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Why Do I Drink?

Why am I compelled to drink every day, when it is observably clear and well-established that I feel healthier, happier, and am more productive and energetic when i don’t drink?

Every morning I vow “not today.” And the I get cravings every day at the same time and easily succumb to the pull.

I’ve been sober for stretches, usually because of a health issue, but then I start to love it. And I am always much happier. But then eventually, I start drinking again socially, and it snowballs into daily drinking in my home. Why am I doing this? I have zero willpower. Why? It’s not what my heart wants, but the cravings override my intention.

by How do I stop?reply 216Last Monday at 10:39 AM

Because you want to feel good, happy and giddy. It's a quick fix. Try to identify why you want the drink.

Is it to feel better? To release anxiety? As a treat, because you deserve it?

It becomes a mindless habit - as many things do. Of course, all the AA people on here will tell you the usual story that you have no control and you're a helpless alcoholic.

There's a gray area.

by How do I stop?reply 101/04/2021

I was the same. I am an alcoholic and this is exactly how alcoholism works. Complete abstinence is my only solution and AA helped me lay that ground work .

6 years sober this past weekend

by How do I stop?reply 201/04/2021

R2 Do you think I might be an alcoholic? My dad’s side all are. Mom’s side are tee-total. I think I’m in denial.

by How do I stop?reply 301/04/2021

I am the same. I never "hit bottom" or lost anything due to drinking. I rarely drank alone. But once I started, I couldn't stop. I was a 3-4 times a week binge drinker, usually on weekends, and I started realizing that I started the week SO ANXIOUS and decided to quit drinking for 30 days to see what happened.

I felt so good I never drank again. It has been 5 years. You can do it. Sparkling water 24/7, and a brainwashing book called This Naked Mind helped.

by How do I stop?reply 401/04/2021

I don't call myself an alcoholic, but I probably am one. I consider myself a problem drinker who is infinitely happier sober.

It is so nice to wake up and feel the same every day. And to not worry about how I acted or what I said.

by How do I stop?reply 501/04/2021

Not OP, but I definitely drank so I would feel good. Giddy, as R1 said. And to relieve anxiety. I wish doctors would just come out and tell people that anxiety is the reason most alcoholics drink. It would make the condition less shameful and help treat the actual problem!

by How do I stop?reply 601/04/2021

You covet. That is your nature. And how do we begin to covet? We begin by coveting what we see every day. Don't you feel eyes moving over your body, OP? And don't your eyes seek out the things you want?

by How do I stop?reply 701/04/2021

R6 my anxiety was greatly relieved when I quit drinking.

Drinking causes anxiety and depression.

by How do I stop?reply 801/04/2021

OP, are you in therapy? Sounds like the underlying issue needs to be treated before you can control your drinking.

by How do I stop?reply 901/04/2021

Our OP is not a real alcoholic, R7, but he thinks he is. He tries to be. He's tried to be a lot of things, I expect. Our OP wasn't born an alcoholic. He was made one through years of systematic alcohol abuse. Our OP hates his own identity, you see, and he thinks that makes him an alcoholic. But his pathology is a thousand times more savage and more terrifying.

by How do I stop?reply 1001/04/2021

For another chance to disapprove and another brilliant zinger. Also, another reason not to move. I imagine.

by How do I stop?reply 1101/04/2021

I hope the H troll becomes a thing. He's very entertaining.

by How do I stop?reply 1201/04/2021

R10 Wait, what? What in holy heck are you talking about? I wish I understood what you were saying, even as a dig. And um, thanks for the assessment. Really resonates with me a lot. Not.

by How do I stop?reply 1301/04/2021

All that is incidental R13. First principles. What needs do you serve by drinking?

by How do I stop?reply 1401/04/2021

God I'd love a drink. Life is so empty without one. I mean the man I had the best sex with has been dead a long time and I'm old so what else is there?

by How do I stop?reply 1501/04/2021

R6 Yeah I do have anxiety. I also noticed that when I had my years of not drinking, my anxiety levels would go way down. And life satisfaction would go up. Why I would ever start up again when I felt so good, is a mystery.

I started drinking regularly when I was 15, because I was a latch key kid/only child, and it became a substitute for parental love, comfort etc. I felt more confident with my peers when I would drink. A tale as old as time. Thirty years later, it's really a false god. I know that it is, I'm not fooling myself. Anticipating the drink is way more exciting than after I've had the drink. But then I feel sad that broke my vow and had the drink... so then I will have another drink (or three) to push down the sadness and shame of the first drink. Such a dumb, weird cycle.

Socially, drinking is so way past being a threadbare party trick. Any phone call or text I make when I've had a drink, I immediately discount the next day, even if I would have said the exact same things while sober.

I certainly don't feel the warm fuzzy of the fake comfort that I used to feel in my teens, alone in my house, wishing I had parents who were there to check in with me, hang out with me, help me with my math, or even fucking ground my ass for being a delinquent. Anything,. These days I just feel shame. And yet, I can't seem to stop until some external force intervenes, like an operation. Or like when I started Lamictal and I felt amazing in my brain for the first time in my adult life. I stopped drinking for a year and a half. I was very happy and productive. Then the Lamictal pooped out, and I found myself reaching for alcohol again. And SSRI's actually making my cravings go through the roof. It's a real thing, it happens to some people. I have read forums about people who were rare drinkers turn into raging drunks because they started an SSRI.

I am wishing for some magic wand that could take away the cravings. In the meantime, is there anything anyone of you that has ever been in my position has tried -- that worked? AA meetings seem out of the question. I guess there are Zoom meetings. I am not sure that would flip the switch in my brain the way an in-person group meeting would do. Naltrexone? Kudzu? A shaman?

by How do I stop?reply 1601/04/2021

And one for Mahler, r11.

by How do I stop?reply 1701/04/2021

R14 I may have answered your question in the above post at R16. It's a great question. What needs am I medicating or ignoring, indeed. I think I'm very lonely, deep inside. Because I was very neglected growing up. And I found alcohol at an impressionable age, and so it sort of hardwired into my brain. The connection between "I feel so lonely and neglected" and "Hey! I can drink and it takes away the lonely feelings."

Then the question is, how to heal the long-held residual neglect so I am free?

by How do I stop?reply 1801/04/2021

R15 "What else is there" is YOU.

by How do I stop?reply 1901/04/2021

Here's a list of AA Zoom meetings, OP / R16. Or google "AA Zoom" and your city.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 2001/04/2021

OP If you started to drink at 15 that has effected your mental development. Your brain was still growing then. I have represented many addicts who started when they were a pre- teen, let alone a teenager. Any drug mixed with a growing brain will effect that brain. For a great many people addiction was a survival technique when they were young. Many times because they are being sexually abused. And the abuser serves them drugs. I will say this: a great many addictions involve OCD. The making of the drink, the lighting the pipe, the rush of the needle- all OCD.

by How do I stop?reply 2101/04/2021

R21 I understand. You are saying there is some developmental issues from drinking heavily before I was an adult. What are the implications of that? The anxiety? The OCD? As a result of the drinking/brain impact? I've done therapy much of my adult life but I am not currently in therapy because of the pandemic. I have worked super duper hard to evolve and grow and "adult" but I am sure I have big deficits. I know there's online therapy resources, but I haven't tried it. I hope there is a way for me to heal my brain. I know not drinking, for like, the rest of my life, would be a big step forward.

I was sexually abused as a pre-schooler, and then while I was taken out of that environment, I was still very neglected the rest of my upbringing. Yes I can see a ritualistic aspect of the drinking. I definitely do set the stage the same way every day. I know I'm self-soothing and I know it's also a total lie and a false god.

You sound very knowledgable and caring. Thank you for your input.

by How do I stop?reply 2201/04/2021

R20 I adore you. Thank you. Such a little gesture but so caring and powerful. I just emailed a volunteer with my plight and apparently they have people ready 24/7 to respond to people. I will check my email shortly.

Maybe just getting this out of my shame closet, into the open, will initiate some sort of sea change. I am very moved by the sincere replies.

by How do I stop?reply 2301/04/2021

Of course each situation is different, but as one who really has been around the block with these experiences, I can almost guarantee that when you hit your own personal bottom the light will come on & you will either give up/in, or fight for your life--the one thing I remember my counselor telling me was "be good to yourself"--no one had ever come close to telling me that, & from that point I began to take steps to do exactly that. It's been a lifetime journey & is not over, but you are the only one who can change your own behaviour--not to sound harsh, but put on your big boy pants & get a clue--you have the power within you to change and become a better person. I'm not a joiner & never did AA, but there are those who need that type of support. Good luck!

by How do I stop?reply 2401/04/2021

I think it's related to anxiety. The alcohol temporarily subsides anxiety, giving you some relief from worry, bad memories, fear, insecurity, regret, guilt. Eventually, you get addicted to the chemical. But you also get addicted to the regular short-term relief from anxiety. Unfortunately, a long-term addiction ultimately makes your anxiety worse.

by How do I stop?reply 2501/04/2021

OP, I'm essentially in the same boat as you, so I have empathy for what you're feeling. (Granted, I didn't start drinking until I was 29 and I'm now 40, but I made up for lost time. Alcoholism also runs on both sides of my family, hence I didn't drink until age 29.) Naltrexone actually works exactly as it's designed to, but you have to take it about an hour before you have a drink. I'll admit I have a prescription but haven't taken any in weeks. This thread has reminded me I need to try it again and let it work its magic.

