on it.The first time I was able to drink the way I wanted to I was 13. It was a party at my parents house.I felt as I fit in with my older brothers and their friends, life couldnt be better.I woke up the next morning so sick I didnt know if I would live, but the only thought I had was I cant wait to do that again.From that day on until I came into the program of Alcoholics Anonymous that is exactly what I did.And I must say that after getting the taste it was easy to find.I also indulged in drugs anything and everything.If I could get high I would take it, but alcohol was always my favorite.As my use increased and there were consequences I began trying different thing things to control or prove I didnt have a problem, if only to myself.One of my cures was the geographical cure I didnt move far just across town but I didnt tell my friends where I was, it was their fault I drank like I did anyway. However after doing the same things only with people I didnt know, waking up to strangers passed out on my floor I decided I may as well drink with my friends.The geographical cure didnt work.I tried the controlled drinking.Go to a party and only have one or two.Great I did it now to go home and celebrate. I was a very bad boyfriend/fiancé.I slept with most of my girlfriends friends while engaged.

The first time I thought that I had a problem was in 1974.A friend and I took a couple bottles of my homemade wine a bag of pot and went to my parents cabin for the weekend.On a Saturday we started drinking at a bar leaving in the afternoon I fell down in the doorway and couldnt get up my friend couldnt help me up so the bartender picked me up and put me in my car.We proceeded to several other bars.Along about closing time I proposed to a waitress that I met that night, she agreed.I had it all figured out.She had 2 jobs and her dad had a place on the lake with all the toys.She could take car of me and I could stay drunk all the time, what a perfect plan.We went to the courthouse the next morning and filled out the paperwork.Had we been in a state that you didnt have to wait I would have been married.However after getting somewhat sober I did not want to get married.So I pulled the alcoholic trick sent her on her way told her I would meet her in the cities and never made the call.I thought that this only happens in the movies so I must have a problem.My solution was to buy a horse because then I would have something else to do besides drink.Well I found out you can get just as drunk riding a horse.My solution failed.It took me nearly another year to find my way into detox and treatment.I never got a DUI, they were hard to get in the 70s.I would get stopped for something so drunk or high that I could hardly stand and be told to take it easy go home and stay there.

As I had signed myself into detox I could have left at any time, I didnt know this and they didnt tell me.I stayed in this wonderful place for a week.Now detox then was not a pretty sight.There were no meds you walked around shaking puking and suffering.After a week I went to a treatment center it was a 2 week in and 2 week out.I was terrified to leave as I only knew one way to live on the streets.I had lost my apartment and most everything I owned, except the horse.I had had some money from an insurance settlement and a decent job for a while but nothing to show as I drank and used up all I ever had.They let me stay inpatient for another week then to a halfway house.

I will never forget my first AA meeting.It was the same as the first time was able to drink the way I wanted to drink; I found a place I belonged.I was in the fellowship. I had 2 sponsors, went to a minimum of 3 meetings a week and life was great. I stayed in the halfway house for 9 months; they finally suggested that I move on.I moved into a house with 2 other members of the program.Several months later I and one of the guys moved.It was away from where I had been I didnt find a new meeting and started to see my old friends, my roommate was doing the same.It wasnt long before I was acting the same as I had when I was using, I was the same person just dry, not sober dry.One night one of my old friends came in and gave me a fifth of whiskey, previously he had been telling me how good it was that I was clean as I had a problem.As the only thing missing was the drink I added it back in.But for the grace of God I only used for 2 weekends.The second weekend I woke up on a Sunday morning and I was sick, I never liked being sick.I was a daily drinker drink in the morning and you dont feel sick.My roommate had always kept beer in the house just in case one of his friends wanted a beer.That morning there was nothing in the house not a drop of alcohol or a roach in the ashtray.I suffered instead of going out.Had there been anything in the house I am sure I would not be alive today.I give all credit to my Higher Power that my house was clean that day.I am not sure of the exact date but I figured that by October 17, 1976 my system was clean so that is my dry date.I have not found it necessary to drink or use since then.

It took me some time but I got back to meetings lots of meetings and involvement in the program again.I have been able to enjoy life and take life on lifes terms.Not all days are good but through working this program going to meetings and reading my BB life is good.My program is rather simple show up every day and do the best I can, turn my life over to the care of God and trust the process.

There was a particularly difficult time when I was about 9 years sober.I was in a custody dispute with my ex-wife for my children.She accused me of sexually abusing them this was just before Christmas 1985.I knew I hadnt done this but someone had.I was angry with God as I had prayed for Him to keep them safe.I trashed my house in anger.I had had a very bad cough, coughed so hard I cracked a rib so the Dr. gave me some cough medicine with codeine I also had syringes in the house that I needed to give shots to animals I raised.There was a passing thought of how not to hurt so much.In a moment of clarity I dumped out the cough syrup.I have asthma and it was extremely bad that winter I couldnt work, I heated my house with wood but couldnt cut any wood.I had purchased the house from my parents on a contract for deed with $20,000 down money from another insurance settlement.Well I couldnt work so I couldnt make the payments.They took the house.Now I couldnt work, was living in one room of the house with a space heater and my dog, the dog got smart and finally ran away, could have no contact with my children.My Higher Power and AA friends helped me through the times.I lived 12 miles from town and would get rides to meetings.Friends would put me up for a few days on occasion, it is a very lonely existence that far from everyone living by yourself with no money.

But due to not being able to work because of the asthma I was given an opportunity to go to college and earn a degree.After nine months of not being able to have any contact with my kids I was able to prove that I had not harmed them and visitation started again.Life was new living in a city again, working at the university and seeing my kids.But when I would see my kids they were bruised and abused.I reported to social services and as the noose was closing on my ex-wife she fled with the kids.There was no trace of them I could not get any information.I knew she had been living with a drug dealer.Again I was angry with God.I cut off all communication, no prayer no meditation it was His fault.About 4 months of this and I came to my senses one night I got back down on my knees and prayed.I told God that I knew he could take better care of them than I ever could.The next morning my attorney called my kids had been found.Within a week I had full custody my ex was not allowed contact.

Sometimes it takes me a hard hit on the head to get through my thick alcoholic mind that God can do for me what I cannot do for myself.God does not punish me my defects cause me difficulties.Through my experiences I have learned to trust the process.My life hasnt always been easy but with God and the help of AA my life is always good.

My advice to all dont drink read the book and go to meetings.

Thanks for reading



-- Edited by StPeteDean on Sunday 11th of December 2011 08:32:29 PM

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My name is Brian and Im an Alcoholic. I had my first drink when I was 13 years old. I was at a friends birthday party and I felt the high of alcohol for the first time. I remember running though the streets of downtown Vancouver with a can of spraypaint. Ever since that first drink in 1998 or 9 I found a way to get drunk at least once a week. I used to beg for boots outside the liquor stores when I was a kid. When all my other friends were doing theyre schoolwork I was the one skipping class and drinking in my bedroom. My friends used to say "Brian, your an Alcoholic" but I didnt think so. By age 15 I was smoking loads of marijuana and getting drunk as often as I could. I was prescribed medicine by a doctor because I was a troubled kid, there was a girl at my high school who I desired a relationship and she wasnt interested. By age 16 I had been expelled from my high school and sent to a small school for "burnouts" "Drug addict kids" "Juvenile delinquets" I managed to get 2 grades done that year and work for 6 months but that was about all I ever acheived. By age 17 I was so screwed up from alcohol and marijuana that I dropped out of school a year behind. I ended up being forced into a school for psychiatric troubled kids and I just sat there all year, dreaming of my next drink. At my house where I lived my father also liked to drink, my uncle lived down the street and there was always lots of alcohol and dope around, we would sit, we would drink, we would smoke dope, and wed fight a lot too. My mother had moved away when I was 11. By the time I was 20 I had been through some sort of rough time over the loss of my love interest and my old friends from high school, but then I met a friend of my sisters named Kourtney, I fell for her so deeply that I decided I was gonna do anything to make her want me, and I tried, for the next 3 years I worked my ass off, I took driving lessons, I moved away from home, I saw kourtney lots but there was a big problem. I was the BIGGEST ALCOHOLIC in the world and I really wasnt as "Cool" as I thought I was. By age 23 I had been through a lot of problems with my family, I hadnt seen Kourtney in about a year and I spent the entire time on welfare in a small apartment we all used to live at, it was there that I hit the downward spiral and ended up becoming a broken man who was severely ill. I ended up getting arrested and taken to a mental hospital for 4 months, it was there that I got in touch with AA for the first time. After I left the hospital, on conditons to live by, I decided I was gonna keep drinking, and thats when things got worse than ever. I was in the middle of my world crashing down, I was depressed, EXTREMELY hurt and I was unstable, Over the next two years I drank and drank and went to mental health appointments, the feelings I once new had all died and I was a poorer than poor derelict who was in such a dark world I wasnt sure I was gonna live, I was broken down, sick, my hair was long, my skin was pale, my mind was so messed up I couldnt think, Everyone I had once known was gone, I was alone, eating whatever I could from my welfare cheque. But one night about 8 months ago I was going through my shit at my apartment and I found some old AA material and I decided to try it. I could immediately feel a comforting sense when I even held the papers. I attended meetings and I met some nice people. I learned "How it Works". Over the last 8 months I have walked a very grim line but theres been something with me, some sort of guiding light help me reclaim my life. This is my higher power. Since last May when I was sitting at a table at my families house, hurt as anyone could ever be, watching them drink and take shots at me I have turned my life around, I am by no means a rich man, Im a 26 year old with a 1 bd suite and thats about it. Since that day at the house I have quit drinking, I have had slips but the 12 steos have reduced my drinking so significantly I have reclaimed myself to the place I was at when I was 23 before this ugly thing happened to me, I have quit smoking, I have spent my money on the healthiest food money can by, I have rised out of a broken down state and I have even forgiven the people who have hurt me from my past, I am not angry at them, I have a good family and I love them, I walked about 40,000 miles through the darkness to get to where Im at and Im feeling like a clear minded, healthy, strong man with no regrets. I just finished having a better christmas than I have in years at my families house, I spoke to people I havent spoke to in years and I am ready to move on with my life at 26, poor friendless person or not, if I had not begun using the program in may and I kept drinking, for all I know I could be dead, or a man who is so sick and so unhappy Id probably be back inthe hospital, which is a place I never intend on going again. And as for that girl I used to know, I dont care anymore, im over it.

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I have been sober since 12/09/2009. I got out of jail that day and by the grace of God walked straight up the hill to a morning meeting. I had a beard and long hair from months of "being down". I took a friends anti-whatever pills while I was in jail so I could sleep, so I wasn't actually sober till I was released on that day. I went to a program a couple of days later, that I was real reluctant to go to because I had just been locked up. Unknown to me this place allowed freedom, 11 o'clock curfew, lots of good (better) food and snacks and some really awesome counseling, which I devoted complete honesty to. I prayed everyday in jail not to get out, I was already sentenced, there were no foxhole prayers to be made. I simply, begged, God to keep me from going back to the same hellhole I was in when I got picked up for my warrant.

Before jail, I skipped town in 2006 to avoid the 7 or 8 cases I had built against myself, all of which could have been taken care of, but I exausted myself and the court system. I went to Wisconsin, where I didn't drink for about a month. I got a job as soon as I got there that week, and after about a month I started frequenting the bar down the street. Funny thing, I took a buddy from work there one night on a Friday, I said I been there a couple times, as we walked through the door the whole bar yells heyyyy C.J.W (substitute name)!!! He says "Only a couple times huh?" I just gave him the same smug smile I'd been giving everyone for years.

Then one day my buddy called from California, so I picked up and went again. This time I worked for a hotel and resort up in the Redwoods. It was beautiful. We hiked everyday and I got promoted to breakfast cook and all was well, until I found the local beer brewery. As the story always goes, I secluded, rarely called family and pretty much gave up on everything I had there till we moved to Redding California where I spent a month accomplishing nothing accept getting drunk and leaving, hitchiking to a little town called Weed Ca, ironicly. As I called my moms, and caught the first bus back to Iowa, I finally knew what it felt like to be just completely broken, spiritually, emotionally and physically. I had absolutely nothing to offer anyone nor myself. I made it back to Iowa and started a job at a bar. "Free drinks to the cook, my cooks drink free", said the bartender. Guess how long that job lasted. In the mean time I met a girl, 3 kids 2 different dads, knew her since elementry school. Got engaged per her request and eventually I didn't like our co-dependantly outrageous relationship, So I left her, twice. I was also taking care of my Great-Grandmother a couple times a week, so I was still doing good things, right?

But just as I had shown up in Iowa to the welcoming commitee I was off again, down to Georgia. Again a job within the first week and no drinks for the first month. Then boom, I was without friends, and sneaking alcohol into the room my Aunt provided for me when she invited me down. Every night after work I snuck the booze up the back steps and hid it by the back door and then returned through the front door, making small talk through the living room to the bedroom where I could get "invisible" from the world. I had graduated to a new level of drinking, consuming till passing out was my only option. I showed up at work every morning and went into the bathroom to look myself over, knowing I shouldn't be there and some days feeling so weak, I believe I was close to exaustion and heart failure. I moved into the below apartment from my aunt where I moved into my place, a real pretty girl name Cherish. I did everything but that. I no longer Cherished anything in my life. Everything meant nothing unless it came from the Canton Package and was wrapped in a brown paper bag. I drank everyday, all day into the night and on a couple occasions ate about a bottle of Vicodins. I remember telling myslef as I finished my umpteen half pint that I didnt care if I died. I believe I meant it, I felt like I was slowely dying. So one day I scared her away, trshed the apartment and took the first bus back to Iowa, not before being met by the Georgia police, and i smiled smugly once again as they told me theres nothing they can really arrest me for and that I should just get on the bus and continue to Iowa. I had my booze in the bags and I was gone.

When I returned to Iowa, I had nothing, I slept on a mat on the floor at the local homeless shelter, I walked the homeless downtown trail from feeding spot to feeding spot to the library and back again. I managed to get 2 jobs and move in with my best friends widow, I rented her basement. He had comitted suicide while I was back from California, right when I left the girl with 3 kids and took off to Georgia. Needless to say his house brought back alot of memories, ones that I had been trying to supress since Georgia, and long before that. So I got drunk everyday yadda yadda no surprise, and stole liqour from the Bar I worked at, same bar I worked at before accept they had new owners and staff, haha...not really. The next day I got picked up for public intox and taken in on my warrant.

