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BANGKOK 24 April 2019 09:12
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Mobi

Alcoholism

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May I add - there are some "friends" with whom I have cut contact with.

They are the ones who saw Patsy as the "let's go out and get hammered" persona. Which I am not anymore. I now enjoy having a drink and conversation and remembering how I got home.

Shise, I must be getting old!! The other day I went into town to meet some friends at 3pm. I was home and in my jammies at 6.30!! :lol:

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" I balk at any sort of "brain washing" situation"

I think that most who wind up on the doorstep of AA are maybe starting to think that a little brainwashing might be just what's needed.

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I am very aware that aa is the most effective of all the different types of self-help suppot groups available around the world and I too would recommend it to anyone who felt they needed to stop drinking, its success rate is about 10% which is really pretty high compared to alternatives. But are the 9 out of 10 that don't stay leave, many of them because they just cannot connect with this Higher Power? I don't know but its a big ask for an athiest to be told that in order to recover you need to find a "God of your understanding" Many people just can't buy into the whole 12 step regime no matter how sick they are, but what's the alternative? Even if you go to a detox centre most of them will send you out to aa meetings as part of their programme.

I have heard at many many AA meetings "It was my best thinking that got me here". Sometimes it is better to turn it over.

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" I balk at any sort of "brain washing" situation"

I think that most who wind up on the doorstep of AA are maybe starting to think that a little brainwashing might be just what's needed.

I agree, but if you have an alternative, softer approach, like i have. Would you not take it? I am not putting AA down, I am just telling my side of my alcohol addiction.

What works for one person may not work for another.

For me, at the moment with my friends is the way to go. Perhaps in a year or two i may seek the AA way to go.

I am lucky to have friends and family (sister, mother) to talk to. My mum understands me perfectly - my dad was an alcoholic.

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The friend that tried to get me to AA was an overpowering bully.

I refused. He insisted. I kicked him and he punched me....

Not the Zen like entrance i was thinking about. Two black eyes.

That person is on the "non friends" list and I feel relaxed and good in myself.

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I agree with what many of you posted concerning the letting go of some friends. Hard drinking 'friends" can and do exert peer pressure when it comes to drinking. Most of my "alcoholic" friends don't bother to hang out with me anymore, since I don't drink.

That is fine with me. If the only (or overriding) commonality you have with those friends is hanging out in bars or sharing a 12-pack, then (I think) you are better off finding a new set of friends that have more in common with you.

Some of my long-time friends still drink around me, and it doesn't seem to bother them or me. But they were generally friends who were moderate drinkers at best; not extremely heavy drinkers (i.e. alcoholics).

I have found that it is much easier for me to make friends since I stopped drinking, than when I was drinking. I find people more interesting, and as a result, I think people find me more interesting. At any rate, I know more people seem to ask me for my phone number and e-mail address than before (even some good-looking, 20-something COEDs).

Hopefully, everyone can become a better person once they kick their addiction and start turning their attention to the more important things in life.

I seldom even talk about drinking anymore,unless I am on a forum such as this one.

If by sharing my experiences, I can help one alcoholic get a little closer to being alcohol-free, then I will feel blessed.

Chok dee!

RickThai

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I drank for 30 years and stopped 20 years ago. It has been a long time. I have to think a bit to remember what it was like. I do remember the stories I heard at meetings about why people stopped. I have literally heard thousands of stories and seen thousands of people who were in bad shape when they came in. There were some common threads. Hitting bottom is a common thread. Bottoms are not the same for everyone. Some seem mild but they are the exception. Most are hard. Ego and booze are best friends.

Drinking for a long time made me crazy but I didn't know I was crazy. The booze and my ego teamed up and convinced me I was not crazy.

It takes years of sobriety to undo the years of drinking. My shrink recommended AA because he knew, they knew more about the disease than he did. He took care of the problems he knew more about and told me to seek a sponsor to take care of the alcoholic problems. A male can't have a female sponsor and a female can't have a male sponsor. Of course there are exceptions but that is normally a good rule. And there is sobriety and good sobriety.