Also, Google the Sinclair Method when you get a chance. I'll attach a great YouTube video on it that someone shared on here back last summer. It helped me when I was religiously taking my Naltrexone.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 2601/04/2021

OP, I think you just had a break through about why you drink and that's awesome.

I replaced drinking with exercise. It's kind of swapping one addiction for another but every time I get that end of the day craving (never, ever thought about drinking during the day, day drinking just wasn't my habit - in fact, if I was at a daytime event, I might have one drink and then come home and get blotto in the evening). Anyway, I was trying to lose weight and to do that I knew I had to give up drinking. So on day 1 instead of mixing a cocktail, I put on my sneakers and went for a run. I eventually joined a gym for strength training and the ability to do cardio inside when the weather is bad, but to this day nothing makes me feel better than a run, bike ride or hike outside. It literally clears my head and gives me insane energy. And the rare moments that I crave a drink, again, I put on my sneakers and reflective vest, my headlamp, and head outside for a run. Exercise and not drinking have also helped a lot with my anxiety.

Speaking of anxiety, it's a bit of a chicken and egg situation. Does drinking cause anxiety or do people start drinking excessively because of anxiety? There was an interesting study a few years ago on the effect of histimines (allergens) and anxiety. Alcoholics have a high amount of histimine in their blood.

by How do I stop?reply 2701/04/2021

R26 Hey, thank you that looks great! I will check it out.

R24 I'm laughing at "put your big boy pants on" because I do say that to myself a lot. But in a mean way. I need to say it (and do it) in a way that is self-loving, and self-empowering, not adding more hurt to my hurt. Like putting on my "big boy battle armor", and kicking some ass, because I care about myself. That's a good way to flip the script of that phrase.

by How do I stop?reply 2801/04/2021

I had the same problem for years with gambling. It sucked my finances dry for a long time. It wrecked me hard emotionally every time I lost huge amounts of money. The closing of the casinos for almost a year now has been a godsend. It’s allowed me to almost completely dig myself out of debt and convince me to never gamble again. The huge benefits outweigh the misery of the addiction. I wish I could go back and change the impulsive decisions I made, but I can’t. The past is past.

It’s funny because one of the casinos sent me a Christmas postcard that they would have sent out to all of their customers, saying how much they missed me and hoped to see me soon whenever the casinos open. All I could think of was “You wish!” It’s nice to know that they’re now the ones losing money.

by How do I stop?reply 2901/04/2021

R27 OMG yes! Histamines!! So, I read that too. It resonated with me intuitively. So I started taking a Quercetin/Bromelain supplement, which are two all-natural bioflavanoids that are meant to lower histamines. They do make my brain feel less anxious... I feel the "ocd" feelings in my brain recede. But they do nothing to curb my cravings.

I even tried straight up Zirtec. Again, my anxiety/stress/ocd brain feels a lot better on the antihistamine, but it doesn't stop the cravings. Interesting though.

by How do I stop?reply 3001/04/2021

People like OP believe in two things:

- All they deserve is misery and pain.

- Anything good can only come with a heavy price aka more misery and pain.

The few happy moments alcohol does provide (aka release from a miserable state of mind) are followed by misery, physical pain, and regret which, based on established beliefs, is rightfully deserved for being so damn stupid to think one can escape his miserable state of mind.

This isn't about addiction alone. It's about the belief that they are unworthy of happiness and good things and life is about suffering and going through one miserable experience after the other.

by How do I stop?reply 3101/04/2021

R31, I'm not OP, but you just described me. How do I change?

by How do I stop?reply 3201/04/2021

r10, that's terrifying

by How do I stop?reply 3301/04/2021

R31 I disagree 1000%. I have internalized neglect, sure—but I have a love of life. I am in awe of life. I have creative pursuits. I think I’m a good person. I have friends and loved ones. I’m a good friend to others.

Yes. It’s easier to give of myself to others, than to care for myself in consistently healthy ways. But I raised myself l, and I think I found early on, I was too young for all of that freedom and self-responsibility. So I learned to cope in different ways. This is standard for children of neglect. To cope we learn escape tricks, to escape the terror of realizing no one is there to protect you.

But I have been sober many times in my life, and when I am sober, I treat myself to travel, culture, spa treatments, massage, Even now, I will reach out for a truly self-loving choice, like a hike or a massage. But I also have slipped back into this other thing. Which is unhealthy.

You are either a troll, or you have not been wounded enough to understand, so you judge others who you deem as “weak.”

Or you just lack empathy. Perhaps you are a bitter asshole.

by How do I stop?reply 3401/04/2021

R33 It’s not terrifying, it’s bullshit.

by How do I stop?reply 3501/04/2021

Dear r34, replace your current established beliefs with ones that make you feel better about yourself.

However, different approaches and strategies work for different people. It may help for you to see your deliberate desire to change for the better as a quest or journey that can only lead to a glorious victory. Trust that there is the perfect solution or path for you out there and all it takes is doing some research to get you there to find the right one for you.

Self help books can be a good way to start. Some find comfort and support in local groups dealing with issues like yours.

by How do I stop?reply 3601/04/2021

OP, don't waste time responding to anything not constructive, i.e., don't waste your time "fighting" with others on this thread. Accept what's helpful and ignore the rest.

by How do I stop?reply 3701/04/2021

[quote] I have internalized neglect, sure—but I have a love of life. I am in awe of life. I have creative pursuits. I think I’m a good person. I have friends and loved ones. I’m a good friend to others.

And yet here you are at DL starting a thread about self-destructive behaviors.

Defensive comments like at r34 just out you as a troll.

by How do I stop?reply 3801/04/2021

OP - alcohol will take its toll on your looks, your face, your skin, your gut, etc.

by How do I stop?reply 3901/04/2021

Forgot to post a photo about alcohol & looks.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 4001/04/2021

You're trying to fill some type of void, OP. Find out why you have a void and if you can fill it with something else that would be more satisfying.

by How do I stop?reply 4101/04/2021

R16 / OP, they're having very successful trials using psilocybin to treat alcohol use disorder, depression, anxiety, and end of life issues. One treatment seems to be all that is needed.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 4201/04/2021

R38 Fucking A. F & F for being an insane person.

by How do I stop?reply 4301/04/2021

R41 Yes. Distilled into a nutshell, yes. Totally. Thank you, sweetheart.

R42. I am. All. In.

Ps I’ve tried Trans-Cranial magnetic therapy, various meds, EMDR - (weeklong 8 he per day intensive), chakra balancing, yoga, cranial-da tail therapy, shamanic soul retrieval, homeopathy...soooo many things. Prayer. Getting saved. (I’m a Jew-Bu but I tried it.). I’m. not being lazy. I am not sitting idly by allowing myself to deteriorate. It’s something very very deep and tenacious. PTSD.

by How do I stop?reply 4401/04/2021

OP, just order yourself a copy of the book "Alcoholics Anonymous". The first 100 or so pages described to me the baffling nature of my relationship with alcohol. I may go months or years w/o it but ultimately, if i touch it again its right back to the beginning or worse. No self help book or licensed professional could begin to explain the situation I was in , but i took to this book immediately, even with the odd 1930's vernacular. It was a relief to find i wasn't alone in this predicament and there seemed to be a solution. Good Luck!

by How do I stop?reply 4501/04/2021

OP, R26 here, and this thread inspired/convicted me to take a Naltrexone and wait an hour before I drank. I went for a walk and read a book I've had checked out from the library for months down at our clubhouse by the tennis courts. (I would usually be drinking and sending buzzed texts, unable to concentrate on a book.) After an hour I walked back home and poured a drink. I've literally had about three sips and feel nothing...the Naltrexone completely blocks the urge to drink. It's just a matter of taking it properly and consistently. In fact, I just sent my psychiatrist PA an overdue e-mail that the meds work (in conjunction with my antidepressant).

Thanks for the reminder that this is nothing to be ashamed of. People can be snarky assholes on here, but it's also nice to know others are dealing with the same challenges. Thanks to everyone on this thread who's offered encouragement and other treatment suggestions as well. Much appreciated!

by How do I stop?reply 4601/04/2021

r31 you literally described me too. I am also in OP's boat. I've surrounded myself with shitty people that I try to please, and I truly don't believe I deserve anything good. How the fuck do I get out of this? It's like I'm stuck in Groundhog Day.

The funny thing is that I am relatively good-looking, kind, and intelligent. I just can't seen to believe I am worth success.

by How do I stop?reply 4701/04/2021

Here's the Big Book, r45:

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 4801/04/2021

24 years sober here. It was similar for me, OP. The urges kept coming and I determined I could do nothing about it. Then I screwed over a friend while drunk. I really screwed him. It was then I knew I had to get sober. You have to give yourself over to the admission you have a problem. Check yourself into an addiction treatment ward at a hospital. I refused to admit I was an alcoholic the first few days, after some education and listening to stories of the other patients in the ward, I admitted it on the third day. I was responsible for not taking care of this problem and I had to be responsible for the solution. Once it's set in your mind you don't want to be that person ever again, you've taken a big step toward success. But it has to come from you. You need to work on it. It's not a simple transition. I had to pick up new interests, adjust my daily routine, visit with friends who gave me support. Now every time I see or smell alcohol, those cravings are there, but I just have to remind myself of the person I was when I was drinking. That's all it takes for me, now.

The treatment was covered by my insurance, but I did have a lot of out-of-pocket costs. Paying those off was difficult during the first years, but I know they were well worth the expense now. The money spent for a 12-pack of beer every day then helped me pay those costs.

