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In fact, most people don’t have the time or the energy to devote to making my existence miserable. That doesn’t keep me from blaming them, however. It’s not even so much blaming, as it is my disease looking for any and all excuses.

Step 5: Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

The blame game has been honed over the years to serve a very specific purpose: justify my alcoholism. I didn’t need reasons to drink; that level of fooling myself went away years earlier. I was going to drink regardless. The finger-pointing, even if it was at myself, seemed to help lower my level of shame.

When I joined the program and outed myself, a number of friends and relatives wanted to know why I was an alcoholic; was it because of ________ ? Had they left the line blank, I would have responded “yes.” But the idea that if everything was perfect and awesome and life was one big pat on my back I wouldn’t be an alcoholic is preposterous.  Instead of being the unhappy drunk that can’t get his life together, I’d be the drunk who had everything and still needed to escape. It’s a disease. It’s not a problem that, once solved, everything goes back to hunky-dory. It’s a problem that, once identified, can be worked on daily, lessening the symptoms over time.

The upside of all this is, the program teaches me how to live, not just avoid booze. Turns out my problems go much deeper than stopping drinking. And I can’t work on making myself better when I’m loaded.

A typical day usually comes and goes without much drama. And if some arises, I have many different tools to apply to the situation beyond running, isolating and drinking.

Understand: That feeling of nothing happening? That’s normal life.

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