Tag Archives: Addiction

Irreconcilable Differences – A Guest Blog Post by Rich C.

LifeRing’s e-mail groups have always been a great resource of support, encouragement, and community to those who use them as recovery tools. So many of the posts people write come from the deepest parts of themselves as a means of expressing their internal recovery processes. A lot of people have described the end of their relationship to their drug of choice – and their decision to kick it to the curb once and for all – to that of finally leaving of an abusive lover or spouse. A divorce, if you will…

The following is just such a post, created by my dear, brilliant husband, Rich C., which exhibits a…conversation, between one’s newly empowered Sober Self and their Addicted Self. It’s so good, it seems irresponsible not to share it with everyone! 

So here, without further adieu, is a break-up of epic proportions, written by Rich C.:

Alcohol:  Hey, sweetie, it’s been a while.  Have you missed me?  Did you get my messages, and my texts?
Me: I supposed I sort of missed you, but that’s not why I called.  I have news for you.
Alcohol: Can I come over?  Can you tell me in person?
Me:  Uh, not really.  I prefer that we keep our distance.  The news is that I want a divorce.
Alcohol:  A divorce?  What about our vows?
Me:  That’s just it.  I don’t even remember our wedding.  We were hanging out a lot, and next thing I know you’re wearing this ridiculously expensive ring, my bank account’s gone, and I have no recollection of anything.
Alcohol:  Well, darling, I do recall.  As you know, when we make love I do what I can to erase any memories of our intimacies, and other stuff.
Me:  Yeah, I have noticed.  You didn’t used to do that, you know.
Alcohol:  Well, our love has evolved, so to speak.
Me: Yes, it has.  So, are you saying that we made vows, “to love, honor, cherish and obey,” etc.?
Alcohol: Well, you made them.  I don’t do that sort of thing.  But, take my word for it, you recited it over and over.
Me:  Well, here’s the problem.  If/when I promised to stay true, to love, honor, cherish, etc…..
Alcohol:  Don’t forget “obey!”
Me:  Sorry.  Obey, and so forth, “in sickness and in health,” I wasn’t thinking in terms of YOU making me sick.
Alcohol:  Don’t forget “til death do us part.”
Me: Precisely. Right. But it didn’t say I had to wait until my bride murdered me.
Alcohol:  Okay, whatever.  So you want another trial separation.
Me:  No, this time is different.
Alcohol:  Hey, that’s MY line.
Me:  Yeah, and I’m sorry to say I’ve bought it all too many times, but I’ve finally figured out that it’s a lie.
Alcohol:  So anyway, we’ll take a little time away from each other, I guess.
Me: You don’t get it.  I’m done.  Through.  Finished.  Bye-bye.
Alcohol:  Well, I’ll go ahead and give you a call at 5 PM every day.
Me:  No, you won’t.  I’ve taken out a restraining order against you, and I’ve set all my phones to recognize your number and send you to voice mail, which I never listen to.  You call me, and you go to jail.
Alcohol: Like I’ve never been to jail.  Big deal.
Me:  Yeah I know–we went together, remember?  But this won’t be like that.  I won’t be there, and neither will any of your other lovers.  You’ll just be sitting there by yourself, with nobody to talk to.  So you’d better not start your harassing calls, this time.
Alcohol: Well, then I’ll send my mind-worms after you.  You can’t hang up on them.
Me:  You wanna bet?  You know what, you’re just a friggin’ molecule, is what you are.  You have no power over me.
Alcohol:  I’m a part of you.
Me:  You were.  Now you’re just a memory, and a mostly bad one at that.
Alcohol:  (sniffling) Is there someone else?
Me: Yeah, there is.  And her name is Life.  Guess what, she’s not perfect, but she’s not trying to kill me and make me do stupid things.
Alcohol:  Life?  I remember when you’d come over so you could get away from that bitch.
Me:  Yeah, that’s right, I used to do that, but I didn’t know how good I had it then.  And there’s a bonus.  Once I started seeing Life again she introduced me to Bobbi, and Bobbi is my one true love.
Alcohol:  Wait a minute; you’re cheating on me with Life, and you’re cheating on Life with someone named Bobbi?
Me:  No, not cheating.  It’s a threesome, if you will.  The truth is, Bobbi’s a part of Life, just like love’s a part of life. I’ve got my kids, my friends, my hobbies, my work, art, music, all things I love.  They’re not separate from life, and neither is heartache, loss, disappointment, fear, or pain.  But I found out that trying to kill the bad stuff kills it all.
Alcohol:  Come on, you know I’m a great enhancer of pleasures and a reducer of pain.
Me:  You were, but over time you became a pleasure reducer and pain enhancer.
Alcohol:  So, what are you claiming–“mental cruelty,” or something?
Me:  I could, but we’re in California, and it’s a no-fault divorce state.  All I’m saying is “irreconcilable differences.”
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LifeRing Meeting Returns to Los Alamos, New Mexico!