You know after having been through all that, and sobering up and getting the right counseling and staying sober for 2 years now, marrying a sober, sweet, God loving girl, getting back with family x10, license, car, job yadda yadda I still somehow found myself in a real funky place lately. I haven't attended meetings in about a year, and tonight Im going to a very small crowd here in Davenport, Ia, to a speaker meeting. First meeting in a quite a while so I think I will just listen. I was anti-AA for a while because I got tired of opinions and personalities and fake people. But what I realize now, is if I had been working a good program, living one day at a time and walking the walk,with a sponser, I would have realized it's not just about me. I have gotten sober and stayed sober and haven't passed that on to someone else. Ive shared things with young guys like myself and older ones but not really passed it on, you know?. To me that just seems a little wrong don't you think? I have decided to ease back into AA, even though I grew up in it thanks to family. I want to do whats right and pass it on to the ones who really direly need it right now, also resentments build up when you don't have a sponser, God knows I keep everything from my wife as to not put all my worries on her.

Any way, I feel good now that I wrote all this out, I know some view it as a drunk-o-logue (spelling?) but if it interests you Im glad you are reading it. It is just a bunch of things I havent shared in quite some time with people who were there for me in the beginning and are still out there, being a beacon of hope for others who were hopelessly lost at one point and near death like me. I can tell you that writting this, I have a very different feeling as I did when I created my new account and started typing this 20 minutes ago. I feel relief. Greatfulness. Something I lost along the way.

Thanks,

C.J.W

God bless.


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C.J.W



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I am new here as of today and this is exactly how I feel!!!confuse



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I came from an extrememly dysfunctional family. My parents fought all of the time. I grew up in such a hostile environment and basically raised myself. I was molested by my father's friend continuously between the ages of 4-9ish. Also molested many times by my friend's older brother (and by her). To this day, my father remains friends with this man, even though he's well aware of what he did to me. Suffice to say, I have a limited relationship with my father. Growing up, he was a tyrant towards my mother and me. He's still an ass, especially towards me.

Both parents were not drinkers. I was not a wanted child, and they married against my mom's desire. They are still married 45 years later. Classic codependency. My younger sister is their pride and joy.

I never drank as a teen. I wanted to kill myself as my home life was pure hell.Recluse in high school. But I escaped by working a lot (babysitting and at a restaurant).

I had my first drink in college. I got wasted the first time. But I never really drank much. Spent more time studying. In my 20s, I got into a relationship with someone who smoked weed and drank. Although I wasn't into smoking too much, we couldn't get along together without it or booze. That said, drinking was my gateway into weed and later, pills.

We ended things after a turbulent 7 years. I married a nice man who barely drank and never smoked or drugged.

After the birth of my second child, I became a stay-at-home mom. I had two young children and lots of stress in those years. My drinking progressed in a big way to a bottle of wine per night, usually as I made supper. I was bored and lost. I was used to working FT although I loved being home with my kids for the most part. Of course, I was also depressed but didn't realize this.

Rock bottom was last Sept. I told my pastor how much I drank, and he encouraged me to seek AA. I'd been to meetings in the past, but was in denial and felt odd being there. But I told him I would. From the church, I  went straight to the store to get last bottle for the last hurrah.

I started drinking at 11 a.m. that day. I was somewhat lit when I got the kids from the bus stop that afternoon - but not lit enough. So I knocked back some hardcore muscle relaxers. Within minutes, I hit the kitchen floor and blacked out (by the grace of God) for no more than a few seconds. Red wine went everywhere. Peices of glasss shattered all over the kitchen floor. Interestingly enough, I fell right on a small throw rug on the hard floor. Has I passed out on the linolium or hit my head against something, I may not be here to share this. My kids heard this and needless to say, it scared them to the core. I managed to convince them that I simply slipped. I think my 9 year old questions that one. My 7 year old thought little of it.

That wasn't the first time I blacked out in the middle of the day while they were in my care. I didn't drink much during the day at home (but always 2-3 glasses of wine when out to lunch with them; ate only a small salad). But one hot summer day, I filled up their baby pool in the backyard and thought what a great idea it was to make margaritas. It was high noon. Again, it was God's doing that he saw to it that I passed out only for a few seconds. I threw up all over the place. I cleaned it all up so well, that my husband couldn't smell anything peculiar when he got home. I also had a great excuse for getting "sick:" Mommy had a heat stroke. That's why she threw up. Way to go, mommy. Kids outside (no gate) in water and mommy is knocking back strong margaritas. It's nothing short of a miracle that my kids are alive and well. They were so, so young then.  

But after that cocktail of wine+pills and my kids scared by that, THAT was my bottom. Looking back, they were in my care when I was drinking. I even went to get bottle #2 with them in the car from time to time. Again, God was certainly watching over us. Had anything happened even at home, of course I would not have been equipped to deal with a crisis.

That night, I excused myself from the soccer mom duty and told my husband I was going to AA. I'd dumped out the remainder of wine in the house and threw it in recycling. I never hid my wine habit. I even went to the same store all of those years to get my wine. I didn't care. And my husband didn't say much. In fact, oftentimes I'd ask him to pick up a bottle on his way home. This went on for 7 years.

That night, I went to a meeting. I stopped drinking that day - September 2, 2011. I went a few times after that, but eventually found a great home group and a sponsor. That's when things really changed for me. I started getting much better with the constant meetings, friends (all female) made in my group, and of course, my "pit bull" sponsor.

Although I stopped drinking that day, I relapsed by smoking pot (twice) in a couple of social settings. Irony there is that I hadn't smoked in years and wasn't looking for it. I also had that bad habit of taking muscle relaxers and other meds not as prescribed. I had to be honest, so picked up many white chips along the way. I picked up a 30 day chip twice; last one was just last week.

I got through the holidays without touching a drop. I now go down the wine aisle of my store to get my ginger ale and actually get a bad taste in my mouth. Towards the end, I really didn't even like the taste of my favorite red wine.

I am one of the lucky ones (thus far). I didn't turn to liquor. I didn't need to drink in the a.m. to rid of any shakes. Never got a DUI and most importantly, didn't harm my kids or anyone else (just a car when I hit a mailbox in my neighborhood on the way out for bottle #2). My husband also chose to go to Al-Anon. Yes, I am very, very lucky.

I feel better today - not different. I am hopeful to remain on this path so I can raise my children without abusing anything. 

I never, ever thought I'd become an alcoholic. But I was born an alcoholic, so it was inevitable.

I thank God and Bill and Bob for AA.wink

 

 



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I noticed that this Alcoholics Anonymous forum stays pretty well on the topic of AA recovery and there are other forum boards for generic recovery discussion and outside opinions and issues.  I appreciate that.

I live in Oregon.  My sober (& clean) date is February 13, 1989.  I love Alcoholics Anonymous-I now consider myself as a recovered alcoholic according to the strong way of working the original 12-step Program. (References to being a recovered alcoholic are in the Big Book, 12+12, Dr Bob & the Good Oldtimers, AA Comes of Age, Living Sober, etc.) God has relieved me of the terrible obsession to take that first drink even when I knew it was toxic for me.  I am not cured-I still have a physical allergy to alcohol, and even a drop of alcohol can set up that craving again.

I continue to travel on the broad highway to reach out the hand of A.A. to the new seekers who have an honest desire to no longer be a slave to their obsession(s).   I walk in the sunlight of the Spirit by choice, and try to practice daily spiritual maintenance for daily guidance.  

Elaine C.



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,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, Happy, Content, Sober and Serene,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Why, Because I decided to' keep coming back.'

This is my second time back into the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous,and for one thing I am certain about in my life today is, if I keep making AA my number one priority,I will continue to have a life today that is like the promises say,beyond my wildest dreams.It was my path and I know today that I need to pass it on.

Perhaps the first time I had the cotton wool in my ears,as I had been told by my sponsor then to make AA my number on priority if not I would drink again. And she saw me slip away,helpless to help me, as I stayed away from my meetings and because of that, I stopped hearing the message. I convince myself that AA had given me all that I needed, I was sober and happy as I embarked upon a new relationship. Not with my higher power ! But with my future husband. Him having been sober 6 1/2 years myself 3yrs. We sailed the seas in a our new yacht every week-end,worked all week far too busy to even think of the most important thing in our lives AA meetings.We would read the literature together at the end of our busy days with a smile.
The inevitable happened and soon we were both back to drinking, we had let it all slip away.

It took us another 5years before we were able to return. And that in itself is a miracle. I was sectioned for my own safety as I could no longer live with the drink or without it. Returning to AA saying I needed friends to help me. I could not do this alone.Our old familiar friends embraced me with loving arms.It was my first year back and during that year my husband returned too, but this time back he was unable to stop drinking with the meetings and friends alone.He was so desperate and tormented that while I was attending a meeting on Valentines day he felt there was no other way out but to take his own life.While in the hospital he found his way back to AA again and passed the message to others within the hospital.

We were loosing everything materialistic and we had lost ourselves in the process.We had been to the gates of insanity.And boy did I search and pray to my higher power,Big book in my hands desperate to find the miracle within the pages.

As I did so and closed the Big Book there was my spiritual awakening,everything I needed to know was within this book. How it started, How it works and How to pass it on. The AA way of living.

Today we have a life beyond our wildest dreams. We moved to North Cyprus because we contacted the fellowship here first, this was our number one priority.We assured friends and family that everything would work out well, how did we know.Because we came here for a reason,our higher power had given us both a second chance,a chance to open our arms to the newcomers here, to share with them our experience,strength and hope.But most of all to let them know that by walking into our AA rooms and working our simple program they too can experience the miracle of being happy,content sober and serene.A day at a time and always





sharing that we must all '' Keep coming back ''
Maria and Vic. 8yrs and 7yrs sober this second time around. Thanks to having a program for living.
North Cyprus.
With grateful thanks to all our true good friends in the Essex area we miss you all. xx


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new found friends are our rock.

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Im am new. I am 30 and idk if Im an alcoholic but I know that I want to stop drinking and it never happens. My father is an alcoholic and my mother is an alcoholic. I was abused as a child and as an adolescent. not to bore with details but sexually by my stepfather and mostly emotionally by my mother. She didn't see me as her molested child bust as the "other woman". Anyways, I don't know if I drink because I hate my life or because I just have an addictive personality. I do not agree with the outlook of alcoholism as a disease, I think there has to be something else there that makes someone want to feel different then they do in life. This is not my only problem but it is the dominant one and it makes the others worse. idk why I drink, it just makes life feel different. It makes me forget everything and it tastes good. I want to stop drinking and the days I don't drink I feel better and sleep good. I have less nightmares and a lot less regrets when I wake up. I tried to call AA 24hour number a while ago. The woman that answered was not concerned with sensitivity and was down right rude. The last words I could stand to listen to her speak were "Are you the alcoholic?" and I just hung up. I though Idk if Im the alcoholic bitch! And even if I though I were I wouldn't tell your judgmental ass! I know that I may just be acting emotionally but I guess I just thought that whoever answered the phone would be some ex alcoholic who would be understanding and not some rude bitch who is obligated to inform me that she is not a counseling service. Well thank God for that cause there may be a rise in the suicide rate. But back to the issue, I know I need help but Im not sure for which of my issue or where to go or if anyone ever really gives a shit because we all know that they don't so how can I find support? Ok, done with my sob story, thank you for listening.

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Hi, it's been a hard long road for me. Born and raised in central Texas as a ranch/farm girl. I have 2 older brothers, and a twin sister (& no she's not an alcoholic addict). I have 2 sons (Travis 32yo, & Richard 30yo). None have the disease. My sons are doing exceptional and seem very happy. I had alot to do with that, which I'm very proud of! I'm close to all my family & they are so special to me,more than ever! I married at 17 yo and divorced after 14 years. I've been married 4 times now ( 3 in my active addiction). I'm on my own & doing very well now after 20 years of active addiction & a very wild ride! Looking back, I can't beleive I'm still alive. I was a Registered Nurse for 20 years. Now that I have over a year and a half clean, I'm getting ready to start back to college for my masters degree in nursing. Now that I'm clean the possibilities are endless and exciting. I battle with Bipolar, Depression and Hepititis C. I just got out of prison SAFP of 9 months and have stayed clean. I'm sooooo happy. I have found a God of my understanding, who is loving and accepts me right where I'm at, & is always there for me. I'm in a homeless shelter & handling lifes challenges 1 day at a time, & and easy does it! I'm starting from scratch AGAIN and I can shape my life just how I want it. No man telling me what to do anymore! Can't wait to try out online chatting with you guys and girls.  Let me hear from you soon.  Chow...............Benita 54yo  how do I upload a photo?



-- Edited by StPeteDean on Saturday 1st of September 2012 09:54:48 AM

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Benita Watson


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I am a member of Alcoholics Anonymous; my name is Angel. I believe that some people are born alcoholic, some are created. I think that I fell into this second category. I grew up in a working class family that aspired to move up the food chain. My father worked sixteen to eighteen hours a day six days a week as well as putting some time in on Sundays trying to insure that we had everything we needed and most of what we wanted. Dad can probably best be summarized as every Norman Rockwell print ever made. My mother was my primary caregiver and can best be summarized as every Steven King novel ever written.



My early life was characterized by physical, mental and sexual violence. It was not nearly as bad as some stories I've heard, much worse than some others but Ive found that it doesnt really matter much. What does matter is that I felt unaccepted and thought that meant I was unacceptable. I felt unworthy and thought that meant I was worthless. I felt unloved and thought that meant I was unlovable. Since then I have found that feelings are just feelings but unchecked they create thoughts and my thoughts create my life.



Stuck with all these unpleasant thoughts, I did what any rational being would do in such a situation; I sought to escape them. At first I simply stuffed them. By eight years old I was being treated for ulcers. Then I tried to swallow them and by nine years old I had developed an eating disorder. I tried to escape into school and sports, religion and relationships but nothing worked. Eventually I turned to drinking and drugs.



These two were especially taboo for me. My mother loved conditionally if you were who she wanted you to be, she loved you. If you were not who she wanted you to be, she didnt love you. Unfortunately for me, what she wanted me to be was the perfect child. Those who know me well tend to have problems accepting what I am about to say but since you all dont know me well you might find believe this: I wasnt perfect - you know, as a child anyway. J



Ulcers were a physical problem that I could explain away and still hope to achieve the illusion of perfection and be loved someday in spite of them. Same holds true for my eating disorder despite its obvious psychological component. A less than perfect grade in school could be explained away by the teacher disliking me. It was the wrong religion and that's why I left. The girl had too many issues so thats why I broke up. The opponent tripped me and thats why I didn't score. But if I picked up a drink or a drug the illusion that I was perfect or presently would be smashed forever. It felt like giving up one's virginity, once gone you could never reclaim it.