If you are asking "Why do I drink?", it's the first step you are taking toward recovery. Keep asking yourself that question. You will realize the answer eventually. That's when you know it's time to get to work solving this. Don't be afraid to jump on it.

by How do I stop?reply 4901/04/2021

I used to drink because it made other people more interesting, then that stopped working.

by How do I stop?reply 5001/04/2021

R36, it's easier said than done. I'm in therapy now, but it's going so slow.

by How do I stop?reply 5101/04/2021

I love the H troll. Brill.

by How do I stop?reply 5201/04/2021

It doesn't happen in a predictable way, R51. If it takes five years, let it take five years. We are all at different points in our journey, and we move at our own speed. Trust you ARE making progress.

by How do I stop?reply 5301/04/2021

R48 Thank you ❤️

by How do I stop?reply 5401/04/2021

R49 Thank you, too

Thanks to all of you

by How do I stop?reply 5501/04/2021

Drink and think

by How do I stop?reply 5601/04/2021

R47 Oh honey. Look at your childhood first. If you don’t think there’s anything there, then you may be an introvert in an extroverted world, and that gave you low-self worth just not fitting in to the dominant societal paradigms. You have as much worth as anyone. No one is better than anyone else. Even I know that, and I’ the OP. You need love. And acceptance. I love you. Please be kind to yourself. We all deserve acceptance and support.

by How do I stop?reply 5701/04/2021

For me it was helpful to realize my father basically hated being a father. He is a very dysfunctional person— a nutjob, really. But we were stuck with him when my mom died when we were young.

For a long time, I made all kids of excuses for him. But the truth is, he has never loved another human being and he’s the one with the problem. I could be bitter about the complete lack of parental love, but on the other hand I’m not Darfur orphan. Many people had it worse. My own child has a pretty great life, though not perfect of course.

Confronting the truth that my father is a psychopath allowed me to make my peace with some childhood pain and anger. This takes time— when you are young, you don’t trust your judgment and it’s less painful to think you are the crazy one.

by How do I stop?reply 5801/04/2021

R58 That's so true. It's easier to blame yourself than to stand tall and blame the broken parent. Could not relate more. Then that becomes the default and you will take full blame anytime you have conflict with anyone ever. And never trust your own feelings, observations, assessments or instincts. I apologized for everything all the time to absolve others of their mistakes, to retain my illusions, and to keep the peace. Did it most of my life.

Kudos to you for being so brave in your clear-eyed inventory of your childhood. I hope you find peace.

by How do I stop?reply 5901/04/2021

My mother became a problem drinker after my father died—she may well have been an alcoholic, but none of us ever addressed it. But she had two or three scotches by prime time and it was not pleasant. She could be mean when drunk. Finally she really nasty to my sister one too many times and my sister, a fairly timid person, said “I don’t deserve this” and hung up on her. My mom immediately called me, distraught and copping to the truth of what my sister said. She went to a kindly psychiatrist, who mainly listened to her check in mood and loneliness, and prescribed mild levels of Zoloft and Xanax. My mother, who had been a nurse decades before, was terrified of mixing meds and alcohol, so stopped the alcohol overnight. Trite as it may sound, it was clear that she had been self-medicating with alcohol; so, she may have been trading one form of medication for another, but the latter was monitored monthly and did not cause cirrhosis. She adopted a cat. Alas, she died a year later from a triple play of myeloid dysplasitic syndrome, emphysema, and a stroke, but most of that last year was happier and more peaceful for her. I inherited her cat (my siblings didn’t want her$, in one of our phone calls she said, in remarking on the shift from liquor to meds, “Well at least we know I wasn’t an alcoholic.” I didn’t know what to say—it was the first and only time she recognized her drinking may have been a problem. I made some noises about how glad I was the meds were alleviating her distress, but felt sad to know she had been carrying some unspoken shame for over ten years.

All of which is to say, if my mom could face her drinking at 76, OP, I bet you can. AA, CBT, talk therapy, meds—whatever works for you.. I tried OA at the encouragement of a colleague and I made it through two meetings. I’m not built for such groups. Individual therapy and, later, bariatric surgery were what worked for me (good was my substance of choice). Bariatric surgery is no simple cure-all, but it’s a great kickstart.

The best therapist I ever had was an alcoholic who eventually killed himself. The epitome of the wounded healer—a wonderful healer (alcoholic with multiple DUIS and, I assume other demons) who could not save himself.

Good luck with whatever path you choose.

by How do I stop?reply 6001/04/2021

It says “Drink me!”

by How do I stop?reply 6101/04/2021

[quote]R33 It’s not terrifying, it’s bullshit.

R35, it's not bullshit, but one of a series of quotes from the film, 𝐓𝐡𝐞 𝐒𝐢𝐥𝐞𝐧𝐜𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐋𝐚𝐦𝐛𝐬 (1991), at R7, R10, and R14. 'H' is supposed to stand for 'Hannibal.' It's why R12's 'Clarice' appreciates it.

Hard to believe so many on this thread don't recognize any of it.

by How do I stop?reply 6201/04/2021

Maybe it is just a bad habit. We all have some bad habits we don't like and wish to quit but couldn't. Don't give yourself too much pressure. Think of it as part of life and cut off alcohol little by little.

by How do I stop?reply 6301/04/2021

In old country, we begin when we learn the potty.

by How do I stop?reply 6401/04/2021

Sure, Jan.

by How do I stop?reply 6501/04/2021

Thanks r57. Your kind words did make me feel a lot better. I hope this thread is helping you as much as it is me :)

by How do I stop?reply 6601/04/2021

R7 and R12, OP is Buffalo Bill.

by How do I stop?reply 6701/04/2021

[quote]AA, CBT, talk therapy, meds—whatever works for you..

Introducing cock and ball torture to this situation doesn't seem like the best idea.

by How do I stop?reply 6801/04/2021

Garden-variety alcoholic. Tedious, very tedious.

by How do I stop?reply 6901/04/2021

^ I meant to sign H.

by How do I stop?reply 7001/04/2021

I heard back from two different AA support people last night via email, after I sent my "emergency--help!" submission through the site that R20 posted. They were both lovely responses, both nudging me towards AA and testifying how AA saved them. But beyond the specific AA rhetoric was the theme that drinking was destructive, and stopping drinking was life-changing. Regardless of what method was used, the act of quitting drinking and purging it out of their lives was a ticket to freedom and happiness, and relief.

So today, in honor of those women who wrote back to me in my moment of despair, and for those of you on DL either maintaining sobriety, or desperately seeking it....I am not going to have a drink. I can always have one tomorrow. One day at a time, right? Today, I can go without. And tomorrow will be tomorrow. I don't need to worry about that right now.

I'll check in later and I'll be honest if I wasn't able to pull it off. But this is good - being accountable to an outside "other" is a big motivator. Talk to you guys later!

by How do I stop?reply 7101/05/2021

^^^ OP ^^^^

ps Have a lovely day xo

by How do I stop?reply 7201/05/2021

[quote] I can always have one tomorrow

After all tomorrow IS another day!

by How do I stop?reply 7301/05/2021

R71 Praying for you! You can do it :)

by How do I stop?reply 7401/05/2021

R74. I did it!!!!

I went all yesterday without a drink. This is major!!!! Kept myself very busy all day. I also made sure my blood sugar didn’t dip in the afternoon, because I have noticed a connection between a 3 pm blood sugar dip and the onset of the alcohol cravings

Most of all, I was determined to come on here today and say “I DID IT, BITCHES!” It can only be the perceived accountability to some presence outside of myself that is making a huge difference in my ability to resist the deeply engrained habitual drinking.

Gonna try it again today.

by How do I stop?reply 7501/06/2021

OP Congratulations!

by How do I stop?reply 7601/06/2021

R76 Aw, thank you. I feel pretty proud today. Cautiously optimistic.

by How do I stop?reply 7701/06/2021

Happy for you, OP. Glad you reported back. Keep posting here.

by How do I stop?reply 7801/06/2021

OP you should honestly look into disulfiram. It's commonly known as Antabuse and it's very effective in the sense that it obviates the decision to drink or not. If you drink you get sick. It's a chemical boost of willpower, as I call it. I'm a pharmacist and have recommended it to several friends who wanted to curtail their drinking.

by How do I stop?reply 7901/06/2021

Naltrexone is what worked for me. A totally different model than AA. But if you are able to stay with AA - great.

Maybe Naltrexone /Sinclair is for the weak-willed like me. But it also relies on the scientific evidence that abstinence breeds craving - and results in more extreme alcoholism. Over a year, the use of naltrexone along with conscious attempts to minimize drinking allowed by brain to be rewired and reduce that subconscious, almost biological mental switch that was connected to drinking. Have gone this year without any drinking - made easier by closures of bars. But I have had zero urge to drink at home and don’t fear myself.

by How do I stop?reply 8001/06/2021

R80 I feel like the cravings do cease with abstinence, but the wiring doesn’t change. So when I stop, it gets easy to forget I used to drink. Until...I start to have a social drink again once in awhile. And then it eventually snowballs again. I guess because that’ll program/ pleasure connection is still wired in there. I’d love to extinguish that wired connection.

But then again, tbh,I don’t know I I am even interested in “moderate drinking” which the Sinclair method is supposed to allow to happen. I kinda just want alcohol out of my life. But of course right now I’m coming from a place of shame and fear around alcohol.

by How do I stop?reply 8101/06/2021

OP, part of "wiring" has to do with patterns. Someone mentioned above that the whole "paraphernalia" portion of drinking / using becomes something familiar & pleasurable (a pattern of pleasure).

IME, you have to start doing different things in combination, create different patterns.

For example: you're bored and lonely --> you drink. You've done that 10,000 times before.

