Emotional Inebriety -- masquerading as depression?

Discussions related to 12 Step Recovery and Treatment
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Postby Dallas » Tue Oct 19, 2010 11:50 am

I can remember back when... if I had been asked the question:

"Would you rather be sober -- or slide naked down an 80 foot razor blade?"

It would have been a difficult question for me to answer!

My answer back then, would have been with another question:
"You mean I'd have a choice?" :lol:

Yes. Because I am an alcoholic (and not "was" an alcoholic)
I will always "have" my alcohol-ism.

However: I DON'T HAVE TO SUFFER FROM IT! My alcohol-ism CAN be treated in such a way that:
a. I never have to drink again.
b. I don't have to fight it or fight with to drink or not to drink.
c. I can get better.
d. I can be happy, confortable, productive and NOT be depressed -- while sober!

That's what this "deal" is about. Withdrawing from alcohol -- and engaging in good, productive, fulfilling, and happy sober living.

Do I have to suffer from depression? NO.

Did a doctor tell me I would always have a condition that would lead to depression? Yes.

Was the doctor right? NO.

Do I suffer depression? NO.

Just like I treat my alcoholism -- with a "sober method" ... not using some other "substance" to treat my alcoholism -- I can treat the depression -- with a "sober method" ... not using some other "substance" to treat the depression.

Unfortunately, many newer AA's in the Fellowship -- do not know they have a choice. They have already had some "Professional" tell them otherwise -- and they bought in to some crappy Professional ideas. :lol:


Jim W
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Postby Jim W » Tue Oct 19, 2010 8:00 pm

Well like they say, pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

I have been in chronic physical pain for quite a few years. But I don't suffer from it anymore.

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Postby Bensober » Wed Oct 20, 2010 7:59 am

Yes that’s it Patty… Vigilant! Accept, Surrender, and EMBRACE! Once I realized I have what I have, to get out of my way, and get over myself, was to vigilantly allow this process to work! I can EMBRACE vigilantly all my problems today. (Qualify: all my problems aren’t necessary my problems. So I have to make sure what I think are my problems,…are my problems. Of course if I think they are my problems…at some level, until I learn to think right, on a higher spiritual plane…they are)!

Yes, resistance is suffering and for me creates a fight with stress. Embracing what I am and what I got empowers me! I can shine. Everything is brighter and clearer. My body can move. I can face life. The sober method in the Twelve Steps and Service always has something better prepared.

john boy
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Postby john boy » Sun Feb 06, 2011 2:18 pm

I am 26 years sober and until recently I have "struggled" with living life on life's terms. Life has been wonderful yet there has been an element of coping that has been lacking.. I asked, what exactly are these "terms" and where are they found? I know acceptance and understanding helps vastly but I had failed to look deep enough to find the root cause of my discomfort.

More has been revealed to me... after much work I now realize as never before when I am uncomfortable with my emotions it is because my safety/security, affirmation/approval, and, power/control are in jeopardy. Any one or a combination of losing these affect me in a negative way. When I realize this I react differently today as never before. To now finally realize this after all these years has brought about a most profound affect on me. I now understand myself as never before. I now accept as never before as a result of my new understanding of me.

Once I am aware I can invite God back into my life and move towards him to bring me the peace I seek. A dear friend recently told me there are only two places we can be....with ourselves and our ego or... with God.

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Postby Dallas » Sun Feb 06, 2011 7:13 pm

Nice to hear from you John! Thanks for sharing!

Chills run up my spine when I hear members of the Fellowship saying things like "acceptance is the answer to all my problems." :lol:

All too often, alkies will look for the easier softer way out of trying to accept things that they could be changing. And, trying to change things that are better left to accept

They want the serenity of acceptance to be given to them -- without the courage and actions and discipline and hard work -- that it takes, to make the necessary changes in our lives -- if we really do want to tap into the productive "Good Life."

Other times when I hear "Life On Life's Terms"... I have a similar reaction.

I really like your question above in regards to "Just what is Life's Terms?"

When I'm lazy, and undisciplined... "Life's Terms" can be anything I want them to be... in my head... so that I can continue a life of undiscipline, lazy and unstructured. I can use it like a Magic Wand -- a "fix for any situation" that might make me feel better or justified in the moment -- but, it does nothing for my personal growth or my "seeking" to understand & live by spiritual principles.

