Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

is anyone interested in an alchohol-free / addiction thread?

(1000 Posts)
youretoastmildred Mon 28-Oct-13 12:30:55

My name is youretoastmildred, and I am an alcoholic.

I am 42 days alcohol free.
have been a problem drinker for a long time and have often convinced myself that moderate drinking will be fine. It never stays moderate.
In this 42 days there have been certain key people that I have not had to see. I have 2 events coming up with them that will be massive triggers and I am looking for support (and very very willing to offer what support I can to anyone else)

I have lurked on Brave Babes and it seems to be a thread of successfully moderate drinkers, and alcoholics who can't / don't actually stop. (The poster who started those threads by stopping completely isn't there: I also remember some 12 step nondrinkers from the early days who don't seem to be there any more. There are a lot of posts by people enumerating what they are having or will have and whether or not this is ok but I don't see much actual NOT DRINKING EVER which is what I need to do)

By contrast, the AA meeting that I attend, while it will always have a couple of people back after a relapse, is mostly packed with people with months and years sober.

Is anyone interested in an actual not-drinking or beating other addictions thread? I am NOT saying I am not interested in talking to those who relapse. I am saying that I DO want to talk to people who aim to stop drinking.

any takers?

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 17:45:54

Some first thoughts:

Not Looking Back, We're Not Going That Way.
The Glass Half Empty Friends (and that's the way it stays.)
The Club with no Bar.
More Life, No Alcohol
More Perfect Days To Come ( nod to Lou Reed today)
Staying OFF the Slippery Slope
Thanks, but I don't drink anymore.
Committing to ourselves and each other – Join Us.

Still thinking about reporting. I have never spoke/typed about this before.

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 18:16:50

No really drink history as an early teenager, and parents were pretty well absent, but then got a temp job v well paid before uni, as did a friend and we became pubbers. Remember drinking massively when 16 at a family do and waking up as it was getting dark the following day, and thinking this was very adult. Got into lots of spats and knew booze was affecting me badly but thought it was manageable..

Uni was massively boozy, lager, Guiness, and soon after lived with friends who were massive wine drinkers and that suited me at the time. They also adored me and I could do no wrong, even when I did, and so I was given permission to continue unbridled.
I loved my work and that kept me on the right side of careful, but still drinking way too much regularly - often an after work thing.

Latterly it's been with a few friends, do's and often on my own, which never seemed a problem - I'd drink a bottle of wine whilst doing something useful so it was 'okay'. I used to have a massive tolerance for booze and would be the soberest around, and friends still expect that, but it isn't the same. I hate waking up groggy and have come to despise myself for it. I'm not 18 anymore and I have loved ones who rely on me.

MrMeanour Mon 28-Oct-13 18:31:34

It seems that we all have similar kind of experiences, no real family history - as in witnessing it at least - my father was a huge drinker and died due to alcohol when I was very small. I had a rubbish childhood - for different reasons and discovered alcohol at 16. That Was It! Oh my, what a wonderful invention!!! It just got worse and worse, until I became a single mother in my twenties and drank every day, all day - it was normal!! Long years since then and I still struggle. I know I can't stop when i start and it has got to a point where I absolutely have to. My eldest child is now in her twenties and panics if i drink, my two youngest haven't been anywhere near as affected but have also seen things they shouldn't have, and my wonderful dh is baffled! That's the past. here comes the future grin

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 18:32:34

mildred - that bit about being in bed with your friends was utterly convincing. With my live in friends we'd be out separately and return to the house, or stay in and drink copious amounts of expensive red wine, and eventually tell each other exactly how much we loved each other and why. To be valued and loved, even if only vocalised in booze was just fabulous at the time.

Weegiemum Mon 28-Oct-13 18:36:59

I have bpd and am 17 days post drink.

That was really scary to type.

I also had a bad experience at AA. But I'm going on as best as I can, one day at a time.

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 18:38:46

bi-polar disorder weegie?

Weegiemum Mon 28-Oct-13 18:40:55

No, borderline personality disorder. One of the most prominent symptoms is addictive behaviour.mi don't mention it on here much due to some huge misunderstandings, but somehow today I just did!

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 18:45:59

Well done you! You are not alone. My very best friend who I see most days has a borderline pd. He is a marvelous person, but yes drinks binge wise. In fact he was the one here last night.

MrMeanour Mon 28-Oct-13 18:53:27

Yes, well done smile I have been diagnosed with clinical depression - totally made worse by drinking copiously - so of course i do grin sensible.. . Also been taking fairly heavy duty ad's for several years...which shouldn't be drunk with - sometimes I just wonder exactly what sort of completely self destructive fool I am grin

Weegiemum Mon 28-Oct-13 19:59:09

I suspect there are a fair few self-destructive fools on here. I'm certainly one. tied to end up drinking after a good day - nothing like sabotaging my success to reinforce my own idea of how crap I think I am!

myfriendbill Mon 28-Oct-13 20:06:00

5 months sober.

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 20:09:07

I'm surprised there aren't more takers, even after only a few hours.

Respect myfriendbill. Any pointers for the longevity please? I've not drunk for one day possibly last week. For two days? Some time last month. 3 days consecutively? I really can't recall.

MrMeanour Mon 28-Oct-13 20:59:34

When I did my 8 months, it certainly helped that I was working with chronic alcoholics at the time! I was exhausted after a days work and saw the terrifying reality close up. Sadly, it didn't stop me returning to it sad More recently, when i've done two, three, four months, I just concentrate on how good i feel in the mornings and that it will get better and better - need to stop sabotaging that.

myfriendbill Mon 28-Oct-13 21:35:30

Support from family and friends and AA. It really does seem to be the only thing that works.