New pattern: you're bored and lonely --> you ____ (something different). Keep doing this until it's a new pattern.

by How do I stop?reply 8201/06/2021

R26 / R46. How are you doing today? Do you take the naltrexone again yesterday? Keep going with it. Let us know how it’s going. I am emboldened by my history yesterday and o keep re-reading this thread, which is making me feel so much more seen. I don’t feel lonely today at all.

You DL peeps are blowing my mind with your insights, compassion and willingness to share your own struggles.

by How do I stop?reply 8301/06/2021

^^^ Typos galore, sorry. Emboldened by my victory ^^^

by How do I stop?reply 8401/06/2021

R82 yes 💯 per cent. Thank you for affirming my hunch. It’s become a strong reflexive habit. Plus quarantining means way more free time and alone time to indulge and solidify the habits. No accountability.

Yesterday I stayed hella busy cooking, cleaning and working on a creative present for a friend. If o can just stay creative during that 3-7 pm window, and well-fed (ie not let my blood sugar drop) I think this is going to become my new normal.

by How do I stop?reply 8501/06/2021

Keep going!

by How do I stop?reply 8601/06/2021

THE REAL QUESHTION ISH :WHY WOULDN'T YOU???

by How do I stop?reply 8701/06/2021

To come off of your Adderall and/or meth at the end of the day, silly!

Seriously though, plenty of drinkers drink heavily because they can't handle their routine amphetamine comedown.

by How do I stop?reply 8801/06/2021

OP, remember the HALT acronym. (Times when you are susceptible to drinking.)

H: Hungry.

A: Angry.

L: Lonely.

T: Tired.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 8901/06/2021

I was in the habit of a couple of vodka tonics at least every other night. After trashing myself on Thanksgiving, I stopped drinking on December 1, just as an experiment. It’s now been 35 days. I’m not going to say I feel so much better, but I’ve stopped feeling bad. I’m also rather proud of myself. I’ve never gone this long dry since college, and I’m old. It sounds ridiculous but every day in my date book I place a little sticker, just those stickers you get when you donate to charity. I find that if I make a dumb game out of something it helps. I have had to find a “mocktail” for myself. I’m currently into diet cranberry juice and sparkling water, like a teenage girl. We’ll see how this goes. When eventually I dine again in a restaurant, I do intend to order a martini and really enjoy it.

by How do I stop?reply 9001/06/2021

Oh and yeah, instead of drinking at 5 o’clock I now eat dinner, which is so much better for sleep and diet and everything else. I do recognize that at that hour I get frantic to have SOMETHING. Once I eat, I’m not interested in booze, since you don’t get a good buzz when you’re full.

by How do I stop?reply 9101/06/2021

Why do you drink?

You're a drunk.

Accept it and get outside help. Don't ask the drunks here, because they'll just tell you it's someone else's problem.

by How do I stop?reply 9201/06/2021

R89 I love this! H.A.L.T. Gonna post it on my fridge. It's so accurate.

by How do I stop?reply 9301/06/2021

R91 Yep. I would get a glycemic dip in the afternoon because I was hungry, usually because I was skipping lunch. Then, instead of eating to alleviate my low blood sugar, I would start to drink. The ritual became: get to the point where my stomach was empty and my brain was crying for calories, and then grab a drink and get a buzz going quickly. I might have then eaten later on, but it would be like at 10 or 11 pm, which only added to my fog the next day, not to mention I've put on probably 10-15 lbs since the virus began.

So yesterday and today I've been snacking and loading up on protein all day. The "dip" didn't happen today. And so even though this is within my typical "window" of craving, I feel like I could not care less about having a drink. In fact it sounds bad to think of putting alcohol on top of the power protein smoothie I just drank.

by How do I stop?reply 9401/06/2021

R92 I don't think I'm a "drunk." I think I have poor habits for coping with stress, habits I learned young. Habits I have to finally accept don't work, never worked, and will never work. It's time to let go of the fucking charade. I can do it.

During this pandemic, me reaching out to DL was my way of "getting outside support." I was fantasizing about going to a clinic or even to in-person AA meeting just to jumpstart things. But the virus is preventing some of those classic options from feeling accessible. Most people on this thread have given invaluable advice and support. Today is my second day, so something about having simply created this thread is working. Something about feeling accountable to this thread, as ridiculous as that sounds, is working. I'm not a tree falling in the forest with no one around to hear it. So thanks, everyone! I know I'm relying on DL a lot right now, and I am probably annoying as hell. But I appreciate you all for reading my posts and sharing your stories and advice.

by How do I stop?reply 9501/06/2021

If ever there were a day to validate having a drink or five, it's today, with all the insanity in DC right now. But that really would be merely an act of taking out on our own bodies the betrayal of Trump on the American people. It's a stressful, disappointing situation, but it is not our fault, and I'm not going to hurt myself because of someone else's awful actions.

by How do I stop?reply 9601/06/2021

[quote] I was skipping lunch. Then, instead of eating to alleviate my low blood sugar, I would start to drink. The ritual became: get to the point where my stomach was empty and my brain was crying for calories, and then grab a drink and get a buzz going quickly. I might have then eaten later on, but it would be like at 10 or 11 pm, which only added to my fog the next day

I have the same ritual, except when I make sure to eat at lunchtime and perhaps have a snack at 4 or 4.30pm. I know what to do: eat lunch; but I don't always do it because I want to drink. I have to conclude that not all of me wants to stop drinking.

by How do I stop?reply 9701/06/2021

R97. Yes. Same with me. I clearly could recognize, in the moment, that I had that choice - eat, or go buy alcohol. It was a clear moment and a clear choice. And I would go get the alcohol.

Maybe you don't have the same heavy shame debt that I've been carrying? When/if you get to that point that you are walking around with shame and guilt every day, you will be more motivated. Cuz it's very hard to stop without a pretty compelling reason.

Second day down, in bed laptopping, no booze in the house. Loving this feeling of safety that I feel.

by How do I stop?reply 9801/06/2021

^^^ OP ^^^

by How do I stop?reply 9901/06/2021

Keep going OP.

by How do I stop?reply 10001/06/2021

You need AA. And a therapist if you can afford one. But mainly AA. (I dont have issues with alcohol or drugs but I've joined a different 12 step program)

Part of your problem is that you are trying to figure out why, like you can discover the root, rip it out, and fix yourself. That's not how it works. That's how it works in movie psychology. Not in real life. Join AA before your life is destroyed. it will get there.

by How do I stop?reply 10101/06/2021

I'm with you, OP. On day 3. Following this thread - keep updating! I'm just off the gym. Allowing myself to eat whatever at the moment, but no booze. I'm ok for now, but it's when the cravings come....

by How do I stop?reply 10201/06/2021

R101 Why doesn't it work that way in real life? Not trying to be snarky. I'm really curious. It seems like you should be able to heal issues at the root. But I also kind of understand what you are saying. It's confusing.

by How do I stop?reply 10301/06/2021

R102 YAY!!! Partners in crime! Happy for you.

I have been reading a lot about the amino acid l-glutamine. It's supposed to stop alcohol and sugar cravings. I'm curious to try it although I haven't had cravings today. But I'm only on day 2, and it would be arrogant of me to think I won't ever have a craving just because I have not had a drink in two days.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 10401/06/2021

L-Glutamine looks interesting.

by How do I stop?reply 10501/06/2021

OP, you described my relationship with alcohol perfectly. I see alcohol as a reward. I need to convince myself that it is a poison and not a reward.

by How do I stop?reply 10601/06/2021

R11 One time I was able to quit drinking by imagining a skull and crossbones every time I craved a drink. I'd think of the cocktail or the bottle of wine and visualize the skull or the word "poison" over the image. It actually worked, if only because it reminded me to shift out of exactly the mindset your are talking about - "mmm candy yummy!" mode -- and back to reality -- this shit is poison to me.

Just that extra few seconds of seeing behind the curtain helped me stop myself before I gave in to the urge. I forget how long I stopped drinking doing that, but it did help for awhile.

by How do I stop?reply 10701/06/2021

I see it as a reward too, r106. I think you've posted that here before r107, and I used that visualisation when I quit last year. Another person said to imagine it's straight ethanol that you're drinking.

The strange thing is that even writing about this makes me want to drink.

by How do I stop?reply 10801/06/2021

I have had eating disorders all of my adult life. I have lived the same way with food. I would binge even though it made me feel disgusting and guilty when I did. It was temporary satisfaction. Then I’d end up vomiting all of it back out. I was so unhealthy at one point my hair was falling out and I was anemic. Thankfully I’m a lot better now after getting help. Addiction is a bitch.

by How do I stop?reply 10901/06/2021

Just checking in. Today is Day 3. I got very poor sleep last night because of the drama in DC and I haven’t eaten yet today. I’m picking up food right now and it would be SO easy to go grab a bottle of something. So instead I’m doing a check in with you guys to stay accountable. I hope you are all doing well today.

by How do I stop?reply 11001/07/2021

OP, I had a hard time sleeping as well. I thought it was because I had caffeine late in the day.

