Your Story - Your Turn

What's your story with drinking?
Share some of your stories here, anonymously if you wish, and take the five question quiz.  You can answer as long or as short as you wish, and I'll post all the interviews here so people can read them for all eternity.

1.  Have you stopped drinking? 

2.  How long ago? 

3.  What was the final straw?

4.  How are you feeling right now?

5.  What works for you staying sober?

As you can see the questions are very brief and give you as much room to move as you need - maybe a short answer, maybe a longer answer.  It is your choice and your answer will reflect what you feel/ think as much as you wish.  I will send you a copy before I publish so you can proofread.
Thanks
or you can email here...

43 comments:

  1. 1. Have you stopped drinking?

    Yes

    2. How long ago?

    I became too ill to drink the day after Thanksgiving 2009. The day I was finally well enough to choose abstinence on my own was March 2, 2009. I consider that my sober birthday.

    3. What was the final straw?

    I had been very sick for quite some time, and had been hospitalized once in October '09 for a very damaged, but pre-cirrhosis fatty liver. I got out and started drinking again. The more terrified I got, the more alcohol seemed to comfort me.

    The last November day I drank, I actually felt my body giving up and I barely made it to the hospital before I collapsed. By that time, I was just about out of luck.

    Though I got out of the hospital that time, and remained out for about 3 weeks and did not drink, I was not able to work again. It would take about a year before I could seriously think about a regular job again.

    On January 2, 2010 I was admitted to the hospital the 3rd time, with full blown cirrhosis. The doc told my mom maybe 1 in 1000 in my condition survived. My family gave away my clothes and started dismantling my apartment since it was a given I would die. There was a hospital staffer there who daily told me I would be dead by February.

    After 12 days, I was released but I had alcoholic neuropathy so bad I spent two months in my apartment naked because even light clothes caused excruciating pain. It took about four months before I could resume any sort of functional life; the itching and pain of neuropathy has only been gone now about 4 months, more than two years after my first hospitalization.

    4. How are you feeling right now?

    I am unbelievably blessed to not only be alive, but to be living a mostly normal life. I don't understand it, and keep waiting for some meaningful reason for my recovery to come to light.

    I'm sober because I have to be; there's no screwing up because my liver is permanently damaged. I'm grateful that it's worked out this way. I don't know if I could have gotten sober without being kicked down and stomped on so thoroughly.

    I LOVE NOT DRINKING. I love not being hungover, tired and ashamed, and I love being able to actively live in the world without smelling like vodka.

    5. What works for you staying sober?

    My life has undoubtedly been shortened, by how much I don't know. I'm 44 now and regret those 12+ years I wasted being drunk. I feel very far behind everyone else my age. Being an alcoholic is so hard, so miserable, that I consider myself lucky and protected by the threat of complete liver failure, liver cancer, and/or ruptured esophageal varices (bleeding to death). I'm grateful to be in a place where my sense of humor is back, and that I was not abandoned when I was sick and crushed by shame.

    I don't know if it's fair to say I'm a recovered alcoholic though. Though I feel sure that I will never drink again, I haven't done the steps or really come to grips yet with the self-destructive impulses that made me sick. But my mind is more clear now - it's easier to make better decisions and strive toward goals rather than drink to quiet my fears and self doubt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. " it's easier to make better decisions and strive toward goals rather than drink to quiet my fears and self doubt."

      Whoever wrote this is a fucking legend.

      Delete
  2. Oops! My sober birthday is March 2, 2010 (not 2009). As of today that's 628 days!

    ReplyDelete
  3. 1. Have you stopped drinking?

    Yes.

    2. How long ago?

    I gave up on 7th of June 2011, but had a brief relapse in early sept.

    3. What was the final straw?

    I was ill, over-weight, depressed, semi-suicidal, just about (but not really) functioning in daily life. I had a break-down and asked my doctor for help, three months later I did a supervised home detox to kick off my sobriety.

    4. How are you feeling right now?

    I feel well and fit. Much happier and content. I get doubts about whether I'm an alcoholic or if I was mainly physically addicted to alcohol after too much partying. But at the end of the day I don't really care. It's just good to not have the hangovers or the anxiety.

    5. What works for you staying sober?

    AA because it reminds me why I wanted to stop so badly.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Just started reading your blog. Here are the answers to your questions:

    1. Have you stopped drinking?

    Yes

    2. How long ago?

    Since April 2008

    3. What was the final straw?

    Finding out that I was pregnant after I'd been kicked out of rehab on my 4th attempt at getting sober. I was living in a house full of junkies, estranged from my family and drunk and high every day for weeks on end. Did a test and those two purple lines said save this baby and save yourself. Never touched a drop or anything else since.


