View Full Version : Drinking too much


Hermus
08-13-16, 05:00 PM
Since I was 14-15 years old I always have been a quite heavy drinker. At that age I used to come home drunk a lot of times in the weekends. Then when I was about 17, I also started drinking on weekdays. Mostly when I had an hour in between classes or after school. in the area where I grew up it was quite usual for people to drink a lot.

Later when I started studying I kept drinking a lot and at times started to drink even more. Lately during the summer months this drinking really has gotten a bit out of hand. Therefore, a few days I have decided to totally quit drinking for a while. However, I find that it's very hard for me to cope. Next to coffee and water, I now sometimes drink non-alcoholic beers, so I still can have somewhat of the taste of beer without the alcohol.

Tonight I had a barbecue party with my family, something that in general isn't that bad. However, without the alcohol I feel a bit depressed and I've got some cravings. It's really difficult and I just need some support. This week I'm going to the hospital again where I'm treated for ADD. I'll bring up the problem I have with alcohol, but I just don't know whether I should take treatment or not. Is it an alcohol problem or just a liking for drinking a lot?

midnightstar
08-13-16, 05:09 PM
If you don't drink alcohol, does that cause your body to be like "You *must* give me alcohol right now"? I know you said it gives you cravings, what I'm getting at is how strong are the cravings?

Is it like your body telling you "I fancy some alcohol" or is it like your body saying "I need some alcohol right now"

Hermus
08-13-16, 05:17 PM
It's not really my body saying it needs alcohol at the moment. Although I had times that I functioned badly without drinking. It's more like having a strong mental desire for alcohol and getting depressed when I don't get it. If I don't drink I just feel bored and I don't feel well in social gatherings.

Little Missy
08-13-16, 05:18 PM
Have a drink then! win-win!

Unless your aim is to get DRUNK. Never pretty.

midnightstar
08-13-16, 05:21 PM
Sounds like you only drink cause you're bored, might still be an idea to see if there's any alcohol help groups near where you live :grouphug:

Hermus
08-13-16, 05:24 PM
Have a drink then! win-win!

Unless your aim is to get DRUNK. Never pretty.

That's the problem a bit. There is no moderation with me. When I drink I drink heavily. Some weeks there are only one or two nights I get drunk, but there also regularly are weeks that I get drunk on three nights or more.

'I drink in moderation. 'Moderation' is an imaginary place that exists wherever I am.'

aeon
08-13-16, 05:58 PM
I never get drunk, but my goodness, 2 or 3 cocktails (always liquor, never beer) in a social situation is just the ticket.

I’ll have a beer with a meal or whatnot, but otherwise, gimme Cosmopolitans!

Of course, I like the taste so much I end up drinking them too quickly, and that’s not so smart, but like I said, they taste so damned good.

Seeing me just a little disinhibited is like me without the neurosis, i.e., unrepentantly playful.


Cheers,
Ian

Little Missy
08-13-16, 06:26 PM
That's the problem a bit. There is no moderation with me. When I drink I drink heavily. Some weeks there are only one or two nights I get drunk, but there also regularly are weeks that I get drunk on three nights or more.

'I drink in moderation. 'Moderation' is an imaginary place that exists wherever I am.'

Probably best to stick with the 3.2 beer then.

stef
08-13-16, 07:10 PM
generally, "one glass too many," of wine
( before and through dinner)
its not a problem though! i enjoy this on weekends with friends
but i see how tt could get out of hand

Fuzzy12
08-13-16, 08:00 PM
I drink in thr absence of anything else.that helps me cope with my emotions or.my issues. I've gone through phases of drinking way too much. One of them was really bad where I'd binge drink every weekend and had a drink every evening. Just something to take the edge off.

I used to need alcohol at social events too. mainly the chit chatting kind where you don't do anything but talk. They bore the hell out of me so alcohol helps. Hugely. Without alcohol many of them were painfully boring.

Then I started taking anti depressants and the cravings stopped. When ever I smoke I don't crave alcohol. When I was taking stimulants I didn't need alcohol at all.

And yeah, I always crave alcohol when my family is around :rolleyes:

For me it's mainly another form of self medication. Could it he something similar for you? A coping mechanism? Do the stimulants help you?

I've found that a decent substitute is actually coke (the drink...cola or pepsi). There's something about the combination of ice, sugar and caffeine that I find very stimulating.

Hermus
08-13-16, 08:43 PM
I drink in thr absence of anything else.that helps me cope with my emotions or.my issues. I've gone through phases of drinking way too much. One of them was really bad where I'd binge drink every weekend and had a drink every evening. Just something to take the edge off.

That has been my pattern of drinking for the past fifteen years or so. And actually that's what's worrying me. More and more I have nights out of which I don't know all the details anymore. It's not that I drink even more than I'm used to, but apparently alcohol is starting to alter my brain, so I will have more and more memory loss.

I used to need alcohol at social events too. mainly the chit chatting kind where you don't do anything but talk. They bore the hell out of me so alcohol helps. Hugely. Without alcohol many of them were painfully boring.

This, plus some level of social anxiety that is reduced with alcohol.

Then I started taking anti depressants and the cravings stopped. When ever I smoke I don't crave alcohol. When I was taking stimulants I didn't need alcohol at all.

Stimulants indeed make it easier to keep off alcohol. However, mostly they wear off half-way the evening, after which the binge drinking begins.:o

And yeah, I always crave alcohol when my family is around :rolleyes:

For me it's mainly another form of self medication. Could it he something similar for you? A coping mechanism? Do the stimulants help you?

I've found that a decent substitute is actually coke (the drink...cola or pepsi). There's something about the combination of ice, sugar and caffeine that I find very stimulating.

There always are enough non-alcoholic beverages available, but somehow they never give me the same kick.

Fortune
08-14-16, 03:15 PM
Please remain on topic. Refer to Hermus' initial post. While some silliness can be fun it can also detract from a thread like this.

Laserbeak
08-14-16, 09:40 PM
If you're not drinking alcohol all the time now, there's really no treatment for you to go to. Alcohol detox treatment usually consists of you staying in some center or wing of a hospital and being given some benzodiazepam (usually Librium) until you get past the physical withdrawal phase, that lasts only a few days to a week. But if you just went to one party and drank and that made you crave alcohol, but you aren't acting on the cravings, there's nothing to do. You're already detoxed.

If you get into a program like an Alcoholics Anonymous one, they will insist you cease taking all psychoactive substances, including Adderall, etc. AA, which most alcohol and drug therapy is based on, is practically a religion demanding you don't take any type of psychotic drug whatsoever. From what I get from your post, that's not what you need, nor will it ever get rid of cravings. Nothing does that, with the possible exception of Ibogaine, but that is an experimental drug and illegal in most countries.

maysarieltiff
08-14-16, 11:27 PM
Alcohol can help reduce boredom, and in moderation and in those people who aren't addicts can be a huge temporary assistance to times of stress.

Are you needing the alcohol in order to feel social, to feel accepted or to feel like you belong? Are you craving the booze to cope with boredom, and that is the first thing you reach for?

I have also drank heavily in my past, and my tolerance is so naturally high, it is ridiculous. This leads me to think perhaps I am pre-disposed to alcoholism, although I have no issues stopping drinking, or having only a few.

If you are blacking out and not remembering things, these are warning signs. I don't think making light of alcohol abuse helps anyone. Not remembering things is not normal, and is a sign you are drinking too much, period.

Just my two (or three) cents. I feel you should find some other outlet for your boredom.

Hermus
08-15-16, 02:25 AM
If you're not drinking alcohol all the time now, there's really no treatment for you to go to. Alcohol detox treatment usually consists of you staying in some center or wing of a hospital and being given some benzodiazepam (usually Librium) until you get past the physical withdrawal phase, that lasts only a few days to a week. But if you just went to one party and drank and that made you crave alcohol, but you aren't acting on the cravings, there's nothing to do. You're already detoxed.

If you get into a program like an Alcoholics Anonymous one, they will insist you cease taking all psychoactive substances, including Adderall, etc. AA, which most alcohol and drug therapy is based on, is practically a religion demanding you don't take any type of psychotic drug whatsoever. From what I get from your post, that's not what you need, nor will it ever get rid of cravings. Nothing does that, with the possible exception of Ibogaine, but that is an experimental drug and illegal in most countries.

Detox actually is not really something I need, no. Physically I think I'm not addicted. I stopped drinking for a while and haven't drunk for four days now. The only problem I'm encountering now is with impaired sleep.

AA? No thanks. They ask you to accept a higher power, something which is just not for me. Moreover, as you say they want you to quit stimulants, which are necessary for people with ADD to function. Using medication would be too heavy.

The real problem is that I can to a certain extent decide not to drink for a period. However, when I start again I'll soon be back at binge drinking multiple times a week. Something that is costing me my health and might be doing serious damage to my brains (blackouts, memory loss etc.).

aeon
08-15-16, 02:54 AM
Two things to consider, Hermus...

Perhaps you have an as-yet undiagnosed anxiety disorder, to which alcohol provides relief. Alcohol works on the same receptors in the brain that benzodiazepines do.

Also, many people who reported behavior like yours, as well as alcoholics, have said their desire to drink went away when their ADHD was properly medicated.


Cheers,
Ian

Hermus
08-15-16, 03:21 AM
These are a few of my favorite things:


Westvleteren 12
Rochefort 10
Duvel
Pauwel Kwak
Westmalle Trappist Tripel
St. Bernadus Abt 12
Gulden Draak
Lindemans Gueuze Cuvée René
Lindemans Framboise
Lindemans Pomme
Saison Dupont
Rodenbach Grand Cru
Rodenbach Red
La Fin du Monde
Ommegang
Hennepin
Three Philosophers
Bells Oberon
Sierra Neveda Pale Ale
Anchor Steam
Anchor Liberty Ale
Anchor Porter
Dark Lord Imperial Stout
Samuel Smith Oatmeal Stout
Fuller's London Porter



Ardbeg 10yr.
Ardbeg Uigeadail
Laphroaig 10yr. Cask Strength
Lagavulin
Balvenie 15yr.



Perrier-Jouët Fleur de Champagne
Moët & Chandon Dom Perignon
Veuve-Clicquot Ponsardin



Christian Drouin Poiré Pear Cider



Cosmopolitans! ;)

So part of my strategy is to go for quality, and avoid quantity. Honestly, anything beyond just the slightest bit of alcohol intoxication is really unpleasant to me.

I wish I could say that of other chemistries in years past. :rolleyes:


Cheers,
Ian

Mind to discuss this further on Chit-Chat? This doesn't really seem to be the right forum to discuss favorite beverages.

Hermus
08-15-16, 03:27 AM
Two things to consider, Hermus...

Perhaps you have an as-yet undiagnosed anxiety disorder, to which alcohol provides relief. Alcohol works on the same receptors in the brain that benzodiazepines do.

Also, many people who reported behavior like yours, as well as alcoholics, have said their desire to drink went away when their ADHD was properly medicated.


Cheers,
Ian

What I know is that I do have a high degree of social anxiety. Drinking used to serve as a (unhealthy) coping mechanism. However, while my anxiety has reduced the drinking didn't really reduce when off meds.

Ritalin helps somewhat. While I still drink when I'm using ritalin, it helps to reduce the urge to drink. One of the problems of Ritalin as a medication against drinking is that drinking mostly happens late at night, while my Ritalin only works until about 8 o' clock in the evening. Taking meds after that time would have too big an impact on my sleep.