Anyway, good that you checked in.

by How do I stop?reply 11101/07/2021

I'm on day 7 OP. I've had a few strong cravings but just ate something so they would pass. Keep on keepin' on!

by How do I stop?reply 11201/07/2021

You're a lush, darlin'.

by How do I stop?reply 11301/07/2021

Day 37 for me. Another sticker in my datebook. I’m a good boy!

by How do I stop?reply 11401/07/2021

R114 You sure are! You get a big lollipop at day 40.

by How do I stop?reply 11501/07/2021

R112 Thank you. And great job! Proud of you.

by How do I stop?reply 11601/07/2021

R111 Caffeine keeps me up too. Also though, yesterday was CRAZY.

by How do I stop?reply 11701/07/2021

R110 the sleeping should get easier after a few weeks. Then it gets amazing as you will realize that drunk sleep wasn’t really sleep.

by How do I stop?reply 11801/07/2021

R118 I have read that you don't go into certain phases of sleep when you have alcohol in your system. That is...really not good. Sleep is like liquid gold, so precious.

by How do I stop?reply 11901/07/2021

before i went to AA i went online to soberrecovery.com. Very helpful especially when not leaving the house and also for counting the hours and days, not months and years early on!

by How do I stop?reply 12001/08/2021

[quote] [R118] I have read that you don't go into certain phases of sleep when you have alcohol in your system. That is...really not good. Sleep is like liquid gold, so precious.

R119, I noticed that when I used to drink, I could probably fall asleep easier, but it was harder to stay asleep.

by How do I stop?reply 12101/08/2021

Cause it's fun?

by How do I stop?reply 12201/08/2021

Today is Day 4. If I could get through yesterday without succumbing, then Magic Is Real, kids. I was really sleep deprived, stressed by the political unrest, had crazy low blood sugar, extreme work pressure, back ached. And then during the Window of Habitual Drinking, I was out in my car, empty stomach and no one to tell me "no, do not go to the liquor store." And somehow, I held my ground.

Anyone who is struggling, please come on here and let us hold you accountable. It is really working for me. I may even start a new thread for that exact purpose. Like an "accountability" thread. Or is that crazzzzzy dorky?

by How do I stop?reply 12301/08/2021

Congrats OP. If you can get through this week without drinking, I think you have a good shot at making it stick. I suggest you keep this thread as your accountability thread. There is a lot of good information and inspiration in this thread.

by How do I stop?reply 12401/08/2021

Three weeks, OP. That's how long it takes to form a new habit, they say. Whether it's proven or not, I have decided it's true. Therefore after three weeks of a diet or abstinence or a new routine, whatever, it kicks in with me and I really feel it. So just tell yourself - three weeks!

by How do I stop?reply 12501/08/2021

R125 Yesssss. I've heard that. Thank you! It's very true that at some point, the NOT drinking becomes the habit, and it feels really foreign to even consider drinking. I remember those times. Don't know how I slipped back into drinking, but oh well. That was then, this is now.

Day 4, done. I'm in bed for the night.

Hope everyone is doing good. Another crazy news day. Not nearly as stressful ,though.

by How do I stop?reply 12601/08/2021

^^^ OP ^^^

by How do I stop?reply 12701/08/2021

Day 5 in da house! How is everyone doing today?

Question: Is it normal to feel pain in the joints? Am I detoxing? I'm having a lot of random stabbing pains everywhere. My neck, shoulders and back are killing me. And I feel like maybe a kidney is aching? Lower right, sort of in the back. I thought I would feel totally invigorated by now. I used to feel amazing quite quickly after stopping drinking. Now that i'm almost 50 maybe it's a slower healing process? Any insights would be appreciated. I'm not going to stop but....yeah, I thought I would feel amazing by now.

by How do I stop?reply 12801/09/2021

It doesn't sound right that you should be feeling like that, OP. Maybe you should consult with a medical professional.

by How do I stop?reply 12901/09/2021

R129 My only theory is that maybe without alcohol I am experiencing the effects of all the anxiety and stress that I was previously drinking away. Anxiety/stress = tight, aching muscles? Is been a very stressful week for our country, maybe I'm more stressed than I even realize.

The kidney ache is more perplexing. I hope it's not a kidney infection. That would be quite ironic, after going through the process of getting sober to be more healthy. If it keeps hurting, or the stabby pains keep stabbing, I guess I will need to go see someone. Ugh

by How do I stop?reply 13001/09/2021

OP, All I know is It happened to me. I hate alcohol, hate it. If I could have received anxiety meds I would never touched it. The feeling with me was I had to end the pressure. Had to feel tne click in my head thats released the unbearable pressure. It was like releasing air from some over inflated balloon. It harmed me , my health, my relationships, my dignity. When I said no more, I really thought my days would always be spent craving it. It was shockingly easy. A relief. No more sick hangovers. I have never wanted it again. I wish I had the confidence in myself sooner. You can do it. Don't allow the fear of quitting stop you. It is a mind fuck that addiction does to us. Good luck dear, and hugs to you.

by How do I stop?reply 13101/09/2021

R130, I understand your theory about a deluge of anxiety now that you're not drinking. But you're saying you can't explain away the kidney part, so you should get that looked at. My health insurance provides an after-hours / weekend phone service. Maybe you can call this weekend and explain your symptoms.

by How do I stop?reply 13201/09/2021

My anxiety and insomnia increases as alcohol leaves my system. It takes a few weeks for my body to get into sync. Hang in there.

I last drank on the 23rd and was horribly hung over on the 24th.

by How do I stop?reply 13301/09/2021

R131 I hear ya, friend! Curious how you ended up dealing with your anxiety once you gave up alcohol. Because I'm assuming it was still there waiting for you to attend to it in a different way. What worked?

by How do I stop?reply 13401/09/2021

R132 Well, now I'm thinking it's just part of the general constellation of pains. Like maybe pain is being referred from my neck and shoulders down through my back to that area. Right now I'm feeling a slight spasming of the muscle in that area. Not fun, but probably not kidney disease. Hopefully what R133 wrote is all that is happening right now. A readjustment period. I hope that's all it is. Cuz I'm tightening up all through my neck, shoulders and back. And even scrunching up my toes and clenching my jaws. Tension everywhere.

Not gonna fucking drink though!

by How do I stop?reply 13501/09/2021

OP, I finaly received medical care . I was diagnosed with PTSD, depression, panic attacks. My ex-husband was a 6ft 6 bipolar nightmare. He threw me out of a moving vehicle, slammed my head into walls. It was brutal. I am a very small, skinny person. He was deadly violent. The worse part was he was 2 different people and you never knew when the monster would appear. It was dangerous to leave him. He said he would kill my baby , then me. I had to plan our escape very carefully. I told him I needed help with our daughter, who was a preemie on a apnea monitor. I need my mom. So I left that motherfucker and everything I owned, took my girl and never looked back. I had no idea I was in such bad shape. It was such a relief for my baby to be safe that I thought I would be ok now. Nurses are known to be stubborn as hell about needing help. Lol. I o not know why. Much love to you.

by How do I stop?reply 13601/09/2021

R136 Oh my God. What a complete nightmare and living hell. I have heard about how having a baby has been the impetus for leaving an abusive marriage, but that then the stakes are even higher because of the child. I am so glad you got away!

Since this is an anonymous forum, would you be willing to share which meds have helped you? I have PTSD from childhood stuff, and have never found a med yet that really stuck and put me in long-term remission (and yes, I've done years of therapy as well, which has made me a more grounded, level-headed person, but has not removed the hypervigilance piece). Lamictal worked for six months. Best six months of my adult life. Then it pooped out. SSRIs have too many side effects. I have never been prescribed benzos except in the short-term for immediate relief, or for occasional sleeplessness. Never as a daily lifestyle maintenance therapy. And I understand why, because of the potential for addiction and abuse. But...the older I get, the worse the generalized anxiety gets. I need to find something that works consistently, so I can "set it and forget it" and live my life.

by How do I stop?reply 13701/09/2021

detoxing from alcohol has very real side effects. That is why many heavy drinkers go into a medical detox facility to avoid dangerous stiatuaions and be under watch while going thru it.

by How do I stop?reply 13801/09/2021

detoxing from alcohol has very real side effects. That is why many heavy drinkers go into a medical detox facility to avoid dangerous situations and be under watch while going thru it.

by How do I stop?reply 13901/09/2021

R139 Ok I just looked it up. You are right. I definitely don't think I falll into the hardcore lifelong alcoholic category, but... For maybe two years now it's been chronic, I was drinking practically every single day, from moderate to heavy consumption. And then it got even MORE intense at certain points during this pandemic to where I was waking up and starting my drinking without even eating. (OMG, I can't believe I was doing that -- it sounds barbaric to me right now. Shit.)

It's saying that alcohol artificially manipulates GABA levels (the neurotransmitter that produces relaxation and calm). And it looks like once you take the alcohol away, you brain has downregulated GABA receptors to the point where one is going to have very low GABA levels when they quit drinking. And low GABA = anxiety, insomnia and muscle tension. Makes a lot of sense.

Also says dehydration must be addressed with electrolytes. And dehydration itself can cause muscle contractions. Oh boy, guess I gotta dig out my Emergen-C packets from the closet. Maybe I've been taking this whole quitting drinking thing a little too casually.

by How do I stop?reply 14001/09/2021

BTW this is Day 5 of abstinence.

by How do I stop?reply 14101/09/2021

[quote]And it looks like once you take the alcohol away, you brain has downregulated GABA receptors to the point where one is going to have very low GABA levels when they quit drinking. And low GABA = anxiety, insomnia and muscle tension.

I didn’t know that, but it sounds right to me. I don’t feel that I’m 100% there mentally/emotionally like I was before drinking, and although I’ve gotten a bit better, there does seem to be some permanent damage. Hard to quantify, but that’s just how I feel 1.5 years into recovery. But when I think about how much I drank and for how long, then I feel lucky I didn’t do even more damage.

by How do I stop?reply 14201/09/2021

If you'd spent 7 of the past 9 months in effective lockdown as we have in the North-West of England drinking would be the least of your issues. Try 'why do I want to get up tomorrow with no end in sight'.

