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Post Info TOPIC: is this relapse


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is this relapse
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Hello all;

I am a friend of Bills, and have been sober for going on four years working a program of AA.   So what i am about to ask is a hard subject for me.  I am not a drug addict, on the other hand if I take a drink, well all the things in the doctors opinion come true for me. I am a alcoholic... The the other day I ran across a bottle of my wives Valiums.   Trust me I am not making excuses here.  But I had changed jobs, was having a hard time sleeping and anxiety seemed to be the norm.  So I said well thats what these are for so i took two. As if i would take an aspirin for a headache.  And the next day two more....   Then I got to thinking, if I play this game, enough is never enough and a drink is going to start to sound like a good idea.  So I stooped taking them. But in all fairness I fear I was not just taking them like I would as if I had a headache....  I was taking them because i wanted to feel different... 

In your AA understanding, did I just give away four years of sobriety?

Thank you for your caring and thoughtful input.

 



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Welcome to this discussion forum, JJ.

You've got a tough one there. The answer is that some people will say it is a relapse and some will say it is not.

My view is that the concept of "outside issues" is very important to consider. Alcohol is an issue totally pertinent to AA.

But Valium is an "outside issue" to AA. So AA as a whole has nothing to say about it.
And there is nothing in the base literature about losing one's sobriety for a few Valium.

Some folks in AA would say that taking any mind or mood altering drug means you lose your sober date. But Bill W. took LSD multiple times between 1956-61 and he didn't give up his December 11, 1934 sobriety date.

I have seen some AAs give up their sobriety date voluntarily for something as you described.

Talk it over with your sponsor,  perhaps. Maybe pray on it, too.

And don't drink...no matter what.



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thank you for your thoughtful input....



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My opinion, not a relapse. Don't take it as me co signing bullshit either. Careful tho, you don't want to wake up a week later in a nuthouse wondering if that was a relapse. 

 

Look for a natural alternative to valium. They are out there.



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 I am thankful that the insanity of a drink did not return....  what i did was stupid, beyond stupid to be honest.   I've known many that have done stuff (far less) things of this nature and set-off the allergy/obsession; only to find themselves asking how did this happen again.  It was truly God once again doing for me what I could not do for myself.

The worse part about it is I know better than this, I am a alcoholic.  That wont ever change...    

 

 



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JJ, you have helped me think about the danger of knowing better yet acting in a manner that endangers my sobriety. Thank you for that. I always need reminders...

I believe either resolution--considering it a relapse or not--can be OK. It depends on your honesty.

My advice to do the right thing for you. If you are honest about it it will turn out fine.

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I misread the OP and I am changing the wording of my response.

First of all, the rule when I entered the AA program is that you are not considered "sober" if you have consumed any mood altering substance since your last drink.  NA calls this substitution.  The unspoken caveats were that it was not done voluntarily or that it was not done under the supervision and direction of a licensed physician and taken as prescribed.

Whether for a medical condition per se, or to make us feel better by allowing us to avoid our feelings and life on life's terms, we were always self-medicating.  Taking an addictive mood altering prescription drug that was prescribed for somebody else is self-medicating and not sober behavior.  Merely the thought was not a sober one and should have raised a red flag.  While AA doesn't differentiate between clean & sober or physical and emotional sobriety you can't say that you were emotionally sober when you did this.

Do you consider yourself sober since your last drink just because you only abused a mood altering substance briefly?  What if you used alcohol "medicinally"for the same purpose?  At least that behavior is legal.  Are you sober then?  It does not appear that your "abuse", yes I mean "abuse", of Valium was such to make you a drug addict.  But you returned to old active drinking behavior and put yourself at great risk.  How can you claim to be sober?  Would you rather be referred to as a dry drunk, taking drugs instead of imbibing alcohol, but still not being emotionally sober?

While I disagree with the following stand-alone statement because it doesn't tell the "whole truth" or there are some key distinctions, think about it:  "In actuality, alcoholics are simply drug addicts who are addicted to the drug alcohol."

I vote for relapse and a change of sobriety date.  To do otherwise opens up a very slippery slope and sets a dangerous precedent.  This is supposed to be a program of rigorous honesty....



-- Edited by SoberInMI on Thursday 8th of June 2017 02:23:29 PM

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I understand and respect your point of view, and i am not about to start a big debate here....  But what you are saying is if you are in NA and drink a redbull energy drink (to change the way you feel/mood).  well...there you go.   I dont read the NA book, have no problems with NA, great program.   I prayed with the God of my understanding talked with my and sponsor and other close AA friends.  And have made a honest decision based on that.

Thanks for taking the time to thoughtfully give me your input.

  



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Joejoe12126 wrote:

I understand and respect your point of view, and i am not about to start a big debate here....  But what you are saying is if you are in NA and drink a redbull energy drink (to change the way you feel/mood).  well...there you go.   I dont read the NA book, have no problems with NA, great program.   I prayed with the God of my understanding talked with my and sponsor and other close AA friends.  And have made a honest decision based on that.

Thanks for taking the time to thoughtfully give me your input.

  


So why come here and ask whether you experienced a relapse or not if you had already consulted your sponsor, close AA friends, and your higher power?  Guilt maybe?

By what stretch of the imagination is Red Bull mood altering?  When we talk of mood altering, we talk of sufficiently mood altering to make our lives unmanageable.  If slightly mood altering were enough, an alcoholic smoker would never be sober.