Enidcoleslaw Mon 28-Oct-13 21:37:37

Hello all, I don't know if I'll post that often but I thought I'd pop past and share my experience. I'll be 3 years sober and clean this week and I attend a mixture of aa and ca meetings.
What's worked for me is the usual 12 step stuff
I go to meetings
I'm in a group
I have a sponsor
And I try to live my life along spiritual principles.

I used to be very isolated, disconnected from myself and everyone else, find being me unbearable, was utterly confused by why I kept ending up in the same shitty place again and again and thought that really life was bad and it would only get worse and deep down I must be an awful person.

It's not like that today as the old saying goes. I can cope with life and mainly enjoy it. I like myself. I'm not obsessed by drinking or using (alcohol was my drug of choice but it has to be abstinence from everything for me, otherwise it's just shifting the same problem onto something else).

When I drank and/or used I could never predict what would happen or control how much I had and any time I did stop for a period of time I would forget how bad things had been and start again. That hasn't happened for a while and I genuinely don't have the obsession to drink, it's gone from me. I know there is nothing there for me anymore.

My life is unrecognisable. It is so much better than I thought it could be, I'm no longer hopeless and miserable and I'm no longer trapped in that repetitive negative cycle of total SHITENESS. And frankly - hoooooorah for that grin

Weegiemum Mon 28-Oct-13 21:37:44

That's awesome, bill!

youretoastmildred Mon 28-Oct-13 21:51:44

Hello myfriendbill, thanks for posting

Hello enidcoleslaw. do you mind me asking what CA is?

Weegiemum, well done for saying that and thanks so much for sharing. my dp thinks I have bpd, I am not sure but I read a book about it and recognise a lot of myself in it (not 5 out of 9 traits, but the ones I have, intensely). For me, if you can unpick this, it was the mental / emotional problems before the booze, not the other way around, as some people say it is (some people have transformed lives the second they get over withdrawal and realise that they don't have to drink again; one of the big things I have to cope with is how shit I still am when not directly under the influence of alcohol)

BPD is so stigmatised. I read a thread about it today where a therapist says she prefers to call it emotional dysregulation. Some of the other posters conflated BPD and abusiveness in a really upsetting way. It's hard. I know I am not perfect, lord knows I am not perfect, but I am never abusive in the sense in which it is primarily used on the relationships board - a person who deliberately and knowingly manipulates other for their own ends and to hurt them.

"invalidating environment" - I did have that although I was never abused. I was belittled and teased in a very confusing way (it was absolutely fine to do and say anything to me, and it was funny; if I tried to join in and do it back it was cheeky and naughty or considered even violent); I was bullied and often very lonely; my emotions, preferences, boundaries, were never acknowledged (I know this is tiny violin shit); I felt painfully ashamed and guilty all the time because of the my Catholic upbringing and my general sense of not being good enough for company or to have people in my life. Many people have all that and come through fine, but I had a proneness to emotional-overdoing -t in the first place, I think, and it interacted with my ordinary but not very sensitive family background to make me quite confused, often despairing, and often unable to take reasonable steps to acknowledge my feelings and work towards well being.

... which.... I now have to do now.

youretoastmildred Mon 28-Oct-13 21:52:52

Mr, are you still up? How are you coping with Day 1 now?

Enidcoleslaw Mon 28-Oct-13 22:05:53

CA is cocaine anonymous but it's actually not a drug specific fellowship despite the name - it's cocaine and all other mind altering substances. They use the big book of aa and the twelve step programme. It just means for me that I have a place I can talk about my whole experience which did involve other drugs apart from alcohol at times. I initially stopped drinking in aa but then picked up diazepam and told myself that because I wasn't drinking I was sober and ok but using another drug just led me back to my drug of choice - booze - in the end so ca is a really great fellowship for me.

My take on pre-existing or co-existing mental health stuff is that until I could stay abstinent it was impossible for me to unpick any of that stuff and to actually see clearly what I was left with or do anything to deal with it.

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 22:07:30

Really interesting Enid, thanks. I haven't been in the places you have been I don't think, but do recognise the onward and upward part - many years ago I was full of beans and hardly ever drinking and feeling in control. The habit though began to dig deep and I just accommodated for it, as if it was a script I would play.
and yes mildred, I have recognised in the past that booze has negated feelings and focused life away from me and my part to play in it, as if accepting that I am not entitled to feelings and so the loss of them via booze wasn't a real loss at all. Again, I've thought that but never said it or written it before.

Lovedaysthename Mon 28-Oct-13 22:08:18

Mr are you still with us?

MrMeanour Mon 28-Oct-13 22:14:47

Hi there grin Just been cheering myself up with 999 - What's your emergency?! I love things like that smile Feeling a lot better now. Was just getting into bed muttering to myself 'day bloody 1 again...here we go'. Will take each day as it comes..

youretoastmildred Mon 28-Oct-13 22:14:56

Lovedays:

"negated feelings and focused life away from me and my part to play in it, as if accepting that I am not entitled to feelings and so the loss of them via booze wasn't a real loss at all. "

this is really interesting... can you say more about this?

youretoastmildred Mon 28-Oct-13 22:15:44

Hi Mr, well done. Day 1 down, uphill from here. Sleep well.

youretoastmildred Mon 28-Oct-13 22:16:46

Enid, thanks for explaining about AC

How do you get a sponsor? I have been going to a weekly meeting but no one has approached me about ... how to do things

This thread is not accepting new messages.