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Sober GAF |OT| One day at a time

Tuff McNutt

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Jun 15, 2020
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Hi guys.

Just an update. My situation was not going well and I entered an inpatient treatment facility last month. There were some issues but overall it went well. I am currently 35 days alcohol free. In addition to intensive outpatient treatment (3 3 hour meetings weekly) I am going to see a therapist that specializes in trauma/EMDR and a couples therapist to help my wife with knowing what her role in my recovery will be. I am also going to groups (AA and SMART Recovery) and working with a psychiatrist to adjust my meds and have gotten on Antabuse.

It seems like a lot of work, but it has been rewarding so far. This is the longest I have been alcohol free from 30+ years and I am happier than I have been in a long time.

Let me know if you have any questions, either here or in PM.

Stay strong bros.
 

Kev Kev

Gold Member
Oct 25, 2012
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Hi guys.

Just an update. My situation was not going well and I entered an inpatient treatment facility last month. There were some issues but overall it went well. I am currently 35 days alcohol free. In addition to intensive outpatient treatment (3 3 hour meetings weekly) I am going to see a therapist that specializes in trauma/EMDR and a couples therapist to help my wife with knowing what her role in my recovery will be. I am also going to groups (AA and SMART Recovery) and working with a psychiatrist to adjust my meds and have gotten on Antabuse.

It seems like a lot of work, but it has been rewarding so far. This is the longest I have been alcohol free from 30+ years and I am happier than I have been in a long time.

Let me know if you have any questions, either here or in PM.

Stay strong bros.
Man that is so awesome to hear! Glad to see you are doing so well. Sounds like addiction has you pretty bad but you’re staying strong and kicking it’s ass. Fuck yeah dude!

I can’t tell you how big of an inspiration that is for me and I’m sure many others. Thank you for sharing, let us know how things go. I’m sure we will have some more gaffers dropping by for the new year, and having some other addicts in here to talk to will be mega helpful. I know this probably sounds cringe, but just one post could be all it takes to get someone thinking about making a big change in their life, and ultimately help improve their quality of life, and possibly contribute to help saving their life.

To any one out there and b the fence about sharing, please consider it. And anyone considering taking some time away from the poison, don’t be afraid to post for some support. I know it might seem meaningless to some, but I can tell you guys from personal experience that supportive words can be very effective to n helping give you that extra push or motivation you need to make a big improvement in your quality of life.

For me personally, I have a bit of a situation that I’m not exactly scared of, but I’m also being very cautious about. I have to get a root canal done on the 31st. I’m sure they are going to give me some pain pills, andi loooooove opiates. I could try to go without, but I never developed a problem with them, I only had a drinking problem. But being that I’m 2 and a half years sober, and I don’t want to be in pain after the root canal, I’m going to take the pills. I’ll post more as I’m getting closer to the date and of course after the operation. I feel very confident that I won’t be falling back into any old habits (I never had a pill problem but that was mostly because I couldn’t find them.... but I’m not going to lie to myself, I love them and usually take more than I need whenever I have them... so there’s that...).

Anyway, wish me luck! And I hope the rest of you are doing well!
 

-Minsc-

Member
Nov 14, 2009
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Great to hear Tuff McNutt Tuff McNutt

No questions. Keep sharing what comes to mind. That alone is a big help. One of these days I may look back into seeing a therapist. Either I was just never ready to make use of one before or I never found the correct one.

Kev Kev Kev Kev

Great to hear you are being cautious.

I'm doing good keeping off the P/M. Noticing I'm uncomfortable with my internet and gaming use. Tuff's mention of trauma reminds me I've been thinking about what I may have in that area. I've never been physically or sexually abused by another so I don't have to deal what that like others do. There could be some parental neglect. I know I would have sensed the pressure from my father and uncle running the farm and any disagreements they had when growing up. Then there was the pressure of getting to work at the farm. Some combination of me not wanting to do the work, not understanding what I was taught and not speaking up about it enough, people not taking enough time to properly teach and me making mistakes and not fessing up. A big thing is failing to understand how to deal with that which is beyond my control. Much of that understanding can only come with life experience, which a child does not have.

The Serenity Prayer comes to mind:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change
Courage to change the things I can
And the wisdom to know the difference.

Still figuring that one out.
 
