Two Wrongs Don’t Make a Right

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Kids often make very bad choices and do things that are not very smart, especially teen age boys.  This is most definitely the case with my son and he often makes choices that leave me scratching my head for understanding, or just down right angry.

I wish I could say he is the only one making bad choices but that would not be true. I don’t always do the right thing or make the best choices, and definitely NOT when it came to drinking.  So, maybe I am really not acting any better than he is?  Maybe I am not showing up in a way that is supportive enough for him to feel loved or strong enough to say no to stupid decisions.

It is so easy to say things like, “why would you think that was a good idea?” or “why didn’t you say no I am not doing that?” or “stand up for yourself when you know better!”, but maybe as a parent who drank I should be asking myself the same questions.  I knew better, I knew it is not a good idea to drink too much, and I had to learn to stand up to myself or to others and say no to a drink or drinking too much. I knew I should not be drinking so much in front of my kids or around them like I did for years. I knew I was not fully present when they needed me most so how can I say to my son, “make better decisions!” or “think before you do the next wrong thing!”

When and how did I realize two wrongs don’t make a right? 

The scenario where it really hit home for me was when I was drunk and got a call from the police to come get my son.  My son made a bad choice with some friends on this particular Friday night, the what he did, is not really important, but the state I was in was not good either.  Another red flag I was drinking too much, and my son needed me and I was in no shape or a state of mind to help or support him. 

We get a phone call that he and his friends are being held by the police and we need to come and get him. Well, that was the first part of the problem, second part of the problem was me! There was no way I could drive, I had been drinking and thank God I had enough wits about me to know I could not drive myself there to pick him up.  So, in the Lyft we go and pick him up.  When I get there I am frustrated, annoyed and embarrassed because I am not really in any shape to have a conversation with the police.  All in all, there was not a big incident, but my tone and manner with the police on the scene was harsh, short and clipped, which was probably not required.  Why was I that way? Well, short answer is two wrongs don’t make a right.  1) I should not have been that intoxicated 2) I was totally ashamed and embarrassed about the fact that I was drunk and should have been in a better state of mind, sober enough to help my son which led me to you usual reactive state of defensive and angry.  So my tone was clipped,  I became angry with myself, my son and the fact I was not present enough for the situation or to handle it with grace. 

Every time I reflect on that night I am still embarrassed and angry with myself. Now, you might be saying it was not a big deal. It was a Friday night and you were relaxing at home and had a few drinks that is nothing to feel bad about.  But the reality is that if something bad had happened to my son or the other boys he was with I would have been in no condition to support or comfort him.  How would it have looked if I showed up at a police station drunk? Or the hospital drunk?  That is the story on repeat in my head. I can’t imagine how my son would have felt if I would have had to retrieve him from the police station with all the other parents and I was drunk!  Or if I had to come to the hospital if he got injured or one of his friends would have been injured, I would not have been able to comfort him or care for him in the way a mother is supposed. I can only imagine how the other parents would have reacted toward me and where the blame would have fallen in the mix of the kids and who was responsible? My drunk state would have definitely focused blame toward my son and his home life and role models.

So, believe me when I say two wrongs don’t make a right, and sometimes they can end with two very bad “wrongs” which creates an even bigger mess.  These moments of inebriation and being checked out pile up for me like empty bottles in a garbage can and I am trying to figure out the equation for two rights = love and support. I know always being sober is one of the right things for sure.

Clean

Reflections of Striving for Sobriety During A Pandemic

In these current days and times I have been cleaning more than I ever have out of necessity really, to keep my family safe and healthy.  As I wipe every handle and countertop, I think about the word clean and what it means to me when it comes to my drinking.  I am not clean or sober, but striving for that now more than ever so I can keep my sanity and wits about me.  I am heading into a time where my kids will need to be home schooled and cared for emotionally and spiritually.  I need to be clean or clear minded to do that in an effective way for them.  

I am trying to keep my house in order, putting away dishes, cleaning bathrooms, washing sheets and towels way too often.  Washing clothes and dishes everyday to provide an appearance of a clean and less chaotic environment.  As I do these chores I continue to ask myself, how will you strive to keep your mind and body clean during and after this time?  Well, if I am going to put this much effort and sweat into keeping my house clean, I most definitely need to keep myself sober.  There really is no difference, as I write this entry I am cleaning my thoughts and changing my outlook about myself and my drinking. Learning how to clean up the thoughts, actions that keep me stuck in that mess.  It is truly time to roll up my sleeves and get down on my hands and knees and clean up me and my approach to living a much better life.

