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Is IT (Life) Worth It? ... 100 Days Into Recovery but Have No Joy or Happiness

I started drinking at the age of 12 and progressed to the point where now at 38, I realized I had to stop or die be it from alcohol related health problems or an accident that would surely occur while drunk.


Drinking and drugging was initially a way for me to self-medicate my insecurity issues and feeling like I didn't belong anywhere (alcohol was my drug of choice). My teenage years were a constant battle, always in trouble for something.

I new I had a problem but somehow pulled it together long enough to get through college and professional school. I never made a conscious decision to stop, I just did what I had to do in order to achieve my goals. As my training was nearing the end, alcohol use picked up again and had progressed as if I had never stopped.

I seeked help from therapists to get to the underlying issues but was never 100% honest with them or myself about what I thought was bothering me. My second to last binge resulted in hospital detox. The last one required detox followed by a treatment center.

I knew I needed help and gave everything I had to the program finally being completely honest with them and myself. I realize now that drinking is not the answer and will only make things worse. I have about 100 days of sobriety behind me now, I attend 6 AA meetings a week and 1 group meeting for recovering professionals.

Despite taking all these actions, I find myself constantly thinking, is it worth it (meaning life)? I have no happiness nor can I find any joy in life. I feel I am doing what recovery experts suggest and do not crave any substance to bury my feelings.

A sober mind has brought me to the conclusion that I really do not enjoy living but I am too afraid of spending eternity in hell for taking my own life. I feel that I have just about exhausted every option I know of or that has been suggested to me. Where do I go from here?

Answer



Thanks for your question because it reminds me a lot of my own story - doing what I had to do to achieve certain goals, seeing various therapists without being able to be really honest about my stuff, until I eventually hit an emotional bottom and also went to a treatment center.

In my experience, the way to find real joy or happiness is through finding things to do that give your life meaning, both from a spiritual perspective and from activities that you simply enjoy doing.

Initially I struggled to make sense of the spirituality side of it and how to apply it to my life because organised religion didn't quite sit right with me. So through reading a lot (here's a sample of books that inspired me) - I began to develop a more spiritual way of thinking and life that I feel comfortable with, which now encompasses practices like meditation, trying to life more healthily etc.

But what worked for me might not work for you in the same way so you need to question, explore, and experiment with philosophies, practices etc. until you find something that resonates with you. Don't let conditioned belief systems and ways of thinking hold you back from finding your path, even if it is simply to re-affirm your current spiritual or religious outlook is the right one for you.

And then you need to find things to do that give you pleasure - whatever that may be for you. For me it's getting into nature whenever possible whether it be hiking or taking a run in the forest, reading a good book, watching a movie, playing the sports I like and spending time with my good friends.

But most of all, be patient with yourself. Change and transformation doesn't just happen. You've abused yourself for 20 plus years spiritually, mentally, emotionally and physically - so it's going to take time to feel comfortable and good about yourself. Keep doing the (inner) work through working the steps and incorporating some of the suggestions I've made and your life will change - but it doesn't happen overnight.

I look back 8-9 years to when I started in recovery and think, 'Wow, I have come a long way.' But initially too, I can assure you it was also damn hard for me, I often didn't see the point, and there have been loads of bumps along the way.

So give yourself a break and trust the process and journey because this feeling will pass. But the more you fight it, the worse you make it for yourself. Having said that, if you really feel you're not coping, go and see someone to help you with this. Also talk to your sponsor about it - because the more you're open and honest about it, the more support you'll get and the easier it will be.

You've done well. It sounds like you're putting a lot of pressure on yourself. I know it can be hard, especially when it seems like everyone in meetings is going on about how magically different their life suddenly is, and if that's the case don't pay too much attention. Just keep being real. You'll get through this!

Take Care and God Bless.

Comments for Is IT (Life) Worth It? ... 100 Days Into Recovery but Have No Joy or Happiness

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helpful info
by: Anonymous

It sounds as though you are going through and imbalance that most alcoholics do. I found the key through vitamin and diet therapy and I feel absolutely fantastic. Never had more energy and feel uplifted. I quit drinking many times before, and failed, because I felt depressed and lethargic. I finally succeeded when I found a nutritional progam that deals with the way our bodies process foods compare to non-alcoholics. I take some fabulous mineral supplements that are great.

Even though you managed the quitting part, please get the book 7 weeks to sobriety, to learn the vitamin deficiencies and tools to feel amazing. http://www.amazon.com/Seven-Weeks-Sobriety-Alcoholism-Nutrition/dp/0449002594/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1317564231&sr=8-1

The book that helped me was Susan Powters: Sober and Staying that way. She takes the prinicples of the 7 weeks book and makes it easy to read and understand. http://www.amazon.com/Sober-Staying-That-Way-Alcoholism/dp/0788163981/ref=sr_1_8?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1317564297&sr=1-8

By adding simple things like B vitamins, zinc and amino acids, I have overcome the blues...you can too.

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no resposes gives me the answer
by: Anonymous

no answers for me yet huh???? so you see my delima

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update
by: Anonymous

When I originally wrote this I was about 100 days sober, I will have 9 months tomorrow. I still find myself asking the same question, why go on??? I have had serious episodes of contemplating suicide but just got more depressed knowing I couldn't do it and would have to stay here. I have spoken to a therapist about it and everyone just seems to have the same answer, develop more spiritually, find things you enjoy, help others... The more time I spend sober the more I realise that I really don't enjoy anything. I really don't have any strong emotions towards anything, like I am empty or something. It makes me realise that I drank to keep from being bored. I lost my driver's licence back in Feb. so I stay in an apt over my office during the week and go to my home in the country on the weekends. I go to a meeting on Tues. night and 2 on Thurs. night. I don't even go out of my house from Friday to Sunday. I interact with people in a very personal manner with my job and don't care to be around anyone after that. I'm just not sure what else to do. Still wondering... why bother?

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Build up the faith
by: Anonymous

I definitely agree that it is something that does not happen overnight. Addiction is a form of escape and not having faith in the future, life, yourself, etc. Life is full of uncertainties, and worry, anxiety, stress, etc becomes habit and so becomes a part of you but this is not who you essentially are, There is light at the end of the tunnel and all it takes is a bit of determination, hope, faith and belief. Also patience. You can overcome anything you choose if you believe. And also believe in something bigger, develop your spirituality, build your faith in a higher power and that will give you strength. I highly recommend that you get the ebook from this site. There are some really great tools and advice that could help you along the way. Good luck and be strong.

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