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Tuff McNutt

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Jun 15, 2020
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For me personally, I have a bit of a situation that I’m not exactly scared of, but I’m also being very cautious about. I have to get a root canal done on the 31st. I’m sure they are going to give me some pain pills, andi loooooove opiates. I could try to go without, but I never developed a problem with them, I only had a drinking problem. But being that I’m 2 and a half years sober, and I don’t want to be in pain after the root canal, I’m going to take the pills. I’ll post more as I’m getting closer to the date and of course after the operation. I feel very confident that I won’t be falling back into any old habits (I never had a pill problem but that was mostly because I couldn’t find them.... but I’m not going to lie to myself, I love them and usually take more than I need whenever I have them... so there’s that...).

For what it's worth, I had a root canal about 6 years ago and the pain wasn't that bad. I used 1 or 2 vicodin out of the 30 (!) I was prescribed. You can ask for a non-narcotic alternative if you're worried.

I'm doing good keeping off the P/M. Noticing I'm uncomfortable with my internet and gaming use. Tuff's mention of trauma reminds me I've been thinking about what I may have in that area. I've never been physically or sexually abused by another so I don't have to deal what that like others do. There could be some parental neglect. I know I would have sensed the pressure from my father and uncle running the farm and any disagreements they had when growing up. Then there was the pressure of getting to work at the farm. Some combination of me not wanting to do the work, not understanding what I was taught and not speaking up about it enough, people not taking enough time to properly teach and me making mistakes and not fessing up. A big thing is failing to understand how to deal with that which is beyond my control. Much of that understanding can only come with life experience, which a child does not have.

There is the idea of "trauma" in the traditional view of the word, like I have in dealing with abuse from both parents. But there is a wide range of trauma. Something like breaking up with a longtime girlfriend can be traumatic, especially if there was cheating involved. Some of what you experienced as a child may fall into that.
 
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Tuff McNutt

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Jun 15, 2020
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The state of mental health and addiction treatment care in this country is pathetic.

I have been going over my insurance claims for my inpatient treatment and I think there was some scamming going on. I was given a urinalysis every week, even though I was in there voluntarily, attended all the meetings/therapy/doctor visits, and showed no signs of use. Ok, fine, whatever. But these were being billed at $200 a pop. UAs should be closer to $20-30. Since the company that was processing the UAs is out of my insurance's network, I am on the hook for $140 per test, or about another $600.

Since my outpatient is through the same company and they have the same UA policy, I think I will be leaving that program. I can't justify paying another $1700 for something that is frankly not needed, especially as I have many other bills to pay.

I am not giving up on using support for my sobriety, though. I have thankfully found some good AA and SMART groups and will be looking for more. Having one or both to attend each day has been helpful. And I will find a therapist that specifically works with trauma. Until that is addressed, my other mental health issues, including the addiction, will not be resolved. This video gives you a good idea of my current mindset towards my path of treatment:

 

Kev Kev

Gold Member
Oct 25, 2012
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Good news. I just did the root canal and they didn’t give me any pain killers, so looks like my streak will keep going after all 🎉🎊🥳

Not gonna lie I was disappointed, but after thinking it over, and honestly just not being in that Much pain, I’m so glad they didn’t give them to me. I’m confident I would have been okay taking them and not developing a problem, but it’s better that i don’t have to take that risk at all. Here’s to how ever many more years opiate free!

and happy new year! To anyone out there trying to stay dry, you can do it! Don’t let tonite end your streak. And anyone else thinking of resolutions for 2021, drop a post and make it real. In addition to your self, having others to hold you accountable can be a very helpful thing for some people. Whether your stopping for a month, a year, or quitting forever, just remember it’s for your health and your life and there is proof ITT that it can be done.

take care and be safe!
 

p_xavier

Authorized Fister
Jun 9, 2004
4,138
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North Glengarry, ON
So Day 2 of sobriety. Days are looking way too long. Anyways I was getting really bad ulcers and IBS so I don't really have a choice to quit for a bit but damn time is long.
 
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Kev Kev

Gold Member
Oct 25, 2012
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So Day 2 of sobriety. Days are looking way too long. Anyways I was getting really bad ulcers and IBS so I don't really have a choice to quit for a bit but damn time is long.
Try to stay busy. Keep your mind off of using and don’t think about how much longer you have to be sober. Try pulling out old hobbies you haven’t done in a while. Go for a 5-10 minute walk and listen to music, whatever gets your mind from just going through the cycle of thinking about using. TV series, video games, books, movies, painting/drawing, write a song, workout, get lost in a YouTube hole, shit post on GAF (one of my personal favorites 😂), etc

In general, the more productive and rewarding what your doing actually is, the better it is to help take your mind off using. Working out was a big, big deal for me getting clean. I just started going to the gym for 30-40 minutes 3 or 4 days a week. Nothing crazy at first. It felt new and different, kind of fun even, and I felt good about myself for working out and, of course, not using during that time.