Eventually though, after resisting the lure of an easy escape for what seemed like forever, I picked up. My first drink was at my friend Bob's house where I was spending the night. His mom took off for a date and of course, we promised to behave. As soon as she was out of the driveway, Bob produced a six pack of beer he had been hiding. I was terrified but decided to give it a go. I nursed one beer while Bob drank three watching all the while for the telltale signs that I was growing a horn or third eye or some other outward sign that I had become irredeemable. By the time the first beer was gone, the terror had subsided to simply fear. I matched Bob beer for beer on the last two.



He then offered me some mescaline. Since two beers didnt seem to be too bad, I took two hits. That seemed to work out even better and so I didnt hesitate when he offered me some weed. I didnt much care for the pot and it started making me sleepy and paranoid so when he offered me a solution in the form of two hits of speed I quickly accepted. Then I suggested we get some more beer. Down to the liquor store we went, $20 in hand, to find some adult willing to buy a case of beer for two needy kids. The first time was a charm and in five minutes we were on our way home with a case of beer. I took three more hits of speed with the first beer and somewhere through the first six-pack I found myself on his couch, my heart racing and thinking I was going to die. Id inhale and my belly (which went in at the time) formed a pool of sweat that poured off me as I exhaled. Bob wanted to call an ambulance, my mother, his mother but I wouldn't let him. I would have rather died than be found out. He helped me upstairs and I passed out. That was my first drink I never went a day without again until I found the program.



My alcoholism and addiction had been well established before I ever took that first drink and I hit the ground running. Stealing, running away, breaking and entering within a very short time I had multiple run ins with the law, been arrested multiple times and after my third treatment center the courts decided that I had hit their bottom. The had this new-fangled idea they were going to sign me up for which entailed forcing people to go to twelve-step meetings. And so, with the gracious assistance of the court system, I found myself in my first AA meeting in November of 1978.



Despite the age differences, I found people in AA with whom I could relate. Too, they gave me the kind of unconditional love and acceptance that I had been craving my entire life. I stuck around. I got a sponsor and worked the steps to the best of my ability and with a measure of success. I walked through trials and tribulations without picking up using the principles that had been given to me. Amongst those trials, and the one that will resurface in this story, is that during my military service I was held prisoner in the former Soviet Union as an enemy of the state. I stayed sober for seven years. Seven years into my sobriety I started working through the steps again with a new sponsor but couldn't get through the first step with him. He kept rejecting it. He kept saying silly things like, It sounds like you hit your parents bottom, the school districts bottom, the courts bottom and the cops bottom but I dont hear you telling me how you hit your bottom. Eventually he suggested that I try some controlled drinking until I could do a thorough first step. I set off to show him.



Many of us no doubt have had curiosity about some of those new drinks that had come out since we gave up drinking. Wine coolers were new at one point and sounded kind of cool, or Mike's hard lemonade, or whatever. I was like that. My first drink was going to be something new that had come out since I last drank and had been curious about. My first drink was an eight ball of crack. What followed was seven years without a day off from alcohol or drugs. I'm not much into war stories; most of us know the terrain: homelessness, poverty, withdrawals, and legal troubles. Eventually I was busted selling drugs to a cop and found myself facing seventy years. I was bailed out by my best customer and was high before I left the jail parking lot.



Over the next month I tried to quit numerous times and failed repeatedly, never amassing even 24 hours. One morning I woke up in a hotel room and found myself alone. The girl who had been there with me had left and worn my pants out. I was left with what used to be a white pair of harem pants, a string of failed quit attempts, a sentence of seventy years hanging over my head along with an overwhelming sense of despair and hopelessness.



Despite seven years in AA, I was convinced it wouldn't work for me at this stage of my addiction but I was desperate. I looked in the phone book and for you youngsters, thats the thing we used to use before the invention of smartphones and found a meeting. Through the. helpline, a ride for me was arranged. Honestly, I remember very little of that first meeting. I know I was high when I got there and I know I got high afterwards, and I know that I had arranged a ride to a meeting the next day but thats about it. I went to three meetings the next day and five the following day gathering the courage to try to quit again. When I finally got home that night it was after midnight. I decided that it made no sense to try and quit then that my quit day would be the same if I quit at 12:15am on that day or 11:59pm and so I continued to use through the day and into the night on that May 10th.



Though I vividly remember my experience of quitting, it seems quite surreal now; after all, it happened to a different person I am not that person any longer. Here though, is the defining moment of that quit

I lay on the floor trying to sleep, a hammer by my side. My arms and legs often flopping around with a mind of their own as my nervous system short circuited. I sometimes would use the claw part of the hammer to tear at the crawling under my skin, sometimes resorting to just pounding on my arms and legs to kill the sensations. The mental torture, of course, was worse. My mind screamed for more, my will crumbling over and over. Finally it screamed, If I dont have a hit Ill die! I remember the thought; so clear and then a response filled with strength and total and utter conviction Then die. And I meant it with all my heart. And then I did.

I'm told the ambulance got there six minutes later and I had no heartbeat. More than enough time to stay dead, or at least be permanently brain damaged. But I didn't. When I regained consciousness, I knew I would never have to use again. Make no mistake, I was still a disaster physically, mentally and emotionally, but I was free if I chose to be. And so I began the long road back.

My public defender told me my best deal was four years. I felt sick. I began attending meetings and really threw myself into recovery attending 387 in my first ninety days clean. Recovery became a full time job, one that I took very seriously. As the court date grew nearer, I became more resigned and accepting of my fate. I may be going away but I would make the most out of my ability to go to meetings and jump-start my recovery at the moment. I figured Id need every inch of head start I could get.



Three things stick out in my mind during that first ninety days. Roger was the first. In those early days I found it hard to relate to people in the meetings. And seeing as they couldnt possibly comprehend how much pain I was in so how could they relate to me? And then there was Roger. Three years sober, Roger had set his five year old daughter on the porch one morning as he turned to close and lock the front door of his house. Because of the cold and ice in the cracks between the door and door frame, he had to slam the door shut to get it to close. When he did, he loosened the sheet of ice on the roof and turned just in time to see it fall on and crush his daughter to death while he stood eighteen inches away.



Roger knew pain. And he kept coming back and not using one day at a time. I never talked to him about what had happened, never asked him to be my sponsor but I watched him not pick up every day. Its a bad idea in practice, but Roger became my higher power for a bit. He showed me how to do it just by continuing to come back and not use on a daily basis.

The second thing I remember was the birthday girl. During a noon meeting one day, a young woman in the Air Force came in. She had just been transferred the day before and this was her first meeting since landing. She shared that she was particularly homesick as she would be celebrating her fifth anniversary sober tomorrow and would be doing so without the support group she had come to count on for the last five years.

I was saddened by the idea. Her sponsor, her friends, her group no one around she knew to help her celebrate. And with no notice, she wasnt likely to get a cake for her birthday, which was a traditional way to celebrate out our way. Five years was too long a time to receive no recognition I decided, and went home and attempt to bake my first cake. It was completely ridiculous. The cake was lopsided, the frosting was missing in some spots and too thick at others and she cried and told me it was the most beautiful cake she had ever seen. I was embarrassed beyond words but it seemed like the right thing to do and so I did it.



The third thing I remember during those early days was The Plan. My lawyer had been in touch and told me that a deal had been struck for me to receive four years. It was a good deal but I had no plans on doing the time. I had been in a cage during my time in the military and I wasnt going back. The nightmares had never gone away and I wasnt going to live that again. I know that prison in the states would be different than what I had been through but waking up behind bars wasnt something I was going to put myself through. The first night in I was going to kill myself.



It may seem strange to people that I knew that alcohol and drugs were going to kill me and yet I went through such efforts to get clean and sober only so that I could kill myself when I reached ninety days clean, but in my mind, even today, it makes perfect sense. I knew I was going to die regardless but wanted to die free. It was going to be a choice. My choice. Alcohol and drugs were the enemy and the enemy wasnt going to take my life from me Id do it my way by my own hand and was at peace with that whole idea. The day before I left for sentencing I bought a going away card and brought it to the meeting and asked everyone to sign it for me it was my going away present for myself.



The next morning I went to court to be sentenced to what the judge thought was four years though with me committing suicide that night, it would only turn out to be a few hours. In front of the judge, rather than sentence me immediately, she started asking me questions. Questions about what I had been doing in the months since my arrest, questions about my recovery, questions that, quite frankly, confused the heck out of me and, from the look on his face, my attorney too. Then she called me to the bench. My attorney and I approached the bench and she suggested he go back to his seat.

Then she told me a story. Her brother and his wife had died years ago in a car accident. Someone who was stoned out of his mind hit them and they were killed instantly. I suspected I may not have to kill myself as I tried to recall if our state had a death penalty. She continued, explaining that their deaths orphaned her two-year old niece who she then adopted and raised as her own daughter.

That little girl, she told me, grew up and became an alcoholic and drug addict herself. She ran away from home and stayed missing for two years. One day she got a call; it was her daughter. She had quit, was clean and sober for a year and was hoping for forgiveness and reconciliation. She told her there was nothing to forgive and asked her to just please come home. It turned out that it wasnt possible at the time but they looked forward to the day that it would be. The opportunity finally arose. Her daughter jumped at the chance and the Air Force transferred her to a base in her hometown a day before her fifth anniversary clean and sober.

Without knowing who it was and with no expectations, I had baked my first cake as a gift for the one person the judge loved more than anyone else in the world - her daughter. Then she got serious and her voice got even quieter. You are facing seventy-years. You got a deal for four. If you violate your probation I give you my word you will do the maximum. Now go re-join your lawyer.



She addressed my lawyer first. Ive spoken to the DA in the moments before court and he agreed. Ive taken the liberty of assuming that youll have no objections: suspended imposition of sentence, three years probation.



As for whats life been like since then it's been life. There have been joyous moments where I have been happier than I have ever thought possible and tough times that I wasn't sure I was going to live through and wasn't sure I wanted to live through. You probably have had some of that in your life too and if you haven't, you probably will. Throughout it, I havent picked up. On May 10th, 2012, I celebrated twenty-years clean and sober.


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That was an INCREDIBLE insight into your life! I am bawling on my couch thinking of what you went through as a child! You inspire me & I thank you for that.

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I had to take time after reading this page because my life does not seem so differnt,,I see why Im here yall have truly touched my life as well as my heart.Thank yall......

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Jack D's  Story:   

assume this is my AA biography... lousy story.  I grew up in the Boston area and to cut to the chase drinking was a way of life.  I didn't know anyone that didn't drink unless they were sick.  I started young and was probably a candidate for the program from an early age.  I lived with my mother and two younger brothers and in 1957 joined the Marine Corps.  I made it through my enlistment without too much trouble, but when I did get into any trouble I had been drinking.

I went to my first meeting in October of 1960, my father suggested it might be a good idea,  He was sober 11 months at the time.  I didn't think I needed it and I would be OK... I'd just becareful.  My careful led me to the symptoms I heard people speak of at meetings that I used to say that "if I ever got that bad, I'd stop!"  It took me approx 9 years to finally get beaten so bad by "John Barleycorn" that I had better "put the plug in the jug."  My last drink was March 31, 1969, I had been working on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange and I went into convulsions on the floor.  Shortly thereafter I went to my 1st meeting at the Midwood Group on Ave. M in Brooklyn.  It was a closed meeting... I didn't know what it was but I was to learn it was about the 12 Steps of AA.  That is when I found sobriety... nothing before had even given me pause in my drinking.  It has been a really good life, there are naturally some rough spots but we get through them... the drink is gone!  One day at a time!



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My name is boris, alcoholic. Sober since 1november 1997.

My first drinking problems became obvious at an age of 13. I had a difficult time then. My normal mood was desperate. I had problems in school and was very shy. Just a few friends I trusted. I looked like a hippie because my mom was a kind of hippie, an artist (painter) and I felt awkward about this when we moved from berlin to a small village when I was 8. This was the same year of the divorce of my parents, my father was also an alcoholic.

Problems, problems, problems. My drinking pattern was binge drinking every four weeks when there was a party, or a few years later at a discotheque. At age 17, 18, I began to drink daily. Finally school was over, and I began to work. I expected adventure and freedom but found dull long days in a store. After my apprenticeship there I started going back to school again. It didn´t work out due to my drinking. Then came the army, another school; I moved to a small city. Again, big expectations. But, actually it ended into more drinking.

I didnt pay the rent for one year, had about 50.000 Dollars debts in total, and was unemployed. The fear of getting homeless and of getting really sick brought the thought of quitting to me. Also, the high of alcohol which made me euphoric didnt happen anymore.

Again, I started getting sober. But, this time it was different. I wanted to get therapy and after being sober for a few days I went to my first aa meeting. Funny enough, I met 2 people I already knew and we talked after the meeting. I went to the rehab and when I came out there  after 4 months I found miracously a job and went to meetings. I didnt like them at first, but my therapist advised me to ask somebody to get my sponsor. Coincidentally, he knew somebody from my group and said I should ask him to get my sponsor. I did this and this was a commitment to go to meetings and we met once a week for talks. I talked openly how bad life was to me. He told me about the steps. Later he committed suicide. I was full of fear and was very sensitive. I had a lot of problems to concentrate and I did some stupid mistake at work. But they let me stay.

I paid back all my debts and I am still in the same company. Before I had a different job every year. I have good and bad times. My hobbies are music and spirituality which I find helpful for sobriety. I combine the old jewish teachings with christianity and found wonderful teachers in some books. It works okay, I can deal better with my emotions today. I still have some issues with shopping. I dont like it, it is not rational, and could threaten even my sobriety.  

 

 



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Hi my names Lindsey, Im 17 years old. The reason I started drinking was for fun of course, I mean im a teenager and thats what most teens do. Well then i realized it made me more confident in myself while i was drunk, it made me talk more, put myself out there more. Without alcohol Im very shy, and quiet, people always ask me whats wrong why are you so quiet. Guys turn me down because Im too shy. So now I just hangout with people who drink almost everyday so i dont have to worry about being shy. My problem is Im actually allergic to alchol, so it responds to my body different then other people. I get drunk really fast and it doesnt take much alcohol. I started drinking when I was 12, since that time frame i have been raped twice while under the influence, I have had to many sexual incounters that I didnt want to do but did because i was drunk to count. I wake up feel like crap, not only from the hangover but because I feel gross that i could actually have sex with strange men and random guys. so i get drunk again to forget about it for a few hours, then the cycle repeats it self over and over again.I feel nasty, trashy, Im uterally disgusted with my self, i have attempted sucicide 3 times . for some reason it doesnt work. I need help. I dont want to drink my problems away to only get more problems. I just dont know what to do, i dont know how to change. Im known as a hoe. which is true. But if i never would have dranken in my life I bet id be a virgin still. please help me. thank you.