It'll be almost a year when the current phase ends and we can't be certain much will be open then.

by How do I stop?reply 14301/09/2021

R143 Yes I'm in New England in the US and we've been in various phases of lockdown since, I reckon, mid-March.

by How do I stop?reply 14401/09/2021

R142 "Different brain regions heal at different paces, including the thinking part of the brain that need longer to recover."

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 14501/09/2021

Aches and pains of all sorts are normal when abstaining. I would give it a month before worrying about anything. The anxiety of worry about your health is just part of the general return of anxiety and nerves resulting from eliminating the sedative and cleansing your body. It eventually settles into a new normal - without the roller coaster you’ve been used to.

by How do I stop?reply 14601/09/2021

R146 Thanks for this info. Day 6 and I don't intend to stop now.

by How do I stop?reply 14701/10/2021

OP I was prescribed 3 mg xanax a day and effexor. As someone mentioned up thread these antidepressant meds can and do have lethal side effects. Later I was prescribed Wellbutrin. I am lucky it did cause a stoke. Anger, rage at everything. The bezo's are dangerous to stop taking. No matter how carefully you lower the dose , you can go into a seizure. Never stop a benzo without a doctors care.À It depends on the patient needs. Just always be under a competent doctors care . Also, loneliness can be another reason for drinking. Nothing is worse than the hell of alcoholism. Nothing. It is very insidious. You are only drinking socially for a time. Before you realize it, it has you by the throat. You can do it and will be damn glad you did. Please get help if you need to. If you like weed, edibles, it can help with anxiety, but know what you are getting. It can also cause paranoia, panic attacks, heart attack in some people. Every drug has risks and side effects. The thing to do is get treatment and advice from competent people. Very proud that you are seeking help. There is no doubt that you can do this. Much love and luck to you!

by How do I stop?reply 14801/10/2021

OP, are you that alcoholic lesbian who’s obsessed with autistic people?

by How do I stop?reply 14901/10/2021

R148 omg thank you, and back at you!

by How do I stop?reply 15001/10/2021

R148 omg thank you, and back at you!

by How do I stop?reply 15101/10/2021

R150 LMAO no I’m for sure not that person

by How do I stop?reply 15201/10/2021

R150 LMAO no I’m for sure not that person

by How do I stop?reply 15301/10/2021

Try going to AA meetings.

by How do I stop?reply 15401/10/2021

DAY 6. On the one hand, I had to go look up which day I'm on, cuz I've just been looking straight ahead, moving forward with this new lifestyle. But on the other hand, I just had the worst cravings since I quit. About an hour ago it came on so strong I could practically smell the booze in my nostrils. I don't know what kept me from succumbing to it; there is nothing stopping me from going to the liquor store right now, except for this new habit-muscle that I'm flexing. And this thread. So anyway, I ended up eating a third of a jar of cashew butter. I had some celery sticks and I just went to town dipping them in the jar of cashew butter until I was stuffed. It occurred to me that I had not eaten much today and that this is an ongoing theme. I'm full now, but I still am romanticizing the idea of going and getting a bottle of Prosecco. But the reality is, I am not going to do it. I'm sick of being grabbed by the balls and squeezed. Fuck you, booze.

by How do I stop?reply 15501/10/2021

R155, I can guarantee you that you would have felt shitty had you started drinking.

Also, I hope you are now saving $$$ by not spending it on alcohol. Use it on something else or start a savings.

by How do I stop?reply 15601/10/2021

I say go ahead and eat a little more if you need to right now, OP, to get through this. You'll settle down in time.

by How do I stop?reply 15701/10/2021

R156 Yes I finally have the ability to have forethought and go "I will regret it if I buckle and drink. I will feel bad physically, and I will feel even worse mentally." That is a BIG deal to have that moment of forethought. As for the money, I guess I hadn't thought of that. I'm sort of scared to do the math because I'd have to face how much money I drank away in 2020, which is going to be a depressing figure.

Thank you for your support.

by How do I stop?reply 15801/10/2021

R157 You were right, thank you! I just had a bunch of trail mix, and a very satisfying pomegranate seltzer. Seltzer is magical. It really fills that need for something crisp and sparkling. I feel complete now. No cravings.

Day Six done and done. In bed for the night.

I really hope someone else is getting something out of this besides myself. It feels so decadent or narcissistic to come on here every day and give my little updates. But it's seriously working for me, so thanks to all of you!

I do hope, though, that someone else can get something out of this, too. Just to see, hey, see? You CAN quit.

by How do I stop?reply 15901/10/2021

Seltzer with a squeeze of lemon or lime over ice is good for me too. When I stopped drinking for a sober January years ago, I would only drink soda with a lime and splash of cranberry when I went out to bars with friends. It was a treat which is weird. I felt so great back then when I woke up in the morning. I am sick of drinking now too. So over the extra weight I carry. Glad you are doing well, you sound strong and I am sending you good thoughts of sticking to your goals.

by How do I stop?reply 16001/10/2021

Hi everybody! Today is the one-week anniversary of starting this thread. Pretty cool, huh? God, what a week to stop drinking, too. Jeeeeeeez. Anyway, I hope you all have a lovely day (as much as possible for a Monday).

by How do I stop?reply 16101/11/2021

OP While intense, the cravings will subside usually within 30 minutes, give or take. Having things to do really helps.

by How do I stop?reply 16201/11/2021

IF for some odd reason you do drink, keep this thread going so as to analyze that scenario and how you would feel about it , since this is completely anonymous anyway.

by How do I stop?reply 16301/11/2021

R162 I’ve been throwing myself into making arts and crafts (Mary!). It’s definitely helping me stay busy. And keeping up with the news is a full-time job right now, too, even though it’s very disturbing and stressful.

by How do I stop?reply 16401/11/2021

Day 42 for me. No real desire to drink. Very pleased.

by How do I stop?reply 16501/11/2021

R165 I am so happy for you! Keep moving forward.

by How do I stop?reply 16601/11/2021

Worst craving yet. I am not sure what is even stopping me right now from going down the street and buying some booze. I threw some potatoes in the oven but that takes and hour and I could leave the house, it's not like they are boiling in a pot and I have to watch them. I am trying to remember all the good feelings and the pride and relief I felt when I have quit in the past.

The difference between then and now, though, is that I wasn't cooped up in my house alone for days on end. I was in a long-term relationship and that person needed me to be the best version of me that I could be. I was also interfacing with the human race. I had places to go. I had co-workers and friends that I was seeing regularly. I felt like I wanted to present a better version of myself to these people. I felt more "seen." I had something to prove.

This time, I don't have any reasons, except that there is a me that is bearing witness to myself, and that part of me has decided "I don't like this version of you. It's gross. You're acting like a loser. You're complaining of feeling depressed but you are drinking a depressant every day. Sort yourself out." But I am also very aware right now, that no one would care, or even know, if I were to drink tonight. I'm in a vacuum because of this virus, and because I'm single.

I thought the clouds would part and the sun would come out and the angels would sing. I don't feel suddenly super energetic and healthy. I feel slightly less tired and foggy, but I'm still low energy, I am still dealing with seasonal sadness, and I'm still "aching in places where I used to play," as Leonard Cohen once sang.

I'm probably not going to drink tonight. Cuz inertia. But I'm also not feeling any kind of self-righteous pleasure from sticking to my guns. It's just....blah.

by How do I stop?reply 16701/11/2021

R167 ..sounds about right

It took me several "go's" of quitting and then starting ,then quitting then starting before the madness of all that sent me over the cliff . I began to realize i truly was "powerless" over alcohol no matter what i tried. Ultimately i had to succumb to some or most of the principles of AA to lay a groundwork of living without alcohol and eventually became neutral to it. Wasn't easy but am so grateful that monkey is off my back

by How do I stop?reply 16801/11/2021

R168 What are some of the principles you live by? Besides admitting to your powerlessness? I'm being sincere here.

by How do I stop?reply 16901/11/2021

R168 and other AA'ers. How do I do these things (see below)? Is it a specific technique? Because I have prayed many times over the past months for my "Higher Power" to take the cravings out of me, to direct me out of my addiction onto the path of sobriety, to soothe me, to guide me. I even would stop, for three days, five days. And then start again when an irresistible urge would take over my thinking and tell me that it was going to make me feel good if I could have a few drinks.

I don't understand what else I am supposed to do. I believe in a higher power. It just didn't feel like anything alchemical was happening, or had any longevity at least, when I prayed for guidance and prayed for help. Literally the only thing that is helping is this thread. So I'm pretty sad about that. I don't feel particularly "guided" or "buouyed" by a higher presence at the moment.

-------------

We admitted we were powerless over alcohol—that our lives had become unmanageable

Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity

Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him

Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves

Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character

Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings

by How do I stop?reply 17001/11/2021

it just more or less Golden rules kind of stuff. When i drank i was selfish and self centered and either hungover or anticipating the next drink. I would get drunk and cheat on my partner, i would avoid some family functions because i was too shit faced or knew booze was not going to be available and was generally cranky at work from feeling like shit most of the time. I am more "out of self" and do for others , but i am retired now so i have the time . I retired early in fact as i knew it would be difficult to stay stopped while still working . Its just better now and am really too old (63) to be carrying on like that. Typically men my age that drink like i did will die in their 50's or 60's. but its been a lifetime battle. Don 't get me wrong, it was a ton of fun back in the early days but i still consumed way too much from the get go. it just creeps up on you as you age and difficulties with health, relationships , work ,etc., start to develop "out of nowhere"

by How do I stop?reply 17101/11/2021

[quote] I was in a long-term relationship and that person needed me to be the best version of me that I could be.

