Happy Easter?

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I figure there can be 4 types of alcoholics on holidays.

​1. The type that dreads the holdiay because we are going to let down ourselves and family...either by not showing up for holiday functions or showing up but drinking the whole time and much to everyones dissappointment (including ours)...making everyone feel uneasy..and ending not having a "good" time because of the atmosphere we create when under the influence (tense and distant).

​2. The type that doesn't show up...but sits home and drinks even more because of the self loathing from the drink. We have let everyone down..and this type suffers more depression because it is never ok with us and usually not ok with others that we are missing holiday events due to our drinking.

​3. The third type...the type that has stopped drinking and is happy to attend the holiday to be able to show that the drinking is under control.  Able to enjoy some of the laughter and joy that can be shared on the holidays.  And even able to participate in any holiday dysfunction within families rationally and come home feeling accomplished and human again.

​4. The alcoholic who will show up to all functions...think they are the life of the party...and some very rare families have accepted that this is who we are.  But, in my experience for the years that my family was forced to accept my alcoholic self....I was the only one having a "good" time and they were disgusted with me.

​I know depending on where each of us are on the spectrum with our drinking today....that alcohol is always the bottom line. It seems that our relationship with alcohol always dictates how our holidays will be.

​Anyone who is alone this holiday or attending a function drinking...I feel for you as I have been there many times in the last 2 years.  I couldn't wait for the day to be over...so the guilt and self hatered would stop. 

​I don't take anyone who's drinking today "the pain" lightly.  I get it and it makes me so sad to think that there are people going thru this H*LL today.

​I am grateful that I am #3 today...able to go out with some family...not drinking...and enjoy whatever the day brings.  I know there is some apprehension in my family as they are wondering where I am on the spectrum right now (I usually blow all holidays).  So it will bring me joy to show up...but their joy will be lessened...because UNTIL I show up....they live with apprehension because of my alcoholism.

​I can't wish a Happy holiday to all because I know it won't be a happy holiday for all.  I just wanted to look back and reflect and also let others know....if you are suffering this holiday....know that there are other holidays...that you may "make" it to sober...and if you can just not beat yourself up today...realize you have a serious condition and make the best of the day that you can.  And to be thankful that you are still alive..and as long as we wake up everyday...we always have a "chance".

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20 Replies

  • Posted

    What about the type that has given up, but doesn't stick themselves in situations where it becomes uncomfortable.

    If I can't have a drink, the last thing I want to be around is a load of people drinking.

    It might sound boring, but it is my coping mechanism.

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    • Posted

      I think I mentioned that type as the type that stays home....but do you think there is another type that stays home and doesn't care about what others think?  That could be....I think I may have been at that point one time in my life.  But, I also think that deep down...I DID CARE....I was fooling myself that I didn't care. 

      I was very angry during those times at everyone...and not so much myself or the alcohol....until I had a period of abstinence and realized that me "giving up" was me "giving in" to the alcohol and letting it destroy me and those around me. 

      ​I know our families love us...even if they are disgusted with us...and I know even when I was giving up....I was hurting myself and others.

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    • Posted

      Your stay at home character drank, there was no character that stayed away from parties etc. but didn't drink.
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    • Posted

      i agree that there is a stay at home character who doesn't drink.  That may be MORE torture because there is nothing to numb.  But, I think that category is for either depressed people or the Introvert personality vs. Alcohol which is why I posted the 4 characters I was with alcohol involved in my life.
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    • Posted

      I have been like that, and after a while it wasnt even my choice because my family, - me, husband and son were not invited to any of his family togethers for several years after I had got drunk and a bit unruly in front of some of their kids once.  I wasnt violent, I didnt swear, I wasnt being sick, I was just too drunk for their comfort. Some years have passed and they now do invite all of us to  things. For a few years I refused to go out of resentment for their prejudiced attitude, and felt very bitter that they had shut us out as my husband has a big family and our son is an only child. He has lots cousins who he grew up hardly knowing, and because of their past attitude now doesnt want to now.  

      We keep trying to persuade him to come along to get togethers, but he is still cagey.  I think peope often dont understnd the long term consequences of their decisions.  I said lots of time - why dont they just invite you and our son, - but they didnt.  They thought it would seem very hard on me - but all I wanted was for my son to get to know his family.

      We have all moved on somewhat since then and we do go to their get togethers, and I never drink when I'm with them, and I'm fine with that.

      I had a great relationship with all of his family until they labelled me an alcoholic.  Sad to say, my husbands brother - my brother in law - and the family member we were closest to - died suddenly a few years ago from an illness which was basically a complication brought on largely by his alcoholism.  

      I think at that point the family felt they had no real justification any more for not letting us back in.

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    • Posted

      I'm an old goat that can dig his heels in as a matter of principal. I don't even fester on it or worry about it. Just make my mind up and move on. The other party doesn't decide when things are okay, they made their choice, live with it. I'm not talking about alcohol related, just in general.

      I don't see why someone else gets to decide the deadline.