Lindsey. 



-- Edited by Lindsey17 on Saturday 21st of July 2012 02:20:06 PM

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I am an alcoholic.  Beginning my Sobriety again today, its a constant battle.

 

 I am 32 years old and have struggled since the age of 21, but mostly in the last 3 years has my addiction become what it is.  I grew up in a wonderfully loving home with my Mother who tried so hard to raise my Sister & I by herself.  She left my Father when I was 3 as he was an Alcoholic and he came in and out of our lives over the years pretending that there were no issues.  He died in March of 2009 and I cried at the Funeral, no because he had died but because I felt as though he missed so much of my life it is such a sad shame.  I was always pushed harder than my Sister, pushed to succeed.  At the age of 16 I met my Husband, fell in Love and got into some trouble for dating him (as he was older) and attempted suicide.  I lived through that embarrassment to go on to date him 5 more years before I graduate College and we were Married.  We made some bad decisions to hang out with the wrong crowd during that time and drinking became my way of escape, several times I fought the cravings and won the battle.  Finally, after the birth of my first child I was completely Sober, happy to be so, the birth of my 2nd Son also gave me great delight and every once in a while (during the most stressful times) I would cave into my cravings and have a short affair with Alcohol, always to end it as I truly want to be happy and be the best Mom to my boys.

 

It was 2009 where I hit rock bottom.  My Father died in March, my Grandfather in April, both of which had little effect on me, however, I was 39 weeks pregnant with our 3rd Son when he also died.  He was born still, the cord wrapped around his precious, tiny neck.  The first few weeks following I was in a daze, a medication induced state.  I was angry, shocked and heartbroken.  About a Month following his death & funeral I began drinking. (my Husband doesnt believe anti-depressants and other drugs are healthy.)  For months, which are hard to remember, I drank.  As sad as it is, alcohol made think I needed it to sustain life.  I was what my family referred to me as the most functioning alcoholic that they had every seen.  *Such a sad title.  I would schedule detox and rehab and then sober up so that I wouldnt have to go through with it.   I went through counseling with my Husband in 2010 and became better.  I still had days that I would drink but seemed to have better control over it.  I focused my attention to my health and lost a lot of weight which became my newest obsession.  I did well (only few periods of drinking) until this year.  I had to change jobs this year as my position was ending, lost 2 of my best friends to moves, and have decided that we were officially not going to have any more children.  This decision came at the same time that many of my friends and family members are expecting and just giving birth.  We have had several family members ill this year as well and with the added stress I turned to my old friend to comfort me, alcohol.  I thought for awhile that no one was noticing.  Over the years I have become good at hiding things from others, even those closest to me.  But my Husband discovered it (and although I really try to hide it, I think deep down a certain part of me wants and needs the help and hope that he will help me out of it as he always has).  He has always reminded me when he knows that I am slipping away that I need to re-group myself for my boys, they are my purpose, they are my life.  Its a constant reminder to myself that I choose them, not alcohol, them.  And, no I cant have both.  I cannot have 1 drink, its just not possible for me to do that as we learned earlier this year on our Anniversary trip.  1 Drink for me leads to constant cravings and indulges and that moment when you begin to feel that weight of stress has lifted off of you.  He said to me last night for the first time you dont want to be like your Dad do you?.  And that sent a nerve to my core.  No I dont, I dont want to be that old me either.  I want to be a proud Mom, one whose kids would also be proud of me.

 

So starting today, which I am praying for many more days to come.I am Sober.



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I became an alcoholic while taking the antidepressant Paxil. I went to an entire year of meetings and an outpatient rehab. It didn't dawn on me that the reason I couldn't quit was becuase of Paxil. I would go to these meetings with the best of intentions then end up buying alcohol on the way home. I would have these moments of clarity in there where I knew something wasn't quite right, then I'd go right back into the mindset of not really caring about anything and begin drinking. I remember my Dr. telling me that one of the side effects of Paxil can be an inability to care about anything. But I felt so happy on it I didn't even notice  that effect, even though I had lost complete interest in everything I enjoyed before.  Finally started doing some research on Paxil, and found lots of similar stories to mine so I got off of Paxil and finally was able to walk away from drinking. Alcohol abuse is litterally one of the listed side effects of that medication also, so thinking that it was just Paxil and not true alcoholism I talked my self into drinking the other night. Bad idea now I can't start my car because of the interlock device and have this overwhellming sense of anxiety. There is no telling if I'll be able to start my car at all today, I downed an unbelievable amount of liquor 24 hours ago. Paxil may have initiated alcoholism in me, but I'm still an alcoholic. Before Paxil I drank way too much, but I knew I had control, now alcohol effects me very differently, I really don't know how to explain it, it's just too dangerous for me and it didn't use to be. One sip and it's over there's really no illusion of control when it comes to me and alcohol. So I'm going to return to meetings, and making changes in my life so hopefully I won't relapse.



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thought i'd try this out....

i'm a younger person who likes to drink (emphasis on likes)...i'm not someone who gets aggressive, violent, or any malevolent repercussions, maybe just acts stupid at the most part... I consider myself an alcoholic...i don't harm anyone and am a respectful person no matter what my state is...however, the only thing people see is my harm to myself...that's about it...i don't offend people, don't hurt people, don't do anything like that; just my friends' concerns...but i enjoy it...it's my own choice and i like it...i've thought about the idea of why i indulge myself sometimes and to be the most honest sometimes, i think people suck...i think i'm an amazing person and, after meeting the tons of people i have, i don't think anyone has the right to share my company with...maybe i'm too selfish...maybe i'm too sure of myself....i'm starting to find a dark side of myself and would like some advice...i think my kidneys are starting to hurt daily...i enjoy it though...i think there's a sense of suicidal tendencies definitely involved that i actually enjoy...it's on of the many conundrums i'm looking at...i don't want jesus to save my life, i'm just looking for like-minded people...

peace

harmchaos@yahoo.com

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I dont know how much Im gonna continue posting on this site, but I thought I'd post my story here.  I grew up in the lower mainland of British Columbia in Canada.  When I was young I attended elementary school with many friends and family close by.  At age 11 my parents divorced and I was left home with my dad and sister.  I had never drank or done drugs before but at age 13 when my dad was at work we smoked some marijuana that was in his jacket with my sister and her boyfriend.  I ended up getting drunk at my friends birthday for the first time and we did graffiti all through the streets of Vancouver when we were high.  The first time I felt the alcohol I knew I had found something.  I succeeded in getting drunk every weekend afterwards with any friend who would want to find a boot.  We would sit in parks and drink Alcohol, smoke weed and go to sick places like abandoned laundromats to sit and do our drugs.  I found myself having trouble at home.  My father had taken his divorce very hard and was also an alcoholic/ addict.  I had a deep affection for a girl in my school named Sophie and I was seeing a counselor about my troubles.  By the time grade ten hit I was in a psychiatrists office failing every class and begging my mountain of prescription drugs along with weed and alcohol.  By this time my sister had moved to a town nearby and was into the crystal meth/ crack scene.  We would go out to the house she rented and we would party for days strait.  We smoked enough marijuana to permanently smack our brains into some sort of paranoid schizophrenia or whatever the doctors have been calling it for the last 12 years.  I ended up in a childrens psych ward talking about drugs, alcohol, sophie, my friends and how I was unable to sleep, high out of my mind and of course very troubled.  After this happened I was a little bit different and I ended up losing a lot of my friends.  I was taken to a school the next september for kids who were burnouts, losers, in juvenile hall, into drugs, any kid bad enough in school went to this place, it was called a satellite school.  The whole year there I sat smoking weed, showing up to school drunk and going crazy in my house where I was alone, I would chug rum and dance to my cds like a nutcase, I would smoke marijuana and get so paranoid I would hallucinate and get the paranoia.  I ended up completing 2 grades of school that year despite this.  I had but one reason for doing all the work at home.  So I could return to my normal school where sophie was.  I had been given a deal.  I complete 2 grades in one year and I can return to the main school, So I did it.  By the time I got there I was so mental and so drugged out I couldnt even tell what the teachers were saying.  Sophie had changed schools and I felt lost.  So I dropped out and stayed home getting even more high.  I ended up in a school later for mentally ill kids in which I did nothing for a year.  I returned home for a year after that and approached age 20 feeling like I was at the end.  One day on a new years eve when I was 20 years old I was smoking a joint with a girl named Kourtney who was a friend of my sisters.  She was always at our house and I felt some strange feeling hit me when we were talking.  Over the next while it grew into a fire so big I literally got a job, a cell phone, learned to drive, forgot my old friends, forgot sophie and moved out to my first apartment, all in an attempt to impress her.  I stayed drunk every day, at work, every place I went, every day I was drunk.  I chased Kourtney around for 2 years and didnt do so well.  I hung out with my family but had no friends.  I was basically running full speed trying to make this girl mine.  By age 22 my dad got rid of the house I grew up in, reunited with a long lost girlfriend and retired from his job.  He moved 3000 miles away and I never saw him again.  I ended up moving into an apartment where I lived before and my sister and kourtney also had a suite.  I sat there all year wondering where everyone was and what had happened.  I didnt realize it but everyone was gone, and I didnt have as many people as I thought.  Over this year, I went all the way down to the bottom, I sat at my 23rd birthday and spiralled down further and further.  I quit my medicatin and had a relapse of parnaoid schixophrenia.  I was broke and fighting with my mom for money.  I finally broke down one night and told kourtney through an email how I felt about her.  She had been out of my life for a good year and a half and she never even replied.  One night after fighting with my mom in a drunk mental rage the cops knocked on my door and arrested me.  The yelled at me and kicked the shit out of me.  I was taken to a psych ward for 4 months.  I had such a awful thing happen that I was broken down inside.  The fire I had for kourntey was put out with a blow so deep it basically killed me.  I was abused inside the hospital and eventually moved to a different town to be close to my mom which was the only person left in my life.  I had been to aa at the hospital but continued drinking for 2 more years after I left.  I became a very sick person who was unemployed and in a very bad illness going to and from a mental health centre where they treat you like dirt.  I looked like a derelict.  My eyes were sick, I was skinny, pale, high on alcohol, and mentall ill, poor and alone.  I ate from food banks, stole my dinners, starved, and sat in my apartment drinking and trying to make sense of my life as I watched everything I had ever known slowly going before me slowly leaving me and scenes from my life went through my mind.  I had gone through the downwars spiral and I was mental.  I was still drinking and I was a complete skeleton sicko, crackhead you name it.  One night when I was in my room I believe I died or came one inch from dying.  One of the old aa pamphlets was on my floor when I awoke in the darkness.  I picked it up and felt a flash of somehting I thought might be spiritual.  I read the 12 steps and thought "How do I understand god"  at that moment the way I thought of god came true and I looked outside expecting to see darkness but saw sunlight instead.  Ever since that day noone ever bothered me again.  I still live in the apartment but I have never been bothered by a person.  The mental health centre quit harassing me.  Noone ever talked to me dirty again.  I began attending meetings and having a very spiritual experience. The more I go nowadays the more on fire I am.  Everything is gone and I am alone but I am alive and Im apparently well and restiched together through praciticng alcoholism.  I have noone and I have little but theres small miracles each day.  I always have food.  noone ever bothers me anymore and if they do I see they quickly change what theyre doing.  I have a real power greater than myself keeping me warm in this place even though im alone.  Im on fire.  I am never bothered or treated wrong anymore.  The more AA I practice the better it gets.  I found recently I have finally come to grips with everything that was and used to be and I have gotten over it.  I am in the process of completely letting go and returning to work.  Im a 27 year old who hasnt worked since 2007 but I am ready to do it again.  I have learnt a lot of stuff in the last 4 or 5 years.  Ive been angered by a lot of it.  Ive been saddened by a lot of it.  Im glad I know the truth now though.  I never saw what was going on when I was young.  I know what its about now.  I know a lot now.  Im not anyones fool anymore.  I know when someone isnt really my friend.  Im aware of a lot of the sick things in the world.  I understand a lot more now.  Ive basically got to the point now where Ive pretty much found myself.  Im getting back to work Ive sorted it out.  Im sitting here thinking up some things to execute in the next while and I pretty sure Im a smart guy.  Finally feel like me again.  Got a fire going.  Got my dinner, which I stole oh well.  Got things more figured out than ever, getting a job.  and from there?  Well I just sign off. 

 

Thanks Mip.

 

Brian.



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Hello everyone, my name is Chad, I'm 21 years old and I'm an alcoholic. I haven't started attending meetings yet but will in the very near future (as in tomorrow). A little bit about my story/situation...

It all started last year in my junior year of college. I was excited to begin a new year in a new apartment with new roommates. The possibilities seemed innumerable and endless. I had been living in my fraternity house the year before, which could quite possibly be the worst place for someone with alcoholism to be on a regular basis. However, ironically enough, it started as soon as I moved out of that environment. Weird how this stuff pans out, huh?

Anyways, so after moving into this new place, one of my roommates decided that he wanted to drop out of school and get drunk every night, making ends meet by selling a certain herb to a certain group of acquaintances. Not exactly the best person to be around, and after awhile we grew quite sick of his shenanigans. Evicting him was discussed but never came to full fruition. After awhile, I started hanging around him more for emotional support, after all, he was my friend and I was growing very concerned for him. He had had a lot of issues with his parents and with the budding phases of alcoholism, so I figured I would do something nice for a friend in need. I started to go out with him to keep an eye on him, but after a very short while I ended up going out for my own enjoyment. 

We would go to bars 4-5 nights a week, often spending ridiculous amounts of money on alcohol and other drugs. Soon thereafter, I started to drink during the day in order to stave off the hangover. Soon, my goals quickly shifted to, "As soon as I finish this class/assignment I'm going to go home and get hammered. I've earned it after all." Before I continue, it's important for me to note the true reason for why I drink.

I have social anxiety disorder, but not in the usual way. I'm actually and extremely personable and friendly guy, often very outspoken and opinionated. I've always had a lot of friends and can say without boasting that I am pretty popular. At least I was, until alcohol started speaking for me. I would self-medicate with alcohol in order to calm my nerves throughout the day, for my ADD medication makes me quite antsy and jumpy. Soon it would be to gain self-confidence around female interests, and for better performance later on (if you know what I mean). After awhile, I stopped realizing what my limits were. Every night, they seemed to change. One night, I'd pound shot after shot and not feel a thing, but yet some nights I feel like I'd have only a few and blackout. This was growing into quite the problem with my roommates and they demanded a change. They started to put up with it and just expect me to blackout every night, they'd even plan on getting me a ride after going out because they knew I wouldn't be able to make the walk back. 

