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Lost In The Bottle

I have read the stories on this site for over a year now. I always read the confessions of those 'worse off' than me. It helps me fool myself into thinking what I do is normal. What a hypocrite.

I am 32, have a beautiful wife, a young healthy son, and am about to start the kind of job that many can only dream about.  I am lucky beyond belief. But I cannot stop drinking.  In fact, I am drunk right now. Just as I have been almost every night for the past several months ... and years.

If I owned a gun I might have already killed myself.  The frustration and self loathing get that bad sometimes.

Every day, between 3 and 5 pm I have my first beer.  It is usually a microbrew with an abv of at least 7.5 percent.  I think about drinking all morning and shop for just the right brew during lunch. I pretend I am a "connoisseur," looking up beer ratings online, staging personal tastings, and taking notes.  Somehow I always end up with the strongest beers in the store, pound them like medicine, and decimate my whole supply before crawling into bed, reeking of booze, next to my wife. My beautiful wife who always thinks the best of me.

I drink the equivalent of 8-12 beers every night. EVERY night. I rarely go out, and when I do I only have a few drinks so as to not alert friends, family and coworkers to my weakness.

I wake up hung over and jump start my system with an energy shot, vitamins, electrolyte water, and Tylenol. I resolve to not drink for one day.   By  the afternoon I am rewarding myself with 'just one or two.'  We all know how that goes. The process repeats.

I have no reason to drink.  It seems a necessary bodily function like eating or breathing. Sometimes, after the rare dry spell, my first drink is almost sexual in nature - it sends warm shivers down my spine.

I am convinced that the attraction to alcohol is genetic like eye color or height.  Every man in my family has been a heavy drinker.  One grandfather died of a heart attack at 65 due to heavy drinking and smoking.  Another quit booze and lived into his eighties. Why he quit i don't know.  One uncle went to rehab three times and is going strong.  Another died of liver failure. Yet another uncle lost his life in a mysterious car crash back when 'one for the road' was the norm. My father drinks 1-2 bottles of wine a night - he is a great guy, healthy and successful.  These are my role models.

One problem is that I have never hit the rock bottom that so many talk about. I can be obliterated and still be relatively sane - I don't get sentimental, angry, or strange.  I maintain a facade of normalcy, peel myself off the floor in the morning, and do my job no matter what. This natural tolerance makes it possible for me to continue the drunk lifestyle unabated. i believe this is a genetic curse.  A curse that will one day kill me.

My drinking has progressively escalated over the past ten years. It saps me of energy, kills my ambition, and is effecting my appearance.  It is only a matter of time until i end up in rehab or the hospital. My body cannot sustain this for another decade.

I have a son and don't want this life for him. I want to be the one man in my family who stands up to the problem and conquers it.  I dream of being the guy who can have a single drink and stop there. No rehab, no intervention.  

I don't know if I can do it.

Please help.
BobEsq BobEsq 31-35 5 Responses Jul 10, 2012

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I just want to thank each of you for your heartfelt comments and support. I have been alone in this struggle for so long. The fact that each of you took the time to share your experiences and advice means a lot.

Hi there. I enjoyed reading your story so thank you for sharing. <br />
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It has similarities to my story, though you sound more even-keeled than I was. I am 35 days sober today, and I can honestly tell you that getting this far has not been nearly as bad as I thought it would be. But more on that later. <br />
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I didn't hit rock bottom or any bottom, either. But it became apparent to me that the way I was drinking was escalating and it scared me. I also am married to a wonderful wife, have 3 beautiful and healthy children, and a job that every man could only dream about. I scared myself so bad a little over a month ago that I knew it was time to quit. I wanted sobriety in my life and I never felt that way toward drinking until then. I figured why should I wait to lose everything? The way I was going, that was absolutely not very far off. <br />
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I would drink like you on a daily basis but I always stopped at around 3-4 beers, but it was enough to sap my energy, make me slightly irritable and short with the kids and my wife. Often she didn't even know I was drinking each day. It took place in my workshop where I would go for solitude and to have a few beers. Several times a year, this turned into 8-12 or more beers, followed by a few hard booze drinks. This was the spark that fueled intense drinking leading to blackouts, followed by pangs of guilt and regret the next day, not necessarily for specific actions but mostly for the inability to remember. My imagination probably made it worse, in most cases, than it actually was. But the guilt was very painful and my wife was always disgusted with me for as much as a week following one of these events. It became embarrassing for her and me when I drank too much in the presence of the new friends we were making in the small town that we live in. <br />
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As another guy here said, you have to want sobriety and you will have to work hard (at times) to achieve it, day by day. It really isn't as bad as we alcoholics make it out to be in our own heads. It is only as big of a deal as you make it. <br />
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I have come to the conclusion that the human body wasn't designed to drink. It doesn't do anything positive for us really. It doesn't give us any good feelings that weren't there already, but we both know it has the ability to cause or result in plenty of bad feelings. It is a widely available and heavily marketed drug, plain and simple. I have tried many drugs and I think alcohol cause inhibitions to drop more than any others and cause generally poor, if not insane decisions. <br />
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As I said, I am 35 days sober and I am LOVING all the positives in my life. To name a few: clear head and clear thoughts, more energy, a block of time every day after work where I can be extremely productive, saved money, a better relationship with my wife, and actually conversing at social events and retaining all that I learned. There have been a few tough times where I was tempted but my anti-drug is exercise. I run, lift weights, or ride my bike. All of these are also positive outlets that are great for your body and mind. <br />
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I attended a few AA meetings only. I will go back, but I don't buy into all of the things that are said at an AA meeting and I had a hard time relating with many of the people there. I pass judgement on no one, but the meetings simply aren't that useful for me at this point, or I have not yet found one that really works for me. <br />
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Best of luck with whatever you decide. Feel free to message me if you want to chat about anything.