    4. How are you feeling right now?

    Great! I don't miss alcohol but I dream about cocaine. I still suffer from terrible anxiety though.

    5. What works for you staying sober?

    My 3 year old son! He is my saviour. My rock. My knight in shining armour.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Have you stopped drinking? Yes.

    How long ago? 74 days

    What was the final straw? I have been working towards giving up drinking for 2 years but the final straw was hiding wine. The first night I hid wine from my husband and lied about how much I'd had to drink was the last night I drank and I will hold to this statement for the rest of my life. "The first time I hid wine is the last time I drank it".

    How are you feeling right now? Complicated. Uptight. Low key. But immensley proud of myself and determined. I look forward to the next Pink Cloud!

    What works for you staying sober? Blogging. The unexpected support from a faceless lovely online community. Lovng my husband and my kids and myself.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thanks for being so open and honest, keep them coming...

    ReplyDelete
  7. 1. Have you stopped drinking? Yes. I am 48, stopped at 36. Was drinking the odd glass as a dare this year, not doing it again, maybe if I get together with facebook hometown friends again, maybe not. They have stopped asking me to drink.

    2. How long ago?

    3. What was the final straw? My husband seeing I was nervous and said a drink may help.

    4. How are you feeling right now? I appreciate lots of aspects of having doing it, and have just done so. Before I didn't realise what a gift it was.

    5. What works for you staying sober? I have never actually been drunk as such, have been having shandies since a child and drank as a teen, but not drunk. I was fine staying sober, facebook has unfortunately reminded me that I love the smell of these things. As a child there was brandy fruit cakes, sherry trifle, rum balls, lifestyle stuff hey? Love lots of aspects of being plain. Socialising with normal people and seeing them have lifestyle has made me interested in this stuff again. So much lifestyle stuff they do.

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  8. Do you know what helped me the most? Being in what my dr succinctly describes as an "elevated mood" (ie raving bipolar mania!!) puts me vehemently against drink and drugs of all kinds. Probably because I've been increasingly sickened by them all for years yet couldn't clean up because I was heavily depressed and self-medicating... as my mood goes down so does the propensity for using go back up so I'm kicking and fighting against it yet again. I wish I could get a teeny bit of mania back then I would kick all substances including methadone quickly. I just wish the clinic I go to would help me more. I'm not lacking willingness nowadays, I just get mired in depression and lose my way, y'know. But anyway yeah it was my mood suddenly switching from down to up and staying up for weeks on end that really really helped me!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi! Thank you so much for posting on my blog, Yoga for Recovery!

    I am inspired to keep it going!!!
    Keep checking back because this new change in cycle will be bringing lots of blog entries centered on healing and regenerating!

    Email me any time at eviebie@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. 1. Have you stopped drinking? Yes, thank goodness

    2. How long ago? Sobriety date is May 2, 2011. Last drink was VERY early morning of May 1st.

    3. What was the final straw? Not sure I can pinpoint just one. My entire life was out of control. I had left my husband and got my own place because he was "so controlling" and just "didn't get me". Really he is a saint who put up with entirely too much BS from me. I had quit my job, had no money saved up, was isolating from family and REAL friends, was starting to go to sketchier and sketchier places and hang out with some not so fabulous people...just a lot happened really. Probably the final kick in the ass was the day I decided to go to inpatient rehab. My husband told me I either had to come home and let him help me or I could go live this other lifestyle but with no help from him financially or otherwise. I surrendered at that point. I knew I was sick and needed the help and the rest is history.

    4. How are you feeling right now? Right now at 9:50pm I'm feelin pretty darn good. Just got home from a great women's meeting. Ask me in an hour and I might feel crappy. Overall I'm happy though. Happier than I ever thought possible honestly. Some days suck, I won't lie. But overall life is pretty darn good and I feel very blessed.

    5. What works for you staying sober? A combination of things. Going to meetings, connecting with others in recovery, working the steps with my sponsor, praying, and reading. The biggest thing for me was completely getting rid of everything to do with my drinking life - which meant changing my phone number, getting rid of toxic people in my life, etc. That was hard. Remember the past is huge in my recovery. The Big Book says the past is our greatest asset and that is the truth. I don't want to go back there. EVER.

    ReplyDelete
  11. This is great - real inspirational stuff!

    ReplyDelete
  12. 1. Have you stopped drinking?

    Yes

    2. How long ago?

    October 23,2011 is my sobriety date, 32 days

    3. What was the final straw?

    I'm not sure. I have known I had a problem for at least 4 years. I quit back then for almost 6 months. My then boyfriend suggested at dinner one night a glass of wine and that was that. I have tried for about the last 2 years to quit off and on. I had 105 days from Feb. 2011 to June 2011 then drank off and on with no more than a week or so sobriety time. I decided to return to AA and really try again the beginning of October. Drank twice after that and now have 32 days. I was just sick of the cycle. I could see the disease progressing. I didn't drink daily but most weekends and some during the week. The cravings were more often. My daughter caught me twice hiding it and that was when I admitted to her I had a problem but still kept drinking. Just not when she was home. I would drink, pass out and have days of severe depression, start to feel somewhat better and do it all again. I wanted to be free of that.