I felt terrible, but there was this thing growing inside of me, nagging me at every waking moment, trying to convince me to relax and find a drink. It manifested into a literal voice, and some might call it the voice of temptation. Junior year ends, I've developed this terrible habit, and I return home from school for a promising summer internship at a reputable firm in town. At first, I don't drink at all when I get back, as I am trying to get back in shape for the next school year and pool season. Then, I grow bored during work, and start to bring in water bottles of vodka to sip throughout the day. It helped with my nerves about work, for I was very self-conscious that I wasn't doing a good enough job. In hindsight, as an intern you should not be expected to be an expert on day one, but my self-consciousness is the prime reason for my alcoholism. By the end of the day, I'd be plastered but not enough to lose control. No one noticed, so I continued. This kept going throughout the summer until one day, my parents smelled it on my breath. They asked what was going on and I covered it up by saying I had recently used mouthwash. Once they caught me again, the first of many long talks into the night began.

Soon, it became apparent that I had a problem. I'd quit for about a week and then start up again whenever friends were involved. They didn't know about this problem, so they had no reason to deny me a drink. I wouldn't blackout or get hammered EVERY time, but enough times that I began to alienate many of my friends from home. They would be scared to invite me over, for fear I'd cause a scene or drink all of their alcohol. I became very lonely as a result and plunged further into the depths of alcoholism. I'd buy a bottle of vodka or gin on the way home from work and drink it to go to sleep. I then became unable to sleep without drinking, so my problems became compounded exponentially. I always felt like I had a handle on it though, and that I could quit whenever I really wanted to without much fuss. Boy was I wrong.

There's a quote from the West Wing I'd like to share, and it's stated by John Spencer's character Chief of Staff Leo McGerry. He is a recovering alcoholic relating one of his stories to a senior White House staffer. When asked if he ever wanted to drink again, he replied very frankly, "I'm just an alcoholic. The problem isn't that I want one drink. It's that I want ten. I don't understand how a normal person's mind works, it doesn't make sense to me." As soon I heard him say that, I knew that that's exactly how I felt. I didn't see a point in drinking unless it was to get drunk. I didn't want to drink like a gentleman, I wanted to drink like a drunkard.

This year, senior year, I got a breathalyzer installed in my car to curtail my drinking when, if anything, it only made it worse. Instead of driving to class, I'd have a few drinks in the morning and not be able to operate the car. Oops, I guess class isn't happening today, oh well. Now, my grades have reflected the very serious decline alcoholism is putting on my life. I'm not sure if I'll ever get better, but I'm going to try. Hopefully AA is the answer, I'm a bit of an agnostic though, so I've always had my reservations. To me, rehab is absolutely NOT an option. If I don't graduate in the spring, I will not be hired through the company that I interned at this summer, and this economy, it's not feasible to take off a month or however long a program would be in order to get better. I have to do it through other ways, and hopefully through a support group, I will be able to achieve my goals.

One day, I hope to be able to drink beer and enjoy life like I used to, because in all honesty, I don't think I want to live in a world without alcohol entirely. I'm not sure that's something I'll ever want, it just doesn't seem right. What do you all think? Is it possible to control yourself at any point, especially if you've been sober for a long period of time? I never have problems when only beer is in the equation, just liquor. Is it possible I'm just addicted to liquor? Is there such a thing? Thanks for reading if you bothered, and I look forward to some great discussion.



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Hi, my name is Robin and I am an alcoholic...and this is my story.
I was born with a thinking and feeling problem. I had my first resentment sitting in a high-chair as a baby, and I carried that grudge and every resentment after that for many years. I couldn't form a binding relationship with anyone. I was an isolator, and very self-centered. I never gave anyone a lick of consideration and felt angry and depressed most of the time and I made some very selfish choices. Did bad things happen to me as a child? Yes. Did I deserve them all? No. Life just kept coming at me and I didn't have the instructions. My parents didn't have the istructions and, very likely, my grandparents didn't either. I often believed that the word "dysfunction" was formed because of my family!
When I was 11, I was living with an Uncle in Texas and "helping" him clean a bar at night. That was where I encountered my first solution to all my problems. Someone's leftover wiskey became my savior. I became "happy" and outgoing. I also became a liar, a thief, a cheat, and a coward. I developed my own set of principles to live by...take as much as possible...never let anyone in...hit before they can hit you...it's all mine...you don't matter...and make sure you run away from everything. I was in the bars at the age of 14 and blacking out by 18. I had also attempted suicide twice by then. By the time I was 22 I had been married twice and had 3 kids...and, of course, they didn't get the instructions either!
I was first introduced to the program when I was 20, but it took 13 more years of me to find my way back. By the time I came back in for the last time I had no one left in my life again and I was more depressed than ever. My last drunk was June 13th, 1989. I took all the booze I could get my hands on and had placed a chair under the door handle of my bedroom, intending to drink myself to death without inturruption. Funny thing was, there was nobody left to care. Well, maybe one...God. I remember being in such a stupor and saying, "God, if you're out there, please help me" and then I passed out.
When I came to the next day the first thing I remembered was AA. There was still a few ounces of booze left but somehow I found the courage to pour it out. I got myself cleaned up and found a meeting 30 miles away (didn't want anybody to recognize me). It was a speaker meeting and the guy was telling my story. I sat in the back of the meeting hall and bawled and someone next to me suggested I pick up a chip afterwards. They also suggested I pick up an instruction manual (the Big Book) and read it and to keep coming back.
I got a sponsor right away this time and, even though I still had a problem with believing I was an alcoholic, I started taking instruction right away. All I had to do was read the book and stay sober between meetings. After reading some of the book I realized why I am an alcoholic. I found me throughout that book. I struggled for awhile because I didn't want to be an alcoholic, but then found that it really doesn't matter what I "want" because I AM! I was also presented with the solution in that book and told about the wonderful things that happen as a result of practicing this way of life and I found that I wanted it with my whole being. We worked the steps together and life got better...and then it got worse...and then it got better...
That was June 14, 1989 and I haven't found it necessary to pick up a drink since. I found a whole new set of principles to live by and instructions to keep my head and spirit right. I have friends today and have managed to build healthy relationships with my family...AA and origin...and HP, of course! We trudge this road to happy destiny together...and I hope to meet more of you as you travel it with us! It's an awesome trip!

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Pass it on.... Robin



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As my 1 year sober anniversary quickly approaches I can't help but think about what I'll share at Friday's meeting.  There is a part of me that wonders how telling my story to celebrate a year became a part of AA where I live, since it doesn't seem to fit with the humility mantra.  Yet another paradox of the program.

I brought myself into the rooms after 38 years of drinking (all but the first few months of that at a legal age, you do the math!)

No excuse from a family perspective, simple childhood in a small town with caring parents- there was always that bullying older sister and those schoolmates who made fun of my good grades, but someone less sensitive likely would not have found those reasons to discover acceptance in drinking immediately upon starting college.

For decades, drinking was just part of a social lubricant process; money was too tight to drink too much or too often.  Open bars at work or social events were my gateway into alcohol abuse- free drinks! Ah, but there is no such thing as free when it comes to alcohol.  

Successful in school (despite a detour through the wrong grad school program which let to my first failure in life), work, and happily married.... one wonders why I felt the need to drink too much.  For me it was the feeling of being an impostor... an introvert in an extrovert's role having left the science lab and meandered through career choices into a technical sales career.  Good money, travel, and an expense account became a recipe for drinking away the stress.  For years I justified my behavior and mostly successfully carried on as a wife, mother, and success in my job.  My family and friends laughed at the quizzes- we're not alocholics, alcoholics go to meetings (we drink instead).

I blame (credit) the DARE program in my daughter's 5th grade class for first planting the seed of doubt that I could drink safely.  She was "brainwashed" into thinking anyone who drinks daily is alcoholic, and confronted me and my husband.  We scoffed.  Periodically I would decide not to drink after a hangover, but never stayed the course.  You'd think my strong preference for only restaurants serving alcohol for family dinners would have been a sign?!  One scary drive with my daughter and her friend in the car was enough- easy solution, drink but don't drive.  Falling asleep during movies, well, that was just "bonus sleep"!  Slurring my words... a bit harder to hide and rationalize. Therapist suggested moderation, that appealed to me.... for a while. Daughter choosing substance free dorm for college and vowing never to drink, that didn't sink in either.  Actually bought me some time and reprieve, since the stories she heard about other families and the students "sentenced" to that dorm put things in perspective.  Then came the day she pled with me not to drink on her graduation day - that got my attention.  2 months later I walked myself into an AA meeting.

The reading of the promises was soothing to me.  However, the word powerless was not one I could accept.  I'd spent a lifetime being told I could do anything I set my mind to... and mostly succeeding at that.  My sponsor put up with me for months of moderate drinking experiments, and since I only put together one 30 days consecutively in that time I think of it as sequentially slipping rather that a relapse... I didn't have enough sober time to call it a relapse.  Finally, her words sunk in and I got honest with myself, my higher power, and my sponsor and family.  I don't know nor do I control when one drink or glass of fine wine turns into refreshing my glass more than my husband's, not daring to answer the phone if my daughter calls at night since I'm probably slurring my words and she'll notice, and the random falling down drunk/"brown outs".  So what was my bottom, my turning point?  I think it was a perfect storm of grief over my father's sudden death, excruciating pain from a back injury, and the classic mid-life crisis... what am I doing with my life-- that led up to finally turning it over.

I thank God, AA, my sponsor and family and new found AA friends for where I am today.  As my coworkers and family put it, I'm "in a better place".  Seldom angry and short tempered thanks to spirituality edging out a fragile but very stubborn ego.  Little or no desire to drink thanks to the 12 steps and thinking through the possible outcome of a drink. Grateful for a second chance to succeed at life with a family who loves and supports me despite my faults and friends in the fellowship.

 



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Well, I've been around this board for 7 months now, so it seems strange I never told my story here. But here goes. I grew up the only girl in an Irish Catholic family in the suburbs of the East coast. My family actually had very little money, but appearing as though we did was very important. My mother worked part time as she had 4 children to raise... My father was the financial backing and disciplinarian. Pretty traditional suburban nightmare. So long as the neighbors thought everything was ok, right? Well, everything was not ok- actually not much was ok. My father was an extremely angry and sick man whom my mother would often describe as a 'dry drunk'. I had no idea what this meant at the time, not for years. I guess this was her way of explaining away his violent temper and extreme antisocial behavior. We didn't ever have people to our home, we were not to disturb our father while he spent hours in front of the tv, we were not to question why we were beaten. 'Just don't tell anyone' was the motto of my childhood. I abided by this rule, living in terror. It took me years to become desperate enough to finally tell someone that my father had been routinely sexually abusing me since before kindergarten. That didn't go over so well. He left the home for 6 months while the state investigated my claims..before the case was dropped due to me saying I had lied. Well, I hadn't lied at all, but my mother manipulated and guilted me into seeing the value of his paycheck and how adversely the lack of it would affect my brothers. He comes back, it continues. Now he has the full upper hand and I am left completely and utterly powerless.

After a few months of this, I ran away from home with nothing but 50$ from my paper route and a backpack. 50$ at that time would buy a 1-way train ticket to NYC. I wanted OUT. I had developed a deep hatred towards the 'suburban dream' and everything that represented to me. Authority? Adults? The status quo? F them!! I was gonna make it on my own in the big city with no $...I was delusional and also 12 years old. Didn't take long for me to be found out and placed into the foster care system. By this time, I had been introduced to the punk-rock scene of bars. I was 12 when I started drinking jack Daniels straight out of the bottle, and I never really looked back. I wanted to be a tortured, misunderstood drunk and drug addict. In my traumatized early teen mind this was very romantic and way cool. It also served to display my lack of respect for any and all adults. I was proud of being on the fringes, as far away from my childhood as possible. The foster care system did little to change this attitude. I lived in close to 20 homes in under a years time. Some were ok, others abusive or neglectful.. 3 were wonderful. At this point I was pretty hell bent on doing whatever the heck I wanted, and I was now in a situation with no discipline, structure, or adult guidance. I was quite literally simply given a bed to sleep in for a couple of weeks or so and I'd leave, or the household would be deemed unfit. I wasn't in school, I was hanging around bars. My best buddy was a crack addict.. I thought it was great! I could do whatever I wanted. I was also extremely manipulative so the consequences for my behavior were little.

My teenage years were spent in this insane, wild drug and booze fueled frenzy. I was placed in an 'independent living' apartment when I was 16, because I was "exhibiting maturity and a sense of responsibility" Uhh, OK haha. Somewhere along the way I stumbled upon the restaurant business as a means to support myself. It was a perfect fit for me the budding alcoholic. Perfect job for someone who thought themselves above the rules of 'normal' society. I drank every night to excess and nobody ever questioned it. I could give up shifts to drink or recover, and pick them up when rent was due. I spent money like a little kid, cuz I was one. I had it all figured out- I didn't have to play by anyone's rules. Somewhere along the way I went to college on academic scholarship ( my last foster mother finagled this-she was an angel). I went more out of a pure love for knowledge than any plans for the future. Also, as a high school dropout, a college degree would serve as a nice 'F U' to everyone that told me not to drop out. Ha that's how I thought about everything 'F U' look how great I'm doing not following your rules. My 20s and early 30s were spent In a drunken haze, working in bars and restaurants, drinking every night with my coworkers, then increasingly alone-and barely getting by financially. I continued to live by the mentality of an angry, angst ridden teenager. I saw nothing wrong with it. My friends and boufriends were easily replaced, and I had little contact with my family. I didn't think I needed anybody but myself. I thought I was having the time of my life. I think I was 32 or 33 before I realized this wasn't so cool anymore.

Everyone I knew who was my age had moved on to having careers, marriage, children... I was still here-stuck living as though i were a kid. I began to realize my entire existence revolved around drinking. I was completely insane and thought that funny. My behavior grew increasingly insane- temper tantrums when drunk, suicidal, big drama. Everyone else was my problem. I used my childhood as a means to excuse my behavior. I had little control of my emotions. I had no respect or care for anybody. Everyone was around for my purposes. When I turned 35 I really hit the wall. I was completely isolated, totally broke, unable to work, unable to pay rent, seriously suicidal and in rough shape physically... I was experiencing numbness in my limbs, my motor skills were declining, I was often feverish, I had stopped eating for the most part, cuz why waste time eating when you could drink. I was a full blown, hardcore alcoholic. This was the worst thing in the world for me. The reality of my existence was not anywhere near the glamorous idea of an alcoholic I had strived towards as a teenager.I spent close to a year recording how much a drank.. Writing how many drinks I had on a calendar- or how many I could remember having haha. It was pathetic. I tried so hard to control my drinking, knowing I couldn't. I thought it a matter of morality and willpower and grew increasingly depressed as I could see I'm black and white that I had no control whatsoever. Being an alcoholic really was the worse thing I could imagine being. The idea of not drinking was a fate worse than death in my mind. Worse still? I was terrified that I wouldn't be able to live sober.I had no real exposure to sober people or AA in my life. My idea of AA was that's where people go when they have really made a mess of their lives and just cannot deal anymore. Guess what? That's exactly where I was, and I knew it.