A sponsor should be a person who has good sobriety. As a rule if you drink for 20 years it is going to take more than 2 or 3 years to get sane.

Most of this thread is serious but it should be pointed out that AA meetings are fun. I posted that my sponsor told me I should go to meetings until I enjoyed going and then I could stop. It took me about three years to really enjoy meetings. By then I had AA responsibilities and was part of the administration of a group. There are behind the scenes things that have to be done. Buying coffee and snacks, paying rent for the hall, signing receipts for those that are doing court ordered meetings and planning speakers and special meetings. There are good groups and really good groups. And of course there are different personalities. Some you get along with and some you don't. If you don't like the vibe of one meeting go to a different one. They are not all the same.

But I did want to make the point that AA meetings are fun. Not at first but after a few years when you get the hang of the thing. It is common in AA to say, “don't quit before the miracle happens.” It is not an instant cure. It takes years. But that is not a bad thing. What, at first may be fraught with fear and anger turns into joy.

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Quiting (forever) any addiction, smoking, drinking, drugs, sex, etc, requires a great deal of inner strength and self discipline.

The fact that many people have done it and continue to do it, means that it is possible.

In fact, in accordacne with the AA program it is not self discipline nor self will that is needed to stop using. It is the surrendering to the action. The giving up trying to give up. Admitting that you have been beaten and the belief in a higher power. Any one who tries to abstain through sheer will power or inner strength has not spiritually understood the first step on the AA program.

Like trisailor, I had a year of total abstaince and through relapse understood that the human body is in its most relaxed, receptive, and intelligent state when not under the influence of any mind-altering substances. An alcoholic, or addict is someone who has compulsive thought patterns, when directed towards wholesome activities can produce brilliant results.

Edited by Geekfreaklover

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Apologies for stating the obvious, but in my case it was easy to ascertain alcohol weakened my resistance to alcohol

I was lucky I found that my wife and children became more important than going out and getting 'blasted' as Patsycat refers. I stopped, as Patsycat, associating with people who had that hard drinking mentality, not easy, some of them are close family members, they found it strange that I didn't enjoy going out and drinking anymore. It was difficult to convince them the change was so great, and of course here is the rub.....they see nothing wrong with their lifestyle......

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Mobi - you haven't upset me. Yes, I am sensitive, but that is irrelevant :D However, I don't appreciate some of your writings. Basically what you're saying is that people in AA who have a faith in God are somehow still 'sick' or inferior to yourself who has 'common sense and reasoning'. You say you respect 'these people' but do you really?

I don't don't why it is that you always seem to misunderstand, or dare I say it - twist my words.

Sick? - for sure - whether or not they have a faith in God. Alcoholism is a disease, therefore the sufferers must be sick. Further, many of them admit to having a range of other sicknesses, most commonly, one or other form of depression.

My contention is that these sicknesses, in which I am a fellow sufferer, leads some to grasp at spirituality as a way to save them from their alcohol addiction. I do not consider myself 'superior' to them, and in many ways I envy them their beliefs and peace of mind - I wish that I too could share their spirituality.

Yes, my powers of reasoning and my 'common sense' have convinced me that there is no God out there for me, but I am not trying to say that because of this I am in some way superior - different maybe, but not superior.

You really seem to be bothered by my point of view - is it because that deep down you question your own belief?

I detest all organised religions with a purple passion, as they are all full of lies, hypocrisy, avarice, hate, intolerance, power seekers and control freaks; but a personal belief in a 'Higher Power'? Why not? Good luck to them and respect to them. :jap:

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For me, at the moment with my friends is the way to go. Perhaps in a year or two i may seek the AA way to go.

I am lucky to have friends and family (sister, mother) to talk to. My mum understands me perfectly - my dad was an alcoholic.

Hi Patsy, good to see you posting here.

Do I detect in that last sentence a tacit admittance that you are an alcoholic? If I may say so, that's a bit of a departure from your previous position. I am not gloating, I am just glad and thankful that you can finally see yourself for what you clearly are.