Actually I can notice the difference between my drinking on Ritalin or off Ritalin. I used to be on Ritalin till later in the evening. As long as they worked I kept it to one or two beers. However, as soon as they started to wear off the binge drinking began.

TheFitFatty
08-15-16, 06:21 AM
Probably the most realistic advice I've ever heard about drinking is that "if it's causing problems it is a problem"
Is it causing problems in your life? Do you feel like you can't control it? Can you stop at one?

I've never liked the whole "if you need it" you're an alcoholic. Because I know many non-problem drinkers who, if you told them they could never have a drink again ever, would be a little upset. Go figure, but lots of people like, or even look forward to, a cold beer on a hot day, and it doesn't make them alcohol dependent.

I wish I had more advise, but I'm far too alcohol dependent and have no desire to fix it. But good luck. :)

Little Missy
08-15-16, 09:20 AM
Just try not to become a dry drunk. Sometimes that is even worse.

lntense
08-15-16, 05:09 PM
You're not alone. I use it to lower inhibitions, and it can also be ritualistic if you drink often enough which is a hard habit to break. When my adhd meds wear off is when I really crave a drink. Preferably a glass of vodka.

I don't feel like my body "needs" it unless I drink several days straight and can't stop the shaking, or the fluttering in my heart. lol **** sucks and is awful for you. I have come to peace with the fact I can't hardly drink in moderation. Because I drink for one reason, to get drunk why else would I drink that nasty ****?

midnightstar
08-15-16, 05:21 PM
Just try not to become a dry drunk. Sometimes that is even worse.

What's a dry drunk :scratch:

Little Missy
08-15-16, 06:18 PM
What's a dry drunk :scratch:

Google! :)

Laserbeak
08-15-16, 06:18 PM
benzodiazepines

That's what I meant, I don't know where "benzodiazepam" came from… I guess it's a portmanteau of benzodiazepine and diazepam (Valium) I made up late-night! :lol:

Laserbeak
08-15-16, 09:23 PM
Hmm, i'm kind of the opposite. Instead of a binge drinker who occasionally drinks to the point of blacking out, I'm more of a slow sipper, drinking most of the day, but only slowly and I never black out or become dysfunctionally drunk. However, I do sometimes start becoming a fast sipper and start getting physically addicted to the point I need a drink first thing in the morning otherwise I'll get sick and throw up. At that point I need to detox myself (I do have a permanent prescription for Librium for anxiety). So I just have to take more of that and stop drinking for a few days and just try to stay in bed or something. After a day or two, I'm OK again and start my "slow sipping" routine again.

I'm not sure what is worse, slow sipping or binge drinking. But I have had somewhat elevated liver numbers in simple blood tests; however, they aren't high enough to really be considered dangerous.

But yeah, I drink mainly just out of boredom.

Sorry for the rambling...

edit:

I would also add DO NOT take any medications, whether over-the-counter or prescription that contain Tylenoll (also known as acetaminophen mainly in the US or paracetamol mainly in Europe), that drug can destroy your liver especially when combined with alcohol. And you have to be careful, it's mixed in with many drugs both OTC and prescription.

In fact, I suggest anyone who drinks on a regular basis to tell their doctor they are allergic to it.

sarahsweets
08-16-16, 12:26 AM
Its not anyone's place to say you are an alcoholic, and I am not inferring thats what you want to know but its important to evaluate your drinking patterns and behaviors, the triggers, the whys and why you cant stop after one. The easiest way I found to determine that I was an alcoholic vs a problem drinker was controlled drinking. I would decide for a month to only drink once a day, or two nights a week or whatever. I could never stick to one if I had any and I could never keep to that schedule without the white knuckles and was so grateful when a month passed.

Its not just the alcohol. Its how you use alcohol, and why and why you want more alcohol than other people.
I cant fathom someone wanting one glass of wine- I wouldnt, I would need the whole bottle- and be back to square one.

sarahsweets
08-16-16, 12:27 AM
Just try not to become a dry drunk. Sometimes that is even worse.

I know a few of those....yucky.

TheFitFatty
08-16-16, 01:29 AM
Its not anyone's place to say you are an alcoholic, and I am not inferring thats what you want to know but its important to evaluate your drinking patterns and behaviors, the triggers, the whys and why you cant stop after one. The easiest way I found to determine that I was an alcoholic vs a problem drinker was controlled drinking. I would decide for a month to only drink once a day, or two nights a week or whatever. I could never stick to one if I had any and I could never keep to that schedule without the white knuckles and was so grateful when a month passed.

Its not just the alcohol. Its how you use alcohol, and why and why you want more alcohol than other people.
I cant fathom someone wanting one glass of wine- I wouldnt, I would need the whole bottle- and be back to square one.


See this is why I waffle back and forth about the extent of my drinking problem.

If my doctor told me tomorrow that I could never drink again, and gave me a good reason like "your liver is about to implode" I could drop it and beyond a wistful sigh at never having a cold beer on a hot day again, it wouldn't bug me. I wouldn't have withdrawl, and I might be a little jealous when others are drinking around me, but generally I wouldn't have cravings.

But when my only reason for not having one or two (sometimes 3 if it's a good episode of Ink Master and the kids are behaving) when I get home from work (and I can stop at one or two) is that I MAY be causing damage to my liver, it doesn't really outweigh how nice it is to relax with a glass of wine after work and kids are in bed (if that makes any sense). I often go a few days a week with no booze. Doesn't bother me. And I don't drink to excess during the week because otherwise the hangover is too bad and I would feel like crap at work. So a big no-no.

My real issue is with binge drinking on the weekends, because I seem to have a high tolerance so I know I drink more than guidelines say I should. And after 3 my inhibitions do seem to go out the window so it's harder to say "Oh no I'm done" and easier to say "Ok I'll have one more, put the next episode of Game of Thrones on." Then I have a hangover and I'm tired the the next morning because I stayed up too late (11:00!!!) and then I feel like the worlds worst mother and a raving alcoholic because I couldn't stop at a sensible number and go to bed at 10. :(

Too be fair, my mother believes firmly that anyone who drinks more than once a week, and more than 4 or 5 at a time, is a raving alcoholic so that may color my thinking about my own drinking.

Fortune
08-16-16, 02:16 AM
I used to be a binge drinker. In my case it was definitely a problem even though I had no physical dependency. Ultimately it was best for me to quit because I did not like myself smashed.

sarahsweets
08-16-16, 05:51 AM
See this is why I waffle back and forth about the extent of my drinking problem.


IMO people can have various drinking problems or issues without being alcoholics. I am not one of those recovering alcoholics that goes around preaching and telling everyone they have a problem. I am not the alcohol police and I can go out with people who drink to an extent. Very very rarely my husband will have a beer or two in the fridge..he always makes sure its ok, and does not have any sort of drinking problem. I just cant have any other sort of open container alcohol in the house, wine, liquor, spirits, I woudnt be able to stop obssessing over it.

If you want to stop or cut down on your drinking the worst thing you can do is have open bottles around. It can be too tempting to have 'just a glass or two'.

If my doctor told me tomorrow that I could never drink again, and gave me a good reason like "your liver is about to implode" I could drop it and beyond a wistful sigh at never having a cold beer on a hot day again, it wouldn't bug me. I wouldn't have withdrawl, and I might be a little jealous when others are drinking around me, but generally I wouldn't have cravings.

This is good. although its always good to think about why such an extreme prediction would be needed if you want to stop.


My real issue is with binge drinking on the weekends, because I seem to have a high tolerance so I know I drink more than guidelines say I should. And after 3 my inhibitions do seem to go out the window so it's harder to say "Oh no I'm done" and easier to say "Ok I'll have one more, put the next episode of Game of Thrones on." Then I have a hangover and I'm tired the the next morning because I stayed up too late (11:00!!!) and then I feel like the worlds worst mother and a raving alcoholic because I couldn't stop at a sensible number and go to bed at 10. :(

Too be fair, my mother believes firmly that anyone who drinks more than once a week, and more than 4 or 5 at a time, is a raving alcoholic so that may color my thinking about my own drinking.
The bolded part is key. Binge drinking IMO should be its own dx or disorder in that it doesnt always lead to chronic alcoholisim but does have consequences (however minor) and the drinker has expressed remorse about it.
JMO youre not a POS mom. Your human.

TheFitFatty
08-16-16, 06:25 AM
If you want to stop or cut down on your drinking the worst thing you can do is have open bottles around. It can be too tempting to have 'just a glass or two'.


This is good. although its always good to think about why such an extreme prediction would be needed if you want to stop.



The bolded part is key. Binge drinking IMO should be its own dx or disorder in that it doesnt always lead to chronic alcoholisim but does have consequences (however minor) and the drinker has expressed remorse about it.
JMO youre not a POS mom. Your human.

Having open liquor in the house doesn't bother me. There's been a bottle of tequila sitting on my shelf next to a half full bottle of red wine for ages and ages. I've not had anything in the house quite a few times (for days) and not even been tempted by it. Bleurgh.

As for the extreme diagnosis (I was exaggerating a bit). I suppose I like beer....And sometimes gin and soda or white wine, but mostly beer. I like the taste, like relaxing with it. So I guess unless someone tells me I can never do it again, I would hate to give it up. I eat healthy, hardly ever have junk food, exercise, I don't smoke. My beer is my vice. :(

Thanks for saying I'm not a POS mum. I guess I really just need to learn to turn off Game of Thrones and go to bed. :umm1:

Laserbeak
08-16-16, 07:10 AM
If my doctor told me tomorrow that I could never drink again, and gave me a good reason like "your liver is about to implode".

Well, he might be right, then again he might be wrong.

I had a doctor tell me I'd be dead in 5 years if I didn't stop drinking. That was 15 years ago and I'm still drinking.

GPs are very under equipped to properly analyze simple blood tests and make determinations about liver function and health.

One would really need to go to a liver specialist and get a liver sample with a big long needle and run a complete liver function test to understand what condition your liver is in.

edit:

The two numbers from a standard blood panel that have to do with the liver are "AST" and "ALT." If they are above normal. what should happen is the ratio between them should be calculated (instead of just freaking out like most GPs do). If the ratio is above 2:1, that does indicate alcohol-induced liver problems, but if not, it may just be something less harmful. You should read this article: Wikipedia article. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AST/ALT_ratio)

TheFitFatty
08-16-16, 07:17 AM
Well, he might be right, then again he might be wrong.

I had a doctor tell me I'd be dead in 5 years if I didn't stop drinking. That was 15 years ago and I'm still drinking.

GPs are very under equipped to properly analyze simple blood tests and make determinations about liver function and health.

One would really need to go to a liver specialist and get a liver sample with a big long needle and run a complete liver function test to understand what condition your liver is in.

:eek: See, if the choice was that or no more booze ever, I definitely take no booze ever!!! :eek::eek::eek::eek:

Little Missy
08-16-16, 07:23 AM
:eek: See, if the choice was that or no more booze ever, I definitely take no booze ever!!! :eek::eek::eek::eek:

This is crazy weird, my mum worked with a gal who had a seriously bad alcoholic husband and his doc told him 'not even one more drink or you'll be dead.'

He quit for about 5 years and came home one night, had one beer and literally died right then and there.
I wouldn't have believed it but I knew the family also and we all were shocked beyond belief!

Too bad, the man was an incredibly talented finished carpenter.