My last drunk began as any other night... Beginning at the bar, a pit stop at liquor store, then home to drink 2 bottles of wine alone. I sat in my kitchen drinking until 3am knowing I had to work an 18 hour day beginning in an hour. I started texting all of my coworkers to cover my shifts-AGAIN. I was suicidal AGAIN. I wanted more to drink AGAIN. This had become a pattern for me. This was not unusual. I prayed to God- again, pretty typical of my pattern. This time I meant it. This time I didn't pray that if I just get my shifts covered I won't drink as much anymore. I clearly remember having a moment of complete clarity, and a focused clear thought "stop this now, or you will die very soon". I believe this was my HP. This time i prayed that I live through this morning, I prayed that I find the strength to stop drinking. I text my boss at 330 am that I would need a few days off to detox from alcohol. He was the first person I told I was an alcoholic- at 330am while he was vacationing with his pregnant wife! I continued drinking that morning until I successfully harrassed a coworker into working my shift. And I passed out. I woke up The next day shaking, numb on one side of my body, unable to walk.. Crawled to the bathroom and cried uncontrollably... Thanking God for answering my prayers. That was over 7 months ago and I haven't drank since. I spent 4 days holed up in my apartment detoxing, more ill than I could've imagined. I went to my first meeting 10 days later, where I met my sponser. And here I am sober:) Hi, my names Colleen and I'm an alcoholic. Thanks for listening.





-- Edited by StPeteDean on Tuesday 1st of January 2013 05:46:01 PM

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I was born the youngest of four. My father was an alcoholic, but stop drinking before I was born. I didnt had the greatest childhood. I dont really remember much before the age of ten. I lived in fear.
My parents were great. We didnt have a lot of money, but we managed to take trips to the Jersey shore every summer. But they worked weekends and werent really around all that much. Around the time I was eleven, things started to get bad around the house. My older brother drank and did drugs. There were violent episodes. My sister and I were usual the victims of his rages. I remember one incident where he chased us through the house and we had to barricade ourselves in a bedroom.
I wasnt the friendliest kid. My shyness stopped me from making friends when I was younger. The few friends I had were outcasts. We didnt really fit in with the rest of the kids in school or the neighborhood. My brother finally went in to the program when he was about 20.
I had my first drink when I was about 15. Id hang out with my other brother and my cousin. Wed spend almost every weekend at my brothers house. I would have a beer every once in a while.
I went away to college when I was seventeen. I had a very hard time making friends. My freshman year, the other students in my hallway would taunt me because I kept to myself and hardly left my room. That was my first bout of depression. I started drinking, eventually every weekend. I starting missing classes, was put on probation that first semester.
I eventually found some people to drink with. I became a binge drinker. Typically, we would start on Thursday night and drink on Friday and Saturday night, too. My tolerance grew. I drank beer because it was cheap . I was drinking more and more; more than I could believe. I missed more classes. My first accident was after a long night of drinking. I walked into a door and the EMTs thought I broke my nose.
When I was nineteen, I went to Puerto Rico with two college buddies. It was three days of beer, rum and whiskey. Really dont remember much about the trip but I do recall walking the streets of San Juan alone, completely hammered. I dont remember leaving the hotel or how I got back. I do remember stopping in a souvenir shop because I HAD to buy three shot glasses. How else where we going to drink the JD? Most people would be cautious or fearful of walking alone in a strange place. But this all seemed normal for me.
I somehow managed to become legendary around campus for my episodes. I didnt care if I was being mocked. All I waited for was Thursday night.
I eventually failed out of college and returned to my parents house when I was 21. Things went great for a while. I got myself a job and went to college at night. I would drink periodically, but not to the level I did when I was away at school.
My parents had a party, I was about 33. I got so drunk, I tried to urinate in the refrigerator. When you do something wrong when youre a kid, your parents give you that face. Let me tell you its a much different face when youre 33.
I was fine for a while. At 37, I became a Friday night drinker. I would be fine the other six days of the week, but on Friday nights, I couldnt control myself. I binged. They started off slow, but eventually my tolerance grew and my binges became longer. I would be the last to leave. I soon found myself stopping in the bar on other days. Eventually, I was there three to four days a week.
I never liked hard alcohol when I was younger. I was always a beer drinker. I liked rum and vodka in mixed drinks. But I soon discovered Jameson. I was a jerk, thinking I was Hercules. I was fortunate, at 51, that I never got my ass kicked especially how obnoxious I would become.
I got my first DUI in August of 2012. I hit another car on my way home after a night of drinking. I totaled my car in the process. I accepted legally what Id done, but it didnt stop me from continuing to drink. I tried to become a control drinker. That didnt work. I fell a couple of times. Road rash on my face earned me mocking from my drinking buddies. Then there was the tennis ball I got on the back of my hand after falling off a chair. That didnt stop my drinking.
I would wake up some Saturday mornings on somebodys couch because I wasnt capable of making it home. This still seemed normal.
My second DUI came in December 2012, just four months after the first. Youd think a night in jail, facing a judge in the morning would be enough. Nope, it wasnt. That didnt stop my drinking. I promised myself for the eight hundredth time that I would my control my drinking. I would stick to beer and stay aware from the whiskey. Of course, that didnt work.
Even after I made arrangements with a friend to go to a meeting, I continued to drink. We had agreed to meet on a Saturday night. I drank the night before.
That last night, I was aware of what was going around me despite having a few. There was an incident in the bar. I wasnt personally involved, but there was a guy who was so tanked that he bit another guy on the face. I was so disgusted at what Id seen and that I was allowing myself to be put in such a place.
I had rented a room in my condo to a young guy in early January 2013. My last drink was on Friday, February 1st. My friend Tom took me to my first meeting on Saturday the 2nd. I didnt really take to the first meeting. But I kept my mind opened. On the following morning, Super Bowl Sunday, I went to a meeting by myself. Arriving a few minutes late, the speaker was already telling her story. I dont what it was, I didnt really identify with her. As I sat there, I was still justifying my drinking, saying I could control it.
Immediately, a lightbulb went off in my head. As I listened to that inner voice, I realized how messed up I was. I knew I couldnt control myself. That was why I wanted to join the program. That was a huge step for me. Admitting that I couldnt control myself; that I was powerless. I hadnt fully accepted that I was powerless, but I admitted that I was. While I didnt identify with the speaker, she was inspirational all the same.
That night, I agreed to meet my friend John at a Super Bowl party and to help my friend Tom cook some food for the same party. I was white-knuckling it, but I managed to make it through without a drink. Still, I left the party early because I didnt really want to be there. One guy approached me and said Have a beer already, youre making me nervous. I didnt.
My roommate and I made it home that night. He said he was going to bed and I sat down on the couch to watch the rest of the Super Bowl. The doorbell rang, which was odd because I never have visitors. The guy at the door was looking for my roommate. We couldnt get him to answer his bedroom door. After breaking In, my roommate was found face down in a puddle; his breathing was shaky. I called 911 and spoke to the operator, while his friend disappeared.
The police and the paramedics came and I was later informed that he had admitted to taken opiates.
I am grateful for the higher power that assisted me in choosing to quit drinking when I did. My roommates mother contacted me and said that he had to be revived.
Had I been drunk that night, I dont know that I would have been able to help him. I do know that I would never have forgiven myself if I didnt because I was drunk. I would have been destroyed if he had died that night. Two lives were saved because my higher power helped me quit drinking when I did.
Im still supportive of my former roommate; hes now in a program too. I admitted to him and his mother that I was an alcoholic and I promised my support as he got himself well. She is grateful for my help and she said my support has been a huge help as he makes it through his first few days.
There is a divine power at work. It was that divine power that had me take in a boarder. It was that divine power that had me decide to quit drinking when I did. It was that divine power that allowed me the capability to help another in need.
I no longer live in fear.


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I Lost My Life but Gained Something Better

I have been involved in the rooms for 5 years, however, like many stories I have heard before I have not been sober that long. I came into the rooms to please the courts, having grown up in a home where drinking and using drugs were acceptable, This was a practice that I became fond with having watched my father for so long. I remember growing up and looking outside of my door to see if it was "safe" to leave the room, by this I mean, seeing smoke in the air, or hearing unfamilar voices in the living room. There were many nights where my mother, brother, and I were left fatherless because of some excuse he made, some fighy he caused, or because he simply refused to come home for weeks on end. I was very angry growing up and began fighting in school and skipping school, while indulging in beer with my brother and his friends.

I started drinking every now and again at 7 years old, after being a victim of sexual abuse. I never told anyone and could not bear the stress or emotional pain. I remember my first drink like it was nothing. I was visiting my grandmothers house one night, while my mother went to search for my father. I waited for everyone in the house to fall asleep as I kept one eye on her opened bar. I had no idea what each of the bottles were, I just noticed that there was one bottle that was a different color, and a different shape, Jack Daniels. I took a giant swig and the next thing I knew I was awoken in a pool of blood and vomit on the pool table, and I heard my mothers tears from the other room. I remember telling myself that I would never do that again, but that was not the last time I trusted the bottle to dull my pain. 

It took me three more years to indulge in another drink, however, everyday of those three years were miserable. After three years I found myself in a similar situation, where alcohol was freely available, and so were other various chemicals. It was then that I became addicted to meth, and I began to spiral out of control. Within the next five years I dropped out of highschool, began doing drugs with my father, engaging in various illegal activites, and racked up a series of criminal charges. At 15, I became a warrent of the state and was forced to go to drug and alcohol treatment. I spent 5 1/2 months in treatment, where I was not allowed to talk to my active using father. After treatment I went to a recovery home, where I spent the next 2 years. I went to meetings, attended service meetings and group conciouses, and finished high school. I didnt really see the affects that AA had on my life until 2009, when I was in a car accident. A drunk driver had run into a car that I was in, I was rushed to a local hospital, and the next day I was in the drunk persons hospital room talking about Alcoholics Anonymous. A couple of weeks later, he was at my home group waiting outside to greet me. 

I moved home soon after that, to live with my parents, I graduated highschool, and continued my education at the local community college. July 3, 2011 I decided that I was not an alcoholic. After one drink I found myself at the dope house with people I did not like, doing things I did not want to do, living in the same hell that I lived in growing up. It took me two months to tell my sponser, but once I did, our relationship began to grow. I am a little over 18 months sober and this go around is so much different, my life has changed in so many ways, and I am blessed to be an alcoholic today. There are so many new experiences that I have gotten to be a part of in recovery that I would have never gotten to see while I was drinking. 

A year ago, I got to be the person to take my father to Valley Hope, where he started his journey of recovery as well. This program works in mysterious ways. A year ago my father and I did not speak, I did not call him "dad" and we could not spend more than five seconds in a room together. Today we attend meetings together, we spend more time together than I could ever count. Today, my faith has been restored by not only feeling the effects of the program, but by seeing it work in other peoples lives as well. 

 

Toni S



-- Edited by Toni S on Wednesday 27th of March 2013 01:14:21 PM

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I am a 60 y/o female, well educated good job 2 wonderful children & 4 grandchildren.  I began drinking 23 years ago when I married my second

husband.  He was an alcoholic and I fell right into the trap of drinking.  I liked the way it made me feel.  It gave me the power I never had.  As the

years progressed he became controlling, manipulative, mentally abusive and treated me like I was his & his alone.  He said he could and

would never let me leave and that he had so much control on my life that I would be afraid to get away from him and he was right.  It was all that

and more.  A very scared middle aged woman who had let alcohol and an abusive man take control of my life. 

By the time I was 50 I was drinking on a daily basis.  I could not get my day going without a drink.  I knew it was always there  and

it calmed me enough to have a normal day in the work place.  No one knew what I was going through at home as I made out that we

had the perfect life.  So as the years progressed, I became more & more addicted to alcohol and was going through a 1/2 gallon of rum

every 3-4 days. 

There were days I just wanted to stay under the covers and not deal with the world.  I became very depressed and began wondering

why I was living the life I was.  I went to AA meetings, therapists, my doctor and they all tried to help me, but within a day or 2

back at home I was again back to drinking.

In 2013 major events happened in my married life.  My husband began to make threatening statements about me to people

and my friends outside of the home.  I could never have any friends come to my home as my husband would proceed to get

drunk and make very mean & nasty comments to our company which would drive them away.  He did this with any of

our family members also.  His niece & her husband came  to a cook out at our home last summer.  It was the first time we

had met them.  My husband started drinking (his drink was Patrone).  He got so obnoxiously  drunk and he became very

sarcastic to them and said very bad things about his family.  Needless to say they  never came back to visit or call at all

even tho they lived only 8 minutes from us.  At this point we had no friends or family that wanted to be around me as he drove

them all away with his abusive ways.  He had alienated me from all the people in my life I cared about.  I had no one.

 

I remember the morning that I had come home from my daughters house to get ready for work.  I had spent the night at

her house as he was being his usual nasty self to me and I really became fearful of my life.  He has always threatened to

me he would have it all if I did not do as he said. ....The events of that morning convinced me that he was out to cause my death

and he would contribute it all to alcohol and me not knowing what i was doing--suicide...  I came in the house and got a bottle of water

from the refrigerator.  I went into my bedroom, drank 1/2 bottle of the water and proceeded to shower for work.

I started to get ready for work and finished the rest of the water and within what seemed like minutes I would remember

nothing after that for 3 days when I woke up in the hospital.  I was told I was hallucinating.  I had lost 3 days of my

life not knowing why..  When I came home from the hospital I noticed he had a prescription that I had not seen before.

Oxycodone....To this day I know he had drugged me with this, as the major side effects are hallucinations.  Although I could not

prove it as I was   not tested for this drug, I know he put it in my water.  I know deep inside he wanted me dead.

 

I have since separated from him, filed for a divorce and have not had a drink since April.  I have been attending AA meetings

regularly, am in counceling.  I am living with my daughter now and feel on top of the world as not drinking has been the best

thing I have done in my life and getting away from a mentally controlling abusive man who I thought loved me but was just out

to destroy me.  When you marry & say I DO,  you try to make your married life a great one and you expect the person you

marry to work with you as a partner, & a friend.  I thought I had that, but I guess the saying is so correct that you

cant judge a book by its cover and I did just that.  Judged him by his cover not really looking into what his real life

was and where it took me. 

