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hello, i am an addict

280254 Views 950 Replies 234 Participants Last post by  rice paddy daddy
i'm starting this thread for all of us addicts here on the board. be it drugs, alcohol, nicotine(all forms). you name it and you can find support here. i'm always willing to lend a hand, or an ear.

let me start out by telling you alittle about myself. for those of you who havent heard my story. my name is vincent and I AM AN ADDICT. i quit using drugs in 95, alcohol in 99, and i quit smoking just 3 months ago. healing is an on going process that never ends. i wake up each day and i look at my family and i think, without sobriety i would have none of this. without my health i will be unable to keep any of this. they are my rock, and i am thankful every minute of everyday for them.

i'm a meth junkie, a drug addict, an alcoholic, a smoker, and a dipper. i have been involved with the N/A program since febuary 3rd 1999. i've attended A/A groups when i couldnt find an N/A meeting. we addicts need to stick together. its says right in the slogan."MY GRATITUDE SPEAKS, WHEN I CARE AND WHEN I SHARE WITH OTHERS." i am here to lend support to anyperson who wants to clean up any or all parts of their life. no judgement. this board is already anonomous so that is not a concern.

please feel free to join me here anytime you want support, or you want to support others. if you have something you want to get off your chest, or you want to ask a question.this thread is for addicts, but family members of addicts are welcome, as are friens of addicts. our addiction affects all around us, and we are lucky to have anyone in our lives to care enough that they would seek out information about our problem.

while the "rooms of bill' do say you need to find "god", they dont preach religion. i find this very important. they also use the term "higher power" very often. this is a term i like. i wont ask you not to speak of religion, but i will ask you not to preach because i dont want to turn this into a religious issue. one of the most important things i learned in the rooms was this. "RELIGION IS FOR THOSE AFRAID OF HELL, SPIRITUALITY IS FOR THOSE WHO HAVE LIVED THROUGH IT." we as addicts, be it alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs have lived through some form of hell.

for many people sobriety is a major concern in everyday life, and in a post SHTF world. so this is a very important and very personal issue to many.

in closing of this invitation for you to join me i ask this. no flaming, no trolls, and no disrespect. if you have an issue with any of these PM me and i will be happy to discuss it with you.

take it easy, and remember to take it one day at a time.
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patrickL.... what can i say? many consider alcoholism, and addiction a diesease, and there is a medical reason for that. it is genetic.

but, many do not prescribe to that thinking. i myself am one of those. i dont believe its a diease. yes i do believe its genetic, i have seen it through the lines of my family, but i dont see hair loss as a diease either, and i seem to be getting thiner up there like my father.

as for a "higher power"..... well, yes. it is one of those things that N/A, and A/A will push at you. some members will say god, and other will call it something different. i personally dont believe in organized religion, but i do beilieve in a higher power. i have for most of my life. weather it be the universes energy, an old grey bearded man, or what ever you chose to recognize. its imprtant to realize that wepeople are not the end all-be all of everything. there is something out there bigger, stronger, and mightier then ourselves. even most athiests will atmit that there is a creative force out there, they usually tend to refer to it as "nature". "nature" is often refered to other as "Gia" , one in the same and viewed slightly different, but infact the same things. so its really not such a thing to scoff at, its a loose translation thing that is open for you to interpret how you wish.
As far as a genetic component.....keep believing it, but it ain't true. They searched and searched, but can't find an addiction gene. It must be hiding right next to the elusive gay gene. All humans have propensities to addiction, some folks more than others of course. Our nurturing (upbringing) exacerbates that propensity. Some folks obsess over neatness, money, etc....others become workaholics, etc....the true "well balanced" individual is likely addicted to moderation!!

The other problem with chemical addictions is that that they do produce physical, not just mental addiction. They are a class above activity related addictions/obsessions......though some of those can be downright deadlyas well.

The disease nomenclature does raise eyebrows in some circles. However,seeing as how it is definitely an affliction, has mental and physical symproms manifest, and can be overcome/controlled through a proper treatment regimen.....the definition does fit.

Lots of words, sorry, worked all day now I am relaxing. The "higher power" very much does have a place in treatment, who else can help you overcome what has you licked besides a higher power?

