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Topic: Battling the booze

  1. Missing user
    Missing user avatar
    20 February 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Morning Kaz,

    Hope you are okay today.  Along with your little doggie friend.

    I am feeling pretty drained, as well as a little hung over I think.   ) - :

    I think its a good thing the scotch bottle ran dry when it did.

    And that all my friends were here for me.

    Loved your post to Geoff.  Hope you're well.

    Sherie xx

  2. Kazzl
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    20 February 2016 in reply to Missing user

    Hi Sherie - I'm glad the scotch ran out too hun, and you had the good sense not to drink the house dry like I used to (creme de menthe from the back of the cupboard anyone? Oh feel ill just thinking about it). 😀

    I'm feeling pretty rough mate (just as well I wasn't drinking!). Will probably have a sleep today. Have a good meal with lots of protein for that hangover eh? xxx

    Cheers

    Kaz 

  3. Missing user
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    20 February 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Kaz,

    Just need to rehydrate I think.  So lots of water.  And a cuppa now, during the lunch break of day 1 of cricket test.  In case you havent caught up, Smith won the toss and sent the Kiwi's in.  Kiwi's 3 down already.

    No wonder you are feeling a bit rough this morning.  Up all night tending to, and worrying about, your little dog.

    Have a good rest today.  You and your little doggie mate.

    Sherie xx

  4. Bayleaf
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    20 February 2016 in reply to Missing user

    Hi Sherie. Well done you for getting through last night.

    Be kind to yourself today, you deserve it. Try not to think on what is past, give yourself all credit for doing what is best for you in the present and love yourself a little. We are all worthy of our own love especially in the hard times when we might see that least. Today is yours.

    A quick Hi to everybody else hereabouts, today is yours too, have a good-un.

    Bayleaf.

  5. Missing user
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    20 February 2016 in reply to Bayleaf

    Thanks Bayleaf.  

    You're right, and I will try to do as you suggest.

    Thanks for taking the time to respond. I appreciate it.

    Sherie 

  6. white knight
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    20 February 2016 in reply to Missing user

    Hi Kaz,

    There is such a diverse number of personal issues here with members on this forum.

    Yes, a great post by Geoff, the most understanding and experienced guy on the topic of alcohol issues on the forum I'd say.

    I cannot imagine the battle you are going through Kaz. But I'm hoping, through a little bit of reaching out (which includes a hug from me) that you'll propel yourself forward in a positive way.

    As I said, I don't have any knowledge on alcoholism....but that wont stop me giving you a little support.

    Tony WK

    1 person found this helpful
  7. geoff
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    21 February 2016 in reply to white knight

    This has become an interesting topic that has only just scratched the surface.
    What happens when you are normally watching the clock, waiting for the time when you can start to drink, let's say it's
    lunch time 12 am, don't you love it when daylight saving comes in, because you can drink an hour earlier, so how
    do you feel when daylight savings ends, that means that you have to wait an hour later, so in other words,
    you start at 12am but when daylight savings comes it's an hour earlier, so in fact it's 11 am but then it ends and 12 am
    is actually feels like 1 pm, so does this tempt you to then start drinking at 11am, so this process continues on until you
    eventually are drinking at 9am.
    Hope you can understand the logic from what I am trying to say. Geoff. x

     

    sorry about how this copy and paste turns out with a couple of words sitting between sentences.

  8. Missing user
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    21 February 2016 in reply to white knight

    Hi Tony WK,

    I was not really sure to whom your post of yesterday was directed?  You had replied to a post of mine, but spoke specifically to Kaz.  

    However, I guess on behalf of both of us - thankyou for your offer of support, it is appreciated.

    And in response to your hug, I return a somewhat tentative one back to you.  ( - :

    Thankyou,

    Sherie 

  9. Missing user
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    21 February 2016 in reply to geoff

    Morning Geoff,

    Your post is very true.  And what it comes down to is the likelihood that we look for any excuse at all to have a drink, and to try to justify why we do so.  I understand the logic in your post .........  xx

    I hope you and your little dog are faring well?

    Sherie x

    1 person found this helpful
  10. geoff
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    22 February 2016 in reply to Missing user
    dear Sherie, I have been away for a couple of days but I'm pleased that you could get what I was saying, because there is
    much more to Kaz's comment which is an important one and can never be pushed aside.
    This is my only reply today. Geoff. x
  11. Missing user
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    22 February 2016 in reply to geoff

    Thankyou Geoff, I appreciate the fact that you took the time to respond to me today.

