the process of getting sober, part 1.

So I asked myself, do I need help? Do I have a problem?

No, I can’t have a problem. Let me just cut down on my drinking now that I see I might be drinking too much. I’ll stop for a while. Guess what? I made it 10 days with no alcohol. On that 10th day, look how great I did! I definitely deserve a drink now that I know I can control it!

Now that I know I can do it, I know I don’t have a problem. BOOM. Back to how it was…daily and excessive.

Only this time…I started to not be able to control the person I became after excessively drinking. I started hurting people. I started hurting people DEEPLY. Saying things I never would have said. Doing things I never would have done. I was always so proud of my kindness, my compassion, my empathy. Did I not have those traits anymore? Who the fuck is this person I am becoming? I hate this person.

I decided to check myself into a recovery center for outpatient treatment. It was outpatient because I didn’t stay the night or live there, but I was there Monday through Friday from 8am-6pm. Woah, this is crazy. These people have real problems with like meth and crack addictions. I’m not like these people. But since I’m here, let’s roll with it.

In this recovery center, they focused on both trauma and addiction, treating the two together. They spoke about how trauma can cause addictive tendencies, and how those addictive tendencies can create even more trauma, and the cycle repeats over and over again.

I began to realize the cycle I was in. I went out and drank so that I wouldn’t be socially anxious, ended up doing some shit to embarrass myself. Woke up the next day scared to even check my phone and see the texts I sent, having flashbacks to the fool I made of myself the night before. But I don’t want to think about that shit, let me drink to get rid of that shame and embarrassment. How the hell didn’t I see this before?

I never thought I was drinking to cover any problems I had, but was I doing that the entire time? Covering problems? I never realized that because I drank so much, the problems never arose.

Ohhh but let me tell you my friend, those problems arose REAL QUICK when I decided to stop drinking and be sober.

People think that when someone is overcoming an addiction, the hardest part is quitting the substance. But from my experience, the hardest part wasn’t quitting; it was dealing with all of the things that were hidden for so long that began to surface all at once. The things that made people want to go back to the substance and not have to deal with them.

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