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    • Posted

      I thought about not responding to this.  Please understand I am a compassionate person and don't want to sound harsh..but do want to share what I have learned in the last 10 years. 

      ​My family also ostrizied me and my family...but it was because of my alcohol problem. My kids are not close to my family because of my alcoholism. It isn't reasonable for me to think that my parents would invite my kids over seperately..that would be just to weird for everyone. My kids are 27 and 30 now and having some sobriety and during that sobriety I learned the devestation my alcoholism had on the family unit.  It wasn't anyone elses fault or personality that ruined the family and isolated my children from family...it was the alcohol's fault.

      ​As you see..interestingly enough...the person you guys were closest too...died from alcoholism.  I know the people we were closest to was my husbands side of the family and that is BECAUSE many of them drank.  So they were better able to accept the fact that I drank and my drinking was not so noticeable to them because they had enough problems with alcohol...that they just accepted me.

      ​The realization that I affected my kids life by being a drinker...overwhelms me to this day and causes deep depression.  But, I own it....there is no good coming from this post to you and I feel sorry about it...I don't like saying things that could make someone feel sad.  But, the denial in your post of you feeling like it is the families fault that your son is not close to them....jumped out at me because I felt the same way for a long time.

      ​I felt like they had no right to judge me...that I was an adult....why wouldn't they just accept it? Well, we can't force anyone to accept somethingt they don't agree with sad.  And it (alcohol) affects everyone around us. 

      ​When your brother in law died...you said you feel that they then "had no justification for not letting you back in". 

      I think what is was for them was fear...of not seeing their other son  (your husband) before some other death occured either with them or their other son.

      ​So much damage and loss is caused from alcoholism and I have had it all.  I have been the "sore spot" in every family relationship and every other relationship I have had because of my drinking. 

      ​What I am angry about is the alcoholism...my lack of control over it...how it has affected my life and the life of so many others and because of it...I am going to live out the rest of my life pretty lonely because people do not trust that I am ever going to be sober. Its a really hard pill to swallow and many things can't be fixed.  These things we all talk about are the sad consequences of alcohol...

      ​I wasn't violent either....but I was shunned too...and it all had to do with the alcohol.  I can't even say...if you realize it now that things will get better...because they haven't for me. I have had to learn to live with the people that do participate in my life and I have had deep conversations with my sons...about being sorry for affecting their lives so much.  The conversations didn't FIX anything...but just let them know that I am truly sorry for any pain I have caused them throughout their lives.

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    • Posted

      It was not my own family - parents and sister who didnt want to see me, it was my husbands family - and again - not his parents. They were some of the lovliest kindest most open minded people I have ever met. They were both doctors and had seen tragedy and untimely deaths through depression and drug addiction in their own family. 

      It was my husbands siblings - and again not all of them - as you pointed out, the guy we were closest too, my husbands brother who was single - was not judgemental, and he very sadly died.  He was a succesful business man, with alot of friends and staff who were very loyal to him. He was a manic depressive as well.  We always thought - why does he get depressed and drink so much - since his life seems pretty good. But Bipolar disorder doesnt discriminate between the haves and the havenots.

      I havent even got that excuse for my drinking.  What I do know is that I have calmed down alot recently, and no longer feel emotions as strongly as I used to - including upset, depression and anger - and feeling those things is what triggered my problem drinking.   It might because I'm now in the menopause, so something in my physiological makeup has fundamentally changed - obviously for the better.

      I have felt extremely guilty about what I put my own family through, but I'm very lucky, because now I'm being sensible, my relationship with my husband and 19 year old son is better than ever.

      As for my husbands siblings - they had a right to feel protective about their kids I know. They also over the years had their own problems to deal with, as my husband has pointed out, so although I was upset at the time, I can see their decision in perspective now - and it really doesnt upset me anymore.

      I actually have a good relationship with them now also. They never offer me alcohol and there is an understanding that this will always be the case, and thats fine with me.

      So, no, I'm not at all offended by youre post.

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    • Posted

      I'm really glad you were not offended.  I knew it wasn't your family.

      I'm glad that you somehow have managed to have good relationships now...especially with your son.

      I apparently have damaged mine beyond all repair....or I should say alcohol has.

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    • Posted

      Well I used to think that. And there have been times my son hasnt talked to me for weeks, and living in the same house with him thats really hard. He wanted my husband to kick me out. He said that if I lived somewhere else he might eventually feel Ok to visit me sometimes.

      Last week I was totally amazed that he started confiding in me about a girl he likes at college and was actually asking my advice on how to approach her.  

      Last summer I remember trying to give him a bit of advice before he went out to a party and he said something - Youre the last person I would ever ask for advice from - about anything.  

      So, things can change alot for the better, and people you love really do appreciate it when they see you have made an effort and are managing to change.

