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Miriam's Alcoholism Story ... Alone For The Ride: How Do I Stay Sober Without Support?

by Miriam

I've been sober for two days. I still don't believe I'm an alcoholic, but then why am I here, reading everyone's stories? Still in denial perhaps?

I've been a heavy drinker off and on for 25 years. I partied hard as a teen and in my early 20's. I switched to a bottle of wine a day until I was 33. Then I had a work accident.

After this, I developed depression, anxiety, ptsd and was diagnosed with Borderline Personality disorder. During therapy, horrifying repressed memories surfaced and out of my own safety, I disowned my family, legally changed my name and moved a thousand miles from my home town. I no longer work, as I'm on permanent disability from the after-effects.

I recovered from the physical part of the accident, but the mental health issues are extremely challenging...I was in weekly therapy and on meds for 6 years, so I did not drink, but when I finally was "allowed" to ween off the meds, I slowly started drinking again. I've incorporated some natural remedies, which help a little. I'm very not willing to return to pharmaceuticals, they really had a terrible physical and mental affect on my body, even though they curtailed the depression and anxiety - it's a no-win situation with the meds unfortunately!

One of the aspects of my mental health issues is a needful desire to be alone, away from people. I lost all of my social skills and being around others triggers my anxiety, which materializes itself into self-harm. I've come to accept my Borderline and anxiety issues. Believe it or not, I'm actually happy with me now, I don't feel the need or desire to be around others. I have a few online friends, but that's very safe for me. They don't know everything about me.

But now...I'm starting to feel better, i.e. depression-wise. Instead of living in a dark hole, I want a future. I want a home. I'm okay with being alone in life, in fact, I relish it now. But that makes for having zero support when it comes to quitting drinking.

Meetings are out, the social aspect of anything is a terrible trigger. I can no longer afford therapy, so I'm really on my own.

Which I'm okay with, not whining at all. But I keep reading the advice that you "need" such a great support system. If I'm unable, and unwilling to be social, am I doomed to fail?

I've been drinking a bottle of wine each day, which I grudgingly suppose is excessive...

Anyway, not sure what I'm asking for, but I hope nobody tries to suggest support systems, I don't want to keep triggering the cutting. My only confidante is my doctor, but she's not available 24-7.

I'm not writing this for pity either. I say this because I went to another board, and every one there said things like "oh you poor thing, why don't you contact your family" or "you need to socialize to be successful in life, why don't you just take baby steps to meet people" and so on and so on...they didn't grasp anything I'd written about my disorders or desires unfortunately.

I know that changing one's lifestyle and developing good, fun, healthy habits is essential for not only recovering alcoholics, but for everyone. I do what I can with my limited funds, but being home 24/7 is outright boring at times. I believe I restarted to drink out of boredom. I try to go for walks, I have an old canoe I pull out on nice days, I read when my mind is not distracted, I write, I journal, I have a set of paints that has sat there for 5 months gathering dust, I cook when I have the energy...not sure what else I can do to keep myself busy. Not working at my age is like a death sentence it seems. I HATE being retired, well, forcibly-retired.

I think my case is unique. So far, I've been reading books, websites and just trying not to drive to the wine store. Can I do this alone? Has anyone else succeeded alone? How do you pass the time, in a circumstance like mine, without using alcohol to help?

I realize how I'm not seizing the day, believe me...time is going too fast, but my anxieties prevent me from always living in the moment.


Comments for Miriam's Alcoholism Story ... Alone For The Ride: How Do I Stay Sober Without Support?

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Dec 13, 2010
by: Anonymous

To answer the question that is also the title of your story...

You dont!

Sep 13, 2010
never knew
by: Anonymous

your story is so touching.i never thought someone else was like that but i am.i am not sure what i am i like being alone as well. i am not working i am on dis; as well i hate that i can't work .i hate myself i don't forgive myself cuz i don't know how. i feel like i am in hell and i have no one to talk to.I AM HAPPY I READ YOUR STORY CUZ I DON'T FEEL SO ALONE.

Aug 02, 2010
Just want to say...
by: Miriam

Thanks to those who actually READ my post and gave me some decent words.

I think it's important that I be free to respond to the comments. Honest is the best policy and perhaps in hindsight, some of you will see why your answer was insulting to me. I do hope that the moderator does not censor my response. We need to see the good and the bad don't we?