    4. How are you feeling right now?

    Right now, pretty good. Yesterday not so good. It varys daily, sometimes hourly. The craving hit on weekends and when I'm alone and sometimes for no known reason. But overall I am much happier sober and truly believe it will only get better the further I get. Just have to get through the tough parts first.

    5. What works for you staying sober?

    AA meetings, went during my 105 days but didn't really give it my all, this time I do almost daily meetings, call my sponsor daily, really talk to her about things bothering me, do my daily reading she told me to, pray and stay away from events where I know alcohol will be the main event. I have to avoid some social events for the time being and be careful who I hang out with and have had to tell my close friends so that I have accountability. I have to sit through the cravings, call someone, or more commonly nap. Napping works well for me because I love naps and when I wake up the craving has usually passed. I don't go buy alcohol when they hit, that's the main thing.

    Good survey, interesting to read others stories. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  13. @ Gledwood - Elevated Mood is something we have to be aware of and when we are experiencing it try to reign it in so we can channel it towards something useful. Like running, or writing or something constructive. Not zipping around town chasing highs or sex or whatever.. Part of managing sobriety is to recognize the onset of an elevated mood and react accordingly - this had taken me time, like into my thirties to handle.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Just started reading your blog today and I really enjoy it. Despite being half a world away (I'm in Canada), I feel like there's a lot in common with our drinking paths.

    1. Have you stopped drinking?

    Yes.

    2. How long ago?

    October 5, 2011 was my last day. 85 days sober right now.

    3. What was the final straw?

    If there was a last straw, it was over the summer on a camping trip with some friends. We all drank, but I got obnoxiously drunk, and afterward for the whole summer I could see that something had changed in our friendship and that I'd crossed a line. This stewed in me for a while, along with what I call my "pre-mid-life-crisis" and finally I had enough.

    "The Plan" was a 3 month abstinance, but part of the "clearheadedness" is that I realize that I can't moderate my drinking. If I have one, then it is a matter of time before I am drinking almost every day, ruining my health, my finances, and my relationships, and setting myself on a track to no-wheres-ville.

    So, 3 months will be January 5th, and I'm already committing to another year of sobriety. I think I'm still in denial about kicking it for life, but I want to make a go of it in 2012 at least and see where that leads me.

    4. How are you feeling right now?

    -RIGHT- now, I feel great. Most days I feel great. Where I feel shitty is when I suddenly want a drink. I resent that other people can enjoy booze and I can't. It's a big "why me" thing. Luckily, those moments are very short. I feel very stable most of the time, which is what I love. I feel like I have control back, that I have agency in my life. On my best days I feel like anything is possible, and I have such a clear view of how life works: you put good in and you get good out. It's not quite that simple, because bad shit happens, but it's like being on a boat: storms happen, and sometimes bad storms happen. But when they do, do you want to be on a well-kept boat that's cared for, or do you want to be on a boat with a crazy man who keeps drilling holes in the hull?

    5. What works for you staying sober?

    Like you, I quit smoking years before I thought about quitting drinking. When I quit smoking (the first time) my doctor told me that if I had even ONE cigarette, I would be hooked again. Of course, I didn't listen, and had that one cigarette, which had me back again at a pack a day. So I quit AGAIN, and this time it's been over 10 years, because I know that one cigarette is more than one cigarette. For me, one smoke equals a million smokes.

    I keep this in mind. I can't just have one beer, because behind that beer are a million others.

    I remind myself that where I will be in 10 or 20 years depends on all of the little decisions I make today, and that they build on each other.

    I make sure I factor in all of the "externals" when I'm weighing the cost-benefit of a drink: one night of drinking means that I will get nothing done that night, will be hungover the next day, and will probably not get back to my rhythms for a few days after that, unless I'm on a bender and then who knows when I'll level out. For me, there is no such thing as just a night out. A night out means giving up a week or more of my life, and I don't feel like I can go around squandering that time so recklessly.

    I think about what I want to achieve and what I need to do to get there.

    I read blogs like this one, because knowing that someone else has been there is really helpful.

    Thanks again for posting your stuff so candidly. I just discovered your blog today, and it came at a good time (was out with some friends yesterday while they got "day drunk" and I stayed sober, but there were moments when I really just wanted to pour myself a beer).

