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    1. #1
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      Do You REALLY Want To Be Sober?

      Well, itís been awhile since Iíve posted on MWO. I left for personal reasons, and I still have some bad feelings about some of the members, but Iím working through them. Iíve been stopping by every so often to read around and see how things are going. I see that Nora has taken her quit seriously and has become a force on MWO, a great example that you can quit and stay quit if you really want it! I also see Lizker is almost at a year sober, congratulations Lizker! But I also see that many are still struggling, still want to drink more than they want to be sober, and thatís okay as well. Maybe one day theyíll realize that there is no such word as ďmoderationĒ in the alcoholicís dictionary. If there was, they wouldnít need a recovery forum. Iíve just made some pretty harsh statements, statements that a few of you will take offense to. But ask yourself why you took offense? Have I said anything that isnít true, or you just donít like hearing and facing the truth?

      For the past months, Iíve been posting on another site, We Quit Drinking. A site much the same as MWO, only it has quite a few more members, and the Cue has itís share of serial slippers as well. But there are more members that donít sympathize and cuddle the slippers, they tell it like it is, quitting and staying quit is damn hard, but it can be done! I used to be one of the worst kind of drunks, just ask Bubba, but I have a new outlook on life, a sober outlook. If a drunk like me can achieve over 500 days of sobriety, then anyone can.

      So I came back to MWO hoping I might be able to help, to offer support, and share what Iíve been doing to stay sober, and not just stay sober, but enjoy a sober life. If you want the same, you have to be willing to give it your all, no running to the bottle when things get tough, no looking for an excuse or reason to drink when you think life is unfair, no looking for sympathy, hugs, and pats on the back when you slip because you found another reason to drink. There is no reason or excuse strong enough if you really want to quit drinking and stay quit!

      So why not make the commitment today, and thatís what it really is, a firm commitment. A commitment to yourself that from this day forward youíre going to be the person you want to be, a person who will gain back the respect and love that they lost in the bottom of a bottle. It really is your choice, you can quit and stay quit, or you can look for another excuse. The choice is pretty simple in my book.

      Iím not going to thread hop and post all over the site. Iím not going to start a bunch of threads and try to get to them all. And Iím not going to give up the work Iíve been doing on We Quit Drinking. This will be my thread, youíll find support and help in my posts or you wonít. But donít badmouth me if you donít like what I say, because everything I say is what helped me to stay AF for the past 16 months. Maybe some of it can help you....

      Over on the Cue, I made a statement in one of my journals and another member commented that I explained lasting sobriety in that simple statement. I now use it as my signature because it is what sobriety is all about.
      Quitting and staying quit isnít easy, itís learning a whole new way of thinking. Itís accepting a new way of life, and not just accepting it, embracing it...
      Worry about tomorrow, tomorrow. Just get through today. Tomorrow will look after itself when it becomes today, because today is all we have to think about.
      Friendship is not about how many friends you have or who you've known the longest. It's about who walked into your life, said "I'm here for you", and proved it.

    2. #2
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      Good to see you back posting ABC. Hope all's well with you and yours.

      Yes, commitment. Pure and simple. I would head straight for the bottle for instant 'gratification'. i.e. Instant temporary relief from a feeling. So i am learning how to see this coming and head it off at the pass. So far so good. Take care mate.

      'I am part of all that I have met, yet all experience is an arch wherethro', gleams that untravelled world whose margins fade, forever and forever when I move'

      Zen soul Warrior. Freedom today-

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    4. #3
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      You're an anchor here G-man! Good to see you're steady on course! And you're right, head those thoughts off before they get into your head!
      Quitting and staying quit isnít easy, itís learning a whole new way of thinking. Itís accepting a new way of life, and not just accepting it, embracing it...
      Worry about tomorrow, tomorrow. Just get through today. Tomorrow will look after itself when it becomes today, because today is all we have to think about.
      Friendship is not about how many friends you have or who you've known the longest. It's about who walked into your life, said "I'm here for you", and proved it.