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    • Posted

      Hi! My oldest didn't talk to me for my first year sober. .2005 thru 2006...on my anniversary he left me a note..we healed for the next 7 years. He became addicted to heroin. And when I drank again..starring 2 years ago. Things have never been the same. I got tears in my eyes when you said your son confided in you after pushing you away in the past. I'm happy for you...keep trying...
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    • Posted

      And my oldest was living with me when he wasn't talking to me for a year..so awkward... And I thought at that time he would never talk to me again. So ya never know!
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    • Posted

      Just dont give up - they can still come back to you. My son used to blame my husband as much as he blamed me, - in fact sometimes more, which was just terrible, as my husband is just the kindest most loyal man ever, and was just trying to help me, and in doing so, hurt my son, who just didnt want me there. 

      He now - my son - sees alcoholism as an illness, and has read some other peoples stories about dealing with it, so he knows that he's by no means on his own in that, and I think that has definitely helped.  Another close family member who he is fond of - but doesnt live with us, has a bad alcohol problem, and although he thinks its a real problem, he still sees them and just wants them to get better.

      I dont think he blames either of us anymore.  One thing I have learnt is that with sons - dont know about daughters - the last thing they want is sentimentality. If you say you are sorry, never do it when your'e drunk, or do it in an emotional way. That will just make them close up even more. They just want you to be 'normal' and well, and believe that they can trust you to not hurt the again - and in time that should - hopefully - be enough.

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  • Posted

    Misssy I'm all of those. I've been that person in all those situations. Unfortunately I'm no 2 today. I didn't make definate arrangements as I knew I was in a very deep depression and wasn't very reliable. I managed to get my son to work Friday and Saturday. Dad said that's a positive. I didn't drink and drive and haven't for a long time.

    I hate myself as I've really messed up. I slept all day today as was depressed. Had a bottle of wine since 7. I'm ashamed of me. I hate myself. I am really ready to give up x

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  • Posted

    I'm a loser! I totally understand why Paul, Joanna and RHGB get angry with us( not you). I've just messed up the naltrexone thing. I was doing ok. But lost it this weekend.last night i didn't wait the hour. Tonight I've not taken it as felt so ill I couldn't take any meds. 

    I think I'm now going to have to go down the campral route like RHGB. 

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    • Posted

      Good accomplishment getting your son to work.  Was it because you took the pill on those days? 

      I did read that you feel you messed up and did not take the pill.  I did read that Joanna said that you shouldn't give up on the pill and that it is pretty typical for people that stop taking it on a number of days will maybe eventually stop taking it totally.

      ​Do what she suggested...do not give up paper on that pill.  You are so much like me that I can probably predict...if you were to switch to Campral...(which to my understanding is a stop the craving pill)....which seems to be used for people who have been able to abstain from drinking at all....would not work for you because you haven't yet reached your point of being able to abstain at all.  That said....the pill you are taking now...has seemed to work for you when you take it the right way.

      ​No one has answered this question that I have asked about this pill.  But knowing that you are going to drink at any point during any day....why isn't the pill taken as soon as you wake up? That way you don't have to torture yourself by having the craving...then taking the pill and waiting. 

      ​I know when I drink...or get a craving to drink...the drink immediately follows...there is no waiting...Maybe if you took it when you first woke up....it would eliminate the chance of you not taking it all?

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    • Posted

      Hi missy

      I think I've read that the pill begins to wear off after 8-10 hours so another pill would have to be taken.I know I've taken a pill twice in one day a couple of times

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    • Posted

      I still think most of us would be drinking within those 8 to 10 hours. I know I didn't wait EVER 8 to 10...if I was awake and active in alcoholism..a drink soon followed waking up.
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    • Posted

      Hi Missy,

      The pill is only taken 1 (or 2 if Selincro) hours prior to drinking as we are looking to 'target' the endorphins that are released from drinking first and foremost to get the maximum impact out of what is a rewarding activity and what is not.

      If the pill was taken first thing in the morning, but then someone decided to go out and walk the dogs for example, then the first endorphins blocked first would be those that the walk releases. 

      The idea is to block the endorphins released from drinking primarily but leave people free to enjoy other endorphins when the tablet isn't active in their system - this helps swing the pendulum from drinking, which no longer is reinforcing the reward mechanism in the brain, towards other 'good' activities which do provide reward because they are being done before the tablet shuts the door on the endorphin/reward system.

      It can take a little planning initially to get it right, but this is also part of the new mindful drinking technique.  Someone is usually needing to learn new habits to replace their old habits.  If someone takes the tablet on the very first sign of a craving and then drinks after the time mindfully - well, this is giving them a 'new' way of drinking and thinking about drinking.  None of this happens overnight though, but it is a good way to start from a solid new beginning foundation.

      If it makes sense, it is a VERY deliberate thing to recognise a craving, take the tablet, wait and then drink.  It soon becomes an engrained activity and helps smooth the process along.  Someone is no longer being controlled by the drink, they are beginning to exert their own control back into the situation.

      Hope that makes sense!

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    • Posted

      Thank you J...that makes sense.

      ​But, I know myself...not good at following orders....I would try taking it in the a.m.  If I kept failing to take it or failing to wait. 

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