    ReplyDelete
  15. I stopped drinking 8 months ago and that was 6 months after discovering I was on the bipolar scale(cyclothymia)
    Why? I had cut down from a couple of bottles a night to a couple of glasses a night over a couple of years, but I just could not, not have a drink. I really resented it but couldn't stop. One rare afternoon when the kids were at their dad's and I was looking forward to a day of getting things done, I had a beer in the afternoon because I could and then another and then another till I lost my precious day and felt completely shit all the next day. With sudden clarity, I realised that every ridiculous, painful, morally questionable and downright unforgivable thing I'd ever done was with alcohol as my partner and I knew that I was worth more than to be treated in this terrible way. And so, I stopped right there because there was an unavoidable clarity.
    Because I am usually shy, it has taken a bit of getting used to but I never want to go back there again. I don't miss alcohol and I am learning to build the confidence without it. I have been amazed to discover that my personality remains bubbly and fun and witty when I am in the mood to socialise and so alcohol was always an excuse to be who I already was.
    The bipolarity, which I had always struggled to control, has become soooooo much easier and sobriety also gave me space to discover that I have an organisational problem, which clears up lots more confusion.
    I reassessed what I wanted from life and gave up my consultancy to become a postie, which I love. Life is simple, life has hope and I have a future. The cyclothymia, which used to terrify me so much, is actually much less acute than I thought it was. I remember many, many occasions where red wine was the instigator of an uncontrollable high that I would use to overcompensate for my shyness and as an excuse to behave very badly indeed. I can never just have 1 drink, because sometimes 1 drink was all it took for a soaring high to be followed by a crash of catastrophic dimensions. 1 drink could truly kill me.

    2 months ago, I gave up TV too. I don't want anything to steal what's left of my life and my experiences with my children. Life is good. I am feeling balanced enough after 7 years on my own to maybe let someone share my life too if I someone happens along :)

    I have enjoyed your blog this evening. It feels like a little bit of home. x

    ReplyDelete
  16. 1. Have you stopped drinking? Yes

    2. How long ago? My sober date is January 7, 2010. I had it tattoed on the inside of my right wrist (my drinking hand) as a reminder. Hey - it worked for me.

    3. What was the final straw? There were a couple of things. First one of my sons was crying one night because of how much he hated to see me drunk. As an adult child of an alcoholic myself...I just couldn't let that happen. Second was my husband finally saying one night "I think you are drinking too much". Since I'd been drinking with and around him for 25+ years and he had NEVER said that before...I figured he was right. So I quit.

    4. How are you feeling right now? A little vulnerable but overall amazing.

    5. What works for you staying sober? Reading what I call "drunk books" about others in recovery. Blogging (which is new for me) at http://ohfortheloveofme.blogspot.com/ and going to AA. AA is new for me also (as you can read in my blog if you'd like) but I'm starting to like it.

    Thanks for your candidness and honesty. It's that which keeps us all on the right track.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wish you the absolute best of luck.. not that its luck that keeps us in the zone but hey.. a tattoo wow. thats commitment. I dont think I could do that. you bloody well stay strong then eh? I wish I could have a fraction of your willpower :)

      I have a 7 year old boy who isnt mine but whose dad doesnt seem to be interested to care for. I didnt have a care in the world responsibility wise before hand. It's like ive suddenly sprouted a child, one that needs me. that really helps. i just decided it was about time i was a grown up. im not drawing paralells... but i think you got a similar kick. :) best of luck babes and love to your family.

      Delete
  17. 1. Have you stopped drinking? Yes

    2. How long ago? 7 days, then 1 day slip, now 3

    3. What was the final straw? drunk emailing my boss

    4. How are you feeling right now? physically good. nervous. hopeful.

    5. What works for you staying sober? reading recovery blogs (this one is beautiful) I went to a couple of meetings, and will probably keep going. I don't know how deeply I will dive into meetings, but I live alone and I know that isolation is no friend to an alcoholic, so I will make sure I take time to mix with a sober crowd.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. totally what Bwendo said. there is a massive camel hump to get over. people think it will take a few days but it doesn't, it takes bout a week give or take. get over that and its the first part of the battle done.
      The next bit just takes willpower. stay away from drinking peeps. I have so many friends that seem to think its ok to invite me to a pub... duh ;) not yet. one day maybe.

      Delete
  18. @Sberquist - the start is always clunky and awkward and just exhausting - get plenty of sleep and water and support...

