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So I did something tonight...

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stratoaxe View Drop Down
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    Posted: 06 February 2013 at 2:13am
....that I'm rather proud of.
 
Yes, this is an FB post but unfortunately for reasons you guys will see in a sec I can't really do that.
 
As I've posted before, I struggle with alcoholism. Not the "woe is me I must now drink until I die" kind of alcoholism but the "holy crap I love drinking" type. Not that I'm segregating alcies here, but my previous posts on this subject were quite depressing and I don't want to mislead you guys in to thinking I suffer from eternal self pity.

Anyhoo, I've done better over the past year in realizing that A:) I have a definite problem and B:) all the crap and excuses I come up with don't change the fact that I'm the one who tips the bottle and therefore am solely responsible for my backslidings.

Despite my marked improvement, however, I tend to think of this as an all or nothing endeavor. I look at it that I'm either sober and living or drinking and dying. Throughout the past few months I've taken steps in both directions for a myriad of self delusional reasons but oddly enough it's a purely narcissistic pursuit that's changed my ideologies-I love working out. In fact, I've become a little OCD about it. I religiously measure, weigh, and grade myself and chastise myself for my various shortcomings.

One of my biggest pitfalls is that drinking dilutes my ability to get in shape. This is, for me, a massive source of shame and probably the first real awakening I've dealt with that I'm only partially in control of this situation. It allowed me to envision myself as small and helpless to my problem instead of the dark and brooding victim that I had once enjoyed painting.

TL;DR-I've been drinking alot lately. Last week I went out with some friends and attempted to put my foot down by designating myself as the, er, designated driver. This of course led to "go ahead and get me some Wild Turkey shots" which led to me going hoping and drinking myself unconscious by myself.

When I went outside the next morning, I discovered that my friends had left gas money in my car and a lovely bouquet of 6 packs in my back seat along with a bottle of Wild Turkey which amazes me because my friends make alot of money and I'm dirt poor.

Today, I indulged in about 4 of the beers and realized that I'm acting like a child with a problem that I should be dealing with as an adult. So I drug my happy ass to the kitchen and about 20 minutes ago I poured out 6 6 packs of Budweiser Black Crown and a full bottle of Wild Turkey.

Most of you (if you've made it this far) are probably like "So-?" But for me, this felt amazing. It was like looking the lion in the mouth and saying "Nope, not this time."

Carry on with your days.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kayback Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 4:47am
Congrats. Like they say knowing you have a problem is the hardest bit.

Good luck and think about professional help.

KBK
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote impulse418 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 7:13am
A lot of people who quit mind altering substances, will quickly pick up another "addiction". Common ones are working out, gambling, sex, food etc. We are still trying to use external things to fill the hole, that alcohol/drugs use to fill. Except the booze and drugs quit working, and started getting us into trouble.

Alcohol was never my problem, but my solution. I had to fix the problem, to resolve my drinking issue. But I also had to realize I'm addicted to more. In the fact that, if something makes me feel good, I want more of it. To the point that it makes my life unmanageable. Unmanageable being the key word. So I have to take a honest look at myself, and determine what is unmanageable, and if any outside thing causing my life to become unmanageable. But to keep external things from making my life unmanageable, I must constantly keep applying the solution that originally got me sober.

Good luck my friend. If you have any questions, feel free to shoot me a PM.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote SSOK Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 9:52am
Good for you. Its the little things that mean a lot. You should talk to your friends, and next time you go out make sure you drive and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. It is a lot easier if you know you can't drink since you're driving.

Plus, that Black Crown kind of tastes like crap anyway. Next time mail me the Wild Turkey though.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote StormyKnight Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 11:45am
Good on you Strato.  I was quite the heavy drinker.  When I wasn't at work or sleeping, I was drinking.  My nightcap after work was bare minimum 6 ice beers every day.  I'd get up and drink more.  I had the will power to stop 4 hrs before my shift.  Didn't want to get fired for coming in drunk.  That would severely impact my ability to drink.
 
After awhile, I realized that I didn't bounce back from the hangovers like I used to.  In fact, they were turning into a drag.  My health was starting to slip as well.  I had to focus my energies elsewhere like hanging with friends, joining a Tae Kwon Do class and then into powerlifting.  Now married with children, I rarely drink anymore.  It is rare that the fridge is without beer, but where it took me a day or two to finish off a case of beer, it now takes about a month to finish a 12 pack between my wife and I.  You can beat it.  You just have to want to beat it.  Dumping the beer and booze was a great start!  Congrats.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Kayback Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 1:37pm
Originally posted by StormyKnight StormyKnight wrote:

After awhile, I realized that I didn't bounce back from the hangovers like I used to.  In fact, they were turning into a drag. 


This. One "never again" was exactly that. I still drink and I still drink quite a lot sometimes but I haven't been "drunk" and had a hangover in about 6 years, if not more.

KBK
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stratoaxe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 6:33pm

Thanks for the kind words guys. It's always at least nice to know other people have dealt with the same issues.

 
Originally posted by impulse impulse wrote:

But I also had to realize I'm addicted to more. In the fact that, if something makes me feel good, I want more of it.
 