Anyways....I transitioned from drugs to alcohol at 15 since alcohol was legal (sort of) and cops would never bust a teen with booze...pour out maybe.
Took me 26 years of trying my best to "be respectable" to admit my own defeat in that department. 10/23/2005 is the day I hope to never forget.
Since then I have also given up the nicotine habit (couple years back)...and worked off some of the extra pounds those chocolate fixes were putting on. Life is good.
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AA told me i had to admit being powerless and give in to a higher power. i said if i quit cigs 19 yrs ago imust have some willpower why must i believe in a god?? i was yold i had no willpower i just needed to see their way....their way is also saying a person sober and never touched a drop in 20+years is still an alcoholic..just a sober one i disagree vehemently i quit tobacco 19 yeras ago and im still a nicotine addict???

disease---cancer that is a disease not a choice even if lung cancer via smoking is the type of cancer..drugs/alcohol/tobacco all choices use or not use...
you dont get yelled at for havin cancer!

dan you junkie! get a life! quit already!! ok
dan you cancer patient! get a life! quit havin cancer!

different choices....diseases.....

learned 2 good things there tho...if ya wanna quit...3 things must change...people,places,things.....that are triggers for using
and quittin is easy...stayin sober....different thing alltogether

I wince at the disease idea myself...but it does fit..look at the definition: a condition of the living animal or plant body or of one of its parts that impairs normal functioning and is typically manifested by distinguishing signs and symptoms : sickness, malady.

I used to "quit" drinking every night once it was time to fall asleep. But I would start up again every day. I have seen meetings that gave out 24 hour tokens, but never 5 or 5 hour ones.
The effect of chemical dependency on the human brain has been documented, so there is a physical manifestation. Unfortunately, one cannot just cut out or replace a person's brain like they do with cancerous tissue. Just as quitting smoking will not stop you from having lung cancer, stopping using will not reverse the effects on your brain from using.

I am glad you gave up cigarettes 19 years ago. Don't do this...but what do you think would happen if you had a smoke every once in a while? I know myself...and after 6 years smoke free, no problem being around smokers,etc, I started to puff a smoke in high stress situations now and then. Took a while, but I ended up back at 2 packs a day.I quit drinking once for a year just to prove i the big book says to do. Actually went 18 months or so, then only had one or two after work for about 6 months. But that was all "controlling" my desires, and within a year I had let my control go bye-bye and was a drunk again. Yep...I DO have willpower. That willpower can be helpful if faced with a stressful situation or such, but does nothing for long term sobriety.

Please, since you do know so much more than all the other's looking for solutions to addiction, share the answer with the world. As for me, I will stick with the single proven program of recovery. The one that has had such good results that instead of being used for the single intended problem, it has been co-opted into literally hundreds of 12 step programs for treatment of addictions.
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Dan...If I were in your situation, I would talk with doctor about the possibility of using suboxone as a combination pain med/addiction treatment. Suboxone is not dispensable as a pain med in the USA, though over in europe they have pain patches for cancer patients utilizing suboxone. Suboxone is an interesting drug in that it is an opiate, and does relieve pain, without the attendant euphoria. It also ceases to work in the presence of any other opiate...causing immediate withdrawal symptoms to appear. In this way, it offers pain relief without a high, as well as providing good reason not to use while taking it. Check it out.

Speedof.....most everyone here can understand your inability to understand. That is exactly the way it is. There are other concepts of recovery, like "pathways"...but having seen interviews with his "success stories" seems that actually it was 12 step programs that provided the success, not pathways. Such has been the case now for three quarters of a century. I prefer proven methods.
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ReverendG was quite aggressive about hinting AA was the best, I don't know your take on it.

I still have a question of this higher power, and I understand misspeaking, it is not always easy to word what you know inside your head. If this higher power is not religious so to speak, what is it then?

And I'm not trying to be smart, I'm just trying to understand where AA is coming from on this.
It is not a hint is a declaration of fact, based on data available.
If you don't like facts....that's fine. But don't blame me for vringing them to bear. Also, what is insulting about stating pertinent facts?
Thanks for the insult. You mom must be proud.

So you say it is AA or nothing? So you want to say that those who can't take AA don't stand a chance?

Total bullcrap. I've seen AA messing people up because it wasn't right for them, and I've seen people succeed without or despite AA.
My mom has nothing to do with this....she has been dead for over 5 years....but I was glad she got to see me sober before she passed.
AA messing people up? is a voluntary association....all they have to do is not come to meetings anymore....sounds like you or those people need someone to blame for their troubles. Aa as a scapegoat...interesting.

It is YOU who keep insisting AA or nothing.....I have only informed you that of the numerous recovery systems that have come and gone in the course of the last century, AA and its other 12 step brethren are the only ones that have anything resembling a verifiable success rate. If putting a star on my forehead and eating oat bran would keep me sober...I would try it....if it had any verifiable results.
Took me 10 years from my first contact with AA (trying to get a girlfriend to sober up and I tagged along to "prove it was easy") earning a place at the tables for real. At that first contact I wasn't far enough gone to need the program..had I learned a lesson then, who knows? I know I abused the stuff, but was not addicted. Even today, I could debate the degree of "dependence" since I didn't suffer wthdrawal and such...but I do know that left to my own devices the road is all too familiar. The differences in my life between then and now speak volumes.
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One of those I know who was very critical to AA is actually sober today. And it wasn't AA doing it. Another one says he actually liked NA despite what they did to him I see as abuse. He will still defend NA. He is not clean today. He actually had to go to meetings in some kind of program. And even if you don't have to, you can be trapped mentally, just as you can in an abusive marriage or cult.