How will you rise up and be the best mom you can right now, and be able to hold up over this long stretch of time to enable your family and yourself to thrive? Well, let’s start by not isolating or numbing to the point I can’t remember things.  Breathe through the news everyday, or maybe just turn it off entirely.  Engage with my kids, talk to them about everything that is going on, answer their questions and more importantly comfort them, now more than ever.  Be present for them, help them with their new normal of school work from home, help them adjust to very little interaction with friends, and teach them to be good to each other and others in this very strange time.

I can’t say I have all the answers but little things are shifting for me now more than ever.  Not only caring more about making sure the house is clean and organized, but thinking about the reasons I would drink and deriving a plan for not drinking as things seem to cave in on me.  I am making mental plans for myself, physical plans as well, about how I will move my body more, making choices to spend time with my family versus numbing out to the point of black out and forgetting everything from the night before.  That will not make it better, only worse, as the anxiety and guilty takes over with no where for it or me to go.  I won’t lie my anxiety is very high right now and I have tremendous trouble sleeping but I working the plan to help me sleep like less screen time before bed, eating dinner earlier, mediation before bed as well.  I know these things work because when I have used them in the past and stuck with them for long periods of time I sleep much better and I feel much better.  

Cleaning everyday, is the new normal for me, just as working more solidly on my sobriety is my new normal. They go hand in hand, as a two prong plan.  The more I clean up the outside, I am cleaning up the inside. 

One thing won’t fix it all

We are always looking for the quick fix, the instant gratification, but we know it really does n’t really exist.  Most things, almost everything takes work, most of the time hard work.  Fixing things is not always easy and can be messy, frustrating and challenging.  If you are like me you avoid those things by looking for the quick fix or just sweeping it under the rug.  I am speaking to emotional things here not the overflowing toilet or the broken toy for my son.  The stuff we try to fix about ourselves or within ourselves. 

For me that is drinking, to start anyway.  I kept telling myself if I fix that everything, else will fix it’s self.  Really? How could I be so naive to believe that if I stopped drinking my marriage would magically get better or my relationship with my children would just instantly be perfect like Leave it to Beaver?

The things I drank over were vast, motherhood, relationships, shame, inability to be perfect, worrying about how other people would treat me or my family, sports, childhood disagreements for my kids, the list goes on and on. But these things to drink at and my feelings were so much deeper I just never took the time to look at them, I would just observe them and then drink them away.  Well, at these that is what I thought. These feelings and worries never went away in fact they began to amplify, and over time become overwhelming to the point I would have so much anxiety It was hard to breathe and I shifted to a shell of myself and a dark place that just kept getting smaller and smaller with what felt like no escape. 

I never really realized that I was drinking to avoid, numb or just live in denial about how things were transpiring in my life and how things were becoming messier and messier due to my drinking and checking out.  I did not really fix things.  I denied they existed, got defensive about them and when asked or confronted I would fly into a rage. I often cried in secret when it all became too much and about what a failure and fuck up I was as a professional, wife, mother and friend. I would drive home from work in the dark and scream at the top of my lungs because I had no outlet accept to drink. Those primal screams were terrifying, crazy and I seriously believed I was starting to loose my mind.  My reality was slipping away and I knew the curtain was coming down on my reality, soon I would truly be found out or I was going to go some place very dark that I was not sure I would be able to come back from.  

When I finally realized that drinking too much was going ruin me and that I was using drinking as way to not really address anything I was terrified of. By that time it was getting out of control and manifesting in very bad ways. Resentment, shame, anger, fear, and failure, worry and most important I think a lack of love or caring about myself or some of those close to me.  The resentment and shame made me more anger, which in turn meant many outbursts, lashing out, blaming others, being mean and hateful. 

My ability to love my boys and husband was getting further and further away from me and I was both terrified and ambivalent at the same time.  Who had I become or should I say who have I always been, this scared little girl who hid from everyone and everything, never letting anyone in so they could not hurt me.  There were moments in time I would have been happy to walk away, free myself from all of their shit and lack of respect for me.  But there was the other side that I knew if I turned my back, I would lose myself forever and devastate the people I loved.  

I stopped drinking twice now for good stretches of time, not years but 3 and 4 months chunks of time and many things changed for the better but new things emerged or became more clear which also terrified me.  