Without sounding too angry, I would like to ask why people insist on projecting their own beliefs, worries and values on others?

Just because you are a "social animal" doesn't mean I am, nor do I want to be. In fact, I've never seen any reputable lab or field operation that has scientifically proven that ALL humans, beyond a doubt, are social animals. Why do you project this on me when I've said over and over that I love being alone?

This is why I avoid talking to people, they don't LISTEN.

I've never been happier in my life. Sure, the drinking was out of control, but that didn't change the fact that I was happy.

I was MISERABLE for the first 40 years of my life when I was around others. I'm happy now.

Solitude is bliss. I've stopped binge drinking and I'm happy that I did. But that doesn't make me want to be around others! It's slightly insulting to hear that kind of "advice" when I've clearly stated what I desire for my life.

Anyway, I won't come here anymore because it's clearly not working for me.

Thanks to those who read my post.


Aug 01, 2010
You sound a lot like me
by: Greg A

Miriam, I felt so much anger toward my parents for what they had done to me that I changed my last name. It was also easy to corrupt into "coo-coo-man" & I felt ashamed of it. An unintended consequence was to further alienate my daughters for rejecting their last name.

Beginning in the 80's I've been diagnosed with alcoholism, major depression, OCD, BPD & finally PTSD & BPD-II. My treatment focusses on the BPD-II using medication to level out my extreme mood swings & help me to function without returning to alcohol. That prevents the suicidal depressions I experience when I stop using alcohol.

It's obvious to me that I had become socially phobic because most everyone in my world attacked me at some level. Some did it out of their own illness, peers did it because I was easy to pick on, and teachers did it because I was one of the class misfits & good for a lot of laughs. It still pains me to think about it.

I'm 56 now & still haven't fully left that world. I've been the one lashing out at authority figures, bullies & lazy coworkers--& the result is that I have ostracized myself. Some even hate me & I have only to look at myself to see how I brought that about.

I'm not giving up on myself, though, because I'm sober & I'm functioning better than ever. I'll take the negative side effects from the meds over what I had with alcohol. I also did EMDR therapy on my PTSD which was highly successful.

Don't give up on yourself & people. We're social creatures & need to be connected to others. The most important truth I learned in my most recent hospitalization & outpatient treatment was that the world I experience today is the one that I alone create, & until I accept responsibility for myself, I will continue to recreate the same pain & anxiety & I will continue to lash out against my mirage.

Jul 30, 2010
5 days sober
by: dani

i too was drinking a bottle of wine a day, hiding one and having another in the cubbord so my glass was never empty but noone knew how much i was actually drinking, i too did not think a few glasses or bottle of wine made me an alcoholic until my fiancee gave me an altimatim, to slow down, i tried but only led me to drink in secret.

i have been sober for 5 days on my own i too dont like meetings and group sessions, not to say i will never attend, i just want to try on my own.
i too feel very alone, no pat on the back for 5 days of being sober when noone really knew how much i was drinking.

it is friday and a big challange not to drink on this long weekend.
today i will not drink.
i travel home from work and force myself not to drive to the liqure store. i went to timmies instead.

if it helps i do feel much better, even lost 3 lbs, my head is not foggy and other than thoughts of my challange of staying sober, i can think and react a lot more quickly.

i think its great that you have become aware that you want more in life and i feel you will succeeed in happiness, your on the way by writing your story
you can always write me if u want

Jul 29, 2010
It's About Doing What Works For You
by: C-P

There is no right or wrong way to achieve sobriety. Sure it helps if one can get support from some kind of support network - but if that is just going to cause you more anxiety - you have to work around that and find ways that work for you. has an excellent forum section where you can interact online with others, but at the end of the day we're all different so we have to find what works for us - even if it isn't totally conventional. What makes you happy? What helps you feel peaceful and content? Then simply focus on doing more of those things - and less of the destructive type behaviours that contribute to your drinking. Especially since you enjoy solitude, have you looked into spiritual and transformational practices like meditation? Journalling can also be very helpful. Reading lots of inspiring material. You simply have to experiment until you get into the habit of doing those things that make you feel good, uplift you - rather than make you feel crap. As a side note - I've found a wonderful tool that has helped me tremendously with anxiety and depression, it's called Holosync - feel free to check it out here. But whatever you do - it's not about what other people think. It's all about your sobriety and finding what works for you. Good Luck and God Bless

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