Fuzzy12
08-16-16, 07:25 AM
This is crazy weird, my mum worked with a gal who had a seriously bad alcoholic husband and his doc told him 'not even one more drink or you'll be dead.'

He quit for about 5 years and came home one night, had one beer and literally died right then and there.
I wouldn't have believed it but I knew the family also and we all were shocked beyond belief!

Too bad, the man was an incredibly talented finished carpenter.


:eek::eek::eek::faint:

Laserbeak
08-16-16, 07:28 AM
I'll repeat my edit from above just to make sure you guys see it, it's pretty informative:


The two numbers from a standard blood panel that have to do with the liver are "AST" and "ALT." If they are above normal. what should happen is the ratio between them should be calculated (instead of just freaking out like most GPs do). If the ratio is above 2:1, that does indicate alcohol-induced liver problems, but if not, it may just be something less harmful. You should read this article: Wikipedia article. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AST/ALT_ratio)

Matador
08-16-16, 11:24 AM
Thanks for starting this thread, Hermus.

I must say, you sound/remind me a good amount about myself. While I don't drink as often, when I do go out I will black out if I stay out long enough because of moderation.

I have no control over it and I think with it being a ritual, I remember telling my friend when we went to a good friend's wedding to help me with the control of my drinking. Well everyone had a drink in their hand and probably had a couple--I stayed strong but was constantly about to get a drink but my buddy stopped me.

He said 'relax' and it was tough, I was pestering--but it wasn't that I craved it...but I just saw others drinking and wanted to do the same. Had I started that early like they did I'd have been blacked out and didn't want to do that at my friend's wedding.

I've abstained for months without alcohol, but I'd have friends over or go out and have nothing in my hand and always felt like I missed out. I started drinking again and ended up back at where I was before I stopped.

I too am finding out I suffer from Anxiety and how that may play a toll too on the drinking. I used to get anxious about going out and not 'feeling' the same as others in a social setting. While I've kind of gotten over that, my tolerance to stay out isn't what it's like when I drink. If I am not drinking I get bored/tired quickly and don't stay out much.

Is there studies between anxiety and alcohol? I now that I look at it do use it as a drug/tool to make me feel better when I go out. I've noticed too I'll drink more heavily if I am out and start feeling anxious/bored.

aeon
08-16-16, 11:51 AM
Is there studies between anxiety and alcohol? I now that I look at it do use it as a drug/tool to make me feel better when I go out. I've noticed too I'll drink more heavily if I am out and start feeling anxious/bored.

Yes, people with anxiety disorders often drink to self-medicate.

Alcohol affects the same brain systems as benzodiazepines like Valium, Ativan, and Xanax.


Cheers,
Ian

Laserbeak
08-16-16, 12:48 PM
Alcohol affects the same brain systems as benzodiazepines like Valium, Ativan, and Xanax.


True, but as in most things, it's not so simple. The GABA complex of neuroreceptors is quite complicated.

Benzodiazepines are much safer than alcohol (and barbiturates, which work on the same systems) because they appear to rely on your natural GABA neurotransmitters, so they can only enhance what you already have -- not give you an unlimited number of new neurotransmitter-like chemicals. Barbiturates and alcohol don't have such limitations. (Neither do narcotic painkillers).

Therefore, it's almost impossible to kill yourself with benzodiazepines alone even if you wanted to because you don't have enough natural GABA transmitters to do so. (Don't try this at home :) )

However, Barbiturates were notorious for overdose deaths (like Marilyn Monroe).

Same with narcotic painkillers such as morphine, heroin, oxycodone, etc.

Alcohol can do the same thing, but you usually pass out or throw up before you can get enough into your system. But there are plenty of cases of alcohol poisoning deaths that occur all the time.

aeon
08-16-16, 01:52 PM
Yes, mine was a gross simplification, and thanks for elucidating.

Laserbeak
08-16-16, 02:03 PM
I should have made it clear narcotic painkillers work on a totally different neurotransmitter system, the opioid system.

Hermus
09-09-16, 07:27 AM
Some time ago I went to a psychologist for an admission interview. We talked about my alcohol intake, which I always knew was somewhat high. The next conversation I had she suddenly advised me to seek treatment for alcohol abuse. At first I felt that that was a bit excessive. I always knew that I am a somewhat heavy drinker, but never really felt like an alcoholic. To me an alcoholic is someone who at least drinks a bottle of wine a day or something. Not someone who drinks 2 or 3 small cans of beer a day and next to that drinks more heavy about 2 times a week. It always felt like it was part of my lifestyle, instead of a serious problem.

This morning I had a telephone interview with someone of the alcohol treatment and she started about different options, one of them being rehab in South Africa. Actually I don't want to have anything to do with rehab or group treatment. I feel that I don't belong between the real alcoholics. At the same time I feel so ashamed that I have been referred for alcohol treatment. People with an alcohol problem to me are the people I see buying cheap half liters of beer as soon as the supermarket opens. Not me.

How to deal with this feeling of shame about it? I really don't know and it makes me sad. :(

Unmanagable
09-09-16, 08:20 AM
I used to think I didn't have a drinking problem, either, and would strongly judge those who I felt did. I would go to work 40 hours a week, maintained an apartment, and although I'd drink to excess a few times within the week, I was still convinced it wasn't really a "problem" since I was consciously making the choice and not doing it because I had no choice, and because I was still able to afford the higher quality stuff, unlike those who I perceived to be alcoholics.......or so I thought.

It wasn't until I tried to quit when I realized just how dependent on it I'd become. It was my form of self-medication. I was lessening the quality of my life, although that lesser quality was more than acceptable to me at the time. Much more acceptable than trying to change something or deal with it.

Shame and denial were two of the biggest hurdles I had to cross. Luckily, I had strong support in a few friends who helped me see the bigger picture from their points of view. If it weren't for them, I'd likely still be drowning my emotions in various alcoholic beverages, not to mention various other "(attempted) better living through chemicals" options.

Once I was able to fully give it up, I was so f'n grateful for no longer waking up with hangovers that sucked the life out of my days, no longer spending as much to entertain myself, no longer feeling super drained and dehydrated, no longer smelling the stink of empty bottles in the kitchen, no longer trying to maintain false friendships based on who was picking up the tab, and no longer worrying if I'm going to drink too much and do something I may regret in the morning are just a few of the reliefs I found in letting it go.

It, along with food and other beverages, was one of the most difficult coping mechanisms to see for what it really is and to work my way through in a healthier manner. However, I wasn't able to do it just because I knew it, I had to FEEL the desire to let it go. And, as usual, as it happens in my world, that desire arrived on the tail of much misery.

Bluechoo
09-09-16, 08:39 AM
I went to AA a few years ago after crashing my car in my 2nd DUI. They talked about alcoholics vs. people with drinking problems. Anyone can have a drinking problem, and usually grow past it. An alcoholic, apparently, never recovers, but must live in recovery forever.

After a while, I started getting anxious and depressed, and looked at it from a treatment perspective, asking myself "is this treatment right for me?" It worked at first, but eventually I realized that I was lying when I said "I'm an alcoholic." I found out that I actually had a drinking problem that stemmed from life experiences, plus the fact that I come from a heavy drinking family.

I suppose AA was good for me to put the breaks on the drinking so I could hit the reset button. But leaving AA and feeling more confident about myself was the next thing I had to do for my own recovery. I could no longer say "I have no control" because I did not feel that way in my heart. And after some testing, I found that I really could enjoy an occasional drink or two, and even some heavy drinking when appropriate.

The way you write tells me that you already have some good insights into your own inner-workings. I would suggest you listen to yourself; as they say in the AA meetings, only you can say whether or not you are an alcoholic or have a drinking problem.

Hermus
09-09-16, 08:44 AM
I went to AA a few years ago after crashing my car in my 2nd DUI. They talked about alcoholics vs. people with drinking problems. Anyone can have a drinking problem, and usually grow past it. An alcoholic, apparently, never recovers, but must live in recovery forever.

After a while, I started getting anxious and depressed, and looked at it from a treatment perspective, asking myself "is this treatment right for me?" It worked at first, but eventually I realized that I was lying when I said "I'm an alcoholic." I found out that I actually had a drinking problem that stemmed from life experiences, plus the fact that I come from a heavy drinking family.

I suppose AA was good for me to put the breaks on the drinking so I could hit the reset button. But leaving AA and feeling more confident about myself was the next thing I had to do for my own recovery. I could no longer say "I have no control" because I did not feel that way in my heart. And after some testing, I found that I really could enjoy an occasional drink or two, and even some heavy drinking when appropriate.

The way you write tells me that you already have some good insights into your own inner-workings. I would suggest you listen to yourself; as they say in the AA meetings, only you can say whether or not you are an alcoholic or have a drinking problem.

Heard a lot about AA. To me it always sounds like something that I definitely am going to avoid at all costs. One of the main reason being that their 12 steps program refers to God and a higher power too much. I'd rather give myself over to science and reason. ;)

(Not wanting to make a religious discussion out of this, since that's against the guidelines.)

Little Missy
09-09-16, 09:05 AM
Heard a lot about AA. To me it always sounds like something that I definitely am going to avoid at all costs. One of the main reason being that their 12 steps program refers to God and a higher power too much. I'd rather give myself over to science and reason. ;)

(Not wanting to make a religious discussion out of this, since that's against the guidelines.)

The higher power is you. Within you. And that power is scientific and reason. :)

Bluechoo
09-09-16, 09:21 AM
Oh yeah, I did not mention anything about the big HP, but that was a clear point that I could never got on board with. My scientific background was raging inside, forcing strong, well-thought, reasonable counter-steps to the first 3 steps that are all abut admitting defeat and seizing an HP.

Hermus
09-09-16, 09:39 AM
The higher power is you. Within you. And that power is scientific and reason. :)

It quite explicitly refers to 'a higher power greater than ourselves', so that means that we are not ourselves that higher power. Something cannot be greater than itself. Luckily AA is not the only option for treatment. If I go to where I got an admission interview I probably won't ever have anything to do with AA.

Little Missy
09-09-16, 09:46 AM
It quite explicitly refers to 'a higher power greater than ourselves', so that means that we are not ourselves that higher power. Something cannot be greater than itself. Luckily AA is not the only option for treatment. If I go to where I got an admission interview I probably won't ever have anything to do with AA.

It is greater than yourself. It is your soul. You can interpret that anyway you wish. But it is within you, and you are not ready to accept that.

You feel firmly about your ideas. So be it.

AA/NA really is a wonderful thing for those that need it.

Hub: Sometimes the things that may or may not be true are the things a man needs to believe in the most. That people are basically good; that honor, courage, and virtue mean everything; that power and money, money and power mean nothing; that good always triumphs over evil; and I want you to remember this, that love... true love never dies. You remember that, boy. You remember that. Doesn't matter if it's true or not. You see, a man should believe in those things, because those are the things worth believing in.

sarahsweets
09-09-16, 10:52 AM
To me an alcoholic is someone who at least drinks a bottle of wine a day or something. Not someone who drinks 2 or 3 small cans of beer a day and next to that drinks more heavy about 2 times a week. It always felt like it was part of my lifestyle, instead of a serious problem.

Its never about how much you drink, its what happens when you drink.

I feel that I don't belong between the real alcoholics. At the same time I feel so ashamed that I have been referred for alcohol treatment. People with an alcohol problem to me are the people I see buying cheap half liters of beer as soon as the supermarket opens. Not me.