    I feel privileged that you did so.

    Sherie xx

  12. Roberty_Bob
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    17 March 2016

    Very useful thread Kazzl. Self medication of depression using alcohol was a big problem for me. I am now 12 months sober and have never felt better. My escape from booze is told here:

    ​ https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/online-forums/staying-well/one-year-sober-today

    2 people found this helpful
  13. Roberty_Bob
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    23 March 2016 in reply to Roberty_Bob
    I went to a recovery group last night. I'm glad I did. I was getting complacent about my sobriety and this meeting brought me back to ground.
    1 person found this helpful
  14. Kazzl
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    23 March 2016 in reply to Roberty_Bob

    Hiya Bob - well done mate and thanks for posting this. Yeah, complacency is our worst enemy once we're sober. It's easy to think we've got it under control now so just one won't hurt. Some people (although very few in my experience) can do that but most of us can't. One's too many and 10's not enough. 😊 That will always be the case for me. The further you get along the sober the road the easier it becomes to accept that.

    The company of fellow sober travellers is gold I reckon. I'm really glad you found the group helpful. Feel free to post more about it if you're inclined - we can help others so much by sharing our experiences.

    Onya Bob!

    Kaz 

     

    2 people found this helpful
  15. Kazzl
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    3 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi all - just 'bumping' this thread up because we've had a few members lately who might find it helpful.

    A big hello and welcome to anyone who wants to discuss problems with alcohol and depression or anxiety. In particular, a welcome to our new member Brian who I was just talking to on another thread! If you want to keep talking Brian, or anyone else, I'll be hanging around here, along with others who know and understand.

    Cheers!

    Kaz

    1 person found this helpful
  16. Kazzl
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    4 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi everyone - we've had a couple of members ask about strategies for getting sober, so I thought I put up some posts that might help. One member asked about whether it was best to go 'cold turkey' and just stop, or whether cutting down was the better option. That is a very important first question to consider. Below is my response on that person's thread, reposted here to help anyone wondering the same:

    How you stop largely depends on how much you are drinking - and if you can it's worth discussing this with a doctor, or an alcohol service counsellor.

    As a rule of thumb, if you are drinking constantly, for example during the day, keeping yourself 'topped up' so to speak, or if you are drinking very large amounts at night every night, and have been for a long time, going cold turkey can be dangerous because withdrawal can make us very ill with shakes, rapid heartbeat, high anxiety, dissociation, even hallucinations. It can even be fatal.

    If you feel your level of drinking is very high, a medically supervised detox is the best option, This involves cutting down gradually, drinking specified amounts at specified times, and switching from say spirits to beer, under the supervision of a doctor.

    Another option, again with the support of your doctor, is to use a drug that reduces the desire to drink (and makes you feel very ill if you drink while taking it). My partner used that and it was effective for him.

    If your drinking is constant but not very large amounts, you can certainly stop by yourself. I did that. But be warned, there can still be some nasty withdrawals, though not life threatening. If you are wanting to do this, I strongly suggest you take a few days off work to get through the tough early withdrawals. You might feel like you've got the flu, your body will work overtime expelling the toxins etc (if you get my meaning). Be very very kind to yourself during that time, keep well hydrated, eat when you can, don't fuss about the type of food - make it every wicked thing you can think of if it helps to ease the feelings of deprivation (and to keep your sugar levels stable - we get a lot of sugar from alcohol and cutting it out can cause terrible headaches etc).

    This all sounds pretty grim I know and I won't kid you, it is. But once you get through the worst it gets easier and easier and you start to notice how much better you are, how much better you're sleeping and, most importantly, how much better you feel about yourself.

    2 people found this helpful
  17. Roberty_Bob
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    4 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl
    Very good advice Kazz. Detox is not something to be taken lightly as you have pointed out. My most recent detoxes were medically supervised with medication to reduce the side effects. It is still hard both physically and mentally but well worth it in the long run.
    1 person found this helpful
  18. Kazzl
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    4 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Continuing from the previous post, here's a bit about what to expect in the early stages of quitting booze, reposted and edited from other threads:

    Quitting is going to take grim determination, and real focus. I know quite a few now-sober alcoholics (including me) who basically had to treat not drinking, dealing with the physical withdrawal and resisting strong urges as our sole purpose every day until it stuck.