I think this is the real bottom line of my issues. This goes well beyond alcohol and more in to a self destructive desire to constantly feel good. I think what scared me the most is the idea that I'm developing into an unstable person who won't be able to hold a job or a normal life because as soon as stress or anxiety creeps in I run to something that makes me feel good. I think it's been a very helpful introspective into areas that have been plaguing me for years.
It's an entire mindset that really cripples you over time. It's why my brother and I suck at relationships. I've posted my "intimacy" issues on the forum before, but it really comes back to the idea that women get piled in to this "feel good" attitude and get treated like objects. I think I've missed out on some amazing oppurtunities with girls I really liked or cared for because I chose the quick lay over the relationships. I regret all of this now, but you can't go back.

And that's what alcoholism is to me-regret. You just look back on the memories you could have had versus the things you can't remember or want to forget.
Originally posted by StormyKnight StormyKnight wrote:

After awhile, I realized that I didn't bounce back from the hangovers like I used to. In fact, they were turning into a drag.
 
This is actually the one upside to being a binging alcoholic. Unlike the "wake up in the morning and start popping beers" variety that runs in my family, my body tends to kick my ass pretty hard here lately. I don't think I even really experience hangovers until last year-now just getting a buzz results in vomiting, acid reflux, and a terrible headache that goes on for a couple of days sometimes.

Being sick all of the time really wakes you up. I've got to where I get a nice little high from working out that's actually satisfying and comes with a next morning that actually makes me feel BETTER about myself. I've started bicycling, taking my rottie for walks, actually associating with other humans on a level that doesn't involve blacking out and making a fool of myself.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JohnnyCanuck Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 9:13pm
takes a lot of courage to come to the place your at.  Get some help, even if it's just someone you trust that you can phone when you are tempted, gl with this.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote The Guy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2013 at 9:52pm
Originally posted by impulse418 impulse418 wrote:

A lot of people who quit mind altering substances, will quickly pick up another "addiction". Common ones are working out, gambling, sex, food etc. We are still trying to use external things to fill the hole, that alcohol/drugs use to fill. Except the booze and drugs quit working, and started getting us into trouble.

Alcohol was never my problem, but my solution. I had to fix the problem, to resolve my drinking issue. But I also had to realize I'm addicted to more. In the fact that, if something makes me feel good, I want more of it. To the point that it makes my life unmanageable. Unmanageable being the key word. So I have to take a honest look at myself, and determine what is unmanageable, and if any outside thing causing my life to become unmanageable. But to keep external things from making my life unmanageable, I must constantly keep applying the solution that originally got me sober.

Good luck my friend. If you have any questions, feel free to shoot me a PM.



I recommend a hobby. Try Warhammer, so I have someone to nerd it up with.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote FreeEnterprise Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 February 2013 at 8:42am
I've had many friends go through this... Glad you recognize the problem. I knew growing up with my personality that drinking would be a personal "no no" for me. So I never started, way too many family members with serious issues from drinking...

I did watch it destroy many friends lives though, some were able to beat it, others we buried, and a few are living in trailers last I heard...

You may want to think about different friends, as kicking it cold often is much easier when the temptation isn't in your face. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote scotchyscotch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 February 2013 at 5:04pm
I've always been kind of tongue in cheek about drinking. I don't think I necessarily have a problem (he says) I know I don't have a problem at the minute. A person with a drinking problem needs alcohol. Whereas I've already got some. I am drinking a bit more than is good for me. It seems in Glasgow if you're not in the pub or club at the weekend then you'll be on the couch. Saying that recently the shine has come off of it. I suppose I'm at the stage I'm just a bit bored with it.

I do have a mate that is currently having a bit of a problem. His personality was always one that if he took a shine to something then he would go for it pretty hard. It used to be E when I first noticed but that phase in our lives dried up a few years ago. He is currently on the wagon so here's hoping he can stick it out.

I'm glad you've not let it become a problem and found other things to fill the gap. I think it's really good you've addressed it and then actually acted on it. Something I reckon I should be doing but I'm a bit busy procrastinating just now.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mack Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 February 2013 at 5:23pm
Strato, Thumbs Up

Also, FE gives good advice below:

Originally posted by FreeEnterprise FreeEnterprise wrote:

You may want to think about different friends, as kicking it cold often is much easier when the temptation isn't in your face. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stratoaxe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 February 2013 at 6:42pm
Originally posted by scotchyscotch scotchyscotch wrote:

It seems in Glasgow if you're not in the pub or club at the weekend then you'll be on the couch. Saying that recently the shine has come off of it. I suppose I'm at the stage I'm just a bit bored with it.

It's roughly the same here in Texas.
 
You get used to involving beer or liquor with everything around here. Fishing? You drink. Listening to music? You drink. Hanging with friends? You drink.
 
Then you eventually reach an age where you're the one buying the liquor for your friends so you always have a stock at the house. Then one day you realize you don't have to wait on them to get there-you can just drink on your own. It's like waking up and realizing there's an arcade in your garage-what the hell were you even going out and using your quarters for to begin with?
 