I imagine that we might all still be living as if we were primates in caves -- had the visionaries and the inventors of the world had decided: "Oh! Life on Life's Terms! Life didn't grant us a working knowledge of electricity with light switches and electrical plugs in our caves -- so... let's just accept it!" :lol:

And... we'd still be walking in the snow & ice instead of driving in nice warm cars -- had "Life on Life's Terms" had it's way.

God seems to have granted us with unique capabilities as humans -- to decide much of our own fate and our destiny in regards to "Life's Terms".

Thanks for sharing John! You assiste me in a wonderful way today! Don't stay away so long -- I like it and like the benefits -- when you show up!


john boy
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Postby john boy » Mon Feb 07, 2011 7:17 am


Thank you for the kind words of affirmation...These last 3years have revealed much to me about myself. These have been the most difficult years of my sobriety. As I once heard a speaker say...."some of us may have a bottom as painful or worse than when drinking". I have found this to be true.
The book, "The Language of the Heart", Bill's writings in the Grapevine have been so helpful. It allows me to see Bill on a personal level. In his 1944 "Letter to the Mother of an Alcoholic" Bill makes reference to a doctor indicating Bill's feelings are magnified by his childlike sensitivity. When I read this it became ever more apparent how childlike I am with my emotions at times. I once heard Clancy I. state "I've never seen anyone who looks as sensitive as I feel", to which I say..."me too".
A friend recently gave me the book "Divine Therapy & Addiction, Centering Prayer and the Twelve Steps". An interview with Father Thomas Keating by Tom S. I have found it to be most informative and insightful...

May the grace of God and the spirit of Alcoholics Anonymous keep us forever.

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Postby Bensober » Tue Feb 08, 2011 8:35 am

W/Dallas on this John…Good to have ya back on the post! :lol:

Good stuff you guys. [i]“safety/security, affirmation/approval, and, power/control are in jeopardyâ€

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hello all

Postby WyndWoman » Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:52 pm

I just turned 19 years and I have had depressed periods in my recovery as well. Nothing like the ones I had in my drinking days though!

My experience with depression in recovery is I was depressed because I wasn't doing what I needed to do. Some thing or some one had become more important in my daily life than my relationship with my Higher Power. I have found that WHENEVER something takes my focus off 'being of service to God and my fellows' my life starts the downward spiral.

It's not always a fast trip back out though, IME. The last time I was depressed I was in a job that was toxic. My co-worker was a really toxic human being and I dreaded going to work every day and spent hours each evening having those one sided conversations in my head. I went through the usual stages of "I can tough it out" then "I'll practice acceptance" then to "I'll pray my way out of it" to the final step (for me) "What do I need to change?"

When I finally become willing to change what is costing me my emotional serenity, I start to get better. I have to be willing to admit I'm beat and realize that I can't let anything stand in the way of my sobriety and serenity, only then do I start the actions to change what needs changing. In this case, I was entirely willing to make less $$$ in return for comfortable days.

I quit the job and only a couple weeks later I had a new job that was a lot of fun and actually paid BETTER! :shock:

But as always, I had to be willing and then do the action. Sadly when I was depressed just starting an action on ANYTHING was difficult but I've learned from the smallest steps begin the longest journeys.

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Postby kidlizard » Thu Mar 31, 2011 11:22 am

I want to thank everybody for posting this topic, it really hits home with me right now. I am 9 yrs sober at the moment and have been wondering what the hells going on with me lately? I havent changed anything in regards t going to mtgs. or praying. So why have I been feeling so depressed?

Until I read all the posts here I really truely believed that "ignorance is bliss", seriously, it seems the less I really know the better off I am. So to everybody that says "knowledge is power" I have to disagree, at least for this Alkie.

Quite honestly Im not one that lives by those quotes but its just something else that makes me go hmmmm.

I feel like I do really need some other help maybe. I have issues. But Im scared and dont really know where to start. My sponsors great but hes real busy and we just never seemed to have that close relationship.

Ive been to Drs. before and I dont want to be put on any meds or waste any more money on Dr. visits. All I know is that when Ilook back at my early recovery it seems I was alot happier and less fearful. Even speaking at mtgs now is very painful. You would think that would get better with time.

I hope somebody here can maybe shed some light for me and give me a kick in the butt or better yet some direction on what I need to be doing or thinking.

Thank You all

john boy
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Postby john boy » Thu Mar 31, 2011 12:22 pm

"My sponsors great but hes real busy and we just never seemed to have that close relationship."

Is your sponsor aware of how you feel about your relationship with you and he?

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