I can only take an outsider's view, and to ME AA sounds like a cult. I find something disturbing about keeping a deep rooted identity as an addict after breaking out of addiction. Having been addicted does not make you special.

But I still think you should be free to choose AA if you want to.
Many people find the comparison to diabetes helps understand things. People can have diabetes hereditarily, or ones diet and habits can induce diabetes. Diabetes cannot be gotten rid of. Ok, to an extent it can be....many people become temporarily diabetic after a surgery, etc...but it goes away. Just like some people react to a really bad situation by going out drinking...but it passes.
However....for a real is a lifetime commitment to treating their condition. They stop eating right, checking their blood sugar, possibly using insulin.....they put themselves in jeopardy.
A true alcoholic or addict is in a similar situation. The physical and mental manifestations of their using will not just "go away" in time. They can be easier to keep a handle on, but start using again, it will all come back to them, how quickly depends on the person.
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I have always been reminded that if I don't like it I can leave, the bars haven't all closed up since I got off the stool.
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Since you mentioned it, I had to google her...OK, now Im not the greatest looking guy and Im far from wealthy but whats with these powerful dudes Arnold, Clinton, almost any politician and the fuglies?
I thought I saw some pictures of her from when the stuff happened, 10 years ago, and she was not too shabby back then. I guess maybe knowing you have the germinator's love child (governor/terminator=germinator?) you can let yourself go?
Be true!! I'll be working tomorrow and Sunday, and running karaoke at the local alano club saturday I will be quite busy. Moght even work monay as well. If not, picnic at the alano, or with family...or both?
That is exactly WHY I work karaoke at the alano club once a month. I am not a fan of the meetings held there...they are great for the newly sober, and have high percentages of court ordered attendees. I have by now found meetings with friends in fellowship and gravitate to the meetings I prefer. Nothing wrong with the other meetings, just my own preferences.
Still, we are not a glum lot. We need fun. It seems that every karaoke we get at least one newcomer that can't believe we actually SING sober, or someone new to trying the concept of singing sober. That we can still enjoy ourselves and "party" without artificial enhancements is part and parcel of sobriety. Why would we want to be sober if it was dull and boring?
We had 28 people singing this weekend, and plenty just listening. The place rocks when we are there. People enjoying themselves sober. We work for free, accepting donations to help keep the cords replaced and get newer discs....though we have a better selection than many bars do these days. For myself, and the others who take time to work with me at this, it is service work of itself. A whole lot of people are "regulars" to our night at the alano club.
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reverendg, your absolutly right, that is deffinatly a form of service work , and it sounds fun too. i myself would have a hard time getting up and singing sober, but back in the day i had no problem belting out "whole lotta love" like i really was Robert Plant. we all need to find an outlet for stress, and if you can get up and sing, or on the floor and dance then all the better.
I used to sing 80's crotch rock and metal...still do (but just karaoke these days). We have a guy that looks like an accountant come in, kind of new to AA...asked if he could sing songs with alcohol references, and we let ya sing whatever. He does a killer rendition of whole lotta love......wows the heck out of them. He gets more applause than my "Enter Sandman".
It is great when new folks figure out that we still have a good time.
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I have one general question, and I would like people's take on it. I mean just from your own ideas despite it is in line with AA/NA or not.

Booze is not a necessity and neither are cigs. What if you take prescribed medication that can cause physical addiction, but still this medication helps you and increase the quality of life? I mean that you take it for a reason, not to get high or anything.
If you feel that the meds are becoming a problem...see what can be done...but do so with the confidence of your physician. In many cases they have experience with that situation and can offer alternatives, or at least some form of counseling to lessen the chances of problems escalating.
i blew my diet this weekend, i gained 2 lbs. i ate ham and cheese snadwichs, thats right, plural. i had fruit loops, and i admit it was the last bowl(sorry kids), i had all kinds of things that were not on the diet. i actually said out loud to myself. "I HAVE ZERO WILL POWER", and then i got to thinking..... if i didnt have will power i would still be using, wouldnt i? grrr, frustrated beyond belief. so please forgive me while i vent. my addictive behavior gets the best of me sometimes.