    One of the first things you might find is that your days suddenly become a lot longer, sometimes terribly long. And you might have difficulty sleeping at night.

    The urges to drink will be fierce - there's some good info on the web about handling urges, so do some research. There's one called Urge Surfing, which is based on the theory that an urge generally last for no longer than about 20 mjnutes at a time, and if you can 'ride it out' it will pass. The technique involves paying very close attention when you experience the urge - notice what's going in in your body and mind. Sit with the urge, feel the 'wave' of it, examine it, ride it and notice the physical and emotional changes when it starts to ease. Basically this is a mindfulness technique that enables you to confront and accept the urge rather than give in or fight yourself about it. I used that a lot and it helps with any form of addiction.


    There's another one I used, a distraction technique called The 10 minute rule - basically when an urge hits, tell yourself it's OK, you can drink, but not for another 10 minutes. In that time distract yourself as much as you can and there's a good chance the urge will pass. If it doesn't, tell yourself another 10 minutes and distract again. Keeping doing that until the urge passes. It's a mental trick but it works because you're not denying yourself, you've given yourself permission, but you're delaying gratification, hopefully until the desire goes away.

    If anyone else has tips for getting through the early stages of recovery, please feel free to share them.

    Thanks and cheers!

    Kaz

    2 people found this helpful
  19. Kazzl
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    4 April 2016 in reply to Roberty_Bob

    Hiya Bob! Great to see you mate - you posted while I was putting my second post together 😃.

    How are you going? have you been back to the recovery group?

    xx

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  20. Roberty_Bob
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    4 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl
    My chief distraction tool was exercise. First walking then, as I lost weight and got fitter, running. I had to pass my old watering hole and bottleshop on the way so made sure I left my cash and cards at home. On the way back I had no desire at all to drink.
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  21. Kazzl
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    4 April 2016 in reply to Roberty_Bob
    Yes, leaving the cash and cards behind is an excellent idea - remove the means for giving in. Love it! Thanks Bob.
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  22. Roberty_Bob
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    5 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl
    I went to my recovery group tonight. Although nothing has been troubling me recently I've found it helpful to maintain contact with my support at all times.
    1 person found this helpful
  23. Moonstruck
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    5 April 2016 in reply to Roberty_Bob

    I am glad I found this additional thread for posting solely about "battling booze". If I can be of any help I will try my best....or see any questions I may be able to give my viewpoint about - I'll have a go too.

    I guess all our stories are unique...very different...the reasons we drank/drink, reasons we gave/want to give up...etc.

    In a nutshell, what convinced me I had to stop was a second near-death situation involving the damage the grog had done to my liver over the years....it was so horrible, the memory of it was so vivid, (I will spare you the gory details)...that I NEVER want to go thru that again....so mine was mainly medical reasons...otherwise I may well have still been using the stuff to anaethestise emotional pain and traumatic memories.

    I didn't go through withdrawal this last time (too ill to even care)...and it was "cold turkey". I had been on only Light Beers for the past couple of years before this medical emergency...but even that was enough to damage me further....my body just couldn't absorb any more alcohol at all......why me?

    Others drink much more than I did..and their livers are still functioning....them's the breaks! Anyhow just past 3 years without it now...my skin is clearer, I've lost weight, I've saved the cost of buying grog and can drive anywhere, any time and thumb my nose at the RBT cops!

    Gotta look on the bright side folks!!! - .....sorry if this has been a bit "flippant"...I know it's a serious topic...and look forward to being of some help.....if I can...in the meantime....hang in there...if I can do it...anyone can!

    3 people found this helpful
  24. seeking_help
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    23 April 2016

    Hi Kaz,

    Thanks very much for directing me here after your wise words in the 'Depression and 'part time' alcoholism thread'.

    As previously mentioned, I gave up social drinking a number of years ago but continue to binge drink whenever I am travelling away from home (i.e. when I cant get caught). It's finally caught up with myself and I really came here to seek help/advice about my addiction.

    I am sick of waking up in hotel rooms with a fort of bottles around me. I function absolutely magnificently when at home with my wife and new born child. Why do I regularly give in to the dark side for the few days per month that I travel/am away from home? It is an escape but is totally not worth it in hindsight yet I cannot reason with myself?