    ReplyDelete
  19. 1. Have you stopped drinking?
    Yes

    2. How long ago?
    93 days. I had my last drink in the early hours on February 11, 2012.

    3. What was the final straw?
    For more years than I can count, there has been a voice in my head telling me I had a problem. Over the course of those years, I have made a few attempts at “moderating” my drinking, but moderation, for me, always eventually failed. Then, after a long night of drinking at a bar, and not eating dinner (a normal occurrence), I slipped and fell on the sidewalk. I broke my top front tooth, lacerated my lower lip, and scraped and bruised most of the right side of my face. A police officer happened to witness my fall, and stopped to help me as I stood bleeding heavily all over the place. He called me an ambulance, and I ended up spending the remainder of the evening, into early morning, basically sobering up in the emergency room. Luckily, a friend was allowed to ride along with me in the ambulance and keep me company while I was in the ER. Luckily, nothing worse happened. My blood alcohol level was .27.
    4. How are you feeling right now?
    Grateful. Aware. Awake. Clear. Open. Connected – to the earth, my body, my emotions, my family. It hasn’t all been easy, but I prefer feeling the emotions I’m feeling now, to the numbest and anxiety I felt when I was drinking.

    5. What works for you staying sober?
    For the first few weeks, sleeping, watching television, reading, and eating the right foods was all I basically did. I holed myself up on the couch, and let myself ‘heal’ as if I had just gotten over a major sickness or had surgery. I still worked and went through my dialing routine, but I just let myself ‘be’ for a while. I saw a therapist a few times, which helped me tremendously. He recommended some really helpful books, and was knowledgeable about, and helped me to understand, the physical and emotional changes I was experiencing. He also helped me to realize that, although I felt alone in this journey into sobriety, I was not alone in my condition. All the changes I was going through, and still am going through, are shared by many. When I feel weak, or have doubts, I read blogs, or google “sober 1 week”, “sober 2 weeks”, “sober 90 days”, etc. I read personal memoirs about sobriety. I read abstract and philosophical books about nature. I began taking yoga classes again. I began walking at least 2 miles a day, especially when I’m feeling frustrated, or need to clear my head. I make or order myself ‘fancy’ drinks when socializing – my recent favorite is cranberry and tonic water.
    To be completely honest though, the biggest thing that helps me to stay sober is the sound and the visual memory of my face hitting the sidewalk. I can’t bear the thought of how I would feel about myself if I ever were to put myself in that position again. I know now that I can’t even have one drink, because one drink for me eventually leads to many.

    ReplyDelete
  20. 1. Have you stopped drinking? Yes

    2. How long ago? 3 days

    3. What was the final straw? There have been a few final straws in the last few weeks: Falling asleep wasted with my baby girl next to me in my bed with no railing. She could have easily fallen off. Stupid. Also the piss poor state of my relationship with my husband. Most of our fights are alcohol fueled and I can't make sense of anything anymore.

    4. How are you feeling right now? Hopeful. Reading the stories of others is giving me confidence.

    5. What works for you staying sober? I'm not qualified to answer this yet. I think the thing/person that will help me stay sober is my daughter. Not being a loser for her.

    ReplyDelete
  21. 1. Yes, I've stopped drinking
    2. This is my second day without a drink
    3. Getting pissed at work dinner and offending a collegue who made a compliant about me. Could cost me my job. Such an idiot.
    4. I've done six month before, I just need to always remain vigilant. Moderation is a joke, just a slippery slope. Just need to say no.
    5. Can't say yet. Started a blog of my own to remind myself of why I want to stay on course. Hopefully it helps me, and perhaps others.

    I'm thinking of attending a meeting or some such, but it something I havnt done before.

    Http://facingfactsaboutmyself.wordpress.com.

    Read your blog from the start last night. Great effort and really appreciated.

    ReplyDelete
  22. 1. Have you stopped drinking?
    Nope. But I am playing with the idea.

    2. How long ago?
    Not applicable, dude.

    3. What was the final straw
    Too many close calls. I've wrecked my car twice in three months; the first one I totaled. I've seen my family struggle with alcoholism and swore I'd never drink because of it. But curiosity got the best of me. I drink almost daily, and quite excessively. I'm 24, so people attribute it to my age. I have used that excuse, too. I've mentioned my drinking as problematic and have expressed concern that I have a problem, but "friends" make excuses for me, saying, "It's just social. You just know a lot of people. You know how to have fun." What they don't know is that it isn't uncommon for me to drink 2-4 glasses of wine before I head out to the bar for my Jameson and cheap beer. (I started drinking Jameson straight to slow myself down, but it's not working anymore.) I black out constantly, embarrassing myself. I've dated the worst guys ever and put myself in questionable situations. To many, this sounds fairly typical for someone my age. But I feel myself slipping. I've read the stories of other drinkers, and while I may not have empty bottles shoved under my bed and I haven't been to jail, I feel like I'm on that path.

    4. How are you feeling right now?
    Conflicted, because I actually can't imagine my life without alcohol. I didn't start drinking until I was 19, but my life has basically revolved around drinking since then. I have sort of based my identity around drinking and being a wild party girl. It's fucking fun.