    5. #4
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      Glad you are here again, Cowboy. I missed you! I look forward to reading your solid posts. lex

    6. #5
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      Well to be honest if I wasn't working and I didn't have a family then I don't know how motivated I would be to stay sober. The thought of losing my job and my family helps me do what I need to do to stay sober. Not saying that fear is enough to keep me sober but it's a huge motivator.

      I have to say serial slippers/relapsers don't bother me, because I was one myself. I don't think I was looking for excuses to drink, so much as I hadn't found a way to live sober yet.

      I have a close friend that is drinking heavily. Sometimes I grow impatient with her because I think "I figured this thing out, why can't she." I have to remember that just three months ago I was in the exact same situation. I would call her and she would be one of the only people that listed to me without judgement and gave me a shoulder to cry on. I didn't care that she was drinking because so was I. Who knows maybe in a year I'll be drinking again and she'll be sober. So every time I feel myself getting impatient with someone who is still drinking, or is a serial relapser, I have to remember to see myself in them.

    7. #6
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      Hi ABC
      Iím glad youíve found something that works for you and I appreciate that youíre sharing that with others. I agree with you in many ways and I certainly donít ďtake offence at your harsh statementsĒ.

      I also understand that your post is intended to motivate.

      However, I will give sympathy and hugs to people who slip, because we are human and I have compassion. And I will also give pats on the back to someone who has worked hard but occasionally makes a mistake.

      Do you think we could perhaps address this problem with a combination of the two approaches?
      There's two ways of looking at the holes in your shoes
      You can dig the ventilation... or you can sing the blues

      I didn't come this far to only come this far.

    8. Thanks NoraC, abcowboy, Rusty, SKendall thanked for this post
    9. #7
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      What you say is true southshoregirl, nothing or no one can help people unless they want to be helped. I have a friend where I live who is/was a member of my AA home group when I attended AA. He's been to rehab 3 times and has been going to AA for over 6 years, and he's still drinking. There's not much I can say to him that hasn't already been said. I've offered all the support I can, but it's not enough. He refuses to close the door on alcohol, leaves it open just a crack in case he needs to run back to it. And he will, time and time again until he wants to be sober more than he wants to drink. He's not ready to make the commitment needed to obtain lasting sobriety. And no one can help him until he does. Getting sober isn't something to take lightly. It isn't something we work at for a few months, it's a lifelong commitment. Until you make that commitment, your next slip/relapse is just around the corner.
      Quitting and staying quit isnít easy, itís learning a whole new way of thinking. Itís accepting a new way of life, and not just accepting it, embracing it...
      Worry about tomorrow, tomorrow. Just get through today. Tomorrow will look after itself when it becomes today, because today is all we have to think about.
      Friendship is not about how many friends you have or who you've known the longest. It's about who walked into your life, said "I'm here for you", and proved it.

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    11. #8
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      Cowboy - I am happy that you are finding what you need to stay on course. That is great. Congrats on your 500 days and here's to a million more.

      But, I am not comfortable with your approach because I am a serial relapser. I have been relapsing for the past 7 years. So, please do not look to me as someone that is an example. I am certainly no leader or force here. I am taking it one step at a time just like I always have.

      I am still here after all of my relapses because of the support I have received here. People offered advice and helped me try again. I doubt that most of us come back here looking for sympathy, hugs and pat on a back. We come back because we made the wrong choice and want to learn to make the right one. We wanted some encouragement that there is hope. We have to force ourselves to come back yet again and share our story. That is not easy to keep coming back and admitting that we drank. But, we keep coming back here because we want to find what will work for us.

      I am finding my way out and it is wonderful. I am so grateful. But, this is MY way out - it's not one size fits all. If I had been greeted with tell it like it is and no encouragement to try again, then I would not be here today. That is a for sure.

      So, I'm going to continue offering support and encouragement.
      "Only I can change my life. No one can do it for me.".....Carol Burnett
      ..........
      AF - 7-27-15

    12. #9
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      Cowboy, it is good to see your words, and I am glad you are doing well.

      I think everyone quits when they are ready, but not before.