Im sure you didnt mean to offend anyone but this is offensive to me. You cant judge what a 'real' alcoholic is or isnt based on what they look like or what you see them buying. I am an alcoholic and if you had known me back then, you wouldnt have been able to guess it, unless you got close enough to smell me I guess (at the end).
Sometimes I would be buying alcohol in the morning, but most times I planned it where I didnt need to buy it until later.
There is a reason you have been referred to alcohol treatment and its important to take a look at why.
But the whole 'hobo' on the tracks view of an alcoholic is judgemental and outdated. If you feel shame then Im sorry for you. Wanting to get help shouldnt be a thing of shame.
How to deal with this feeling of shame about it? I really don't know and it makes me sad. :([/QUOTE]

Hermus
09-09-16, 11:39 AM
Its never about how much you drink, its what happens when you drink.


I'm sure you didn't mean to offend anyone but this is offensive to me. You cant judge what a 'real' alcoholic is or isn't based on what they look like or what you see them buying. I am an alcoholic and if you had known me back then, you wouldn't have been able to guess it, unless you got close enough to smell me I guess (at the end).
Sometimes I would be buying alcohol in the morning, but most times I planned it where I didn't need to buy it until later.
There is a reason you have been referred to alcohol treatment and its important to take a look at why.
But the whole 'hobo' on the tracks view of an alcoholic is judgemental and outdated. If you feel shame then I'm sorry for you. Wanting to get help shouldn't be a thing of shame.
How to deal with this feeling of shame about it? I really don't know and it makes me sad. :(

Sorry that you feel offended by it. I get why you see it as judgemental, but it is not meant to be. It is just that the whole thing of planning buying alcohol and stuff doesn't refer to me. I just go to the supermarket once a day and next to my daily groceries also take some beer or wine. I don't even drink much when I'm at home on my own most of the days.

It's more that I tend to binge drink often and that when at home I drink a few drinks every day. To me that just not feels like I'm an alcoholic. I have had stages in the past where I used to get drunk everyday, but that is a long time ago. More recently I also have had stages where I almost never drink when at home. Even a few weeks that I didn't drink at all.

The time when I got drunk everyday and only really felt awake after my first drink, I would say that at that time I used to be an alcoholic. But right now? I have very much difficulty with accepting the idea that I need treatment for that.

sarahsweets
09-09-16, 11:59 AM
Sorry that you feel offended by it. I get why you see it as judgemental, but it is not meant to be. It is just that the whole thing of planning buying alcohol and stuff doesn't refer to me. I just go to the supermarket once a day and next to my daily groceries also take some beer or wine. I don't even drink much when I'm at home on my own most of the days.

It's more that I tend to binge drink often and that when at home I drink a few drinks every day. To me that just not feels like I'm an alcoholic. I have had stages in the past where I used to get drunk everyday, but that is a long time ago. More recently I also have had stages where I almost never drink when at home. Even a few weeks that I didn't drink at all.

The time when I got drunk everyday and only really felt awake after my first drink, I would say that at that time I used to be an alcoholic. But right now? I have very much difficulty with accepting the idea that I need treatment for that.

Thanks for the apology, I really didnt think you meant it to be offensive,I guess Im just super sensitive.
Like I said, its not for me or anyone to determine whether you are an alcoholic.
For me, I cant stop drinking once I start and the consequences of my drinking were vast. If you can drink and control yourself, or how much you drink then you are lucky. I wish I could. But something to think about is, normal people dont have to think so hard or so much about whether they have an alcohol problem- they just do or dont. Its just something to toss around.
And lets say you go through treament- whats the harm? its not like it would br bad for you right?

Hermus
09-09-16, 12:15 PM
Thanks for the apology, I really didnt think you meant it to be offensive,I guess Im just super sensitive.
Like I said, its not for me or anyone to determine whether you are an alcoholic.
For me, I cant stop drinking once I start and the consequences of my drinking were vast. If you can drink and control yourself, or how much you drink then you are lucky. I wish I could. But something to think about is, normal people dont have to think so hard or so much about whether they have an alcohol problem- they just do or dont. Its just something to toss around.
And lets say you go through treament- whats the harm? its not like it would br bad for you right?

There is a stigma around being considered an alcoholic and being in treatment and the stigma bothers me. My (perhaps incorrect) view of it is that it are only Hollywood stars and the really heavy cases that get treatment. In fact the only person I know who was treated for substance abuse is a girl with severe borderline, who often when I saw her was snorting heaps of meth. So yes, my view of people who get treated is not exactly that of someone who drinks a bit too much a few times a week.

sarahsweets
09-09-16, 12:23 PM
People often get caught up in the HP part of AA. Its true that its not the only way to stop drinking and it doesnt work for everyone. In the literature though, there is a specific part written for agnostics- a higher power can be a person, the group your pet duck-whatever. Just something that is greater than yourself because alone, you were not able to stay sober-at least thats what most people who come to AA believe. And you can be rational and scientific and still get something out of it if you have an open mind.
I know for whatever reason , it was the only thing that worked for me.

Unmanagable
09-09-16, 12:26 PM
To me alcohol treatment just sounds like something for the very heavy cases. There is a stigma around being considered an alcoholic and being in treatment. My (perhaps incorrect) view of it is that it are only Hollywood stars and the really heavy cases that get treatment.


It's easy to get stuck in that mindset, in my opinion, because in most arenas in life we aren't taught to address anything from a preventative standpoint BEFORE it becomes a life-altering problem. Addiction is still viewed as simply being bad choices vs. an underlying desperate need for healthy connection, be it via widely recommended (although still not widely accepted) treatment or whatever means we have available.

sarahsweets
09-09-16, 01:47 PM
There is a stigma around being considered an alcoholic and being in treatment and the stigma bothers me.
I get what you mean but who would know about you getting treatment? Privacy laws protect a lot of sensitive information and its nobody's business if you get treatment.

My (perhaps incorrect) view of it is that it are only Hollywood stars and the really heavy cases that get treatment. In fact the only person I know who was treated for substance abuse is a girl with severe borderline, who often when I saw her was snorting heaps of meth. So yes, my view of people who get treated is not exactly that of someone who drinks a bit too much a few times a week.
Even if you dont identify with people its very important (at least for me) that you lose those views because they only add to the shame of substance abuse issues and mental health issues. There are many people with BPD who live completely healthy lives and not every person with BPD will be in such extremes. Perpetuating stigmas is a lot like spreading gossip- its not correct information and it will only harm the individual.

Hermus
09-09-16, 02:12 PM
I get what you mean but who would know about you getting treatment? Privacy laws protect a lot of sensitive information and its nobody's business if you get treatment.


Even if you dont identify with people its very important (at least for me) that you lose those views because they only add to the shame of substance abuse issues and mental health issues. There are many people with BPD who live completely healthy lives and not every person with BPD will be in such extremes. Perpetuating stigmas is a lot like spreading gossip- its not correct information and it will only harm the individual.

I know that there are a lot of people with bod who aren't that way, but this is a friend of mine and I think there is nothing that I wrote here that she didn't tell me herself.

I have nothing against people with issues with substance abuse. My younger brother has been addicted to alcohol, meth and GHB. He's one of the smartest and nicest guys I know. He beat his addictions on his own. So if my addiction is much less heavy, why do I need treatment?

sarahsweets
09-09-16, 02:37 PM
Why were you referred for treatment? An by who?

aeon
09-09-16, 02:52 PM
My younger brother has been addicted to alcohol, meth and GHB. He's one of the smartest and nicest guys I know. He beat his addictions on his own. So if my addiction is much less heavy, why do I need treatment?

Severity of addiction can *never* be known from the intoxicants alone. Inasmuch as addiction is a human process, the addiction potential has more to do with the person than the thing(s) abused.


Cheers,
Ian

Hermus
09-10-16, 01:40 PM
Why were you referred for treatment? An by who?

Actually I was not looking for treatment for alcohol. I was looking for treatment for issues relating to self-image, social anxiety, unstable relationships etc. And then all of a sudden they referred me to alcohol treatment, which actually was a shock. :eek:

Somehow my mind throws all kinds of defences up not to stop drinking. Thinking of how boring life would be without alcohol, how it would impair me socially, how to tell the therapists I'm not like the others they treat and therefore need no real treatment etc.

Apparently the clinic where I have been referred to does work with the 12 step program referring to God and a higher power. Would it be possible to substitute humanity for God and nature for higher power.

[NOTE: In this thread, please avoid religious discussion. Additional discussion of humanity and higher powers can be continued here: http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=180030 ]

aeon
09-10-16, 05:39 PM
Would it be possible to substitute humanity for God and nature for higher power.
Absolutely it would.

Cheers,
Ian

sarahsweets
09-11-16, 12:11 AM
Somehow my mind throws all kinds of defences up not to stop drinking. Thinking of how boring life would be without alcohol, how it would impair me socially, how to tell the therapists I'm not like the others they treat and therefore need no real treatment etc.

Dont listen to those voices. You do not know if life will be boring or not, because you havent given it a try. And not drinking shouldnt impair you. If anything drinking too much would impair you.

Hermus
09-11-16, 02:35 AM
Dont listen to those voices. You do not know if life will be boring or not, because you havent given it a try. And not drinking shouldnt impair you. If anything drinking too much would impair you.

Not drinking does impair me. I have much more brakes on my social behaviour, which stops me from being the sociable, funny dude that I am when I had a few drinks.

Hermus
09-11-16, 04:06 AM
My social life is centred around drinking and having fun with my buddies during the weekends. If I quit it it feels like I have to start from scratch in rebuilding my life. I have worked so hard to get where I am. I don't know if I'm ready to start from zero again.

Unmanagable
09-11-16, 12:01 PM
Drinking is just one flow in your life.

What other things really ignite your inner fire that you could pursue socially?

Why do you feel it would be totally starting from scratch? Is ALL of your courage in a bottle, or have you gained any feelings of self-empowerment and confidence from the interpersonal experiences themselves?

Are there any activities you do while drinking that can't also be enjoyed sober?

Do you feel you have to be a bit intoxicated to be able to respond to females, or would you be comfortable being approached for intimate encounters while sober, as well?

Do you feel like your hard work thus far is paying off well for you in having achieved an enriched and healthy social life that is meeting all of your needs currently?

How would you define a social life that does not include alcohol?

What would your ideal social life minus alcohol look like?

I hope you don't equate me asking questions with your buddy you mentioned that likes to ask investigative questions and plucks your nerves. Hahahahahaha!

I ask because some of your previous comments make it seem as if you feel people who don't partake in drinking are simply boring, not worthy of hang time, are on some wild goose spiritual chase, etc., and that seems like a poorly perceived reason to not give yourself a shot at a wider and potentially richer life experience.

As long as you remain convinced of those perceptions, and keep repeating those things to yourself each time you think of trying an extended trial period of not drinking, you likely won't ever feel attracted to wanting to pursue social things that aren't alcohol based. You'll keep talking yourself right out of it.

You mentioned somewhere else about feeling good without a hangover today while listening to your friends complaining. Did that feel self-empowering to you, or do you feel like you robbed yourself of a chance to have a good time and would rather have a hangover?

Little Missy
09-11-16, 12:17 PM
If I were you, I'd wait until I arrived in South Africa and see what they have to offer.

Hermus
09-11-16, 12:59 PM
Drinking is just one flow in your life.

What other things really ignite your inner fire that you could pursue socially?