this idea that its okay if i cheat on my diet is the same idea that allowed many of use to use for so long. we told ourselves it was okay, we said we would get straight tomorrow, we told ourselves that if alcohol was legal then we couldnt possibly have a problem. this is when its most important to recognise, and respond to our problem. i have to make myself be responsible for my actions. now, i know a diet, and drugs are not the same thing in my case, BUT, for some people its exactly the samething. will power to overcome our personal challenges is something that extends beyond mere addiction, we find we need to use it in our daily lives. and we need to beresponsible for our actions even when they affect only us.

thanks friends.
The idea is not that we have zero will is just that will power cannot keep us from falling back into our old habits completely. Which is what you just experienced. Will power is NOT enough. It can work for you in the right circumstances, places, etc....but when it fails you, it fails big time. It is the lessons learned, the fellowship gained, the lack of guilt and baggage that you find through the program that can get you through those moments when no amount of will power could have done it.
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Still smoke free! And I've tested my resolve heavily the last few days. I don't drink often. But when I do I go for broke. Literally. Me and my crewmates went out and figuratively burned Winchester VA to the ground! Not once, did I even think about smoking. Really the thought never even occured to me. Which is pretty strange since the two go together like peanut butter and jelly. Strange side effects though... Lost 10Lbs. But then works been pretty busy lately.
That they do, nicotine is a hard quit. Most folks gain weight when they quit, so good for you.
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It can be interesting seeing the world through now clear eyes. Last Sunday we went to a birthday party for my 12 yr old niece. A huge gala, she invited her whole class at school, there were dozens of kids running around, plus adults, probably 100 people during the course of the day. Big old farmhouse, with the water slide, trampoline, etc rented for the kids. Coolers full of pop and water, and a fridge out back with beer in it. Would you believe none of the kids and few of the people were drinking beer? None of those doing so got all toasty? For a drinker like myself this would have been an impossibility. Free and easy access to all I wanted meant drink more faster. But most people aren't like me....ta da!! Fortunately today diet pepsi was exactly what I needed to quench my thirst. Of course, if that weren't the case, I don't think the wife and I would have been invited to the party in the first place. These kind of events only help to illustrate that "everybody doesn't do it just like I did". That I can exist in these situations with normal folks and even seem normal to them, is even more reason to be thankful for the program, and to remain a devotee to the steps.
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Interesting call today from an ex-girlfriend. Mind you I put this woman out of my home over 15 years ago, she could not even attempt sobriety and was sorely in need. I attended meetings, counselling, all that with her, but she would not work the program.
10 years later I ended up in the program myself, for me.
A few years back this woman calls here, many times, not a good thing, my wife was not appreciative. That the woman lives in another area of the country, west coast, and ended up calling very late night for us easterners was even worse. And her drunken diatribes and all got bad enough we got rid of the landline.
She called me on my cell this evening while I was working. I didn't realize it was her, thought it was gonna be another "remortgage your home" call but it was her. She was sober, apologetic....celebrated 2 years today......sometimes quickly sometimes slowly guys.
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Too too busy here over the weekend. Had 5 yards of dirt delivered friday, started clearing out the overgrowth in the low spots around the garage saturday before work.

Between both sides of the garage and a spot in the yard I got about 4 yards of dirt down over the weekend with my little wheelbarrow, and seeded watered and fertilized those spots.

A 4x 25 area next to the house got cleared,covered in garden cloth, some timber and stone blocks to define the area....and finally 20 bags of "rubber mulch" to make that area clean, neat and maintenance friendly. Put up a few little cosmetic upgrades around the place as well. Put up a rubbermaid storage shed as well.

Got the grill back in place on our little back deck, wife grilled up dinner Sunday and Monday, and I ended up going out and picking up a little package of "legal" fireworks so we could celebrate last night as well. Did find time Sunday to make it to my home group Sunday evening. Nice open talk by a younger kid with 27 months sober.
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Yes Vincent... I got my 30 day chip today. I am a little upset though...

I wish I can have a glass of wine with friends and not feel the need to drink the whole bottle...
I wish I could have a glass with dinner or out on a date...
I wish I couls have a little to drink after a long day at work... I work hard and I (earned it)I am tired and a glass would sure feel good.... (I think) DEEP BREATH... I am OK though and sober!
And some people with diabetes wish they could have a nice slice of birthday cake....but they can't cuz it could cause them some serious problems or death.
At 30 days the feelings can be rough, it is understandable. In time though, not just you but others close to you will realize you are better to have around NOW, than you were then. More pleasant, responsible, aware....more of a whole person will exist within you.
We all can have difficult days, the program and the fellowship one develops within the program get us through those hard times and keep us focused on reality.
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