      The person most like me in the world in some ways is my older sister. She still drinks, and usually denies that she has a problem. She almost died once due to alcohol: fell down outside at night and broke her hip, couldn't get up, a neighbor found her and called an ambulance. She has had multiple DUI's, lost her license. But she still drinks.

      I'm done drinking. I experienced no major crisis, just got tired of seeing my life get wasted. I was ready, she is not. But I posted here for a few years before I was ready, as reality gradually sank in.

      I think it's important to have a web site like this, where people are supported through multiple starts and stops. You can watch others learn, you learn from their mistakes and learn from the examples of those who have quit. So many of us aren't ready to quit, and this is a place we can slowly learn how to be successful. This is what worked for me.

      Like Nora, I stick around both as a reminder to myself of where I've been, and occasionally offer the right words at the right time for others.
      My life is better without alcohol, since 9/1/12. My sobriety tool is the list at permalink 236 on the toolbox thread under monthly abstinance.

    13. #10
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      I appreciate all the comments, I really do but I think my message wasnít really clear. I want to help those struggling, but not to the point where I become an enabler. And I think in some situations that happens, and Iím guilty of doing it and also have been in the position of receiving it. Iíll bet I could go back through the posts and come up with a hundred responses that were not much more than ďIím sorry to see you slipped, but itís good that youíre back and trying again.Ē Words like that will help the first few times no doubt, but to some it will say ďWell, I think I can slip as many times as I want, theyíll still welcome me back.Ē We often hear comments about not being enablers, but arenít we in fact being enablers ourselves by the comments we make to the person who slipped?

      ďIn the context of alcoholism, an enabling relationship is one that makes it easier for the person with the addiction to continue in their destructive lifestyle. In most cases, enablers are well-intentioned and believe that their actions are beneficial to the alcoholic. However, the opposite is usually the case.
      Without enablers in their lives, alcoholics typically descend much faster into the chaos and pain that their destructive lifestyle engenders. The enabler wants to protect the alcoholic from the pain of this descent, so they spend much of their energy trying to offset the potential damage. The reverse side of this dilemma is that any alcoholic who is protected from the ramifications of their drinking problem will be less motivated to seek rehabilitation.
      For the enabler, the thought of letting the person they care about hurt themselves is too much to endure. What they do not realize is that their acts of kindness and protection may actually contribute to deepening the alcoholicís addiction. Only by stepping back from this toxic relationship can the enabler hope to recover their sense of self, and truly help the alcoholic they care about.Ē

      Now that was written by someone with a higher pay grade than me, and itís doesnít give a true definition of enabling. But to me, when I tell someone 10 times that Iím sorry you slipped, but great to see you back trying again, I feel like Iíve become an enabler. What I should be saying is that you canít keep doing the same things and expect a different result. If this forum isnít helping you to quit and stay quit, then you need something else, or at least something in addition toÖ

      Any just today as I read through the threads I see where many members feel that MWO is fading. I guess I can agree with that, not sure why, but a lack of new members is certainly one of the reasons. There are probably many other reasons as well, but I came back because MWO was a place that gave me the ideas and tools to make my quit stick. Now I want to give back. But as I said, if you are here just to hear, ďSorry that you slippedÖÖ..Ē you wonít get that from me. Youíll get ďso you slipped again, what are you going to do different this time?Ē And Iíll expect some concrete alternatives. Because if you donít do something different, youíll slip again. And thatís not just my experience, itís the experience of many, many others.

      We need to stop enabling and start helping, enabling is not helping in my opinion. It didnít help me and I expect it doesnít help others. We need to rally around those that are struggling and offer other ideas that may help them get to the point where they are sick and tired of saying ďI slipped again last nightĒ Ö.., but more importantly, they are at the stage where they are really willing to do something about itÖ.whatever it takes!
      Quitting and staying quit isnít easy, itís learning a whole new way of thinking. Itís accepting a new way of life, and not just accepting it, embracing it...
      Worry about tomorrow, tomorrow. Just get through today. Tomorrow will look after itself when it becomes today, because today is all we have to think about.
      Friendship is not about how many friends you have or who you've known the longest. It's about who walked into your life, said "I'm here for you", and proved it.

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