Toadstoolpie. Thank you for your comment. Your experience sounds uncannily similar to mine. In the past, exercise has been the one of the few things that has killed my desire to drink.

A few years ago I stopped drinking for two months at the insistence of my wife. I ran and lifted weights almost every day. I did a 10k. I felt great and my friends told me I looked like I did in high school. Then one day I went out with an old acquaintance, got hammered and resumed the lifestyle of a daily drinker. I only exercise a couple days a week now. Mainly I do it to keep my body from breaking down - not to get better or stronger.

I also share your feelings about AA. Where I am from, AA is not "anonymous" by any stretch of the imagination. I absolutely cannot go to one meeting or I will be branded for life. Secondly, I cannot give myself over to the philosophy of AA, although I believe it has been beneficial to many people through the years.

Congratulations on 35 days sober! That is a tremendous achievement that I can only dream of attaining at this point. Nonetheless, your story gives me a lot of hope. Thanks again and good luck.

Well said comments. From my personal experience, I never hit "bottom" either. However, I temporarily had my 4 year old taken from me. Just one night It happened. That did not stop my drinking. I went to a few meetings, but my *** wasn't doing the work. I assumed that things would change. 12.26.2011, I looked at the person i was with, told her that the next day I was going to a meeting and getting sober. I did just that. At that meeting, i heard someone say that he had the answer. He had help to give. I grabbed it and ran. I listen to everything that he has to say. I follow every suggestion he makes. I obtained a sponsor thru him. I went to at least one meeting every day. I wake up and ask for help from a higher power of my understand him. Thru the grace of god, and the simplicity of the AA program, i have not had the desire to drink in over 6 months. I was the drinker you described. I have found now that easy part of recovery is not drinkin.<br />
Bottom line my friend, is that you have to want sobriety. Go to meetings. Plan your entire day around that meetting. You dont have to talk. But you must listen with every ounce of effort you can muster. If you hear soemthing you like, go talk to that guy after. Arrive 15 minutes early, leave 15 minutes late. If you dont care for that meeting, find one you like. Find someone who sounds like he knows whats what. Talk to him. Listen and follow intently to his suggestions. If you like him, ask him to sponsor you. <br />
Always remember that it truly is one day at a time. just dony drink today! Put it off til tomorrow.<br />
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Brother, its a tough start, but if you want it, youll get it. It is proven that AA works. Today, i have my son back! And chances are that custody will be overturned, granting me full. You will slowly begin to have clarity on the way things are, and why. Just dont drink. Good luck!

I just saw your post and can only offer my own "experience, strength and hope." You sound like me, self-destructive and maybe looking for a reason - an "excuse" - to keep drinking. I found all the excuses I could to keep drinking and "justify" it until I had to be responsible to the consequences of my drinking. That loss - and it was a loss because it could not be recovered - was my "bottom." I quit and, as I went from being "dry" to being sober, I incorporated AA's 12-step program in my own common sense, and my common sense helped me to define the THREE key basis of my not returning to the bottle: in the end, unless someone is physically holding us down and pouring the **** down our throat, drinking is a CHOICE; with that CHOICE, as with all choices, there are CONSEQUENCES; and, in the end, we and we alone are RESPONSIBLE to those CONSEQUENCES. For me, then, it was the question if I was willing to be responsible to the consequences of my choice to drink. Like other alcoholics and addicts, I didn't want to be held responsible to the consequences. So, if there were no consequences to be responsible to, there was NO choice - DON'T DRINK. Please let us know how you are today, dear friend.

a wish is wish, sometimes the wishes we have as adults never comes true thats why we wish things thats hardest to stop or immpossiable to come ture.... wish you could drink just one drink...be like everyone else who has controll.. change the pattern of life of each day you said you live... change helps,change is hard ... even if relaps hits again keep trying...the alhoclic is as the sex addicit,drug adictic,food addictic,the gambler, the addictions are with us every where, in all kind of shapes and forms for abusing oursevles with ob<x>jects and with things we think we cant fuction without within it tears us up making us more gripping on hanging on to it, for our own self worth is metally and physically challeged each day....get it out of your fridge... if it isnt there to grab then you want have to have it....or just buy one six pack..ease off it ... you have self controll use it....you have a wife one to get out with.. yall go walk go to the gym do something when its time to start to drink that first beer....your little guy your son.. you are his world.. dad is a childs world they never see no wrong in you...you have him to push you to make you a better person a better person you need to be for him as a dad..and a wife to be there for you when you crash..thats what a wife is for the cushion to the fall sometimes from yall the dad ,,husband from doing all the leading in a family yall do......and you have aa......your to young to keep going as you have said your going....i have my own demons on me too.. do it for your son...if not for you... do it for your family... you know family is all we have.. friends come and go like seasons on a calender...but your family loves you and will always back you when you try to better your self....good luck we all need it.. in todays times in the way this world runs and with its changes around us all....ck