    5. What works for you staying sober?
    I haven't figured it out yet. I am leaving the Midwest this weekend for the mountains. I hope to travel around the U.S. and possibly the world and since making the decision to embark on this adventure, I have cut back on my drinking some. It's given me something to focus my energy (and finances) on. But then again, I have about $250 less than I had planned to leave with because of going out, keeping a stock of wine and having to replace a tire.

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    Replies
    1. good luck on your trek dude (dudette.. sorry, I reread.. my bad ). The honesty is awesome. I had real problems when i quit because my persona was the same. I drank, took drugs, partied like I couldnt die... i was friggin awesome.... but to be fair the drugs were less damaging than the drink... and the drink was more addictive. I gave up the drugs no worries.. the drink.... well. :/

      good luck babes. explore, be adventurous, have fun. ;)

      Delete
  23. Hello :



    I am in Recovery 28 years. I am writing a book. I want to publish a second book. " The Little Big Book, " - 30 - 40 stories /



    3500 - 5000 words. submit here , follow link for details.



    http://www.alcoholicshare.org/2012/09/04/the-little-big-book/



    thx : Thomas Gillis

    ReplyDelete
  24. 1. Have you stopped drinking?
    -------------------------------
    I stop and start. I spent the best part of 10 years drinking myself silly. then I stopped for 2 years. since then I've struggled with it. As I write this, I have been 12 hours or so, sober.

    3. What was the final straw?
    ---------------------------------
    I couldnt get out of bed properly to get the alcohol I needed to stop myself from going into a terrifying withdrawal. I hallucinated so badly on withdrawal it was like I was living a terrible dream. I think at the time I preferred that feeling to living my actual life no matter how terrifying it was. I also got a friend that only I could see. bonus right? :s wrong. the hallucinations were the warning that the doctors needed to pop me into bethlam hospital and prescribe me with the librium I needed to sober up.

    4. How are you feeling right now?
    --------------------------------------
    Horrible. I need to build things, to make stuff, to be constructive but I can't spend money on materials I dont have. I'll find something else to do. I'll live :)

    5. What works for you staying sober?
    -----------------------------------------
    Being busy. walking, geocaching, creating, tameshigiri, whatever it is, it has to grab my attention and the best things are those things that you walk away with something at the end of it; something physical that you can look at and remember the sobriety that led you to its acquisition or creation, something that you can hold on to for a second and realise that its only you thats really led you here to this better place. :) stability in my life also works... if someone rocks the boat I get dead crochety... and then I drink.

    the bitch with this is that the game changes and what kept me sober last year wont work this year. ive gotta keep moving and keep interested. my mind babbles away at me and theres nothing I can do to stop it.. short of a drink. so I have to keep it occupied.

    i dont know if anyone else gets that.. *Shrugs* we're all in this together, each and every one of us, individually.. alone. or at least thats how it feels.. without a drink.

    good luck people. ;) peace.

    also as an end note, I spent two years sober. thats a long time. I realise that diatribe sounded quite down and desperate.. its not. its one day at a time sure, but there will come a point where you can look back and be proud... :)

    ReplyDelete
  25. 1. Have you stopped drinking?
    Yes I have stopped drinking and using drugs.

    2. How long ago?
    I have been sober for just over 5 months!

    3. What was the final straw?
    The final straw was when I got arrested at the school of my dreams, SMU. I was also slipped 'Xanax' (it was in my drink) and overall had an awful night. I was kicked out of the school a few days later, which meant I was only enrolled for less than a week. I went to a sober living home right after that.

    4. How are you feeling right now?
    Right now I feel amazing. I am heading to work in 6 minutes. So there's that, the full time job. I run my own blog on sobriety, my own forum on addiction, associate with other alcoholics and stay active (I bike every day for the most part).
    I feel awesome!

    5. What works for you staying sober?
    Well what I listed above works great. However, I feel so proud of myself for doing what I thought I would not ever do.
    Exercise is a huge thing for me, along with routine. The scheduled hours for work keep me in line, exercise makes me happy, and the blog and forum I run definitely add some responsibility that I never want to give up.

    www.beingsober.org is my blog
    I'd like to invite you, or anyone else, to share their story there as well.

    ReplyDelete
  26. 1. Have you stopped drinking?

    I am hoping to stop today. I am trying to stop today.

    2. How long ago?

    My last drink was a half-glass of wine around 4 am this morning, which is absolutely horrifying.


    3. What was the final straw?

    This morning I awoke on the coach, still wearing my clothes from the previous day with the blue glow of a DVD that had ended on the television and a half-glass of red wine on the coffee table, which I downed like a champion before getting into the shower. I tore apart my purse searching for cigarettes, which, had I been even remotely less disgusting I would have remembered I ran out of at some point between putting the kids to bed and my nightly drinking myself to sleep which is basically when I collapse on some piece of furniture in the living room and snore away until I wake up with the need to urinate. Hopefully, anyhow.