In these periods of time, I became more engaged with my boys and talked with them vs. yelling at them and being impatient.  I could rationalize with them and discuss things to work through them versus huge blowouts and long stretches of hatred and shame.  I would listen to them, most importantly vs. talking at them.  I spent more time with them and was more available. 

Those were the good things.  The other things that emerged were how much I was resentful of my husband and how much I very much hated the way he talked to me and treated me at times.  The verbal noise and disrespect was blurred and far away when I was drinking or caused reactions that were not healthy but when I was not drinking I was able to see things clearly and my responses were not combative or childish.  They were mature, thoughtful and came from a place of clarity and strength.  I would shut down arguments and call him out when he was creating stories or future tripping where before I would spiraled with him and been overly anxious and always worried about why people did not like me, why I was the problem, why I was weak etc.

When I stopped drinking I would be able to shut down unproductive conversations.  I would simply walk away after it had started calling out the fact my husband was telling himself stories or calling him out on his behavior, including a rationale explanation for why it was not right and I wouldn’t stand for it anymore.

I started questioning what I was doing with my life.  What I really wanted to do, who I wanted to be with and how or if I should make different decisions for the future.  I was starting to dive into how I go to this place, how I was not the mother or in the relationship I wanted to be.  You see it all stems back to the things we don’t want to fix or take the time to learn how to fix.  We just look for the quick fix which in my case became drinking. When I was younger I would just pick up and move so I did not have deal with the mess I made in my currently world. I would run away from everything and everyone.  I would blame everyone else and never examine myself.  In all honesty, I did not even know how to look at myself or my behaviors or that learning to love yourself was a thing.  I was what everyone else wanted me to be.  I would move, I would switch jobs, friend groups, anything I could to escape myself but you know the old saying “no matter where you go, there your are looking back at yourself in the mirror.”

I would try to change myself, want I liked, who I liked so that I could move forward.  Never stopping to do the work to fix what was really going within me.  I kept jumping into new relationships and looking for those relationships to take everything away, the fantasy of finding “the one”.  

I would go back to drinking during these two stretches only to realize very quickly things would go right back to the same place, no progress to the me I wanted to become. I would go right back to isolation, just not engaging, checking out completely.  Disappearing quite honestly. And that shook me to my core!

Now that I have sober AGAIN for a good stretch of time, I am trying to do the right work with the right tools.  Even if it leads to hard discussions, choices I am facing them.  I will not rush, or move fast but make very solid and investigated decisions.  I will take the time and re-engage, work my way back to who I want to become and how I want relationships to be, healthy, mature, nurturing, loving and open/honest. 

There are no quick fixes, there are no magic spells, there is only the work that makes us stronger, smarter and more alive.  I am in this for long haul and time is important but this is not a race and I am not looking for instant gratification.  Only love and admiration.

No Cool-aid Here!

Allow me to introduce myself. I am a friend to many, daughter, mother, professional, wife. I used to be person with very questionable drinking behaviors. In other words a lush, a person who could not stop drinking, manic and most often bat shit crazy. My life became crushingly small and I began to fade away into a very dim place.

I would crush it at work, fail miserably at home and try everyday to figure out how to make it better. But I continued to drink the cool-aid, just like when I was a kid. Sugary goodness that we all knew was rotting our teeth and making us crazy hyper but we drank it anyway.

Cool-aid was a treat as a kid, then for me wine became the cool-aid of my adult life, it was still sugary and sweet but it was taking more from me than my teeth!

For me “cool-aid” is not just about the wine. It is about all the norms we hold ourselves to even when we know better. How to dress, act, who to be friends with, how to be a mom or the good wife. You name it! I was drinking the Cool-aid about all of it but not anymore.

I stopped drinking and starting thinking about how I needed to find my spark again and stop drinking the god damn Cool-aid!

Come along for the ride on my the journey of sobriety, finding myself (again?) and living life with all the ups, downs and in between.

Fake It To You Make It

Fake it to you make it was a saying my old boss used to say and it always made me chuckle.  The saying was always referring to work and used when we did not know something or total understand something new or different.  We were both obviously very smart people but there were the times when we would have to take on new programs, teams or work that was really new and we would have to work hard  to really understand it to make good decisions.  If I was nervous about it or did not how I would present information she would always reassure me with a quick “fake it to you make it” comment and we would both laugh, lifting the worry or anxiety around whatever it was we were trying to figure out or explain to others.  