I don't know if I will ever venture into a relationship again as trust is an important thing for me and if you cannot trust

your partner then there is no reason to go that route ever again.  It will take a long time to recover from this episode

in my life.   I take one day at a time now.  What tomorrow will bring is always uncertain.  I am living for me now

and enjoy each day like it was my last.....

 

 



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juanita robinson


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simple story.... years of AA, became a local circuit speaker, got overwhelmed, went out... got my ass kicked for a few years, and here I am.

 



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Glad you were able to get back Captain ... ... ... many of us never make it back ... There must be a reason that you made it back ... we need you!

 

Love ya and God Bless,

Pappy



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Hi, my name is Kayla and I'm an alcoholic. My sobriety date is March 3, 2013. My homegroup is a very active group; we have multiple commitments every night of the week speaking at jails, rehabs, detoxes, institutions, and other meetings. For me, personally, that's what I need. As the Big Book says, "...nothing will so much insure immunity from drinking as intensive work with other alcoholics." My drinking certainly presents problems, usually with the legal system or in relationships in my life, but my real problem is my thinking. "Selfishness - self-centeredness - that, we think, is the root of our troubles." I think about myself a lot and I'm almost certain that the rest of society must think of me just as much. And so growing up, I was always fearful of what you were thinking about me. I knew everybody was talking about me and what I loser I am, because that's what I thought about myself. I had to act like somebody else in order to have your love. Soon, life became like an endless series of auditions for me. I figured out who I needed to be for each person and tried my best to fit the role. Nobody knew the real me, the whole me. I would only let you have bits and pieces. Life was lonely because I wouldn't let anybody in. And then, at 14 years old, I had my first drink, and it was wonderful. I went to a party where there were a bunch of cool older kids and a lot of my friends. I thought it was going to be my time to shine. If I could just get the cool kids to like me, I would be ok. But then a stunning realization hit me: all of my friends were there, in one place. Shit! I was a different person to each of my friends. If they all got together and talked about me, as I was sure they would, then they might be able to piece together who I really was, or at least find out that I'm not who I say I am. So I tried to butt into all their conversations to make sure that I wasn't the topic. Soon somebody offered me a drink and, not wanting to stand out, I accepted it. I didn't particularly enjoy the taste, so when I was done drinking it, I was glad. But then another idiot offered me another drink, and once again I accepted for fear of being judged. Now, I'm not sure if it was the second or the third or the fourth, but something changed for me. All of a sudden, everybody's eyes softened up. No longer was I feeling their harsh, judgemental stares. I felt love and friendliness. I could talk to people without having to plan out the conversation first. It was amazing! I woke up the next morning and asked my friends if we were going to do it again next weekend, and they said no. I couldn't believe it! I had no idea why they didn't want to do it again. And so, I found new friends who could party the way I did. See, when I start drinking, I can't stop. This phenomenon of craving sets in and all bets are off. I don't stop until I physically cannot drink anymore, and that usually only happens if I'm restrained or passed out. I love drinking. I feel like I'm finally a part of the human race. And there are no consequences that will keep me from feeling that way. So my drinking progresses and shit's starting to get crazy. I'm doing non-AA approved substances and having sex for money and breaking in to cars and I am absolutely fine with it. Those actions are necessary in order for me to keep the buzz going so I don't have to go back to being sober and feeling shame and guilt and loneliness again. Life is getting insane and I'm just going along with it. Friends start dying, cops are getting involved, I decided that maybe I should just slow down a bit. I start trying to use outside things - sports, academics, music - to distract myself from drinking and thinking. And it works for a little bit. I obsess enough to become extremely successful in those areas, making the paper and getting interviews for sports, full scholarships and awards to top Pre-Med schools for academics, etc., but it's not enough, and drinking, once again, becomes my only option. Around 16 years old, I was introduced to a member of Alcoholics Anonymous. This person went to meetings and said she was sober, but admitted to me that she still drank and that it was okay because she no longer drank to excess. I thought this was a program of moderation, and, hell, I can do that on my own! I don't need AA! So I began to white knuckle it for a couple days or weeks at a time and then go back out and party for weeks and then stop again and start and stop and start and the entire cycle became dizzying and exhausting. So I stopped stopping and just drank and drugged as often as possible, which was every day for me. Life was becoming miserable and I didn't know what to do. I started talking with a cousin of mine who was sober. He told me that thanks to AA, he had not felt t necessary to take a drink in over 25 years. I couldn't believe it. I asked for his help, and, in the middle of my senior year of high school, I left Pennsylvania and moved to New Jersey to do AA full time with him and his group. I jumped in, which is important for me, because if I don't jump in, I have reservations, and if I have reservations, I'm getting drunk. I moved through the steps quickly and as outlined in the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous because I'm a sick individual and I can't try to tweak the program. I can't do it Kayla's way, I had tried for 18 years and it did not work (which was made clear to me in the second half of the 1st step: "our lives had become unmanageable"). I worked the steps and went to AA meetings and quickly tried to give what I had gained from the program to other alcoholics. By 30 days sober I had two sponsees who were working the steps. An amazing thing happened as a result of sponsoring people: I began to see a God that I had never believed in. In fact, I began to see him everywhere. Alcoholics Anonymous has given me something I never thought I could have: connection with God and with others. The buzz I get in AA from working the steps and working with others is so much better than the buzz I get from a bottle or in a bag. If it wasn't, I wouldn't be here! I thank God every day for AA and the experiences I have from doing the work. Thank you for reading and keeping me sober another day.

 

-Kayla P.



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Welcome, Kayla. Heckuva story. Plenty of similar ones here.

Feel free to post in the forum.



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Welcome to MIP Kayla, ... and thanks for sharing your story ... Like Pickle said, please continue to post on the board ... I think you have much more to share that others can definitely benefit from ... I love reading stories such as yours ... great job ... keep on keeping on ...

Love ya and God Bless,
Pappy



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Lindsey, I know exactly how you feel. I even went so far as to have sex with guys I hated for drugs. But I've come back from that, and all because of Alcoholics Anonymous. Scroll down and read my story and if it clicks with you and you want help, message me and I will give you my phone number.



-- Edited by kp2013 on Wednesday 24th of July 2013 10:36:06 AM

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John wants to share his story with as many people as he can.  He had suffered some mild brain damage from his accident so he's not good at typing but he's recovering.



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Hey my name is Erick im 18 soon to turn 19 ive drank since I was 16 almost 17 years old. im here cause im trying to change i want to take away all the negative shit that is in my life im here for support im struggling. im also going to stop using pot .....i need a lot of support im young and well its hard

 



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Welcome, Erick, you're in the right place!

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Right now I am feeling ashamed weak dishonest and I don't know what to do about it. I am very close to my HP but have been playing with fire ever since last August with a shoulder replacement. I have yet to admit it to anyone Its my own little monster racking havoc in my heart and soul.  I am so afraid to let my family daughter: 22 Son :34 and my husband of 27years.  Let me tell you my story at a very young age I was taken from my mother and placed in a foster home awaiting my new family that's right adopted.  Well don't let anyone underestimate the courage of the adopted child.  I have always been the strong one I fear my foolish pride has taken hold.

Maur211 



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Hi. I am an Alcoholic, I have been sober for one month and a week. Lately it seems as though my life is really throwing me some challenges with family. I have been an alcoholic for many, many years. I am still getting use to all these feelings and emotions that are coming up. It's so hard trying to find that sober friend to talk to or hang out with on the weekends. I haven't been with my ex-spouse because he is the reason why I end up having a slip. I know that he has taught me great things in my life but when I see him, it just seems like I drop everything and end up giving in to my addictions. Last night, I had a great cry, letting it all out really helps. I am trying to figure out what is working for me and how I don't want go back to my old ways. I truly am happy with being sober and I really do love myself, I can say that now because treatment really helped me, I love the fact that I have learnt a lot of tools during my healing journey. My friend has been sober a little longer than I have but he is going through some really tough times right now and I'm not sure what to say to him for encouragement. He is the best friend I've ever had in many, many years. I really don't want to lose his friendship, if I end up saying the wrong thing to him. 



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Carmen Bird


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I have been considering AA for a long time now...ever since my daughter was born which was about a year ago. I have extremely bad post partum depression and drinking has been my way to "cope" with it or so I thought. But the truth is that I have been an alcoholic ever since I had my first sip of alcohol after that addiction came pretty easily to me wether it be drugs or alcohol. My step mother was a big drinker, well she still is. I don't think that helped much. Alcoholism runs in my family. And I thought I could control it but I can't. I am sitting here just balling my eyes out. I want to change so badly! I have lost God I have lost my self and I have lost all hope. I don't know what to do anymore. I feel dead inside. And alcohol is the only thing that makes me feel alive. But I am damaging my family. My husband and my daughter. I feel like the biggest piece of shit and I don't know where to turn. I feel so lost and alone. I just want to stop! I am ruining my life. Once I have one drink I need to have ten more. Until the bottle is gone. Some mornings I wake up and I don't even remember going to bed. I am not giving my daughter the attention she needs and deserves! I am such a bad person. I just want to change. I want to find God again...I feel possessed. I don't know who I am anymore. I used to be so determined and optimistic. I always loved a new challenge. But now I feel so tired and beat down. I don't how where or how to start but all I know is I want to stop this destruction! I want to be me again...

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Raeanne, We all experienced what you have described, you are not alone. Come back to the board and post an introductory thread so that our regular members can get to know you. You're in the right place.

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Well first off I would just like to say thank you to everyone for posting their stories. Coming onto this site and being able to see that I am not alone helped me gain the courage to share my story. So thank you for that. I am a 24 year old living in canada I am married to an amazing man and have a beautiful daughter, which I desperately need to get better for! So I can be the wife and mother that they so deserve.

I grew up in a home with a mentally abusive mother and step father, she would use guilt and mind games to control me and my sisters. My parents always played us against the other. My mother saying how horrible of a person my father was and visa versa. My mother was a pill popper and huffed gas. Most of my child hood she was basically high and passed out on the couch. We ended up taking care of my mother our whole lives instead of the other way around. My step father yelled, he screamed so loud it would make your ears ring, he would make threats to us and throw and slam things constantly. He beat and abused our family dog right In front of us.

When I was 11 I moved in with my father and step mother. My step mother was a very jealous person and hated me for any and every time I spent with my father. It wasn't long before more mental abuse started. She called me fat and ugly, told me I was worthless. She told me I was a horrible singer (singing was my passion and my life's dream) I hardly sing now. She criticized every sentence that came out of my mouth. She played favourites with my step brother and I, except I was never the favourite. I could no right in her eyes. So after a few years of abuse I started cutting my wrists until a friend saw my scars and told the school counsellor. Then I found alcohol. The first time I got drunk I was about 13. And I've been addicted ever since. Sneaking into my parents liquor cabinet almost every night of the week until I got caught. They were very heavy drinkers.

When I was fifteen they got divorced and I lived with my dad and my sister and the drinking only got worse. My father would drink with us and our friends. He always bought us alcohol to keep us happy. He tried to be our friend not our parent. At this point in my life I was extremely depressed. I dropped out of high school after the first month of grade 10 due to depression and social anxiety so I could go work with my father. By that time I could finish an entire 26oz bottle of liquor by myself. And I did. More frequently than I would like to admit. I got mixed up in drugs at about 16. My father treated us like wife's having to take care of him. Cook his dinner, do his laundry, clean the house. He encouraged us both to drop out of school so that We could start working with him. He never wanted us to leave him or stop taking care of him. He would even tell us about his sexual ventures with random women. Living with my dad was like living with a child, again we ended up raising our father instead of the other way around.

Just before I turned 17 I decided I wanted to break free from my father and the situation I was in, in my current town. So I moved a province away to live with my sister. I went back to school and found a part time job and was pretty happy. That was until I got pregnant by a much older man who was heavily into drugs and alcohol. I regretfully admit I ended up having an abortion. After that I lost about 30 pounds in 6 weeks. I quit school and devoted all of my time into working. But it wasn't long before the drinking started again. I got mixed up with a bad crowd and met a boyfriend who was very mentally abusive. By the end of our relationship I felt more like a dog in a cage than a human being. I was not allowed to see nor talk to any of my friends and family. I was not allowed to drink but he forced me to smoke marijuana. After we had a miscarriage I went back to work and developed an eating disorder. I became very thin and my anxiety was the worst it had ever been in my life. He was always accusing me of being with other men. Even though I spent every waking moment with him. He had the emotional independence of a toddler and treated me as if I were his mother. I was somehow responsible for everything that had ever wrongly happened to him. Ive been struggling with post traumatic stress disorder ever since. 


But then I met my husband and life has changed significantly since then. He is a kind and loving man. He only wants what is best for me and loves me unconditionally. We got pregnant and our daughter was born in April of last year. At the end of my pregnancy my anxiety was so bad I had to go on medication for it for the first time in my life. And after she was born it wasn't long before I started to drink again. I stated to binge drink almost every night. The depression was so bad I couldn't leave the house. Since having her I have gained an additional 50 pounds. I am also struggling with an addiction to eating. I don't want to exercise. I don't want to leave the house. I don't want to talk to friends of family. I feel lost and alone and sad all of the time and I don't know why. The drinking has started to slow down but I will still have a night every now and then where I get completely out of control And will binge drink. I wake up the next morning violently ill.

The drinking is ruining my life, my relationships and ME. I feel ruined. I used to be a very vibrant, physically fit person. I was proud of who I was. I seemed so much stronger then I am now. even with the battle with depression and anxiety I was usually able to keep it in check with lots of exercise. But now with my daughter I just don't have the time all of my energy goes into her, I find it hard to anything else. I can only concentrate on her, my house is a mess. Our whole life as a family is a mess. And all I ever feel is guilt, depression and pain. I feel like I am ruining everything. I feel inadequate. I don't know how to get back to my former self. For the first time in my life I can't put the broken pieces back together...I am crying out for help and feel like no one is listening. I just want to get better. But I can't seem to muster up the strength.



-- Edited by Raeanne on Monday 31st of March 2014 11:11:09 AM



-- Edited by Raeanne on Monday 31st of March 2014 11:21:00 AM

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Glad you're here Raeanne, ... AA has a 'solution' for everything you described that bothers you ... with AA, you CAN put the pieces back together ... the scars may remain, but the point is to get our lives back on track to live happily and be useful to others ...