OP, must have been nice ... for the other person. You should want the best version of yourself ... for yourself.

[quote] I thought the clouds would part and the sun would come out and the angels would sing.

No, that's what happens after the first drink. Unfortunately, ten more drinks follow that first drink.

Welcome to the adult world, OP. You can do this.

by How do I stop?reply 17201/11/2021

R172 No I thought the clouds would part and the angels would sing when I QUIT a week ago.

by How do I stop?reply 17301/11/2021

[quote] I don't understand what else I am supposed to do. I believe in a higher power. It just didn't feel like anything alchemical was happening ... when I prayed for guidance and prayed for help.

You don't always get answers or help immediately. All you can do is throw it out there and ask for help. If you go to the gym, you don't expect your biceps to immediately bulge out of your shirt sleeves.

I've been through this, too, OP. Wanting this immediate-type gratification is part of why you get dependent on stuff in the first place.

I feel like I might be making people mad here and that is not my intent. I've struggled as well.

by How do I stop?reply 17401/11/2021

R172. Yes. It should be that I'm doing this for me ,and not to please others or prove something to others. That's a huge lesson I'm still trying to learn, and I'm almost 50. But the main thing I would want for myself, from this, is to physically feel a whole lot better physically and mentally. And I really don't feel that different yet. I still feel kind of unwell, physically. I think I may be depressed because of seasonal affective stuff, and/or because of the virus, and/or or because of the political upheaval. But regardless, I quit drinking a week ago, and I don't yet feel much of a lift from that lifestyle upgrade.

R174 I'm not mad at all. I'm so grateful to have anyone spelling anything out to me right now. I appreciate the time you are taking to even type these things to me. And I'm hearing you. It's not instant rainbows.

by How do I stop?reply 17501/11/2021

OP, don't forget to drink water. I can almost guarantee you that, in a couple of months, you will look in the mirror and say: "My skin looks better."

by How do I stop?reply 17601/11/2021

R176 And my brain goes straight to "Who gives a shit about if my skin looks better? No one. I am alone all the time and no one cares." Which is both true, but also makes me think I've been medicating an underlying depression that I have not addressed yet. A kind of worthlessness. "Who the fuck even cares if I'm healthy? It's meaningless. We all die." That sort of thinking.

by How do I stop?reply 17701/11/2021

Stinkin' Thinkin'!!!!!

Let go and let GOD!!!!!!!

Cigarettes & Coffee!!!!!

Pray to JESUS!!!!!!!!!

by How do I stop?reply 17801/11/2021

R178 AA troll?

by How do I stop?reply 17901/11/2021

Ok this is making sense to me. Perhaps the other times I quit drinking, I wasn’t depressed? I was just drinking regularly, but still sort of upbeat within myself? So when I stopped, I didn’t have any underlying depression weighing me down, and I I felt better sooner.

I think the code has been cracked! Now...what to do about the depression, when the way things are right now is legitimately depressing?

by How do I stop?reply 18001/11/2021

This OP is pulling over one big EST on y'all.

Maybe if he quit posting DOZENS of replies on every single Trump thread, he might have an actual life.

But, instead, he pretends to be an "alcoholic," in order to get attention.

KEEP COMING BACK! IT WORKS IF YOU WERK IT!

by How do I stop?reply 18101/11/2021

Update: Did not drink. It's that damn WINDOW. 3 to 7 pm. Thanks to all who messaged me during my hour of need. I really mean it, I probably would have EASILY given in if I didn't have this thread.

by How do I stop?reply 18201/11/2021

You are supposed to take actions connected to the steps to show a sponsor that you did them. Or not, depending on who you get.

The principles of honesty, openness, self-examination, and service to something larger than yourself, is what the steps are supposed to lead to. If you are asked to do something that is not related to those things==run away.

by How do I stop?reply 18301/11/2021
Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 18401/12/2021
Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 18501/12/2021

No Tuesday check in from OP. How you doing OP?

by How do I stop?reply 18601/13/2021

The photos of my friend, Mark, drinking and enjoying himself drove the OP of this EST back to the bottle.

by How do I stop?reply 18701/13/2021

R186 Oh hey, hi! How sweet are you?

Well... I must be phasing into a new normal, because I didn't think to post yesterday. It's Day 9. Staying the course. Weary from the political stuff. Trying to unplug from it, but keep getting sucked back in. The weirdest thing is that I have all of this pain running through my neck and my back every day, for about five days now. I made a doctor's appointment. I can't imagine a "detoxing" thing, but what do I know, maybe it is? Or maybe it's anxiety. Other than that, I still think about drinking, but it's getting easier and easier to ignore the thoughts. I love you for checking in on me. Hope you are doing well today, too.

by How do I stop?reply 18801/13/2021

R183 Thank you that all makes sense. "honesty, openness, self-examination, and service to something larger than yourself" -- I think I was doing those already, which LED to me choosing to STOP drinking. So I guess that's good. Good news.

by How do I stop?reply 18901/13/2021

UPDATE: I threw my cigarettes out this morning because I suspected that is what is behind all of this body pain I've been experiencing. Inflammation or something. I only started up again, after years and years of not smoking, because I got so BORED during the pandemic. The problem was that smoking is not pleasurable to me without alcohol. And alcohol did not as fun without smoking. It was a two-pronged addictive dopamine bomb. And now, without alcohol to mask the gross smell and tase and feelings of cigarettes, I can gauge much more clearly how poorly smoking makes me feel.

Now that I've eliminated the alcohol, the smoking had weaned itself down to between three and four cigs a day. But I was having all of this unexplained pain. So, I threw out my remaining American Spirits this morning. And you know what? All of the cramping, stabby, arthritic pains are, in fact, receding. It's like magic. I feel this sense of well-being washing over me, in my body and in my brain. I think this was the missing ingredient to finally accessing the feel-good chemicals of sobriety.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 19001/13/2021

That’s great, op. I’m on day 42 or 43, and I no longer have the Pavlovian urge to drink at 5 PM. It’s truly gone away, even when I consciously ponder it. I just make dinner instead. And I feel pretty good.

by How do I stop?reply 19101/14/2021

I’ve been dry 14 days. I want to start working out again to lose my Covid weight gain, but I’m still drained and tired most of the time. I usually have to dry out for a month before my energy levels feel normal.

by How do I stop?reply 19201/14/2021

You’re an alcoholic, Mabel. Go to bed.

by How do I stop?reply 19301/14/2021

R192 That's good to hear. I was expecting to feel more energetic immediately but yeah, maybe it will take a few weeks. Although, I notice that I'm cleaning my kitchen every day now, and cooking too. And the laundry is getting done all the time now, too. So I think I have more functionality in that way. But like you, I'm waiting to feel really energetic so I can start working out.

by How do I stop?reply 19401/14/2021

R191 "Pavlovian" is exactly right! It's conditioning. I had this window from 3 pm to 7 pm and that's when the urges have hit me since I quit. And if I sweat it out, by 7:30 pm I can't even remember why I wanted to drink. But it was the conditioning.

by How do I stop?reply 19501/14/2021

Vitamin B1 (thiamine) reduces cravings. It helped my alcoholic brother.

Offsite Link
by How do I stop?reply 19601/14/2021

R196 That is awesome information, thank you!

by How do I stop?reply 19701/14/2021

I was looking at my "Ignored" stuff and noticed there was someone who I already had on ignore, that posted on this thread so I never saw it. And he basically called the thread an EST. I'm scratching my head now, because to me, someone grappling with trying to quit drinking, IN JANUARY OF THE NEW YEAR, NO LESS, is one of the least "elaborate" stories in the known universe. It's a tale as old as time. So....yeah. Not an EST. Just a flawed human trying to get my life to a healthier, happier place, like millions before me. Reaching out to others anonymously for support, again, not for a hunger for "attention" but to create a system of accountability for myself during a global pandemic. Anonymous reaching out for support is a cornerstone of, oh, ya know...AA.

And apparently it's working, cuz:

Day 10 of no drinking Day 2 of no smoking

by How do I stop?reply 19801/14/2021

What the fuck is an EST?

by How do I stop?reply 19901/14/2021

R199 EST = “Elaborate Scenario Troll/Thread “

Quitting drinking in January is not so elaborate of a scenario as to beggar belief, IMHO. But ok.

by How do I stop?reply 20001/14/2021

Just to keep track, if even for my own self, this is Day 11 no drinking, and Day 3 no smoking. At the two week mark of sobriety, I will abandon this thread. This has worked so well for me. I'm very grateful that it worked. Still kind of can't believe it. Today is the best I've felt in forever. No smoking, too. I just felt wonderful today, physically and mentally.

by How do I stop?reply 20101/15/2021

OP, can't believe you quit smoking, too! Quitting smoking was really hard for me. Now, you've gotta be saving even more $$$. If you're now paying more attention to your food (cooking) and caring about a clean house, that proves you are on the right track.

by How do I stop?reply 20201/16/2021

R202 When I wasn't smoking for the 18 years I was free of it, before the pandemic drove me back into the arms of cigarettes, I would have dreams occasionally that I had started up again. Then I'd wake up so freaked out! But then I felt this huge sense of relief that it was just a dream. Because quitting is SUCH A BITCH. Even though I only smoked for 11 months this time, it felt like I was waking up in one of my old "nightmares" of having started again, except it was reality. So many failed attempts in the past several months, leading up to the miracle of success. Drinking and the smoking support each other like tea and toast. I am sure the quitting drinking is the thing that has allowed me to let go of the smoking. Needless to say, I'm elated. Still craving nicotine but I no longer feel like a disempowered person, which has completely alleviated the depression that I was existing in this whole pandemic. I see all of my healthy choices and options now and it all sounds fun and exciting instead of boredom-inducing. Which is what healthy actions feel like when you are addicted to unhealthy things.