    Nick

  25. geoff
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    24 April 2016 in reply to seeking_help
    hi Seeking_help, can I ask you a question and only answer if you want to, but did you start drinking socially after your wife has told you to stop drinking every night and wiping yourself out, and if this is correct then 'while the cat's away the mouse will play', in other words you will take advantage of being away and then being able to drink as much as you want.

    No one knows what you are doing except for when you have to pay the bill, and I'm not sure that you have got your 'social drinking' under control, so you drink as much as you can while you are away and at any time you meet with friends.

    If someone says that they want to stop smoking, it would be pretty impossible for them to smoke socially, especially if they have smoked 30 cigarettes a day, so it's very hard for anybody to drink socially after drinking everyday and if you play up by drinking everything in sight while away then it's a decision you have to make, keep drinking or stop it entirely and give up, but that's a big call. Geoff.
  26. seeking_help
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    24 April 2016 in reply to geoff

    Hi Geoff,

    Thanks for your message. I actually stopped social drinking a number of years ago due to my inability to moderate intake i.e. I was drinking to excess at any opportunity and it was affecting my relationship with my wife etc. As far as my family and friends are concerned, I am sober and have been for a number of years.

    However, when I am away from home and know I cant get caught, I drink. You hit the nail on the head with your 'cats away, mice will play' comment. I know it is doing me damage and I believe I am strong enough to control myself and stay sober but then my next trip comes along and I end up drinking again. It's a bad cycle as I actually really do want to stay sober, I just get an overwhelming urge to get drunk when I put myself in that situation.

  27. Moonstruck
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    24 April 2016 in reply to seeking_help

    Hi there Seeking.....I've no direct experience with binge drinking (mine was the other kind) so won't pretend to have expert advice, however over the years have found the 24 hrs Alcohol &Drug Information Service phone counselling to be excellent, understanding and very helpful (as are the BB phone counsellors)..

    It's a 1800 number in the front of the phone book with all the other "emergency numbers"....(not sure if I am allowed to give out phone numbers here).....they are not AA people, they are trained professionals.....just a thought for someone to talk to when you're in that hotel room - they don't judge you or preach..they're great!

    .....yes, I would say you have done the right thing in reaching out for help now, before things escalate for you......very best of luck...

  28. Kazzl
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    25 April 2016 in reply to seeking_help

    I Nick - so good to see you here mate! There's a few tips on this thread, back a few posts, about urge surfing and, my favourite, the 10 minute rule, to help you get through the urges when you're away.

    I'd also suggest that when you are away, you fill your days and nights with activity so you're not just alone in your hotel room. Go to a movie or something at night - anywhere that doesn't serve alcohol. Go for long walks without money or credit cards. I even phoned ahead to a hotel I was booked into and asked them to empty the mini bar before I got there (if you feel you need to give a reason say it's for religious reasons haha, they won't ask anything else ...) eat at Maccas if you have to or somewhere else that's not licensed.

    Get yourself good and tired by the end of the day, and when you get to your (alcohol free) room, get into your PJs and straight into bed. If you are going to tell your wife about your problem, make sure you call her every night you're away to let her know you're sober.

    You can do this Nick. And I tell you mate, no matter how much we might enjoy our 'nights off' from sobriety at the time, there is nothing better than waking up with a clear head, no guilt, no pain, no fear of being caught out ... proud of ourselves instead of ashamed. You can do it.

    Kaz

  29. Kazzl
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    25 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Another thought Nick - if you want to let us know beforehand next time you're travelling, we can be on this thread ready to talk at night while you're in your room. I'd be happy to do that.

    Kaz

  30. Bayleaf
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    25 April 2016 in reply to Kazzl

    Hi Nick. Well done to you for facing up to a very harsh reality.

    I was moved to jump in on Kazz's Post suggesting that some might be here for you in those difficult times when you find yourself alone and in the way of temptation. I have battled the booze for many years and been sober for something over five now. In the process of getting sober, I was part of a forum and we had friends in our pockets/handbags/manbags/cabin luggage: As a group we would make a special effort to look out for each other and when one was going into a danger zone the rest would be there with them (through the mobile phone) in their pocket etc. This was a lighthearted, chatty but very effective tool in the face of loneliness or the solo-permissive mindset.

    This is a hard road Nick but you really are doing what you know to be best for you and you need never be alone on that road. Go well!

    1 person found this helpful

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