    At the beginning, my drinking seemed to me romantic. Because as unbelievable as it may seem, I knew from my first drink that I was an alcoholic and I FUCKING WANTED IT. I was a boring kid who did well in my private school and came from a white suburban neighborhood in goddamn New Jersey with smiling parents who never got divorced and no one went to prison or traumatized me unduly. I wanted to be a writer, and in some insane case of drunken logic, I convinced myself that my excessive drinking made me a more interesting and complicated person.

    But today, today I am tired. I am tired of passing out before brushing my teeth. (Yes, this is a disgusting factor in my life.) I am tired of awkwardly avoiding all human contact after 8 pm because I know I’m going to be incoherent. I am tired of taking out the trash that clatters and clinks down the steps with bottles each week.

    I am tired of being tired.


    4. How are you feeling right now?

    Embarassed.

    5. What works for you staying sober?

    I do not know yet...

    ReplyDelete
  27. 1. I stopped drinking, but haven't decided it's for good. It's just something that no longer works with my life.

    2. I think it's been a few months by now, but after having multiple sobriety dates in the past, and then huge relapses based around the guilt when I lost them, I decided what's important is today.

    3. The final straw was that I was heading for a "deeper bottom" and decided I didn't need to get all the way there to react.

    4. I feel strong, and independent. I feel like I've finally taken control of my life.

    5. I play music, write songs. I'm currently working on a Kickstarter project to fund studio time to record a concept album surrounding my experience. Maybe you could relate to some of the songs?

    http://kck.st/13yC74Y

    Thank you for the time,
    Danny Stipe
    www.stipesongs.com

    ReplyDelete
  28. 1. Have you stopped drinking?
    Yes

    2. How long ago?
    September 1, 2013

    3. What was the final straw?
    Over the past 15 years, I have had an on-again/off-again relationship with alcohol. When it's on, it's REALLY on. As in, spent a month in college completely wasted. As in, this summer I spent more days drinking/recovering from drinking than I did with my family. It's a disgrace and a mess and I decided on September 1st that I'm tired of using it as a way to deal with negative feelings. I'm 27. I'm too old to be running from this.

    4. How are you feeling right now?
    Angry with myself for letting things get this out of control. Sad for my family and friends. Pathetic and weak. Really, really tired.

    5. What works for you staying sober?
    When cravings are bad, I squeeze handfuls of ice until it hurts. It helps take the edge of the cravings off and isn't something that will literally hurt me long term. Also, going to bed and establishing a regular routine and channeling my energy into volunteer work/extra time with my kids also helps.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Don’t know what I can say. I am no more aware of justification than anyone that seeks it from me. I am explained so painfully perfectly in the book Alcoholics Anonymous. My difference is I am still drunk.
    I have attended thousands, truly thousands, of AA meetings and witnessed the authentic miracle in others of a free and glorious life without liquor. I believe some of them were as hopeless as I am.
    I have so many loving and admiring friends willing to help, whatever is needed or wanted. Yet, I know that won’t help. And the act of being a careless drunk amidst ones who I know have suffered as I have seems like another unwelcome outcome I am supposed to bear.
    I have learned “fade out” it not an option in this world I know, yet I long for it.
    To exit before one grows old and tedious.
    Too late for that. I have become both. Just ask me.
    So is my answer in this writing?

    ReplyDelete
  30. My life as an alcoholic has left me dry. My first experiences with intoxication probably occurred before I had cognitive memory. My last experiences came with little memory, as well.
    I have no illusion that I am not suffering from the lethal form of alcoholism. I am as sure of it as I am the face I see in the mirror. Yet, that has not arrested the shameful and senseless demise I am surely facing.
    I have attended over three treatments and thousands of AA meetings, all calming to my condition, yet I am as bound to return to the drink as the sun is to rise. Hopeless is the term, I believe.
    What I don’t understand is the senselessness of the harm I cause others. I do not approve of assault weapons, and would absolutely never use one, yet the impact I cause is just as vast and random.
    I want to be whole or, at the least, not feeling excruciating discomfort by merely existing. Alcohol by no means cures this, but it does alleviate enough to return to sleep.
    There is no one to blame or attach responsibility. The impulse to assign a catalyst towards my relentless approach to self destruct is attractive. But, in all truth, no person or condition would have any impact on the power that alcohol has had over me.
    Just as not being able to experience another childhood, I am only familiar with a life that has always been ruled by alcohol. Whether it be consuming it or the steadfast actions to keep it at bay.
    It will always be driving me.
    Angry and hopeless. Where is the purpose in taking a genuinely kind and helpful woman and bestowing her with this loathsome condition. I am faced with trying to understand or logically accept, yet I am forever intoxicated. Thus logic and understanding are not frequent visitors.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Don’t know what I can say. I am no more aware of justification than anyone that seeks it from me. I am explained so painfully perfectly in the book Alcoholics Anonymous. My difference is I am still drunk.
    I have attended thousands, truly thousands, of AA meetings and witnessed the authentic miracle in others of a free and glorious life without liquor. I believe some of them were as hopeless as I am.
    I have so many loving and admiring friends willing to help, whatever is needed or wanted. Yet, I know that won’t help. And the act of being a careless drunk amidst ones who I know have suffered as I have seems like another unwelcome outcome I am supposed to bear.
    I have learned “fade out” it not an option in this world I know, yet I long for it.
    To exit before one grows old and tedious.
    Too late for that. I have become both. Just ask me.
    So is my answer in this writing?