Day 12 no booze

Day 4 no smoking

by How do I stop?reply 20301/16/2021

Day 13 No booze

Day 5 No cigs

Whaaaa??? Did I really type that?

Feeling clear. No depression whatsoever. No lethargy. No anxiety. Just a feeling of calm normality. I feel in control. Grounded. Mature. Normal. I like this person. I’m realizing that my habitual use of toxic substances was creating an imbalance in my neurochemistry and generating a feeling of ill-health, sadness and worry. And shame. So many painful emotions. But then I would double down on the substances in order to escape from the anxiety and sadness that the substances were causing! I’m sure it’s a tale as old as time, but you have to come out the other side to see it. When you are in it, you can’t see how much of your pain and shame is being self-inflicted. You want to protect the addictions, so you skew reality (“I must have low-T or a thyroid issue and that’s what is making me feel sick and exhausted all the time”; or “I’m sad because of the pandemic, we’re all drinking more because of the pandemic, so it’s ok even though I feel like shit every day” etc etc). I finally had to call bullshit on the whole affair when all of my myriad hormone, thyroid, iron, liver, metabolic, etc test results came back NORMAL.

I had to finally get sick enough of my own lies and whining and helplessness that I was willing to admit that I was doing this all to myself. All of the fatigue, the depression, the anxiety spikes, the malaise... I was generating it all by abusing alcohol and by picking smoking back up. The shame that engulfed me this past year was, I see now, connected to the bullshit lies I was always telling myself, and to the false front I worked so hard to portray to others. This false mask of “I’m totally fine, my drinking is manageable, I’m not even slurring my speech right now. This is all totally normal and not spiraling out of control. “. I maintained that facade for a long, long time. I was so skilled at hiding addictions that it became lonely. It was this burdensome dirty secret that only I knew. Secrets = shame. It’s insane that no one in my life could even detect how bad things really were. They still don’t know.

My friend is in AA and we were hanging out during my worst phase of drinking, and he STILL insists I’m not a “real” addict and that I was never out of control. Ha! I was often drinking my breakfast, lunch and dinner and then eating crappy junk at 11 pm. I just got superstore good at acting.

by How do I stop?reply 204Last Sunday at 9:51 AM

[quote] My friend is in AA and we were hanging out during my worst phase of drinking, and he STILL insists I’m not a “real” addict and that I was never out of control.

OP, you're sounding better and better. You don't have to commit vehicular homicide in order to quit drinking. Don't listen to this kind of BS.

by How do I stop?reply 205Last Sunday at 11:36 AM

Well...shit. I slipped.

Six hours ago I was feeling clean, happy, and in control. But I just slipped. And yes, I know exactly why I slipped. It's because I haven't eaten all day. I stupidly doubled-down on my (low) daily dose of Adderall this morning because I was going to be very busy with family today, and I got poor sleep last night. Not the right way to use Adderall but that's what I did. And then it killed my appetite dead. And I totally forgot about the concept of food, all day. Around six pm I found myself driving a relative home. During "The Window" of when I used to drink every day. As soon as I dropped them off, I had the urge to buy alcohol and cigarettes. It hijacked my brain so hard and so fast that I didn't care about all the progress I've made, or how good I've been feeling, or consequences, or anything. I knew exactly what I was throwing away, and I Did. Not. Care.

I bought a single can of Gin and Tonic canned cocktail. I commend myself that had the presence of mind not to buy the four-pack. I bought one small can of 12% alcohol Gin and Tonic and a pack of American Spirits. Instead of food. I sat in my car in my driveway and drank the cocktail slowly. And I smoked three cigarettes. Then I realized that my relative forgot something in my car and I needed to go back and drop off their forgotten item. I sat awhile longer, and when I determined that I was not buzzed and I was okay to drive, I headed back to their house, ten minutes away. Sure enough, even though I was basically in full command of my faculties, I felt the same old sense of hiding, of acting, of holding back that was my daily existence prior to 13 days ago. I was hyper-aware of if I smelled like smoke or booze. I had shoved three sticks of gum in my mouth and spritzed cologne all over my clothes and hands before I went back over there but I still felt like I was "acting." I did eat a pear at their house. I didn't want it but I forced myself to eat it.

After I succumbed, it would have been soooooo easy to go back and buy more booze and just give in totally to the slip. But to my credit, I drove myself straight back home. But not before pouring bottled water all over the rest of the pack of cigarettes and throwing them in a trash can downtown. So they are out of the picture now. I am home. There is no booze and no cigarettes in my house. I just feel toxic now. I have a faint ringing in my ears. I feel that weird buzzy feeling in my brain of when you have a drink without food, and it's not enough to get a happy buzz but enough to make you feel sort tired and sad. Kind of like when you take too long of a nap, and when you wake up you feel ennui instead of refreshed. I'm really feeling the low-blood sugar now, too. I still have not fully addressed that, because the Adderall erased my appetite completely today, and nothing sounds good to eat, even 12 hours later from when I took it this morning.

I was going to stop this thread tomorrow at Day 14, too. Ha. Well, I'm very grateful that I caught myself early on in the slip tonight, but I do feel sort of scuzzy right now. I am not going to beat myself up. I know this happens to a lot of people early on, and that I'm only human, and that it's not a matter of black/white, win/lose, success/failure. Maintaining sobriety is an ongoing process. I just cannot believe that I felt so good and so clear six hours ago, wrote that whole philosophical novel at R2014.... and now I feel so yuck. I am not interesting in creating a dramatic narrative around this lapse. I just feel disappointed. I have to stay vigilant from here on out or I will lose whatever trust I have accrued in myself.

So here's my big question: Do I start over with my daily count? Is tomorrow Day 1 again? Or...can I continue tomorrow at Day 14 and allow the slip to be part of the timeline, without feeling like I am going back totally to square one?

by How do I stop?reply 206Last Sunday at 4:45 PM

R205 Your message was so lovely today. It made me feel really good and I am embarrassed now. Ugh.

by How do I stop?reply 207Last Sunday at 4:50 PM

OP, yes, you start at Day 1 again. You said you hadn't eaten all day. Remember HALT (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired). Get some hard-boiled eggs, string cheese, bananas, whatever. Have those things on hand.

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by How do I stop?reply 208Last Sunday at 5:03 PM

OP, try to look at it this way.

Even though you drank 1 out of the past 14 days, you have still reduced your drinking by 93%! That is an amazing accomplishment.

Each non-drinking day you add will improve your stats even more.

I think it’s very important to dwell on your accomplishments in addition to being aware of what caused the slip.

All-or-nothing thinking causes so many problems. Don’t let your brain go there.

Sending you good thoughts.

by How do I stop?reply 209Last Sunday at 5:25 PM

r1 that sounds like me and overeating

by How do I stop?reply 210Last Sunday at 5:51 PM

R208 Day 1 again?? Nooooooooooo!!!!!!

Ugh. Ok. And yes HALT. HALT!!! I blew it so completely today with the HALT. What I also realized was, besides the sheer stupidity of forgetting to eat, I think I was feeling trepidation, because I had family in my home all weekend. It was such a warm, happy and lively vibe. And then suddenly it is a cold dark Sunday evening, and I was driving my last relative home. I knew subconsciously that I was going to go back home to a quiet, empty house. So maybe that was another trigger. When my family was here this weekend, I didn't think about smoking or drinking. And I ate. A lot!

by How do I stop?reply 211Last Sunday at 9:07 PM

R209 Thank you, that does make me feel a lot better. It puts things in perspective. I wish I could get rid of this throbbing headache. It feels like I irritated my whole brain, or at least my sinuses, with the cigarette smoke and that one Gin and Tonic. I am still pretty darn proud of myself that I didn't double down on the slip and go buy more booze after the first drink. And I am still way healthier than I was 13 days ago. Thank you so much for keeping me grounded in reality. Honestly, thanks xo

by How do I stop?reply 212Last Sunday at 9:11 PM

It's 6:15 am. I've been up all night with a migraine. Wide awake. Because of one small cocktail and three cigarettes that I had nine hours ago Play stupid games, win stupid prizes, I guess.

by How do I stop?reply 213Last Monday at 1:14 AM

[quote] I was driving my last relative home. I knew subconsciously that I was going to go back home to a quiet, empty house.... When my family was here this weekend, I didn't think about smoking or drinking....

OP, you anticipated feeling Lonely (another HALT word). Sounds like your family members do not drink and do not smoke, so you're lucky in that respect (you can be with them & not be pressured). Most of my family members quit smoking, but many of them drink.

by How do I stop?reply 214Last Monday at 7:39 AM

R206 is the literal definition of ELABORATE SCENARIO TROLL.

by How do I stop?reply 215Last Monday at 7:58 AM

R214 Yes that is correct, that side of my family is very healthy and tee-total which means that I can surround myself with them and not be tempted in anyway. The flip side was all of the "acting"and hiding that I did during this past year of chronic alcohol abuse which intensified my feelings of shame. But that's over... and yes I am very lucky in many respects regarding my sweet wholesome family!

And...I guess this is DAY 1 again.

by How do I stop?reply 216Last Monday at 10:39 AM
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