There are not tot much social encounters that I really enjoy that don't involve alcohol. When I'm with my friends who are drinking I don't really feel that I'm participating in the social gathering if I'm sober. At those times I'm just too much stuck in my own head. Alcohol helps me at those moments. Now, Ritalin is something that also has helped me tremendously with getting out of my own head. But taking Ritalin late at night is not advised, so that's not a solution. And since it's a neurological thing I don't see a way that doesn't involve taking one of the other that would solve the problem.

Why do you feel it would be totally starting from scratch? Is ALL of your courage in a bottle, or have you gained any feelings of self-empowerment and confidence from the interpersonal experiences themselves?

I did, but I'm afraid that soon my social life with the friends who do drink would suffer. Then I would have to build a whole new social life, start from scratch so to say.

Are there any activities you do while drinking that can't also be enjoyed sober?

Don't know. I have no experience with going to the bar or a party and not taking either alcohol or drugs.

Do you feel you have to be a bit intoxicated to be able to respond to females, or would you be comfortable being approached for intimate encounters while sober, as well?

That's a bit of the problem with Western culture isn't it? Females don't usually approach that much. While I know some who do the vast majority wait for a guy to make a move. When they do make a move without alcohol I'm mostly too stuck in my head to be able to respond in a spontaneous manner. So waiting for her to approach wouldn't really be a very fruitful solution.

Do you feel like your hard work thus far is paying off well for you in having achieved an enriched and healthy social life that is meeting all of your needs currently?

How would you define a social life that does not include alcohol?

What would your ideal social life minus alcohol look like?

I don't know whether there would be any social life at all.

I hope you don't equate me asking questions with your buddy you mentioned that likes to ask investigative questions and plucks your nerves. Hahahahahaha!

I ask because some of your previous comments make it seem as if you feel people who don't partake in drinking are simply boring, not worthy of hang time, are on some wild goose spiritual chase, etc., and that seems like a poorly perceived reason to not give yourself a shot at a wider and potentially richer life experience.

To be honest most of the people who don't are the people who always play it safe, never get into any funny situation, don't have exciting things to tell etc. In other words, dull people. I just don't know any examples of the opposite.

As long as you remain convinced of those perceptions, and keep repeating those things to yourself each time you think of trying an extended trial period of not drinking, you likely won't ever feel attracted to wanting to pursue social things that aren't alcohol based. You'll keep talking yourself right out of it.

You mentioned somewhere else about feeling good without a hangover today while listening to your friends complaining. Did that feel self-empowering to you, or do you feel like you robbed yourself of a chance to have a good time and would rather have a hangover?

Yes, I have been more productive and I would seriously consider drinking less often. But giving up on being drunk occasionally, that's a big step.

The thing is that I went to the psychologist for problems around self-image, unstable relationships, social anxiety etc. The psychologist told me that alcohol might be a thing that keeps those problems in place. So if it can contribute to solving those other problems I am willing to cut down on my drinking. But drinking less for me is not a goal in itself.

The clinic I have been referred to does take on the other problems in their approach. However, they're still primarily offering treatment for addiction. What I'm afraid of is that they will take out the alcohol, but only will deal with the other problems in so far as they will lead to drinking. For example, they might leave my social anxiety in tact, but leave it at teaching me not to drink as a response to it without tackling the issue itself. If they do I will still have the same problems, only without the alcohol. And that in itself to me is not worth getting treatment for.

Hermus
09-11-16, 01:02 PM
If I were you, I'd wait until I arrived in South Africa and see what they have to offer.

It is not certain that I will be shipped off to South Africa. The intake is in the Netherlands. SA is an option they do offer to many people though. However, before I decide to make the expensive trip, I first want to know whether they want to really deal with the problems I came to a psychologist for, or just want to cut out the alcohol and then leave me with my other troubles.

stef
09-11-16, 02:22 PM
Hermus, is there a lot of drinking in the netherlands? i mean just culturally.
its not the same in US vs France,, ive noticed

Fuzzy12
09-11-16, 02:22 PM
Don't take this the wrong way herms but it does sound a bit like you might depend on alcohol quite a lot. Maybe you are not physically addicted to it but you do seem to lean on it quite a bit even if it's just for the social effects.

If that's a reason to quit I'm not sure but it might be worth considering it and it might be time to explore other avenues that will give you the same social benefits as alcohol does..or make them unnecessary.

Hermus
09-11-16, 04:17 PM
Don't take this the wrong way herms but it does sound a bit like you might depend on alcohol quite a lot. Maybe you are not physically addicted to it but you do seem to lean on it quite a bit even if it's just for the social effects.

If that's a reason to quit I'm not sure but it might be worth considering it and it might be time to explore other avenues that will give you the same social benefits as alcohol does..or make them unnecessary.

You are absolutely right. I am dependent on alcohol for my social life and actually I'm fine with that. If the choice would be between having lived a moderately fulfilling life, while dying at 60 of liver failure, or dying miserable and alone at 90, what reason would I have to choose the latter?

Tonight I realized there is more to the drinking than just the social issue. I haven't drunk a drop for 48 hours now and I start to feel agitated and empty. This emptiness is just always there when I don't use substances.

My psychologist suggested that those issues might be caused by the drinking. However, I have had times that I didn't drink for months and the emptiness didn't reside. In the past I used to tackle my emptiness with binge eating and I feel that I'm going back to that. If the choice is between killing the empty feeling with alcohol or with binge eating, I'd rather choose the alcohol. The past few years I managed to drop 15 kilo and I'm almost at a healthy weight now. If I start binge eating it has all been for nothing.

Maybe I can learn to both do away with alcohol and binge eating. But what then? Feeling empty all the time? Society certainly wouldn't care. I'd be perfectly able to function on that empty feeling. As long as I'm just acting according to what is considered normal, what's going on inside isn't really a problem, is it?

Fuzzy12
09-11-16, 06:41 PM
I used to crave alcohol and drink way too much till I started taking anti depressants. When the anti depressants pooped out smoking helped with alcohol craving and then later stimulants.

I can relate to just needing something. And I agree that whatever that something is, be it alcohol or meds or nicotine or food it's better than the emptiness.

It's fairly common I believe to self medicate when you've got adhd or other mental health issues.

Hermus
09-11-16, 08:29 PM
Hermus, is there a lot of drinking in the netherlands? i mean just culturally.
its not the same in US vs France,, ive noticed

What is a lot? I think it's quite usual for people in their twenties to regularly binge drink. But there are also a lot of people who don't. So it might just be my friends who do. Not too sure about that.

sarahsweets
09-13-16, 12:04 AM
Tonight I realized there is more to the drinking than just the social issue. I haven't drunk a drop for 48 hours now and I start to feel agitated and empty. This emptiness is just always there when I don't use substances.

Im going to be real now...
This is not normal and IMO not ok. No one should be empty and agitated without alcohol. You obviously rely on it in an unhealthy way even if you are not physically addicted to it. And it could be physical if its only been two days since the drink.


My psychologist suggested that those issues might be caused by the drinking. However, I have had times that I didn't drink for months and the emptiness didn't reside. In the past I used to tackle my emptiness with binge eating and I feel that I'm going back to that. If the choice is between killing the empty feeling with alcohol or with binge eating, I'd rather choose the alcohol. The past few years I managed to drop 15 kilo and I'm almost at a healthy weight now. If I start binge eating it has all been for nothing.

Are you listening to yourself?
You are saying that you deal with stuff by bingeing-food or alcohol. You want to choose the alcohol. Choosing which poison to engage with is never healthy. And I assure you, both are equally as lethal and addicting.

Maybe I can learn to both do away with alcohol and binge eating. But what then? Feeling empty all the time? Society certainly wouldn't care. I'd be perfectly able to function on that empty feeling. As long as I'm just acting according to what is considered normal, what's going on inside isn't really a problem, is it?

You should not feel empty without those behaviors. And the way to avoid this is not to continue, but to get to the root of why it is that you need an addictive behavior to function. I think you do need rehab- for both addictions. You might not see it this way but your relationship to food and alcohol is lethal.

namazu
09-13-16, 12:11 AM
What is a lot? I think it's quite usual for people in their twenties to regularly binge drink. But there are also a lot of people who don't. So it might just be my friends who do. Not too sure about that.

This article (http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2014/10/how_much_alcohol_do_americans_drink_consumption_pr edicts_alcoholism_and.html) is US-centric, but addresses the issue of cross-cultural norms in drinking.
If I was surprised to learn that my “modest” drinking habit places me well outside the [...] mainstream, that’s just because I see my friends’ behavior as the norm. When you’re sitting on the slope of that consumption curve, it can be hard to keep things in perspective.

I agree that it doesn't sound like alcohol is the primary problem, though it does sound like it's a problem. Are you also being treated for depression and/or other stuff? I would think that any high-quality treatment program would address these types of things, in addition to the substance itself.

Hermus
09-13-16, 01:33 AM
Im going to be real now...
This is not normal and IMO not ok. No one should be empty and agitated without alcohol. You obviously rely on it in an unhealthy way even if you are not physically addicted to it. And it could be physical if its only been two days since the drink.

Are you listening to yourself?
You are saying that you deal with stuff by bingeing-food or alcohol. You want to choose the alcohol. Choosing which poison to engage with is never healthy. And I assure you, both are equally as lethal and addicting.

There are no favourable choices here. These feelings of emptiness have been there for as long as I can remember. Even before the addictive behaviour started. Since my younger brother has the same chances are high that it is a genetic predisposition. So the choice for me is between alcohol, binge eating, smoking weed (did that on a regular basis some years ago) and always feeling the void. Alcohol and binge eating both might not be particularly healthy, but if the choice is between dying from liver disease at 60 or dying at 80 or 90 but always feeling that hole in my soul, the first option doesn't sound so bad anymore. Does it? Why focus on health if a healthy life is a chronically unhappy life?

You should not feel empty without those behaviors. And the way to avoid this is not to continue, but to get to the root of why it is that you need an addictive behavior to function. I think you do need rehab- for both addictions. You might not see it this way but your relationship to food and alcohol is lethal.

I shouldn't, but sometimes in life things are just facts you have to deal with and should and shouldn't don't matter. I'm FUBAR to speak in military terms and the only thing to do is to learn to accept it with grace.

Hermus
09-13-16, 01:43 AM
This article (http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/medical_examiner/2014/10/how_much_alcohol_do_americans_drink_consumption_pr edicts_alcoholism_and.html) is US-centric, but addresses the issue of cross-cultural norms in drinking.

Great article. So what it is saying is that:

1. Almost all the drinking is done by a small portion of the population.
2. The amount people drink depends on their environment.

What conclusion I think also might be justified, but not clearly supported by the article is that drinkers tend to cluster together. People in the top 10 percent might not have a lot of friends in the bottom 30 and vice versa.

Does it mean I should break with my heavily drinking friends and find non-drinkers, or very moderate drinkers, if I want to get rid of alcohol? I think most of my friends would fall within the 9th decile (although the distribution might be different for the Netherlands), but not a lot of them would fall in the 10th percentile. I'm a 9th decile drinker myself.

The author points out another thing that is important too by the way. Not really being able to precisely assess how much we consume. I'm wondering how reliable these figures are, since I think a lot of people wouldn't be able to accurately tell how much they drink exactly. So the numbers might easily be either overestimated or underestimated.

Hermus
09-13-16, 03:47 AM
It's not even depression by the way. I know what depression is. If depressed I'm not able to properly function for weeks. Right now Im functioning perfectly fine, but the feeling of emptiness is just always there.