We never really meant “fake it” as in just fake what you really know and don’t know.  We always dug in and figured it out. We always took the time to study, learn, interview and dive into the right level of detail to support our people and teams.  It was not a cop out, more of a way to get over the worry and acknowledge we were smart and did not have to be afraid.

I tell you this story because I was faced with an invitation last night to visit with my neighbors, super nice people who are very out going and our sons are very good friends.  We live really close to each other and I wanted to get to know them better.  

We are new to our neighborhood, which is very social, and they know everyone so I thought it a good idea to go over and visit. They asked me over for a margarita.  Yes this is were the puberal needle scratched across the record and brought me to a halt.  CRAP! I want to go! CRAP! I can’t go! CRAP! How will I explain why I am not drinking? CRAP! CRAP!

So I texted her back to say I was waiting for pizza for the kids and one other thing.  Then I started pacing and wondering if I could go over and just not drink? But then I thought what if they think I am a prude, uptight and not “like them”? Would they put me in the “not fun neighbor” bunch?

I know your are thinking “what the fuck are you doing”? No, is a complete sentence right?  Well, right or wrong, I was not truly thinking of myself but my son.  He is such good friends with the boy next to us and all the other boys they hang out with.  I was worried they would not include him or not invite him or us to parties or boating etc.  I just did not want my “problem” to become his or impede him from friendships or a full life in any way.  I am not saying they would do this at all! It was the story I was telling myself, on repeat in the moment. Whether it was really ever going to come true or not it was the story in my head.

So I started mapping the scenarios for myself about how I could go over and not drink but make it look like I was drinking.  “Fake it to you make it, right?”  Well, I had several scenarios in mind.

  1. Bring a drink with me so I could say, “I’m good I brought something with me”.
  2. Bring a drink with just a tiny splash of something in it just in case they ask what it is and I could feel like I had taken the edge off.
  3. Don’t bring anything and say, “just making a quick pit stop” as the boys are having friends over and I can’t leave them for too long.
  4. If they ask me if I want a drink or a refill I just say, “Na I have to get up early tomorrow to get some work done before the kids get up.”
  5. Just say it is too late tonight and I have kids here but next time for sure.

Ok, you must be thinking that is a lot of time spent on thinking about how not to drink! Yes, it was and I knew it and still know it.  And I know better! I know it should not matter if I drink or not for people to like me. I know I can fake it to save my sobriety and I know I can just say, “No”. No to coming over, no to a drink, no to thinking too much about whether or not I have to drink to be friends with people.  I know all of things.  

There are some many times when we can over think or beat ourselves up about this drinking thing.  I know we need to protect ourselves and our sobriety and make good decisions in order to keep it. 

This story and scenario is real and happens all the time for people new or at shaky points in their sobriety. So what was my choice from the list above?  Not the right one but one I learned a lot from this scenario and how to be stronger, wiser and to fake it until I make it. 

I learned many lessons and better tools from this experience.  I learned to fake it.  I learned I can still go and give myself permission to say no thanks to a drink and to change the subject. “Want a margarita?” “No thanks, hey catch me up on what has been going on with you guys.” “ What’s up with the boys?”  Basically, changing the subject and moving on to a different topic to take the focus off the drink.  Or I can bring my own “cocktail” or cup with fizzy water so they will not even question whether or not you want a drink cause I have one in my hand.  “Want a refill?” “No, that’s ok I have an earlier day tomorrow so I am taking it easy tonight.”  

All these answers and actions are so easy right?  Well, that night I did not use my tools and did not keep to my story I was afraid and anxious they would not like me or my son if I did not come over with a drink – with a splash  in it to take the edge off or have a refill margarita with them.  So I did both of those things.  Both wrong, both I regret. 

I half beat myself up over it and half felt I learned a very great lesson.  I can fake it to I make it and no one will really question me or ask me to drink.  I can show up empty handed or with a drink in my hand that does not have alcohol in it and no one will know the wiser.  I realized they really did not care whether I had a drink in my hand or not.  We had a great conversation with tons of laughter, talked about getting together with our families, all things I wanted to happen.

The peer pressure we have felt while growing up to fit in and be liked does not go away as an adult.  We are creatures that crave connections and for those of us who don’t drink we can give ourselves permission to “Fake it to we make it” in order to learn how to navigate fostering connections.  We can give ourselves permission to pick the right answers from the list above.  Go and bring your own drink without the alcohol of course. Go and just make it a quick pit stop with the caveat you have something going on that you have to get back. Don’t go and politely say next time.  These and many other suggestions can be your choices.  You don’t have to give in like I did because I was wondered about what they would think of me or how much they would or would not relate to me and want to be better friends.  

