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Thread: Donna's Story

  1. #1
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    24th June, 2009.
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    Donna's Story

    I promised myself I would climb out of my shell and post my story on my birthday. Which is funny because most of my life people would have preferred to see me crawl inside my shell! But for some reason over the past 10 years or so I?ve retreated to a shell and closed myself off from family and friends (to perfect my drinking skills I presume). I?ve gone from a loud party girl to a quiet drunk! Anyway, here goes?

    I grew up in a fairly small town in Texas. I had an average semi dysfunctional childhood. My parents liked to party. My dad was a biker and definitely an alcoholic, not that the two are synonymous. My mom drank, but not to excess. If mom felt I was up to something I wasn?t telling her she had this little trick of taking me on a long ride in the country with a bottle of Mogan David wine. I spilled my guts! Of course she usually got more info than she really wanted! So you can see drinking started at an early age in my family. Since alcohol was okay, I had to switch to drugs in order to rebel. I tried just about everything in high school and college. I started shooting methamphetamines (back then we called it crank) and a few other substances. I would drink beer when I crashed because a hangover felt much better than the alternative. Eventually a new set of cleaner cut friends got me out of the drug scene; only smoking pot. But we drank a lot of beer and whisky! I met my husband (now ex) and father of my children in this group of friends. Something fun going on all of the time... all of it included drinking. Most of the group consisted of guys, so I had to learn to hang with the big dogs. I could definitely hold my own (well to a point). My husband and I went away to college and I got a degree in Fashion Design and Patternmaking, my husband in Engineering. We weren?t out of college long when along came motherhood and that responsibility. I got left behind?a lot. My ex and his buddies continued on with life as usual... they played on 2 softball teams in season, 2 basketball teams, fishing, hunting, golf... whatever! While I stayed at home with a new baby, all alone with nothing to do but drink (I wasn't nursing). I would usually have a couple of beers when she was down for her afternoon nap. Then I would switch to whisky after 5. Later my husband got a job in a metro city about 2 hours from our home town. After moving there I began teaching aerobics (which I did for the next 12 years) and that probably helped save me from my otherwise unhealthy lifestyle. My husband and I had terrible problems and we were having problems with our daughter as well. My drinking got worse during that time because I just was so miserable. I began to have affairs and some of them were so blatant that it was embarrassing. Alcohol was causing me to make some really poor choices for myself that were seriously affecting my family! We went through some counseling and we were better for a while. As I neared my 30s we had another baby who was the complete opposite of our first; easy going, sweet tempered. It made my life at home much more pleasant so I tried harder not to drink. I was nursing so I really made the effort to stay off alcohol during that whole time. Until I went on my yearly beach vacation with my wild girlfriends! Well, needless to say, nursing was over for me! And I made up for lost time drinking. Of course my marriage began to suffer again. Once both of the kids were old enough I found a full time job and finally was able to begin my career (I?d been freelancing at home during the time the kids were small). I got a job as a designer in Dallas and a divorce. My son stayed with his dad, my daughter with me, and my life was awful! I traveled a lot with my job and stayed with it until my daughter was 18. At that point she left home and I moved to California for work. It was exciting but lonely. My career was really taking off but I was drinking a lot more. I found that I could not go out at night because I got into too much trouble! I found it was better to stay home and drink. I got another fabulous job offer in Las Vegas and I moved again a few years later. I was still very active, hiking, biking or aerobics during the day, but drinking at night. I figured at least I was counter acting the bad stuff! Finally I took a job in Nashville where I met my current husband. He?s a great guy. He?s not much of a drinker but never really thought of me as a drinker either (HA!). He?s seen me drunk a few times (especially when I?ve taken him back to my home town) and now that I?m on the MWO program, he really sees a huge difference. Funny, I could drink a bottle of wine a night, by myself, and he would swear that I was not drunk! Now I?m not so grumpy in the morning! But I am much quieter in the evenings, which he doesn?t like. We must readjust to the ever changing courses of our lives. I am trying to keep mine on a positive track and finding it difficult. The minute I let my guard down I find it VERY easy to fall back into old habits. I must be vigilant, cautious and hopeful. I know I can succeed.

  2. #2
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    24th June, 2009.
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    Donna's Story


    I think that sitting down and writing a chronology can be most helpful, especially when you are honest about your own responsibilities in how things went, which you seem to be. This is a very good place to start, kind of like an examination of conscience. It helps all of us, as we see bits and pieces that we can identify with (games that we play with ourselves, self-justifications that we fall back on, etc.). Hope all is going well with you...this isn't an easy road, ever.

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