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 Can You Relate?

As one person struggles with recovery from severe childhood abuse (multiple kinds), she writes here about her view of alcohol throughout her journey. In the absence of effective coping strategies or when the stress becomes overwhelming, we tend to turn toward less healthy and unhealthy coping strategies. These can unfortunately offer temporary relief which itself become desired, yet, over the long run, poorer coping choices contribute to worsening thoughts, feelings and of course behaviours.

Check out the following list of pros and cons for alcohol use and you can determine if any of these may apply in your way of thinking…

PROS

  • I feel like I am close to being human
  • I’m not scared of noises I can’t identify
  • I’m not paranoid of people
  • I laugh and I can feel happy
  • I can walk in public around other people and feel like I almost blend in
  • I can express my feelings better or at least some
  • I can’t feel my constant anxiety, worry and stress
  • Flashbacks don’t stress me out as much
  • I eat…because I need to….
  • I dance, sing, swim, listen to music, roller blade , bike ride, play with the kids, jog because it’s fun
  • It tastes so good and feels warm inside my body
  • I don’t focus on anything bad… I just enjoy floating around with no inside pain
  • It feels familiar and comforting
  • I don’t feel so alone and hopeless

CONS

  • That makes me an alcoholic = not a nice label
  •  My liver probably hates it
  •  My moods, emotions, memories, identity can change quickly
  •  I have less control over who is in charge… if any….
  •  Past experiences have led to many undesirable consequences, eg. abuse, jail, loss of a child, suicide  attempts, car accidents, homelessness, etc.
  •  Shows a bad example to my children so it must be hidden and it makes me a liar
  •  I can’t afford it
  •  Sometimes it makes me not human
  •  Sometimes it makes me forget my body belongs to me and I don’t care about it
  •  I can be too impulsive
  •  I can find myself places I don’t want to be
  •  I forget who I am or where I am and where I belong..

Using alcohol comes with risk. Why do I sometimes feel like it’s worth it? It’s not. I know that. It’s just so nice to have a break from my dysfunctional exhausting brain.

 

8zaebiho

Why stop any addictive behaviour? Because it has reached the point where it is getting in the way of important relationships, blocking progress at home and work and/or because you simply want a better quality of life. Addictions can become such habitual behaviour that the body and mind simply become used to this.  Stopping addictive behaviour in its tracks often requires a team effort with a wide variety of supports and strategies.

Motivation to change increases when we explore the benefits or positive results that will happen as we take back control of our health.

One young man listed his top 10 motivators for stopping drinking as follows:

  1. Better myself
  2. Quality of life – e.g. travel, socialize
  3. Accomplish things – around house, with friends, at work
  4. Own a house – currently drinking a mortgage payment per month
  5. Family’s well being – so they don’t worry and are happier with me
  6. Physical health – healthier energy levels, organ functioning and sexuality
  7. Mental health – increased confidence, happiness and peace
  8. Spiritual health – strengthen my spirit, explore faith possibilities
  9. $$$$$ – save and re-invest thousands ($1000.00 to $1400.00 per month)
  10. LOVE – express this emotion through my actions toward me and others more!

Addictions can become all consuming thoughts and actions interfering with almost every area of our lives. No matter what the addiction, we can overcome it with help and by shifting our thoughts toward more hopeful and positive ones. Intentionally changing our mind is complicated.

Our professional registered counselors in Oshawa can assist you anywhere in Durham Region or even farther via internet video counselling sessions.

If you are, or a friend of yours is, struggling with an addictive behaviour, one that is causing you concern… even modest concern…then dig deep for the courage to reach out for help!  To find out how we can help Contact us today

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