Just get through today man. Don’t worry about tomorrow until tomorrow gets here. Thinking about time and how long you have to stop for makes the whole process seem too daunting. Don’t do it! It’s a trap and it will beat you if you keep dwelling in it. Just promise yourself you’re going to make it through today, and don’t think about tomorrow until you wake up tomorrow morning.

Good luck! Come back and let us know how you’re doing. I know from personal experience that it gives people hope and strength to see other addicts successfully making it through even one day. Congratulations to you on your sobriety. You should be proud of yourself, even if you can’t see it right now.
 
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p_xavier

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Jun 9, 2004
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Try to stay busy. Keep your mind off of using and don’t think about how much longer you have to be sober. Try pulling out old hobbies you haven’t done in a while. Go for a 5-10 minute walk and listen to music, whatever gets your mind from just going through the cycle of thinking about using. TV series, video games, books, movies, painting/drawing, write a song, workout, get lost in a YouTube hole, shit post on GAF (one of my personal favorites 😂), etc

In general, the more productive and rewarding what your doing actually is, the better it is to help take your mind off using. Working out was a big, big deal for me getting clean. I just started going to the gym for 30-40 minutes 3 or 4 days a week. Nothing crazy at first. It felt new and different, kind of fun even, and I felt good about myself for working out and, of course, not using during that time.

Just get through today man. Don’t worry about tomorrow until tomorrow gets here. Thinking about time and how long you have to stop for makes the whole process seem too daunting. Don’t do it! It’s a trap and it will beat you if you keep dwelling in it. Just promise yourself you’re going to make it through today, and don’t think about tomorrow until you wake up tomorrow morning.

Good luck! Come back and let us know how you’re doing. I know from personal experience that it gives people hope and strength to see other addicts successfully making it through even one day. Congratulations to you on your sobriety. You should be proud of yourself, even if you can’t see it right now.
Thing is I already do all of these things, work 70h weeks and still have plenty of time left. Usually it was 4am gym, 5 am house chores, 6 am work, 4pm activites, 6pm to pass out. Often I travelled and spent days on flights/trains to waste time but can't now for obvious reasons. I renovated an entire house in 3 months and that was supposed to be a 5 year project. At least when Spring comes I'll redo the whole yard. I often cancel my vacation time because I'd rather do work.
 
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Tuff McNutt

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Things have been ok for me, I guess.

I did have a slip up a couple of days after Christmas, but on the bright side, it was just one-time and not a several-day bender and/or leaving the house like my pattern of use was.

I have been doing more meetings recently, in particular SMART Recovery, but still doing AA as well.

I'm having to going days between my doses of Antabuse because I can't get a hold of the doctor in rehab who prescribed it to me. The RN who handles my mental health meds wasn't a help because she needs paperwork from the doctor to write me a script. Hopefully, this will get straightened out next week.

It's also been a challenge to find a therapist/counselor. The rehab did put me in an outpatient program, but I dropped out of it because they were shady with the billing. I do have a therapist I was seeing for a couple of years, but he doesn't deal with trauma or addiction.

Trying to stay positive though... got through a football Sunday without using, so that's good.

p_xavier p_xavier do you have anxiety by any chance? I do, and some of what you said (having to keep busy all the time) is similar to what I go through.
 
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ClanOfNone

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Nov 24, 2018
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Never really look at the communities board, I was totally unaware there was a thread for sobriety on here. Been sober since August 20th 2012, keep fighting the good fight gaf!
 
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Tuff McNutt

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Jun 15, 2020
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Yes badly. No medication worked for me. I did see psychiatrists and the last one said for the first time in her career she doesn't know what to do with a patient.

Wow, what a crap psychiatrist.

Maybe CBT or DBT, or SMART Recovery might be a good fit. They are more scientific approaches to mental health/addiction issues that try to address the root thoughts/behaviors.
 