The point is they will either like you or they won’t sober and you can fake it you make it with no harm, no foul done to move past the initial “get to know you better” scenarios.

I have learned a valuable lesson and added tools to my toolbox from this scenario.  One, I am sure I will face over and over again.  I share this story for those of you faced with similar experiences. Do what is right for you and your sobriety.   “Fake it to you make it” with the definition of I am learning, growing and figuring it out as I go. Or just don’t go.  Just make the choice about you and what it best for you and your boundaries.

The Art of Stop, Not Stopping

It is funny to me, but not in a funny haha way, why trying to stop drinking is and has been so hard.  I understand the addict part of it and the fact it is a diversion mechanism but still why is it so hard.  I guess the saying is true old habits die hard.  There have been so many times I have said to myself, “stop, what are you doing?” or “just stop what is your problem?”  I really can’t say why I continued to make an art out of not stopping but I am finally doing the digging to get to the bottom of it.  

In the current times, which are quite strange, one would think we need to be as clear and as present as possible.  Be ready to make good choices, and be present to keep our kids strong, healthy and not afraid, during these very uncertain times that are very strange to say the least.  But yet the cycle continued. For me, I call it the art of stop, not stopping, because I would come up with a million reasons why I still needed to drink or pretended why I was not stopping.  I continue to use my inner voice and my writing to train my brain and propel myself forward to learn new paths, but some how I typically ended up back on the path of stop, not stopping.

I really can’t say it is a cyclic thing, but then again maybe it is and I just don’t see it that way.  If I break it down, it starts with the voice inside telling me to stop, clean up your act.  Then rationalizing why this so hard or why it is ok to continue to drink, even when I see the progression and the absolute pursuit of numbing out to blacking out.  I am so tired of not remembering things the next day or being worried I was a bitch the night before in some drunken swirl again.  

So what makes up the art of stop, not stopping?

For me it is denial, shame, unhappiness, depression and inadequacy, that I believe creates the perfect canvas for my art of stop, not stopping.  I can name any one or more of these contributors and bring them to the forefront so that I will isolate, numb out and dissolve into nothing so that I don’t have to deal with life or the reality of the day, whatever day that may be.  My art of not stopping is one of mastering the ways of avoidance, shaping shifting and disillusionment and so begins the subtle pop of the cork, the very specific placement the bottle out of sight, the casual refill after refill and all the while slipping away. 

For me the art of stop, not stopping drinking is was wall.   I could get close to the wall, I could even at times get up the wall and stand on top of the wall but then I would fall right back down on the same side of the wall.  I believe in order to change the art of stop, not stopping I need to break through the wall. That my friends will be the key to the art of stopping for me! It is working so far but many you just don’t know how many times I kept trying to climb that wall!

And Then I Woke Up

Not sure my title here will support all my thoughts for this posting but here it goes. I woke up after another night of fitful sleep due to drinking and determined I needed to stop drinking and start diving into many of the current problems in my life that were making me drink.

Reasons for current drinking?

  1. FOMO – FOMO can go to hell. I know where the train is headed and just because the people I am stewing about are behind me does not mean I know know where they are headed.
  2. Dissolve versus resolve. I just want to slip away and not really resolve some of the very hurtful things that are being done to my family and my child right now. So instead of addressing it, I spin up stories, drink to escape because I can not control it.
  3. Need to be found or perhaps rediscovered. I love to make people happy and don’t put myself first. So, I am tossing and turning about how I need to be better, different but basically just WAKE UP and stop numbing/blacking out over every little thing I can’t fix. I want to rediscover myself and not be lost in some puddle on the floor.

My shame and loathing over drinking is just so disgusting and I am done. So, tired of hiding, dissolving and erasing with alcohol.

And then I woke up figuratively, and literally! Ready to make better choices, decisions and starting seeking help and not hiding.

I am good enough, I am worth it. So when I wake up tomorrow it will be with clarity, inquiry, and motivation to do better for myself and my family.

Back in Black

Then fast forward to a few years ago my husband and I were having a lot of parties at our house, kids swimming and adults have fun but then my husband would talk about something someone said, or a conversation from the night before, and I would have to fake the fact that I remembered it.  When in fact, did not recall the conversation or the remark.  I did not remember what was said or when people left.  I would not remember putting my kids to bed or conversations we had had together from the night before. It started to scare me and made me really question if I was losing my memory, Alzheimer’s potentially, but I did not really know that what I was experiencing were black outs.