    ReplyDelete
  32. 1. Have you stopped drinking?
    Yes
    2.How Long Ago?
    April 5, 2013
    3 What Was the Final Straw?
    Tired of everyone complaining about my drinking, I "ran away" from home (at age 35). When I went to check out of the hotel at what I thought was the end of the weekend, I found out I'd been there for 9 days. Four days later, I had my last drink in the parking lot outside the admissions office of a treatment center.
    4. How are you feeling right now?
    Healthy, optimistic, overwhelmed, scared, grateful.
    5. What Works for You Staying Sober?
    AA - not just going to meetings, but really working the program, gratitude, getting plenty of sleep & eating a lot of candy (I'm tapering off the candy, but damn was that important for the first few months!)

    ReplyDelete
  33. 1. Have you stopped drinking?

    Yes, I've stopped

    2. How long ago?

    It's bee 2 years

    3. What was the final straw?

    Police officer arresting me.
    Lose my driver license and getting fired.

    All the same day.

    4. How are you feeling right now?

    Feeling ok, I always some kind of little thirst.

    I do not feel I've done something wrong yesterday loll.

    5. What works for you staying sober?

    I don't have headaches related to drinking.
    I know I'll be in shape in the morning.

    I do not feel I've done something wrong yesterday loll.

    Philip

    ReplyDelete
  34. 1. Have you stopped drinking?
    YES!

    2. How long ago?
    November 2, 2013, 106 days today

    3. What was the final straw?
    My final straw was a culmination of things over the past two years. I didn't drink every day. I'm a binge drinker, drinking ever other weekend (when I'm away from my youngest daughter). The propensity to binge drink has always been there but I had periods where I didn't drink for years.

    I was married for 20 years and after divorcing I found that dating always meant drinking. I found a great guy who unfortunately has a drinking problem as well and that's what we did together for the last 4+ years. We went from sharing a fifth of booze over a 3 day period to the point where we were both drinking a half gallon of hard liquor each over a 24 hour period.

    About a year ago, I woke up after a binge with the most horrible case of anxiety. I wanted to crawl out of my own skin just to get away from myself. The hangovers where incredibly debilitating for days if not an entire week after the binges. After figuring out that alcohol was causing my anxiety, I tried moderation to no avail. One drink led to days of blackout drunks. I figured out that if I stayed drunk, the anxiety stayed away.

    All of this drinking led to many fights with my boyfriend and since we don't live together, caused me to drive over an hour back home. I always waited hours before driving but realize now that I was still legally drunk and how lucky I am to not have killed someone with my car.

    I got tired of lying to my teenage daughter when she asked how I had bruised myself so badly. I couldn't tell her that I had no recollection after having been black out drunk for days. It's a wonder I didn't break anything other than my pride.

    4. How are you feeling right now? I'm feeling pretty great. I'm able to be productive every day instead of losing days to the dreaded hangover.

    5. What works for you staying sober?
    Sleeping always helps me when I'm feeling like I want to drink. I don't think I would be here without the help of sober bloggers. I know that I one drink will lead to a week of sick unproductive time. So, the fear of hangovers also helps me stay sober.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. the week of sick unproductive time is what keeps me sober - I can't handle the anxiety of being hungover anymore.

      Delete
  35. I love this blog and its so great to hear your amazing story. I just started my own blog similar stuff, I want to quit and i have a progression blog started today so if anyone wants my story and to follow my journey, Id love for everyone to check it out. http://smalltownnatalia.blogspot.ca/

    ReplyDelete
  36. My post in the form of a video:

    http://player.vimeo.com/video/97622113

    ReplyDelete
  37. Wow - this is powerful. I just started a blog on being in a painful relationship with an alcoholic. I'd love folks' feedback and comments about it. I'm only giving my perspective and it would be nurturing for me to hear others' thoughts on my experiences. Thank you. dearjohnnarron.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete

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