Looking for encouragement on my first day

Hey everyone,

I’m 27, have been drinking since I was 15 and drinking heavily since I turned 21. I’ve blacked out and made a fool out of myself more times than I can even remember. I’ve lost jobs, opportunities, and relationships because of my struggles with alcohol. I know that I NEED to stop and I WANT to stop. I know the rules of this forum state not to focus on the drinking part but on the staying sober part so that’s what I’ll try to do here. I woke up this morning with my mind racing, hungover, (apparently in a fight with my boyfriend) thinking about how I hate myself for not being strong enough to resist temptation. I googled how to stay sober and here I am. I don’t want to feel or be this way anymore, and I can’t do it on my own! No one in my life seems to understand that I have to quit for good and I cant just be a “social drinker” like everyone else. I’m here for advice, help, and conversations with like-minded people. Today is the first day on my journey to sobriety. I know it’s going to be hard but there is so much more to me than this problem and I want to prove that to myself and everyone around me!

Thanks for listening!
Ashley

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Hi Ashley, welcome! :blush:

Reaching out is a great first step. There is so much information and support here. Everyone has a slightly different story but we all have a lot in common and I’m sure you’ll find lots you can relate to. Search through the forum, read as much as you can and reach out whenever you need to. You’re definitely not alone!

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Welcome! I’m still kind of a newbie myself, but what has helped me is just coming on here and READING. Just reading other people’s stories has helped me so much in reflecting on my own issues. Helps me think before I act. I dont always post or respond (sometimes I feel like a hypocrite, particularly if I’m fighting a bad urge) but really reading the stories here has done wonders.

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Hi Ashley! That was a great first share. We understand all those feelings you mentioned like non alcoholics can’t. For them it’s as simple as “just don’t drink then” or “just have a couple”. They just don’t get it. And that’s okay, we can’t expect them too. It’s up to us to find and talk to like minded people that DO understand.
You found that here. Maybe a meeting will help. There’s people that get it there too. :wink:

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Welcome Ashley. Your story sounds familiar, and you are most definitely not alone in your struggles. You already know that you need to stop, and you are honest about that… which is the necessary first step to staying sober. I commend you for the courage that posting this took.

Advice: well i too am an addict and have realized for quite a few years now that I simply cannot use ANY mind or body altering substance. I don’t have that button that I can push to turn on moderate use of anything. No social drinking or drug use for me, as that turns to a binge upon my first taste of that day’s substance. It seems like you are the same, and most, if not all, of the friends here on this app will admit the same about themselves. And you know what? That is okay. We must learn to be okay with the fact that some people can control themselves with the substances that we alcoholics and addicts simply cannot.

When we accept that this is not a trait that we can change about ourselves, we must then ask how can we combat the urge to have that first drink or dose? First thing to do, especially in early recovery, is to limit the influences and triggers that have typically led you to drinking. Easy access to your drug of choice(in this case, alcohol) poses a great risk to your goal of staying sober. Be honest with those people that you typically have been drinking buddies with-they may not understand what you are going through and what all has led to you needing sobriety. Help them understand by honestly explaining the lead up to this sober journey. Peer pressure can have a powerful grip on us if we allow it to. If your buddies do not understand or they continue to wish you to drink, then they are not really your buddies at all in my opinion.

Another helpful thing to do early on is to sit down and write out an emergency plan in the event of a strong craving or a terrible day. Ask yourself what will you do when all you can think about is drinking? You may call your most supportive friend or family member, maybe you will have an exercise routine that can help melt away the urge to drink. Have you thought about going to AA meetings? I was skeptical before my first meeting, but after I was done I was so grateful that I found the courage to get my butt in that room. If you can find your way to a meeting, i urge you to speak up and tell your story… you will be welcomed with open arms by likeminded individuals that have gone through what you are going through now. Find a sponsor that can guide you in your time of need.

You will no doubt be going through some physical and emotional trials soon, if you aren’t already. Please assure yourself that all the symptoms that find you are temporary. Positive mindset makes the difference between staying sober and relapsing.

Adopt healthy and relaxing hobbies to occupy your mind and body while you are healing. Dont do the activities that have traditionally led you to alcohol.

Get as many people in on your sobriety as you can… accountability from people that care about your wellbeing is a strong deterrent from going back to the bottle.

Gather supplies or groceries you may need for the coming week(s). Proper nutrition and vitamins will speed up the physical part of your recovery. You have been consuming poison for years, and your body will respond well to feeding it a more natural and healthy diet. It may not feel like eating well is doing much, at first, but it and dstaying hydrated are imperative at this time in early recovery .

