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Rock Bottom

  • anonymous Asks ...

    How do you know when you have hit rock bottom? Is it really true that you need to hit rock bottom before you can stop drinking for good. I have tried to stop drinking before but it has never worked and maybe this is why.

  • Jill Edwards Says ...
    Jill Edwards

    The experience of heavy drinking does in the end cost as they say, more than money. One aspect of rock bottom is that a person accepts for themselves that the cost is more than they want to pay. There is a great deal of thinking that goes on which helps to make going on drinking acceptable, because of the fear of stopping. At rock bottom a person finds themselves letting go of the thoughts which justify going on drinking in spite of the effect. It is sometimes true that this happens when a person feels that all other people have left and they alone have to sort the situation out. They take on responsibility for the place they find themselves in.

    So it may not be necessary to hit rock bottom, but it is necessary to recognise the damage that is being done to yourself and others. It is necessary to see how your thinking patterns are supporting your drinking behaviour and to start thinking differently. It is necessary to take responsibility for your own behaviour. It is a fundamental turning point and for some people a very drastic change is needed before they are prepared to give up,

    It is difficult and some people have found that going to AA meetings gives them the necessary reminders that helps to keep them sober. It is not a matter just of giving up, it is also a matter of taking on life and sorting out the problems that have arisen and really finding our who we are and where we want to go. We need some kind of support system, that helps to keep us on the new direction. Sometimes family members who have had to deal with the unpleasant side of drinking find it difficult to adjust and they need support so their negative reactions do not impact on your recovery.

    I hope that when you stop drinking, you do tail it off and not suddenly come off large quantities of drink as this has risks of fitting. If necessary check with your doctor to be safe.

    To sum up, I am saying that while you may not need to have something truly drastic happen before you are prepared to change, you will go through a real change process if you are going to achieve sobriety and it does need a kind of turning around, a kind of letting go of the mental processes you have used to support the idea that you can safely continue to drink. These thoughts are only aware of the alcohol dependence you suffer, they hear the voice which says "I need alcohol and I need it now" and they send whatever thoughts will make it possible for you to get a drink.

    It does mean life changes, these may be different activities, perhaps more exercise, being part of a supporting community, learning to put life first.

    You can look at my website at www.invitationtotalk.co.uk and contact me if you want.

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