I never really connected the amount of alcohol I was drinking to the fact I could not remember things.  I would wake up and have to lay there trying to piece together the night before and this was happening a lot! It was beginning to frighten me and make me begin to think that I might need to stop drinking. Finally, I connected the dots or maybe just got real with myself for once, about the fact my drinking was getting worse.

I did not want to live this way, not remembering things, not being there for my kids, not being present with my friends and family.  I did stop drinking for two months and I noticed how much I remembered and how present I was with my family.  But of course then I thought I was cured and could drink again and very quickly I was back in the black again.   

I drank for a while again, then quitting again for 4.5 months and life was great.  I was getting strong, healthy, rational and empowered but made a decision to have a drink at a party and threw it all away.  And by the way, that very night I drank to excess and did not remember most of the evening.  There I was again, back in the black.  Black outs that is!

As I tried to quit and shrink the number of nights I don’t remember the end or going to bed were still growing so I knew I needed to get real, get strong, and bring back the light.  

I am embarrassed of myself as I write this but once the words on the page you can’t take them back. I am embarrassed I keep going back to the thing that makes me numb, less present and ashamed.  When the clarity about what I have to do is so strong I know what I have to do to take back the light and live in the black anymore.

Living in the light is so much better!

The Struggle Is Real And The Time Is Right

Getting off the hamster wheel can be hard, tricky and a general pain in the ass.  The level of frustration, shame and general disgust of my lack of self control.  I know better, I am better, and I am sensing others are catching on to my behaviors.  This frightens me and I am afraid I am setting a bad example for my boys.

So, how do you slow the hamster wheel down enough to jump off? Cause you know if you just jump off, you will jump right back on.  And once you slow it down how do you ensure you don’t look for another hamster wheel to start a new cycle of destruction.  

Every once in a while the hamster wheel slows enough that you realize you don’t have to remain there and you feel amazing, strong, you immediately know the difference so why not just stay off the hamster wheel?

Lack of tools? Lack of self control? Insecure? The mess of everything around us too big to take in? For me it is all of these things.  It is seriously time to get the hell off the hamster wheel for good or I am going to trip and fall way too far down to ever get off.

So, how do you know the time is right? When do you make that call and then hold yourself to it?  I don’t know the right answer but for me the mess in the mirror is getting just too much to take. The lines I said I would not cross are becoming more and more blurry and inside myself – deep inside – I know the time is right.  The nagging in my soul and in my heart are getting too much to bear and the mess too big to clean up by myself.

The time is right when even you know you are bit too far gone and you see a look from someone who loves you and you know they are afraid and they are not sure how to look at you anymore.  That was the signal that my time was up! Enough was enough, now I am trying to figure out how I stay the hell away from the hamster wheel but I know what to do, when to reach out and how to move forward.

I just keep remember that look and how my soul cried out to me and said just STOP!

It Is Just One Simple Choice

Honestly, it all seems so simple you just don’t stop at the store, you just don’t worry about where you are going to be able to drink or get more.  It really is not that hard. It can be as easy as knowing the fact I would not drink bleach or rat poison. So why am I making such a big deal about buying and drinking alcohol when I know it is one simple choice to say no?  

It really is a simple choice to say no, not today.  Really, it is that simple but yet so hard.  I know it is addictive and that is part of the reason it is so hard to say no.  But if we look at like any other bad choices, like not dating a guy we know is bad for us, or choosing friends that make good choices, it should be so simple. 

We look at the weather before we walk out the door to know which coat to where shoes to wear, and we know not to walk alone in the dark in a strange neighborhood. So why is it so hard to just not buy or drink alcohol?

Addiction is a nasty, dark beast that makes us all do the worst things and make bad choices.  We know this as we suffer through the hang overs, off-the-chart anxiety and overwhelming, crippling shame.

So, how do we stop, stopping at the store or buying alcohol? We make plans, try new routes home, stop going to events or keeping patterns of activity that trigger drinking or the thought of drinking.  We play the tape all the way through and visualize the bad, ugly and chaos that ensues once we start and can’t stop.

It works if we just make one simple choice to stop. Change it up and more importantly find support.  I can’t say I have all the answers but I know by putting these words down I making the choice to move in the right direction and can help support you too.