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notseqi

Gold Member
Jun 15, 2020
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Ho/Hum
Good news. I just did the root canal and they didn’t give me any pain killers, so looks like my streak will keep going after all 🎉🎊🥳

Not gonna lie I was disappointed, but after thinking it over, and honestly just not being in that Much pain, I’m so glad they didn’t give them to me. I’m confident I would have been okay taking them and not developing a problem, but it’s better that i don’t have to take that risk at all. Here’s to how ever many more years opiate free!

and happy new year! To anyone out there trying to stay dry, you can do it! Don’t let tonite end your streak. And anyone else thinking of resolutions for 2021, drop a post and make it real. In addition to your self, having others to hold you accountable can be a very helpful thing for some people. Whether your stopping for a month, a year, or quitting forever, just remember it’s for your health and your life and there is proof ITT that it can be done.

take care and be safe!
Reminds me of this story which I like to read every once in a while: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/27/opinion/sunday/surgery-germany-vicodin.html

Personal progress, if you're into drivel:
I started a kind of therapy at the beginning of december, talks with a psychologist to work through the lead up to me losing my driving license and general drinking behaviour. It all seems very goal focused and to be less in-depth than I would have expected but I'm only three sessions in, it might be his approach to not coddle me as I'm a matter-of-fact guy and not making excuses for my behaviour etc, I don't know, I'm no psychologist. The goal is to pass the medical-psychological test they do here to assess if you're capable of carrying that driving license with a positive prognosis on not reoffending, it's quasi-mandatory for drug offenses or if you're above a certain alcohol level. The level they tested me on would lead a psychologist (doing his part of the assessment) to believe that I'm a seasoned drinker. The reasons why or how I drank don't matter (living in Italy with up to 5 hour lunches and dinners almost every day and a constant stream of wine and hard liquor), only that I deal with it, never drink another drop and be an all-around good boy. Reflection, reflection, reflection.

I'm due a paper for next session asking and answering myself serious questions about the lead up to, happenings on, and feelings after that fateful day.

The only time I think about alcohol now is when I evaluate my food and drink choices, part of the medical is testing my hair for degradation products stored within so it's necessary to find out if products contain alcohol or are still fermenting. It's the bloody calorie counting all over again.

Most interesting to me is that after 20 years of investing time and money in my favourite pasttime I, for the first time ever, heard the words 'stop drinking, right now' (uttered by my psych). So I did.
Granted, this is exactly 30 days in only, still, looks like I'll be fine.
 

Tuff McNutt

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Good on you for the 30 days, that's a big accomplishment.

I met with a new therapist yesterday and it went well. I'll keep seeing them. My eventual goal there is to use EMDR to help with trauma/PTSD from childhood abuse. That is the root of my drinking, which I view as a mental health issue versus "AN ADDICTION". My therapist has the same view, which is good. For me, it is trauma that leads to depression and anxiety, which leads to drinking. I've been working to break that cycle.
 

Kev Kev

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Oct 25, 2012
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Good on you for the 30 days, that's a big accomplishment.

I met with a new therapist yesterday and it went well. I'll keep seeing them. My eventual goal there is to use EMDR to help with trauma/PTSD from childhood abuse. That is the root of my drinking, which I view as a mental health issue versus "AN ADDICTION". My therapist has the same view, which is good. For me, it is trauma that leads to depression and anxiety, which leads to drinking. I've been working to break that cycle.
keep it up man, you can do it. your posts are an inspiration for me, and im sure others as well. ive been looking into therapy recently. i think i have a lot of unchecked trauma from break ups, deaths in the family and a lot of other small things that have built up over the years. found myself in a really bad place the other night, just sitting in silence staring at the wall feeling doomed and ready to turn back to self destruction... made me want to say, "whats the point in not drinking if im going to feel like this anyway?"

of course im not going to start drinking again, but i think its time for me to talk to a professional. hell, the years of drinking and living like a low life scum bag may have added even more to my depression and anxiety, and perhaps there is some unraveling i need to do with my emotions there as well. thanks for all your replies itt. it really helps give me strength. good luck to you, you got this 💪
 

Tuff McNutt

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Jun 15, 2020
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keep it up man, you can do it. your posts are an inspiration for me, and im sure others as well. ive been looking into therapy recently. i think i have a lot of unchecked trauma from break ups, deaths in the family and a lot of other small things that have built up over the years. found myself in a really bad place the other night, just sitting in silence staring at the wall feeling doomed and ready to turn back to self destruction... made me want to say, "whats the point in not drinking if im going to feel like this anyway?"

of course im not going to start drinking again, but i think its time for me to talk to a professional. hell, the years of drinking and living like a low life scum bag may have added even more to my depression and anxiety, and perhaps there is some unraveling i need to do with my emotions there as well. thanks for all your replies itt. it really helps give me strength. good luck to you, you got this 💪
Alcohol is a depressant, so it definitely does affect depression and anxiety. Since I stopped drinking, my depression and anxiety has definitely been better. A lot of people (myself included) use alcohol to self-medicate for other mental health issues, so if you're not using, it may be beneficial for you to find some other outlet, whether it's therapy, support groups like AA or SMART, or sober recreation groups, either in-person or online. Addiction is very isolating and anything you can do to break out to break out of that will help.
 