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"A Lady Knows How to Hold Her Liquor"
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   Well I have to give my Mom credit for that. She was never visibly lit. Never falling down drunk, you'd never know, but even as a kid I knew it was a lot. Unfortunately as a kid and later a know it all teen I didn't understand. Only as I aged myself dcourse for math id I begin to realize what my mother what dealing with in those days. A 40 hr+ job, community activity, my Dad's job and organizations she entertained for, an aging father and me...mouse-like, shy, learning disabled. She tried to understand me sometimes, I know she did. But like my daughters after me it just wasn't going to happen.

  Fast forward twenty five years. I got sober in the early eighties, so I was sober perhaps 20 years by that time. I was in the graduate department of a college telling me I was such and such points off of my GPA for the teaching track. My math is perhaps 2nd grade...not even, I graduated college by passing a programming class for math credit...by the skin of my teeth. But no I would have to pass full remedial classes AND college classes in math to teach even elementary level English. Graduated with honors in English but I can't wrap my head around division.

   There was a liquor store on the way home. Twenty five years since I walked in one. Odd smell but it was familiar anyway. I used to drink vodka as a teen and get sloppy. Rum perhaps? I bought a bottle, drank on and off a few years. Then finally a job, a special needs kid, two estranged daughters, a husband with health issues...The blackouts I got used to. I didn't drive or leave the house after a certain time at night. I woke up some odd places, remembered bits of things, but it wasn't really a problem.

   Then the levee broke. It was over a dog. Actually the dog was tragic but it wasn't about the dog really. I have two dogs. The male is easygoing, the female might be me in a dog disguise. As she ages she gets less stable. Loving to me but fearful and protective as well. I tried to at least foster a young female pup. All went well until late evening when without warning my girl attacked the pup. Anyone who has ever witnessed an angry pit bull knows how frightening it can be.

  I managed to break it up. Took the other dog back to safety. Just a deep paw bite but not fatal. My son turned on me for bringing another dog in to begin with, how could I be so stupid. This while I was cleaning blood off the floor. My husband had about the same reaction. The next day was my birthday and I couldn't stop crying from the events of the night before. His reaction too-how can you be such an idiot???? What were you thinking????Why the ****are you crying?????!!! It's your fault you did it.

   That night I was letting my older son talk to me on the phone. Me and Captain Morgan were hanging out together. Empty stomach and almost empty bottle. I haven't been that ripped since I was a teenager. Complete blackout-I tried to write a note and couldn't write/I broke a kitchen window...good I didn't fall through/I might have fallen down the stairs...definitely fell a couple times...black and blue everywhere but my face. A hangover that lasted the day. And now I know it's time to come back to the rooms.

   Realizing I have the rooms to come back to is so freeing though. Here I've been carrying all this **** alone. No wonder I was overwhelmed. I feel beeter today than I have in a long time. Not a pink cloud, still a lot to carry. But with the rooms and sobriety I can do it somehow. Getting together with a sober friend I was avoiding for a time. I will be so happy to see him.. Get together with the dogs and one day at a time.

 

 



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Hi. My name is Onzello and I'm an alcoholic. My sober date is Oct 25th, 2014.  I've been in and out of A.A. since I was about 20

years old (I m now 38). For me, ever since I went to a rehab in Long Beach, CA I would not finish even the 1st month and go

straight to a liquor store, get drunk and very low since I always drank myself into homelessness. I eventually got used to being homeless and discovered that I could steal easily from supermarkets and drugstores. This would help me stay high/drunk most

of the day. I was just wandering through life. No goals really except to score another bottle, find a bush or a vacant lot and get

completely obliterated.  I bounced from sober house to sober house, rehabs, de-toxes, occasionally my mother would let me

stay for awhile, but usually not for long.  This (100 something days) is the longest I've had in around 10 years.   I have a sponser, I read the books, go to meetings and r. now I'm on my 8th step list. I am working on getting more self confidence, cuz it seems hard for me to help others in the program beyond just; Hi, my name and maybe "keep coming back". But I am so freaking grateful to be sober, not homeless, no legal troubles, food, family and God as my higher power. Anyway, I've

never been on a forum before, so I hope I posted this in the right place.     Thanks for allowing me in your group, and thanks for sharing all your stories.

onzello.

 



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My name is Paul R. and I am an alcoholic. Sobriety date is 04-01-2009, yes it's April fools day.

I spent a lot of time drunk and high starting at the age of eleven. I knew that I was alcoholic since 18. I spent a good number of years (20) in and out of the program.

I was never a newcomer, I was an old timer with no sobriety. I preyed on the hopeless, and kept coming back.

I could spend a lifetime telling you good ole' drunk and high stories, but I would rather stay in the now, and talk about about how I have stayed sober.

The 1st step was the most difficult for me, and I kept tripping over it to get to the other steps.

I thought I knew better than everyone else, the ones before me, they didnt know who Paul was, how could I listen to someone who didnt know the almighty mess that I was?

When I finally was at that "jumping off" point, literally was on a bridge ready to jump off, is when I decided to make some serious changes in my life.

I came back again, and did exactly what those before me did, and guess what, they knew all along exactly what Paul needed, the steps, one by one, thoroughly and true.

I cannot stress how important it has been for me to do the steps, with someone who has worked the steps, out of the big book....and just like those before me I continue to work the steps everyday of my life.

Six years later, my life is completely 180 degrees different than before, not only have I found out who Paul is, I get to everyday help another suffering soul find his way through the big book.

God has blessed me with this gift, which I well up every time I think about it, this gift of life.

If you are seeking sobriety I pray you find it.

If you have sobriety I pray you keep it.

Just for today I got my life back, a life I never knew existed.



-- Edited by Spiritual Paul on Tuesday 24th of March 2015 09:16:38 AM

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Great post and welcome to MIP ...



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Sobriety date 11/30/13

I always felt a different for whatever reason, but it was a normal childhood.  I started drinking when I was 13 here and there.  I noticed in highschool that I could drink more, I was getting in trouble more than my friends, and I lived for it.  I was getting underage drinking tickets, kicked out of college, 2 DUIs, failed relationships, employment, lost the house I was closing on 7 days prior, lost the ambition to live.  Alcohol stopped working for me.  After my 2nd DUI I thought my life was over.  I could not get through this, and I had no answers.  Someone suggested I got sober, and I thought that was a terrible idea.  MY AA journey actually began on this website.  I didn't know anything about AA so I started doing some searching online.  I posted a cry for help on this site, and luckilly some of you responded and helped me off the ledge.  People were sending me encouraging message, and sent me a free PDF big book.  That very next day I called a cab to get my car out of the tow yard, bank, and release papers from the police station.  For whatever reason I opened up about my problems with alcoholism, and this person had been working the program for 10 years.  He started quoting from the big book, and some of it sounded familar since I read the first 4 chapters the night someone sent it to me.  He offered to bring me to a meeting and I figured he'd either kill me or it would be a meeting (didnt care either way).  As I walked in the door I seen my best friend growing up who I knew battled this disease, but I didn't want to call and be hypocrit.  Those days changed my life.  I listened to the others stories, and I related with each of them about my insecurities the way I was living.  Taking a chance with sobriety has been amazing.  Since then I have been getting involved with ISCYPAA (Illinois state conference of young people of alcohlics annonymous), gone to many retreats, spoke at a rehab center on New Years Eve with my friends to share my stories, and chair a beginners meeting that helped me tremendously in my first year.  I never thought I would be doing good with my life, and AA has given me a second chance.  Everyday is not perfect, but it is a lot better than it was when I was using. I have real friends that only want to see me better my life and help me.  People that drive me to work 25 miles to home throughout my license suspension (I should be driving next month).  This life I never thought was achievable is happening and I couldn't be more grateful.  I am currently working the 4th step, which is not a fun but it has open my eyes to my part. 

 

I just wanted to say thank you to the people that helped guide me into living the right way.  Without you commenting to my cry for help 16 months ago I may not be hear.  THANKS!!!



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Good to see you post again Gohawks, ... I am certain your post will help others who are where you used to be ... great job ...


Pappy



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My story is not unique or special.  My journey is not better or worse than any otherit is a journey I've chosen.  I came in years ago through an ultimatum and am so grateful to that fellow as he was instrumental in pointing me in the right direction, and had the help from many others since then.  Now the point is, what I am doing with today?  How am I treating myself and others today?  Does it bring me peace or misery? And if it is bringing me misery, then what can I do about it?   

Regarding birthdays:  I could have 80 years sobriety and still be miserable or I could have one day and be at complete peace (i.e. spiritual experience). It is not the time we have in, but what we are doing with the time init is the content and not the form that is important.  When I heard a member many years ago say "I don't celebrate birthdays because I am supposed to stay sober" that resonated with me so I abide by that; but out of respect for others, I attend their birthdays and congratulate them.

 



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The dash between the words "other" and "it is journey" have been omitted as well as between the words "time in" and "it is the content." So will not use dashes in next posting

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Welcome to MIP Pais, ... glad you're here ... looking forward to reading more of your shares in the future ...


Love ya and God bless,
Pappy



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'Those who leave everything in God's hand will eventually see God's hand in everything.'



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My drinking affected my work.  lateness calling in sick.  Drank in Law School affected my grades. flunked out been sober awhile but ran into mental health problems.  Now I have a place that places disabled people in jobs trying to place me in a customer service or clerical job.   just won a stand up comedy contest come see my AA jokes.



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I drink everyday. one day a 6 pack will get me drunk but the next 750ml of whiskey wont do anything. I am a functioning drunk. I just got promoted to management at my job. I have no one in my life to talk to. I live in a new city so I have no friends. everyone at work hates me because I got promoted so fast. My dad is a militant Christin pastor, so he thinks all my problems can be fixed by god. my mother has copd, breast cancer and liver cirrhosis. she has been drinking at least my entire life and probably has less than a year to live.  I started drinking again because the guys at work would never stop asking.... its my fault for giving in but I cant help but feel betrayed by how they would ask daily to drink even though I told them how bad my life was 4 years prior.

 

     My first experience with alcohol withdrawal was when I was 19. I went to the emergency room about 3 hours after it had started. I have 1 dwi, 3 larceny charges and have lost 4 jobs because of my alcohol use. I also have been to the emergency room 3 times my whole life because of withdrawal.  These days I can go a week or so with out drinking but the anxiety and panic attacks get to me. after one drink I end up losing 3-4 days in a drunken blur, my co-workers and family never notice.  the biggest problem Is I know what I need to do to quit, however I cannot bring my self to sustain it.



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RedChili


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Hello All;

My Name is Marc and I am a RealAlcoholic.

I had my First Drink at age 14. Even then 1 was not enough so I had a few beers.
As you may well imagine I got the SpinsAndPuked.
But hey, I had so much fun that a bit of vomit was a small price to pay.
Later on in life I found myself returning to Alcohol more and more frequently and switched to liquor.
My drinking was usually excessive and often into oblivion(BlackOut).
In my thirties I had become Alcohol's prisoner and was unaware of my predicament(Powerlessness). I drank and I drank even when I did not really want to drink. I had no idea why and I could not stop. I tried going back to beer but all that did was make me PissALot and I couldn't get a decent Buzz.
I was a Rum, Vodka and Whiskey kind of guy and proud of it(Insane thinking).
Wellp, That's My IttyBittyDrunkALog.

Marc

 



-- Edited by MarcLacroix on Wednesday 30th of December 2015 12:45:05 AM

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I am but a vessel,

Tied to a rock on the shore line. With each wave that comes in I am beaten against the shore, and as beautiful as it is, I don't see the damage being done to the shore, I only see my injuries. And the biggest thing I overlook is the rock that I am tied to, resting far enough down and out of my sight, that I don't even realize that it is holding me down and all I have to do is cut the rope.



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Welcome to MIP Cedeines, ... glad you're here ...


Very profound statement above!!! ...


Love ya and God Bless,
Pappy



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'Those who leave everything in God's hand will eventually see God's hand in everything.'



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Hi Chad;
There is a FlipSide to that Coin. :)
The rock is an anchor. Cut the rope and you will drift away...
Only Lord knows where you will end up.

Marc


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Let me fall, for I know I will be caught. Take my sight, for I know that I will see. Take the sound of this world, and still I will hear. The Lord is my Savior If I were placed in a lions den as Daniel was, given all the time that I have had to prepare, would I be able to call upon the Lord as he did and save myself? God wants soldiers, God wants us rightly dividing the truth, knowing His Word. Jesus came to this world and delivered a message of grace and love, not to create weakness, but to create strength. All things are possible through Christ who strengthens me, all things, not just the weakness that we need help with, all things. This is a power, the power of the Gospel. CHRIST STRENGTHENS ME...

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Hello every one. Writing my story helps me heal. V-E-R-Y slowly. I'm 52. Live in Adelaide, South Australia. Until Sept last year lived in a nice middle class home in a nice middle class suburb in the foot hills- koalas, kookaburras... Got pissed (25 year history) last Aug. Fell over and smashed up my right shoulder. Put in a hard plastic splint. Few weeks later got pissed again, fell asleep with a cigarette in mouth which fell in splint. Fire- splint turned molten, clothes caught fire. 20% 3rd and 4th degree burns- including charred bone. Lots of grafts, 20 operations- including grafts, dressings, nerve repair etc. I have never experienced so much pain. I have foggy recollections of taking up screaming as a hobby when staff changed dressings- ended up having to do it under anesthetic, 13 times. Doctors decided to save me- nearly died 3 times, then nearly had arm amputated. On dialysis. Family disowned me- would not be next of kin, did not visit me in hospital in the 3 months I was there. Wife wants a divorce. Not allowed to go home. Living in basic room below poverty line on benefits. 3 months sober- any support all I have I made happen. AA/sponsor, community support, psychologist, doctor, sponsor, support groups. Docs and nurses told me I should be dead. That I am not is nothing short of a miracle. This in part they told me is due to the spark in me- that fight to stay alive bit- specially noted when I was nearly dead and in a coma. When woke up from coma my bro told me he was next of kin and why, that the bed space I was in in ICU was the same one my other bro died in a few years ago, aged 45 because his body shut down because of alcohol. We turned him off and watched him die. Then he told me dad was dead. In part due to alcohol, never close- but still my dad. My adult sons (who I adore) do not talk to me. I am told lots I am improving every day, have a high drive to heal, grow- get better. I do not feel successful. I feel empty, alone and scared. I am independent, look after myself and do what I need to do to remain sober. Moving to better, cheaper accommodation next week. At present rent takes up 85% of my benefit. I hope with the boss upstairs life WILL get better as so many tell me it should. Not feeling the love yet...but learning. Growing. Hope all who read this are at peace with the world. Apologies to any who have heard my ramble before. Cheers, John.

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