Don't know whether to mention this to a psychologist. They will try to get me on antidepressants. Something I definitely don't want.

midnightstar
09-13-16, 03:50 AM
I shouldn't, but sometimes in life things are just facts you have to deal with and should and shouldn't don't matter. I'm FUBAR to speak in military terms and the only thing to do is to learn to accept it with grace.

What's FUBAR mean? :scratch:

:grouphug:

And it's an idea to talk to your psych about this, they won't force you onto antidepressants if you don't want to be on them, they'll let you decide what therapy you want (or they should do) :grouphug:

Hermus
09-13-16, 03:54 AM
What's FUBAR mean? :scratch:

:grouphug:

And it's an idea to talk to your psych about this, they won't force you onto antidepressants if you don't want to be on them, they'll let you decide what therapy you want (or they should do) :grouphug:

F'ed up beyond all repair

sarahsweets
09-13-16, 03:54 AM
What's FUBAR mean? :scratch:

:grouphug:

And it's an idea to talk to your psych about this, they won't force you onto antidepressants if you don't want to be on them, they'll let you decide what therapy you want (or they should do) :grouphug:

F**ked Up Beyond All Recognition.

sarahsweets
09-13-16, 03:58 AM
Alot of times people cant get or stay sober without changing what they call "people,places and things".
This means that if your desire is to not drink or use drugs then hanging around with heavy drinkers in bars would make that difficult.
I had one friend I had to drop. We became friends over nightly "cocktails" and other dry goods. It was just too triggering to stay friends because our relationship was only about alcohol and stuff.



Does it mean I should break with my heavily drinking friends and find non-drinkers, or very moderate drinkers, if I want to get rid of alcohol? I think most of my friends would fall within the 9th decile (although the distribution might be different for the Netherlands), but not a lot of them would fall in the 10th percentile. I'm a 9th decile drinker myself.


The author points out another thing that is important too by the way. Not really being able to precisely assess how much we consume. I'm wondering how reliable these figures are, since I think a lot of people wouldn't be able to accurately tell how much they drink exactly. So the numbers might easily be either overestimated or underestimated.
If anything I would guess that people would underestimate how much they drink.

sarahsweets
09-13-16, 04:03 AM
Alcohol and binge eating both might not be particularly healthy, but if the choice is between dying from liver disease at 60 or dying at 80 or 90 but always feeling that hole in my soul, the first option doesn't sound so bad anymore. Does it? Why focus on health if a healthy life is a chronically unhappy life?
I think you are focusing too much on health being physical. It is mental and physical. And yes, you have a lot going on now and are afraid of the void, but thats not mentally healthy. Its also not mentally healthy to drink to deal with feelings and also damage your body. And please dont think my insistence is to condemn you or make you think I dont care or understand. I get it, I want for you what I have, and I would love to get in your head and show you what peace can feel like.




I shouldn't, but sometimes in life things are just facts you have to deal with and should and shouldn't don't matter. I'm FUBAR to speak in military terms and the only thing to do is to learn to accept it with grace.
I dont believer you are FUBAR. You are worth something,
You are NOT: lazy,crazy,stupid,useless,worthless,unworthy,evil, horrible,terrible,unlovable, annoying,dumb,irritating,hopeless or insignificant.
You are human.
You have flaws.
You have gifts.

Hermus
09-13-16, 05:33 AM
I think you are focusing too much on health being physical. It is mental and physical. And yes, you have a lot going on now and are afraid of the void, but thats not mentally healthy. Its also not mentally healthy to drink to deal with feelings and also damage your body. And please dont think my insistence is to condemn you or make you think I dont care or understand. I get it, I want for you what I have, and I would love to get in your head and show you what peace can feel like.

Thanks for your advise and kind words, I really appreciate it. However, I don't think people here really understand. It's not something that is going on just now or that is alcohol related. I remember this feeling of sadness and emptiness being there when I was as young as eleven. That was far before the time I drunk alcohol for the first time. It's just something that is always there and since it has been there for the biggest part of my life I don't really believe it will ever go away. It's just a permanent part of who I am.

There is a prayer by Reinhold Niebuhr that I really like (despite being non-religious):

God, give me grace to accept with serenity
the things that cannot be changed,
Courage to change the things
which should be changed,
and the Wisdom to distinguish
the one from the other.


I think this is one of the unchangable things that I need to learn to accept with serenity.

I dont believer you are FUBAR. You are worth something,
You are NOT: lazy,crazy,stupid,useless,worthless,unworthy,evil, horrible,terrible,unlovable, annoying,dumb,irritating,hopeless or insignificant.
You are human.
You have flaws.
You have gifts.

I know I do, but true happiness just won't be there for me. But I always think contemporary Western culture is too much focused on happiness anyway, forgetting that there are higher goals than being happy.

Hermus
09-14-16, 05:55 PM
First evening off alcohol that I really feel happy about being sober. Went to the bar and I didn't have particular difficulties ordering the non-alcoholic beer. It just tasted like normal beer, without the hangover tomorrow. My confidence is even growing and my depressed feelings are somewhat diminishing. :)

I don't have the illusion I'm already there, but it's a good start. :)

acdc01
09-14-16, 07:51 PM
So I was reading how stimulants do help you but then you can't take that in the evenings or at night. Have you tried guafacine or some other nonstimulant that treats adhd that can be taken at night?

I had told my dr. How I didn't like the stimulants cause I felt a crash in the evenings that made my adhd seem even worse after the drug wore off. Guafacine was what he gave me for evening use while I kept with the stimulant during the day. I actually hated it cause it made my mind feel dull but perhaps it or something like it could help you.

aeon
09-14-16, 09:05 PM
...I didn't like the stimulants cause I felt a crash in the evenings that made my adhd seem even worse after the drug wore off.

That was certainly true for me with Concerta (and that sucked), but I have none of that with Dexedrine.


Cheers,
Ian

Bluechoo
09-14-16, 10:15 PM
It sounds like you have a good seed planted. A mighty tree takes years to grow. Hold on and enjoy the ride :)

Hermus
09-16-16, 03:27 AM
Yesterday night I fell off the wagon. There was a big event with music playing all over the city. First I went with my friends and later I did a bar shift as a volunteer at a place where I volunteer more often.

When I was with my friends I really felt some sensory overload. I couldn't focus on conversations and my attention drifted everywhere. Somewhat later I went to the place where I had to volunteer. There were not much people I knew there and I felt my social anxiety coming up.

When it was time to do the first shift I took a beer to calm my anxiety and then got to work. The guy I did the bar shift with was really slacking. He really took it slow serving people and he didn't take care the fridge got filled, so I had to work really hard to compensate when things got busy. In the meantime I could get free beer from the fridge and took some, not really thinking and instead just acting under stress.

At the end of the evening I felt a bit intoxicated and I felt so guilty towards myself and the people who support me. So I decided to text a friend of mine who is really supporting me through this process. She has been addicted to alcohol and meth, so she understands a lot about what I'm going through. I told her I failed myself and I failed her. This morning I got a text back that was very understanding and encouraging. She means so much to me right now. :)

When I got home I prayed the serenity prayer over and over until I was calm. I never knew that praying could feel so healing.

Well, today is going to be a new day and I'm starting my sober period again.

sarahsweets
09-16-16, 05:03 AM
You and I have been going back and forth in this thread about alcoholism. What you described is a lot like what I experienced when trying to stop. Think long and hard about it, and why you feel so low now and use that to fuel your next shot at staying sober.

midnightstar
09-16-16, 05:04 AM
You can do it, Hermus :grouphug: We all believe in you :grouphug:

Hermus
09-19-16, 06:19 AM
Wondering where to draw the line with other drugs. This post is in no way intended to advise people to take drugs. Myself I've taken cannabis, meth, mdma, magic mushrooms, salvia divinorum and LSD. Only cannabis I've ever used on a daily basis, the rest of them I at the most used once every few months (meth, mdma). However, some of them might be addictive and I need to watch out for replacing addictions.

The most potential of addiction for myself I would see in cannabis and meth. There might be a small chance to get hooked to using mdma a lot on the weekends. As far as I know there is not such a thing as an addiction to psychedelics (salvia, mushrooms, LSD). So I don't see an immediate reason never to use psychedelics again. However, for mdma, cannabis and meth I don't know. On the one hand if I can keep its use restricted to a party every once in a while to me that wouldn't be a problem. But if I start using more regularly it would.

Where to draw the line here?

Hermus
09-26-16, 11:07 AM
Tomorrow is the big day that I will have an appointment at the addiction treatment facility. Somehow part of me is still convinced that I will come there and that they will tell me the psychologist who referred me was mistaken. Although it has been difficult to stop now, in April and May I haven't drunk any alcohol for over a month, without particular difficulties. So while my recent behaviour seems like that of an alcoholic this is not really a long-term pattern.

sarahsweets
09-26-16, 01:52 PM
When you shared about your drinking issues I didnt know about the other drugs. The meth in particular is concerning to me because of how awful it is for your body and how addictive it is. You seem intent on proving to yourself that you dont have a problem yet I believe you do. You mentioned a lot of drugs- why do you want or need them? Its easy to say that alcohol isnt an issue but its only been a month; and from what youve shared about how you think it affects your social life and having a good time, to me its clear there is an issue of some sort. I know there is always someone who will say they can do all the drugs you mentioned recreationally and be functional, and not addicted-but most people cant do what you have mentioned without some sort of repercussions or consequences.
The risk of dependence is great, the risk of health issues is greater. IMO you have an addiction issue and you are trying to nail it down to one thing or another-convincing yourself that none of them are an issue. Only you know inside if its right or wrong for you. It doesnt matter what I or anyone else has to say about it.

Hermus
09-26-16, 02:44 PM
When you shared about your drinking issues I didnt know about the other drugs. The meth in particular is concerning to me because of how awful it is for your body and how addictive it is. You seem intent on proving to yourself that you dont have a problem yet I believe you do. You mentioned a lot of drugs- why do you want or need them?

To put this into perspective: I'm a party person. Have been for a long time. At techno- and drum 'n bass parties it's quite usual to take lots of drugs and mdma. In that sense a lot of ravers lead a quite unhealthy lifestyle. It is a way to escape reality once in a while. It is my strong conviction that if done in moderation there is nothing wrong with every now and then use stuff that alter your mind.

For me it has never been more than once every few months and in between I don't feel urges to take any kind of drug. So those are definitely not an addiction. Yet, I am aware of the potential that I will replace alcohol by using other drugs more often. So that's why I want to stay away from meth and probably mdma in the future.

Its easy to say that alcohol isnt an issue but its only been a month; and from what youve shared about how you think it affects your social life and having a good time, to me its clear there is an issue of some sort. I know there is always someone who will say they can do all the drugs you mentioned recreationally and be functional, and not addicted-but most people cant do what you have mentioned without some sort of repercussions or consequences.
The risk of dependence is great, the risk of health issues is greater. IMO you have an addiction issue and you are trying to nail it down to one thing or another-convincing yourself that none of them are an issue. Only you know inside if its right or wrong for you. It doesnt matter what I or anyone else has to say about it.

No. I don't say that alcohol is not an issue. It is. Yet I'm still doubting whether it is such a big issue that I should get treated for it. Scores of people abuse alcohol to a bigger or lesser extent and never will get treatment. So that's why I view treatment as something that is only meant for people whose problems with substance abuse are really huge. Not for people who are still able to get out of bed in the morning, stay sober during the day and the majority of evenings don't get sh*tfaced.