Ask questions. People here are kind and knowledgeable and hope and pray for each other and their sobriety. People at AA are generally just the same. We have all been where you are at and I find that serving my fellow alcoholic is a great way to stay the course.

Exercise and/or meditate. Dont overdo it at first, of course, but spending your energy on your body instead of your buzz is a great way to build some confidence and to tire yourself without the help of the depressant you have been consuming for these past years. Meditation is a great way to learn to calm the calamity of early sobriety. Try to figure out a way to push away negative thoughts and to instead have a peaceful and sober mind.

Pamper yourself. Love yourself and do things that will help you find relaxation. It is difficult sometimes, but taking extra care of yourself now will help to keep you in the fight.

Dont transfer addictions. Masking the pain of no alcohol by consuming some other substance will not lead you to where you want to be. The only option is to be entirely sober. Only sobriety can successfully fill that void that alcohol once occupied.

I am sure I will think of something else to say, and I hope this post made sense… i am detoxing as well and I feel pretty slow and disoriented today, but I truly hope for your success and wish you all the blessings that I can throw your way.

Take care of yourself ma’am, fight for your life and never give up. Godspeed!

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Welcome!!!
Firstly I would like to congratulate you on taking the first step. This is fuckin huge. Be very proud of that fact!! :muscle:
Secondly, this journey you are about to embark on may seem incomprehensible to most people. Which is fine. Due to the fact it is YOUR journey not theirs! Always remember that. During this experience the only persons opinion that matters on the subject is your own. As long as you keep getting better at being better every day and try your best you will find yourself where you need to be.

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Thank you so much! I’ve been reading posts on and off all day and I can see that you’re right. I plan to be around for a while :blush:

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Thank you! It’s definitely helpful to know that other people are going through the same things. I plan on reading on here a lot!

Thank you! It is hard to explain that to someone who doesn’t understand, so just reading other people’s stories and the support that I have gotten already is truly amazing. I have thought about going to a meeting but I live in a small town and there’s only a few(held in churches) and I don’t want to see anyone I already know…although I could see how that could be helpful. Idk, I’ll keep thinking about it.

I am 26 with a verrrry similar story. Though I am only on day 5 myself this community has been such a huge help and support in just the last few days. I have been in therapy for a few weeks and have met with a new doctor exploring supplement/medication options. So far both of these things have been great for me.

Find any and every thread here that interests you and engage in it. This is a really amazing place for people struggling. Another thing that I have started to do is write down every thought that crosses my mind that has anything to do with me not wanting to fall back into alcohol. I wrote down three last night while I couldn’t sleep, ripped the page out of my notebook, and set it on my night stand so that it was the first thing that I saw again when I woke up. Anyway, all the best to you!

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Wow thank you for all the advice!! While I have admitted to myself, my SO, and other close friends that I have a problem… it’s doing so to my family and other friends that is going to be tough. I have always had a problem asking for help but I’ve gotta get over that because my wellbeing is at stake. I am very thankful already for this forum and the encouragement I have recieved already. You all are amazing!

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Thank you! I definitely need to keep that in mind. This is MY life and I’m the only one who gets to live it. I want to be the best version of me.

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That is great to hear and know!!!
Also as cliche as it sounds you literally have to take it one day at a time because the only way through it is thru it.
If you ever want to talk or need encouragement I’m around, don’t be a stranger.

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Just from reading a bit today I can see that you’re right. If you don’t mind sharing, what types of meds/supplements have you had success with so far? I was thinking about exploring those options as well…although talking to my doc about it seems daunting. Thank you for the advice and well wishes!

Hi there. I encourage you to read the book This Naked Mind by Annie Grace. It really gave the tools to try and achieve sobriety. It really retrains your unconscious mind to help you avoid alcohol. Wishing you lots of luck!

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Gonna go look for it on Amazon right now! Thanks!

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You can do it. I’m at Day 35 and if I can do it anyone can do it. Just don’t drink, that’s the only rule

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Definitely talk to your doctor about it. I would share but everything I take is specific to my situation and other things that I deal with. It could be very different for you. It’s worth working out with a professional to figure what is best for you specifically.

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Hi, this is my first ever post. Im Day 25 free of alcohol. This is my 2nd attempt in 2years. My first ended on Day 45. Iv learned from that and feel so much more in control this time around. Im loving my sober life!

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