There are many kinds of alcoholics Patsy, and they are not all spewing their guts out on street corners and drinking meths from brown paper bags..... but you know all that....

You also know that your 'gently, gently' approach and your endless attempts at 'controlled drinking' always end in failure. Friends who drink regularly will never really help you with your problem. They are either alcoholics themselves, in which case they, like you, are in denial, or they are 'controlled drinkers', in which case they cannot really understand the problems of an alcoholic.

At the very least, if you do go to AA, you might make some new, sober friends who will understand your problems so much better and be able to advise you in good practical ways how to change your life around.

But no one knows more than I that this is a personal decision and nobody can make it for you. It will come, if at all, in your own good time.

Good luck, my love.... :)

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Mobi - you haven't upset me. Yes, I am sensitive, but that is irrelevant :D However, I don't appreciate some of your writings. Basically what you're saying is that people in AA who have a faith in God are somehow still 'sick' or inferior to yourself who has 'common sense and reasoning'. You say you respect 'these people' but do you really?

I don't don't why it is that you always seem to misunderstand, or dare I say it - twist my words.

Sick? - for sure - whether or not they have a faith in God. Alcoholism is a disease, therefore the sufferers must be sick. Further, many of them admit to having a range of other sicknesses, most commonly, one or other form of depression.

My contention is that these sicknesses, in which I am a fellow sufferer, leads some to grasp at spirituality as a way to save them from their alcohol addiction. I do not consider myself 'superior' to them, and in many ways I envy them their beliefs and peace of mind - I wish that I too could share their spirituality.

Yes, my powers of reasoning and my 'common sense' have convinced me that there is no God out there for me, but I am not trying to say that because of this I am in some way superior - different maybe, but not superior.

You really seem to be bothered by my point of view - is it because that deep down you question your own belief?

I detest all organised religions with a purple passion, as they are all full of lies, hypocrisy, avarice, hate, intolerance, power seekers and control freaks; but a personal belief in a 'Higher Power'? Why not? Good luck to them and respect to them. :jap:

It's a choice many alcoholics I've known have had - to live a life based on spiritual principles or die an alcoholic death. Sadly, a few have chosen the latter.

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"I detest all organised religions with a purple passion"

The AA Preamble:

Alcoholics Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from alcoholism. The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking. There are no dues or fees for A.A. membership; we are self-supporting through our own contributions. A.A. is not allied with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution; does not wish to engage in any controversy; neither endorses nor opposes any causes. Our primary purpose is to stay sober and help other alcoholics to achieve sobriety.

Where does it say it's an "orgainized religion" Mobi?

I think that many people are actually afraid that they might get better or be transformed. They hold on to the approach they've had for life even though they know that it's not working. What other possible explaination could there be for a person to resist trying a process that has worked for so many millions. The danger for you is not organised religion the danger for you is you.

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Seems odd to read some things here. AA is the most successful way to stop drinking in our world today. There simply isn't a better way available. Every alcoholic, of course, as part of his or her disease thinks there is. A part of AA is going to meetings. Since there is no cure meetings are part of the treatment and the need to attend them does not stop. Perhaps the frequency gets less but it never ceases.

It is one of the dreams of the alcoholic to be able to drink moderately. It is one of those things, it does not work. It is not just me with this opinion. Go to any one of the 100,000 AA meetings world wide and ask them. There a couple million people going to 100,000 different AA meetings all over the world who think meetings are necessary and total abstinence is the only sure way to stay sober. Makes you stop and think.

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"I detest all organised religions with a purple passion"

Where does it say it's an "orgainized religion" Mobi?

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I never said it did. I was not attacking AA.

I was making a general comment about spirituality and religion. I am fully aware that AA does not endorse any organised religions. If I did, given my abhorrence to them, I would never recommend alcoholics to go to AA meetings, now would I?

So sorry, if once again someone has taken my comments as some sort of attack on themselves, or AA.

We are a sensitive bunch aren't we....

Peace and sobriety.... :)

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