Actually I believe that a lot of the problems with quitting now are a self-fulfilling prophecy. If the psychologist hadn't told me that I had an alcohol problem, but just that I had to quit drinking in order for treatment to be effective, it wouldn't have been as difficult as it is now. The previous times I quitted drinking for a while I didn't find it that difficult, so probably it would have been the same now.

The other substances, no they're not a problem right now. But I recognize they could become problems if I don't stay away from them if quitting alcohol.

Hermus
09-26-16, 03:19 PM
I see that it's double. On the one side I have admitted to people that I'm an alcoholic. On the other side there is still a part of me resisting and telling me that the problem is not that big, that treatment is unnecessary and that psychologists have exaggerated the problem.

sarahsweets
09-27-16, 04:27 AM
To put this into perspective: I'm a party person. Have been for a long time. At techno- and drum 'n bass parties it's quite usual to take lots of drugs and mdma. In that sense a lot of ravers lead a quite unhealthy lifestyle. It is a way to escape reality once in a while. It is my strong conviction that if done in moderation there is nothing wrong with every now and then use stuff that alter your mind.

That may be true for some people but you have put a lot of thought into whether you have an addiction issue/drug alcohol problem. People that do not have a problem with drugs or alcohol do not put so much time and effort into wondering if they do have an issue with them.

For me it has never been more than once every few months and in between I don't feel urges to take any kind of drug. So those are definitely not an addiction. Yet, I am aware of the potential that I will replace alcohol by using other drugs more often. So that's why I want to stay away from meth and probably mdma in the future.

If you are aware of the potential, why risk it?



No. I don't say that alcohol is not an issue. It is. Yet I'm still doubting whether it is such a big issue that I should get treated for it. Scores of people abuse alcohol to a bigger or lesser extent and never will get treatment. So that's why I view treatment as something that is only meant for people whose problems with substance abuse are really huge. Not for people who are still able to get out of bed in the morning, stay sober during the day and the majority of evenings don't get sh*tfaced.

It doesnt matter what other people can or cant do with alcohol and it doesnt matter if you can get out of bed and do things, that would be a'functional' alcoholic of which there are many.

Actually I believe that a lot of the problems with quitting now are a self-fulfilling prophecy. If the psychologist hadn't told me that I had an alcohol problem, but just that I had to quit drinking in order for treatment to be effective, it wouldn't have been as difficult as it is now. The previous times I quitted drinking for a while I didn't find it that difficult, so probably it would have been the same now.

The other substances, no they're not a problem right now. But I recognize they could become problems if I don't stay away from them if quitting alcohol.
Ok, well you have answered your own questions then.

InvitroCanibal
09-27-16, 10:07 AM
The most powerful question that you can ask yourself or anyone else is "What do you want?"

If the drugs and coping mechanisms keep you from what you want in life, or they will keep you from it, then the cost is too much.

One thing I have learned is that whatever you do,

ask yourself "Is this habit sustainable?"

Finally ask yourself,

"Am I in control or am I making excuses for the control that I do not have?"

I don't judge you, I've had a similar past. But that was 10 years ago. It was when I realized that I wanted my life to be about more than just me, that I got sober and went on my own path.

In order to answer these questions though, you have to be willing to ask more from yourself though.

I think that willing to get the things in life that you value the most are the things that can be lost in the most simple of ways.

It can be hard to want to obtain anything at all.

It was when I realized that life is about a pursuit of something Intangible, like happiness, but it is this pursuit that helps us find out who we are. There isn't any feeling that can match self pride.

Being add, it was easy for me to forget what self-pride looked like. I questioned it's existence. It was in pursuing my goals and failing many times that I started to feel pride in my failures, as it helped me relate and help others as well as learn from them.

I had found what I wanted in the most peculiar way.

It's your life, but ask yourself one last question. "What do I need?"

Whatever it is that defines your needs is what you serve. If you are addicted, you will know it when you give up what you want for what you think you need.

That's as much as I can say or know.

Hermus
09-29-16, 12:06 PM
Last Tuesday I had an intake at the addiction treatment clinic. They do the intake interview and the advise by the head practitioner in one morning. First when I got there the psychologist who was going to do the interview and be responsible for my treatment came in the waiting room. It happened to be someone I know through my time at the student union. We quickly decided that it wasn't a good idea that she would do the interview so I got someone else.

After the interview, which was quite intensive, I broke down when I was in the waiting room. Then I got the advise to go to South Africa and after that I broke down again. As a coincidence a good friend of mine, who is being treated for addiction at the same institution was there because she had an appointment after me. She gave me a long, warm hug, which really helped.

Next week I will hear when I will be going, but it will be a few weeks from now. I already arranged the money for the plane ticket, which my father will pay and arranged things with my education, so finishing my master's thesis can be postponed. My mother in first instance was very upset and I don't really feel supported from that side. Luckily all other people who know have been very supportive. My brother, my friends and my thesis supervisor all really are backing the plan. Still it feels a bit like I'm being sent to prison for having done something wrong.

When I was at the institution I spoke to a guy who knew my friends and who had been in South Africa. He was very positive about how the clinic had changed his life. Later a friend of mine brought me in touch with a friend of his who had been there. We called and he really recommended it and told me that it had been such a life changing experience. So far I only hear positive stories.

The treatment in South Africa will consist of nine weeks of very intensive treatment during which I will be forced to really work on my problems. Afterwards there will be treatment in the Netherlands. I'm really hoping this will help me to finally make something of my life.

I'm hopeful right now, but it's also very scary.

Unmanagable
09-29-16, 12:26 PM
All change is scary, my friend. Even the good ones. As with everything, there'll be hurdles. I have confidence in your ability to clear them as you need to. You've shown great strength in how you've handled the process.

I hope you feel accomplished and empowered in between the scary thoughts in knowing that you're seeking more knowledge and support. It's the hardest, yet most beneficial step to forward motion, from what I've experienced.

I'm excited to hear of your journey and discoveries of what works best for you, and wish you many good things in your pursuit. Will you have internet access while there?

Hermus
09-29-16, 03:25 PM
All change is scary, my friend. Even the good ones. As with everything, there'll be hurdles. I have confidence in your ability to clear them as you need to. You've shown great strength in how you've handled the process.

I hope you feel accomplished and empowered in between the scary thoughts in knowing that you're seeking more knowledge and support. It's the hardest, yet most beneficial step to forward motion, from what I've experienced.

I'm excited to hear of your journey and discoveries of what works best for you, and wish you many good things in your pursuit. Will you have internet access while there?

No idea whether I will have internet access and how much I can use it, but I think it will be better for the process to not be connected to the outside world too much. I need to focus on myself and my recovery first. :)

midnightstar
09-29-16, 03:32 PM
No idea whether I will have internet access and how much I can use it, but I think it will be better for the process to not be connected to the outside world too much. I need to focus on myself and my recovery first. :)

idk what they do to people who they have in rehab but I hope whatever they do, it helps :grouphug:

Hermus
09-29-16, 03:36 PM
idk what they do to people who they have in rehab but I hope whatever they do, it helps :grouphug:

After having spoken to some people who have been there, or who are under treatment in the Netherlands and know people who've been there, I'm very confident that it will help. Everyone tells me the same thing: It's hard as hell, but it helps you grow so much stronger.

I'm collecting little items from friends and family to take with me as keepsakes, so I have something that reminds me of all the people who support me when I'm there. It would be great if someone from ADDF could create something that they can upload and I can print. :)

midnightstar
09-29-16, 03:38 PM
After having spoken to some people who have been there, or who are under treatment in the Netherlands and know people who've been there, I'm very confident that it will help. Everyone tells me the same thing: It's hard as hell, but it helps you grow so much stronger.

I'm collecting little items from friends and family to take with me as keepsakes, so I have something that reminds me of all the people who support me when I'm there. It would be great if someone from ADDF could create something that they can upload and I can print. :)

Over the weekend I can write a list of things that make you great, if that will help :grouphug:

Hermus
09-29-16, 03:41 PM
Over the weekend I can write a list of things that make you great, if that will help :grouphug:

That would be nice :)

Hermus
09-29-16, 06:07 PM
Part of the treatment is focused on making amends with the family. I actually don't feel much like involving my parents in my treatment. They are an important part of the problem, but it will only cost me a lot of frustration. In their view they are perfect and never do anything wrong. It are their sons who are difficult and are the problem. I'm not even willing to put my energy into it. I'm happy to have my dad pay for treatment and for the rest they can stay out of it. But what if the clinic requires me to get my parents involved?

Little Missy
09-29-16, 06:30 PM
Part of the treatment is focused on making amends with the family. I actually don't feel much like involving my parents in my treatment. They are an important part of the problem, but it will only cost me a lot of frustration. In their view they are perfect and never do anything wrong. It are their sons who are difficult and are the problem. I'm not even willing to put my energy into it. I'm happy to have my dad pay for treatment and for the rest they can stay out of it. But what if the clinic requires me to get my parents involved?

:eek:

Greyhound1
09-30-16, 02:09 AM
Part of the treatment is focused on making amends with the family. I actually don't feel much like involving my parents in my treatment. They are an important part of the problem, but it will only cost me a lot of frustration. In their view they are perfect and never do anything wrong. It are their sons who are difficult and are the problem. I'm not even willing to put my energy into it. I'm happy to have my dad pay for treatment and for the rest they can stay out of it. But what if the clinic requires me to get my parents involved?

If your parents are an important part of the problem, it sounds like maybe they should be involved. Perhaps having a professional explain their part in your situation to them is what they need to hear.

Hopefully, they may change their view and their role in all this. Even though it may be extremely frustrating at first it could help them to get on board with your treatment. They may become more supportive if they really understood what you are going through.

Just a thought but you know them and I don't. Good luck with it.

InvitroCanibal
09-30-16, 02:46 AM
Part of the treatment is focused on making amends with the family. I actually don't feel much like involving my parents in my treatment. They are an important part of the problem, but it will only cost me a lot of frustration. In their view they are perfect and never do anything wrong. It are their sons who are difficult and are the problem. I'm not even willing to put my energy into it. I'm happy to have my dad pay for treatment and for the rest they can stay out of it. But what if the clinic requires me to get my parents involved?

My fiancee parents are psychiatrists. It pretty much went like you said.

I think oddly enough there was some value to it though. She sort if learned to let go of the parents that she wished she had and started seeing them as the flawed people that they were.

I think that rejection and having your fears confirmed, can sort of be a finalizing act of letting go.

It really depends on where you are at though and what you need. Remember that no one can force you to do anything, that there is always a choice. Maybe that judgement hammer will go down, but after the fallout maybe things in life will be more clear to you?

Perspective is hard to estimate.

sarahsweets
09-30-16, 04:15 AM
It sounds like you are already putting up barriers to treatment and wanting to run the show before it even starts. I dont see how that is an open minded way to approach things. obviously they are a part of why you drink because as kids we internalized things from our parents that affect us forever. I dont think you should be deciding what will and will not happen before you even get there.

Hermus
09-30-16, 04:26 AM
It sounds like you are already putting up barriers to treatment and wanting to run the show before it even starts. I dont see how that is an open minded way to approach things. obviously they are a part of why you drink because as kids we internalized things from our parents that affect us forever. I dont think you should be deciding what will and will not happen before you even get there.