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Moogle11

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Feb 7, 2020
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I'm closing in on 6 weeks with no drinking. Not really planning on going permanently sober, just had some stomach issues arise (reflux, irritable bowl type symptoms and a couple inguinal hernias that are getting surgically repaired in a few weeks) and alcohol is of course a major trigger for any digestive inflammation issues.

I wasn't a super booze hound or anything and have stuck to just beer and wine for years, but had far too many days of 4-6 drinks and too few of zero the past couple of years. Stomach issues haven't improved a ton, but have lost some weight and cut down to 150 from 168. That's not just the no booze though as my wife and I had been eating healthier and exercising way more since October, but definitely way easier to lose some flab without all those empty beer/wine calories for sure.

If/when I got back to drinking it will definitely be way less than before. No drinking at home (alone or with the wife) and just 1-3 beers here and there when eating out, at work happy hours etc. Just not worth the empty calories, stress on my digestive system, or financial cost. Not even thinking about it before March at the earliest as I want to be healed up from the hernia surgery and have the digestive issues feeling much better before having any beer/wine.
 
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-Minsc-

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Nov 14, 2009
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Well I'm officially off the wagon. Shouldn't have gotten wasted on New Year's. Trying to find the willpower not to drink tonight.
Hi haxan7,

Did you get through last night? If so, great! If not, then get through tonight. One day at a time. Eventually the individual successive individual days add up. You can do this. :)
 
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Tuff McNutt

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Jun 15, 2020
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Some more modern treatment of addiction and their support groups have dropped the whole notion of "x days sober". Recovery is a marathon; just because you trip, it doesn't mean you can't get back up. If you got sober once, you can do it again. Just take this as a learning experience and don't beat yourself up too much about it. It's is super common for people in recovery to have lapses back into use.

One thing is though, most people can't just white knuckle it and stay sober on their own. For alcohol, this is also referred to being a "dry drunk" - you're not drinking, but not really addressing the causes of your drinking. I would recommend therapy, but I know that it isn't for everyone. There are support groups; if you don't like the notion of AA, there are newer ones like SMART that don't use the 12 steps or higher power/God aspects.
 
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Jasonadream

Neo Member
Sep 9, 2020
47
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Checking in.

I’ve made a terrible decision last night.
I decided to try coke again believing that I could control myself.

I’ve been sober for 10 months, before the lockdown I would go through 8 grams of coke a week and 3 bottles of whiskey for an entire year straight.

went through hell and back to get myself out from the partying lifestyle.

I quit the drugs, alcohol and I even stopped listening to music all together because they were all triggers for me.

The lockdown pretty much saved my life, without it I would’ve most likely been dead from oding.

I just feel pathetic that I went back to my old habits
 
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Peggies

Gold Member
Jan 7, 2011
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Vienna, Austria
Checking in.

I’ve made a terrible decision last night.
I decided to try coke again believing that I could control myself.

I’ve been sober for 10 months, before the lockdown I would go through 8 grams of coke a week and 3 bottles of whiskey for an entire year straight.

went through hell and back to get myself out from the partying lifestyle.

I quit the drugs, alcohol and I even stopped listening to music all together because they were all triggers for me.

The lockdown pretty much saved my life, without it I would’ve most likely been dead from oding.

I just feel pathetic that I went back to my old habits
Don't feel pathetic, man! I know how you feel right now but falls are ok.
"If you're going through hell, keep going" (Chruchill)
 

JetSetJustin

Neo Member
Jan 14, 2021
13
20
95
Hello everyone, I'd like to post a bit about how I'm doing, since I'm new to Gaf. I have been completely sober for 3.5 years. I haven't touched an opioid (my DOC) in about 5 years. Overall, as of late, I've been feeling fairly decent and I attribute this to the effort I've put in to psychotherapy. It took a long time to find a therapist that I clicked with but it did happen.

Covid totally threw me out of my meeting regiment. I haven't been to one since they all shut down because of the restrictions. I do talk to people in the fellowship from time to time though.