There is an argument to be made that alcoholics are really sugar addicts.  So do alcoholics belong in NA or OA?

It is without question that you abused your wife's Valium prescription and unlawfully so.....  But we alcoholics can justify just about anything and it is called "denial",  it just doesn't get us sober.  You couldn't go to your doctor?

I know, logic and reason is lost on an alcoholic.



-- Edited by SoberInMI on Thursday 8th of June 2017 03:29:00 PM

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I came here 1st, it was late when i wrote that. Guilt; yes i guess you could call it that, I know better then to do things that could make me start drinking again. Trust me this alcoholic is not a sugar addict, although I do enjoy a good piece of cherry pie. And RED Bull sure changes my mood.... just saying....(but i hate them things) I guess you could say I was 86ing it... Now if I would have had a drink, the answer would have been very clear, and there would have been no room for any discussion.

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When I came into the program nearly 30 years ago alcoholism was life or death so AA members took seriously the suggestion: "Rarely have we seen a person fail who has thoroughly followed our path." We respected the wisdom and experience of the old timers.

Now alcoholics come in with such high bottoms that they are not willing to do whatever it takes to get and stay sober. They are like whinny brats: Me! Me! Me! They self-interpret endlessly. They ignore the wisdom and experience of the old timers. The other day I witnessed 3 non hearing impaired women, at least 2 of which had > 30 year's sobriety, dominate a business meeting fighting over the anniversary meeting this 2 year old deaf group, but none had even helped create an opening and readings, helped choosing or implementing a meeting format, and none had seen to it that this specialized meeting was even registered as an AA group. Me! Me! Me! These woman and the deaf group are codependent!  Strange is the fact that so few AA's are willing to work the program as written, but they won't change a word of it:

In recent years some members and friends of A.A. have asked if it would be wise to update the language, idioms, and historical references in the book to present a more contemporary image for the Fellowship. However, because the book has helped so many alcoholics find recovery, there exists strong sentiment within the Fellowship against any change to it. In fact, the 2002 General Service Conference discussed this issue and it was unanimously recommended that: "The text in the book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions, written by Bill W., remain as is, recognizing the Fellowship's feelings that Bill's writing be retained as originally published."

Introduction, Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions.

AA is slowly decaying from the inside!



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It seems to me soberinmi that you are the one that is decaying. Your posts that I have read are full of "put-downs" and blame. You have such a negative view on what everyone else is doing in AA. Maybe as someone who has 30 years in the fellowship you should stop pointing the finger at everyone else and look at the ones pointing at you. Something that was suggested to me is to stand in front of a mirror and have a look at the problem. I dont know about you but I have paid dearly and earned my seat in AA the hard way so I don't put up with such ridicule and negativity. This is still and will always remain "A life & death programme". God bless.

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Denial is not just a river in Egypt!!!  And the old saying to the effect that the common thread must be the problem isn't absolutely true, but a only good general guideline.  Until AA came along there was no effective treatment for alcoholism, so AA's early days where met with strong skepticism too - "wrong opinions."

You're right, I have a jaundiced view of AA right now.  But that doesn't mean I am wrong.  I support my opinions with verifiable facts as much as possible.

Your jaundiced view comes in here because you can't practice the program principles of patience, tolerance, and understanding, but would rather take my inventory.  You would rather point the finger at me than admit that I am am advocating a return to basics, a return to the program as written.  In other words, your behavior isn't sober behavior.

By the way, you do as most do and misuse the word blame.  Most use it as a wrongful assessment of liability, but it is merely an assessment of liability:  "assign responsibility for a fault or wrong."  Thus your use of the word is judgemental which is the way you intended.

Follow your own advice.  Look in the mirror and find "your" problem.  At least follow the steps and take your own inventory as suggested in the 4th step which is suggested to do the same thing in the 10th step.  I dare you to tell me the two inventoried are different because I can prove you wrong.

And so much for humility and a few other AA principles.



-- Edited by SoberInMI on Friday 9th of June 2017 09:32:38 AM

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I slam the door on thumpers. 

Now if you leave that pamphlet at my door, I usually pick it up and read it.

 

 



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SoberInMI wrote:

When I came into the program nearly 30 years ago alcoholism was ...


 How many years sobriety do you have, SIM?



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First, deal with the things that might kill you.

 



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Tanin wrote:
SoberInMI wrote:

When I came into the program nearly 30 years ago alcoholism was ...


 How many years sobriety do you have, SIM?


 

A moderator resorting to personal attacks on a sober forum. What's next?



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MIP Old Timer

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SoberInMI wrote:
Tanin wrote:
SoberInMI wrote:

When I came into the program nearly 30 years ago alcoholism was ...


 How many years sobriety do you have, SIM?


 

A moderator resorting to personal attacks on a sober forum. What's next?


 It is simply a question, not an attack.

You brought it up, SIM. How many years sobriety do you have?

 



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First, deal with the things that might kill you.

 



Veteran Member

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Tanin wrote:
SoberInMI wrote:
Tanin wrote:
SoberInMI wrote:

When I came into the program nearly 30 years ago alcoholism was ...


 How many years sobriety do you have, SIM?


 

A moderator resorting to personal attacks on a sober forum. What's next?


 It is simply a question, not an attack.

You brought it up, SIM. How many years sobriety do you have?

 


 Now your being dishonest!



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