The problem is as their son I've known my parents for 32 years and I already know how they are going to respond. Being defensive, trivializing my experience, gaslighting. I'm not going to let my experience be trivialized. No longer. Is that really such a difficult thing to understand?

sarahsweets
09-30-16, 04:49 AM
The problem is as their son I've known my parents for 32 years and I already know how they are going to respond. Being defensive, trivializing my experience, gaslighting. I'm not going to let my experience be trivialized. No longer. Is that really such a difficult thing to understand?

No its not difficult to understand, but if you are in treatment the clinicians will teach you how to handle them better and work through your resentments. And you really dont know how they will act unless you give it a try.

Hermus
09-30-16, 05:03 AM
At this point I'm just not up for it. Next week I will see my therapist and I will tell her about my doubts about it. Being open about how I feel towards this issue is the best I can do for now.

Hermus
09-30-16, 11:46 AM
No its not difficult to understand, but if you are in treatment the clinicians will teach you how to handle them better and work through your resentments. And you really dont know how they will act unless you give it a try.

Why are you actually acting to me like I'm someone who is trying to obstruct all treatment? It's already a huge step I have to take to go to SA.

Hermus
09-30-16, 12:55 PM
I've decided to be completely open to the world about getting treatment for alcohol addiction. So far response has been very encouraging. Maybe it will come back to bite me eventually, but only time will tell. For now it feels great that I've got nothing to hide from anyone.

sarahsweets
10-01-16, 08:24 AM
Why are you actually acting to me like I'm someone who is trying to obstruct all treatment? It's already a huge step I have to take to go to SA.

Honestly? Because since you started this thread you have seemed to be. You have had an excuse for why things dont apply to you, or why your circumstances are different. You have had answers for why you do not have a problem and how you can handle it. You have had an excuse for why you drink, why you should be able to, and what its good for your social life.
You have said that you cant have good time with friends without alcohol and justified various binges or drinks in moderation. Now you are saying what parts of treatment you wont do or dont want to include before you even get going!
This is not judgement on you, I SO get it. I was there. I had all the same excuses and preconceived notions. I had all the answers and I was the one who was going to fix my own problem.

You can think however you want but to say you are not standing in your own way would be a falsehood for me. I like you, please do not think this is a personality thing. I will be your #1 fan but you have to let go and work with the process because you are spending too much time tearing it down.

Hermus
10-02-16, 07:33 AM
Honestly? Because since you started this thread you have seemed to be. You have had an excuse for why things dont apply to you, or why your circumstances are different. You have had answers for why you do not have a problem and how you can handle it. You have had an excuse for why you drink, why you should be able to, and what its good for your social life.
You have said that you cant have good time with friends without alcohol and justified various binges or drinks in moderation. Now you are saying what parts of treatment you wont do or dont want to include before you even get going!
This is not judgement on you, I SO get it. I was there. I had all the same excuses and preconceived notions. I had all the answers and I was the one who was going to fix my own problem.

You can think however you want but to say you are not standing in your own way would be a falsehood for me. I like you, please do not think this is a personality thing. I will be your #1 fan but you have to let go and work with the process because you are spending too much time tearing it down.

You may be right and I understand what you mean. My brain is somehow clinging to addictive behaviours and making up excuses. Somewhere in the back of my mind I know. Excuses for drinking, excuses for using other substances. Sometimes I only realize afterwards with my mind has been doing with me and that it wasn't pretty.

About not having fun and needing it for my social life, it's not as bad as I believed. None of my friends has yet asked me to start drinking again or told me that they didn't like me around when sober. Actually it's the other way around. Friends compliment me when I'm staying sober and are very encouraging. They won't even consider dropping me if I relapse though. They are some of the most supportive and accepting people I know. :)

About the parents: It's a difficult thing for me to get them involved, since they haven't always been the best parents and that has contributed to the problems I'm experiencing right now. I have been with my parents this weekend and they are quite supportive now. Yet, dealing with that part of my life will definitely become one of the most difficult things.

What should be understood is that I'm just at the beginning of what is going to be a very long process and that there still is a lot of resistance to some things that are involved in the treatment. Yet, I'm trying to be as honest as possible about that. It will just take time to deal with some things.

Bluechoo
10-02-16, 11:42 AM
Good on you for being consistent and open about how this is going for you, at every turn along the way. As someone who has struggled with drinking, it helps to read other people's stories and struggles. In my opinion, you are doing a great job and have already made some real changes.

Hermus
10-04-16, 05:07 PM
Today I had three appointments at the addiction treatment. First I had to talk to the psychiatrist, who told me that I didn't need detox, which I already expected. I have to stay sober until departure at the end of next week, which I'm sure I will be able to.

After that I had an instruction about the rehab clinic in South Africa. Actually this was the hardest part. They told me that contact with the outside world was restricted. When I get there I get one phone call (not to my lawyer as in American crime series :p) and after that five days without any contact. After that I can make phone calls with the landline. Mobile phones will get confiscated. Mail contact also is possible, but limited. That part really triggered some recalcitrant feelings in me. I hate it when my liberties are restricted. But I'll have to deal with it for the treatment.

Next I had a talk with my psychologist. That was emotionally the hardest. I told her honestly which things I feared and what would be difficult about it. She completely understood that I had these feelings and it helped to talk about it. She advised me to visit the addiction group they had that evening.

At the addiction group I quite honestly talked about the difficulties I had with the label addiction. I told them that although I knew I drank too much I still had trouble with accepting the label addict, that I could and did sometimes stop for over a month and we talked about the preconceptions people have about addictions. I got really great feedback.

I also talked about the fears I have. One of my major fears is not being accepted in the group and that I won't have a way to escape if things go bad in the group. They reassured me that it would be fine and they told me that they all struggled with that feeling before they left. That meeting was really great and productive.

InvitroCanibal
10-05-16, 03:36 AM
You may be right and I understand what you mean. My brain is somehow clinging to addictive behaviours and making up excuses. Somewhere in the back of my mind I know. Excuses for drinking, excuses for using other substances. Sometimes I only realize afterwards with my mind has been doing with me and that it wasn't pretty.

About not having fun and needing it for my social life, it's not as bad as I believed. None of my friends has yet asked me to start drinking again or told me that they didn't like me around when sober. Actually it's the other way around. Friends compliment me when I'm staying sober and are very encouraging. They won't even consider dropping me if I relapse though. They are some of the most supportive and accepting people I know. :)

About the parents: It's a difficult thing for me to get them involved, since they haven't always been the best parents and that has contributed to the problems I'm experiencing right now. I have been with my parents this weekend and they are quite supportive now. Yet, dealing with that part of my life will definitely become one of the most difficult things.

What should be understood is that I'm just at the beginning of what is going to be a very long process and that there still is a lot of resistance to some things that are involved in the treatment. Yet, I'm trying to be as honest as possible about that. It will just take time to deal with some things.

It does take time. Sometimes as we stroll through life, we have to see life in the same way a blind man sees it. Because we don't know where things will go and what will happen in the future, like a blind man, we can't always know where we are or where we are going.

Like blind men we get through the hardest things; not by seeing where we are going but knowing where we are not.

It's in knowing where you aren't in both the good aspects and the negative aspects that you can decide where you would like to go in this life.

It's good that you want to be honest, but this isn't a punishment. Honesty isn't a pillory in which you are supposed to be shamed and shunned. Honesty is a necessity for trust.

Because like the blindman, you have to trust others to guide you when you are lost or in unfamiliar territory. But the only way to know where you would like to go and for you to get there is to be honest with those people around you and to be honest with yourself.

In the long run, it's important that you stay honest about your feelings, validate them and accept them. You may feel fear or shame when confronting your parents, you may feel anger or rage but that is okay.

Mourning what we have lost, or what we realize we never had is a part of the healing process.

In the end, you have to come to terms with what you don't have so that you can finally see what you do have and what there is still left for you to find.

good luck to you

Hermus
10-05-16, 04:30 AM
I notice in myself that after having heard the house rules yesterday I just feel like putting up a lot of resistance once in the clinic. In the end they probably will get me to conform, but not without at least defending my own dignity by challenging authority. But what if the rules are designed to make people uncomfortable and to create these feelings of resistance, as some people who have been there suggested? Wouldn't resisting be exactly what they planned then? And wouldn't docility be real resistance? Or am I over-analyzing things too much?

InvitroCanibal
10-06-16, 11:33 PM
I notice in myself that after having heard the house rules yesterday I just feel like putting up a lot of resistance once in the clinic. In the end they probably will get me to conform, but not without at least defending my own dignity by challenging authority. But what if the rules are designed to make people uncomfortable and to create these feelings of resistance, as some people who have been there suggested? Wouldn't resisting be exactly what they planned then? And wouldn't docility be real resistance? Or am I over-analyzing things too much?

Stay focused on your feelings, not their actions. The heart of your addiction is in your feelings, and if you get too caught up in what their intentions are you'll lose sight of the more important questions such as "Why do you need to resist restrictions?"

Is it because you are afraid to admit your limitations or the possibility that you may not have self control?

Or is it the lack of feeling trusted by them or others?

Those are examples, the answers and questions are yours alone.

katied924
10-25-16, 12:47 PM
I have found success with AA. I've been sober for 7 years - highly recommended if you find you are powerless over alcohol. :)

xPETEx
10-26-16, 08:33 PM
Hermus, your posts could have been written by me. Since a teenager I was a heavy drinker. I'm 36 now and until six months ago I was still a heavy drinker. I was drinking 3 bottles of wine in an evening and not even feeling drunk.

I kept getting colds pretty frequently (once a month) and ended up getting pneumonia and going to the hospital. I couldn't figure out why I kept getting sick and my wife said in a very matter of fact way that it's because I drink too much. So while I was in the hospital I decided to stop drinking and see what happens.

It's been six months now without drinking. I haven't been sick again since. I feel great now. BUT every day was tough. Every day I struggled with depression and boredom from not drinking. I love drinking. After about three months that feeling went away.

Now I feel great. I was at a work function this last weekend and there was an open bar. My wife had a couple drinks, but I didnt have any. I had a slight temptation, but I resisted knowinging that one drink would surely turn me back into an alcoholic because I have no ability to moderate my drinking. I'm really proud with myself because this felt like an impossible task so many days... but here I am. If I can do it I'm sure you can do it too! Just know that it gets easier.

sarahsweets
11-04-16, 10:05 AM
It's been six months now without drinking. I haven't been sick again since. I feel great now. BUT every day was tough. Every day I struggled with depression and boredom from not drinking. I love drinking. After about three months that feeling went away.

Now I feel great. I was at a work function this last weekend and there was an open bar. My wife had a couple drinks, but I didnt have any. I had a slight temptation, but I resisted knowinging that one drink would surely turn me back into an alcoholic because I have no ability to moderate my drinking. I'm really proud with myself because this felt like an impossible task so many days... but here I am. If I can do it I'm sure you can do it too! Just know that it gets easier.

Thats great that you were able to stop cold turkey safely- I am glad you didnt have any alcohol withdrawal seizures. Physically alcohol withdrawal is the most lethal and uncomfortable of all substance abuse.
I am of the belief that if you identify as an alcoholic, you will always be one, just one who abstains from drinking. I used a 12 step program for me, but they dont work for everyone. I hope you have support other than your spouse if you ever get into a situation where you are on the verge of drinking. Its nice to think our spouses are enough, but they too have to heal from the pain our drinking caused, and they are also not as objective AND if they dont have a drinking problem, they wont understand.
Best of luck to you and congrats!