 

We’re pleased to announce a meeting on hiatus for the past couple of years is returning to Los Alamos, New Mexico, beginning on January 11, 2017! Please see the meeting information below:

When: Wednesdays at 6:30 PM
Where: Los Alamos Unitarian Church, Room #2, 1738 N Sage Loop, Los Alamos, NM 87544  
Convenor: Chris B.

Contact Information: E-mail: sobercb@gmail.com

We’d like to welcome Chris back, and we wish him and all new/returning meeting members our best!

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New Study Suggests New Hope for Choice in Recovery!

 

By Craig Whalley

A new study just released in the respected “Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment” (JSAT) offers firm support for LifeRing’s approach to recovery support. The study, conducted by Dr. Sarah Zemore and others from the Emeryville, California-based Alcohol Recovery Group, used a series of member surveys to provide comparisons between LifeRing, SMART Recovery, and Women for Sobriety (WFS), using criteria and methodology much like those used in studies of 12-step programs.

Some of the most encouraging language comes from the study’s carefully-worded Conclusion: “Results suggest differences across 12-step groups and their alternatives that may be relevant when advising clients and a choice of mutual help group. Meanwhile, findings for high levels of participation, satisfaction, and cohesion among members of the mutual help alternatives [emphasis ours] suggest promise for these groups in addressing addiction problems.”

In other words, treatment providers, whose first and only impulse often is to urge all clients to attend 12-step programs, should consider suggesting the alternative groups on an equal footing or at the very least for those clients resistant to the quasi-religious and strongly-regimented approach of 12-step groups. In all 3 so-called “alternative” groups, members demonstrated at least the same level of success as has been measured in AA programs.

A summary of the study can be viewed here. The complete study currently lives behind JSAT’s pay-wall and can be purchased from them for $35.95, but we hope to be able to put it on our website soon. If that’s not possible, then we’ll at least offer as many more details about it as we can.

Of course, the fact that LSR is shown to work very well for many members comes as no surprise to those members! But the larger recovery community, especially including the medical professionals and treatment providers, have often resisted offering multiple paths to sobriety, either out of ignorance or from a firm conviction that “AA is the only way”.

The study shows convincingly that such resistance is misguided. One study is unlikely to change things quickly, but it is certainly a major step forward in legitimizing LifeRing and other secular recovery groups.

 

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New LifeRing Meeting In Lubbock, Texas!

 

We’re pleased to announce we have a new meeting in Lubbock, Texas – our third in the Lone Star State – starting on January 5th, 2017. Please see the meeting information below:

When: Thursdays at 8:00 PM

Where: UU Church, Fellowship Hall, 2801 42nd Street, Lubbock, TX 79413

Convenor: Kristin B.

Contact Information: E-mail: kristinbarron85@gmail.com

We wish Kristin and all new meeting members our very best!

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Enjoying the Holidays: A Guest Blog

 

 

Pat McGraw, a counselor at The Prevention Coalition – a recovery support organization based in Southern California – sent us a lovely e-mail filled links to helpful resources out there for any of you who may find yourselves feeling stressed out and/or struggling through this holiday season.

Please check our Pat’s guest post with those links included, and please – reach out to and keep in close contact with your support groups and friends in recovery. And feel free to contact us here at LifeRing anytime via e-mail at service@lifering.org.

Many thanks to Pat for sharing this information with all of us, and to all of you, we wish you safe, healthy, happy, and peaceful holidays. 

 

Hello there,

While this is a joyful and busy time of the year for most, many people suffering from mental health issues or substance abuse disorder find the holidays to be a challenge.

As a counselor, I see a lot of my clients struggle with putting on a brave face during the winter holidays. For those in recovery, the parties and celebrations are rife with temptation (and explanation). For those suffering from depression and anxiety, the holidays can exacerbate feelings of despondence and agitation — which, unfortunately, can linger even after the holiday season is over.

In an effort to help those who are suffering find measures of comfort and reassurance, I have created a list of resources to share this list with your readers.

How about starting here:

http://lifering.org/2011/11/addiction-and-alcholism-beyond-12-steps/

 

25 Ways to Find Joy and Balance During the Holidays

 

Stronger than Ever: A Counseling Guide for the LGBTQ Community

 

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder During the Holidays

 

Stress, Depression and the Holidays: Tips for Coping

 

Avoiding Family Stress and conflict During the Holidays

 

Happy holidays.

 

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