Being an alcy is expensive too. When you're in college you start looking for ways to economize your buzz so you go out and less and drink alone more. I think that's how you start the habit.
 
I do agree with you though-I don't consider myself "diseased," I consider myself perpetually bored. That's the trouble with self diagnosing something like this. You have this image of old men with five o' clock shadows who wake up and brain sex themselves with Mad Dog 20/20 or Boone's Farm and you kind of wait to turn in to that.
 
But then you see guys like Bradley Cooper and read about their restraining orders and blackout humiliations and realize that there's really no face to the habit (I say habit instead of disease because I feel like using the term disease removes the inherit responsibility factor.)

I think that Impulse hit the nail on the head-it's not the alcohol you get addicted to, it's just being high in general.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stratoaxe Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 February 2013 at 6:48pm
Originally posted by Mack Mack wrote:

Strato, Thumbs Up

Also, FE gives good advice below:

Originally posted by FreeEnterprise FreeEnterprise wrote:

You may want to think about different friends, as kicking it cold often is much easier when the temptation isn't in your face. 


 
Yeah...I'm realizing more and more I have some less than desireable friends.
 
Sometimes one of the crappiest things you have to do in life is to realize that you've "leveled" above your friends. When you're trying to better your life and they're antagonizing you for it I guess you have to rething what your definition of "friend" really is.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote FreeEnterprise Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 February 2013 at 8:18pm
Yeah, it ain't fun... I've done it many times, and it is hard to do... But, necessary if you have different goals then the guys you are hanging out with. 


I had it explained recently to me this way. Guardrails. 


We all see them and they are located at a place that is safe, but if you go PAST the guardrail, you are in big trouble. So do your actions/friends push you to walk on top of the guardrail or do they want you to stay on the street far away from danger.

As I'm sure you've gathered I had some friends that LIVED on the other side of the guardrail, hanging on for dear life. It was fun over there, but as I got older, I realized I was putting myself at major risk by hanging out with those guys. As you get older, you will see that many of the guys that you were once close with aren't "helping" you toward your life goals. Which is why friends are so important, as they have a huge impact in our lives. Some good, and some bad... Even if "our" outlook and goals are different, our friends choices can directly affect us. 

I'll be praying for you, as you deal with this stuff. I'm sure it ain't easy.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote choopie911 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 February 2013 at 4:16am
Strato, that's seriously admirable. I have a seriously close friend back home, one I met in kindergarten and have been close to for over 20 years now. Whenever I go home I spend 60-75% of my time with him. Lately when I've been home I've noticed that he's started drinking a decent amount pretty much daily. I had to talked to him about it, because that kind of **edited** can be seriously scary pretty easily, and I'd hate to see that since I know there are already issues with it in his family.

It's a strong thing to recognize it yourself and do something about it. All the best in kicking it, and hope whatever your tolerance/ stance is in the future works for you.

Edited by choopie911 - 08 February 2013 at 4:16am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote deadeye007 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 February 2013 at 1:46pm
I always found it odd how quick a "friend" would toss you a beer, but not give support for a decision to not drink.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote scotchyscotch Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 February 2013 at 3:48pm
Originally posted by deadeye007 deadeye007 wrote:

I always found it odd how quick a "friend" would toss you a beer, but not give support for a decision to not drink.

That's a good shout.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote __sneaky__ Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 February 2013 at 9:31pm
Originally posted by stratoaxe stratoaxe wrote:

Originally posted by Mack Mack wrote:

Strato, Thumbs Up

Also, FE gives good advice below:

Originally posted by FreeEnterprise FreeEnterprise wrote:

You may want to think about different friends, as kicking it cold often is much easier when the temptation isn't in your face. 


 
Yeah...I'm realizing more and more I have some less than desireable friends.
 
Sometimes one of the crappiest things you have to do in life is to realize that you've "leveled" above your friends. When you're trying to better your life and they're antagonizing you for it I guess you have to rething what your definition of "friend" really is.
This. I dropped out of college for a while because I inadvertently decided smoking pot and playing video games was a better use of my time than getting an education, or meeting girls, or having a worthwhile job, etc. I was spending way too much time with a friend who still does almost nothing but smoke and play video games. It was always my decision to join him, but it feels like a great idea when you have someone sitting next to you being your personal enabler. It's a very sobering moment when one of your best friends from grade school tells you that they feel like they are outgrowing you and your friendship, and that you are wasting your potential.

It's very hard to ignore the environment you are exposing yourself to.

Anyways, Congrats on taking control of your life Strato, its not easy, but it's definitely worth the work.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stick_boy_2002 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 February 2013 at 9:42pm
im kinda with you in that im not drinking as much as used to. i like to think that at 24 my wild party days are behind me. i guess that the 2 situations that happend in my life recently were the keys. the first being going over to see my dad and hes passed out the couch by noon, and when he does get up stumbles around in a drunken stupor. the other being an old drinking buddy of mine having a heart attack at 26, and legally dying for a couple minutes. im not sure if he has any family history of heart disease but it was definatly a slap in the face to sober the **edited** up.
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