60 Days Sober

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Yayyyy. Leavin’ the past in the rearview mirror like whaaaaattt.

Grateful to be moving on with life.

Otherwise, I don’t have much to report. My classes at the tech ended, and they’re not offering anything relevant to my programs or interests this summer, so …gah.

I guess I could start hiking.

I’ve been cranky lately, still don’t feel well and I’m just like, anti-social interaction right now. Once again, I have to figure out where I’m going to live…ugh, I don’t know why I don’t just get a car with a nice backseat and start living that parking lot/rest stop life again. Maybe go on a solo adventure this summer.

Oh, wait, there’s no way Tevye could handle that. Shit.

10 Cheapest Places to Live in the U.S.

PS: Got a surprise chunk of money today, and a surprise letter from the Wisconsin IRS…they want money from me…$20 :p. Apparently they’ve been trying to find me since the end of ’15.

Step One

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We admitted we were powerless over alcohol – that our lives had become unmanageable.

There’s really two sub-parts that need to be understood in this step- powerlessness and the resulting unmanageability.

Linguistically, the use of “we” is used here to give the individual taking the step a sense of belonging to the larger group and promote unity – addiction itself is deeply lonely, and here the individual is given a sense that they are moving into a group that has found a solution to their common problem.

When I first did this step, I understood powerlessness to mean that once alcohol or the addictive substance is consumed, the individual has given their power over to the chemical, and no longer has their normal rationality and control.

It seems to me now that we are inherently different than normal people in the sense that even when sober we are mentally obsessed with relieving our discomfort with a chemical solution. The Big Book refers to “mental blank spots” – even after a lot of study and sincere effort, I relapsed.

It is really as if parts of my brains completely ignore obvious warning signals at times…My relapse was initiated by my leg breaking (my left femur, while standing, no particular reason), which meant I had to leave the Oxford House I was in (bedrooms were upstairs, insurance reasons)…my best friend really saved me by letting me stay with her and helping me out for the first few weeks. I started to drift away from my sponsor when I moved three hours away from her, and I was in a wheelchair in a new city, so meetings weren’t readily accessible to me at the point. I moved back to my home town after a while, and what really drove the final nail into the coffin was getting involved with people from my past…even if they weren’t from the completely chaotic period of me life, it put me into an old negative head-space and I put other people’s needs above my sobriety.

Briefly relapsing didn’t cause me to completely unlearn everything I had learned, but it’s put me back into a heavy obsession with drugs and alcohol. I don’t have the physical cravings I had in early sobriety the first time around, but my brain seems to be dedicated to all the drugs, all the time right now. It’s uncomfortable, but I still have the tools I learned I don’t think it’s particularly important if we were born like this or “broke” an internal control mechanism.

Unmanageability manifests itself in different ways and different degrees, but this part of the step furthers the admission of internal chaos with a direct admission of its manifestation into all elements our lives. We are not in control of ourselves, and our lives are now controlled by raw, insatiable need.

By noting that we are in a condition of powerlessness, we open the door to allow a higher power and the strength of the group in our lives. I wasn’t aware that this step had this element of allowing in God until recently. It’s not a major part of this step, but it creates an opening for the next two steps.

Meta-Post

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I’m trying to write a post on how mental health, substance abuse/dependence and culpability intersect with one another, which will be interesting if I ever manage to finish it or figure out what my exact opinion is on that messy combination. However, I keep getting horribly sidetracked by interrelated issues while writing, getting too personal with other people’s lives, which I feel is crappy behavior, have to re-draw the line on where my responsibility began and ended in past situations, which I did with my fourth step, but my perceptions have radically changed in the last six plus months.

One of the main problems with writing this is that one of major events in my life was a messy abusive relationship that I kept going back to. It really should have ended a lot sooner than it did, and I started out talking about my own responsibility with it, and ended up getting tied up with my ex-partner’s end of the situation. The man I was with had a number of wonderful qualities (which is another thing, is people don’t really seem to realize how ostensibly “normal/above normal” abusive people can be in certain areas/seem), but also had a number of physical and mental health issues (beyond what should be applicable to a man in his 30s), including paranoid schizophrenia.

At the time, I kept arguing with myself about how responsible he was for his actions, but it would have been better, I guess, to operate from a different viewpoint. Something more along the lines that no matter what the cause is for certain behavior, especially when it’s repeated, combined with the responsible party’s knowledge of the problem and tendency to put fuel on fire rather than attempt to mitigate it well…that’s pretty good grounds for terminating a relationship, really.

But I feel shitty talking about this, because I feel that people with schizophrenia are talked about negatively too much. I’m certainly no expert on it, but I’ve known two other people well enough to know that it was part of their life, and they were both good people, one of them was pretty instrumental to me psychologically surviving a chaotic portion of my life.
*sighs* I guess the point is that the man is an asshole with schizophrenia, not an asshole because of schizophrenia.

Should I be treating this specific disorder differently than any other medical condition? Honestly, I feel like if, for example, he had heart issues, or even depression, and actively disregarded them while doing things to worsen his health,  I’d feel differently/talk about it differently. But maybe it is appropriate to treat this differently.

 

Reblog: Ranjan Dhar just celebrated 24 years in recovery!

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“At first they will ask why you’re doing it. Later they’ll ask how you did it.” It takes a lion heart to walk alone and pave the path for others to walk on. The beginning of a journey often brings a lot of questions and doubt in one’s mind. Then, there are moments in a […]

via 24 Years in Recovery — Shafa Home

Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls, Stick to the Rivers and the Lakes that You’re Used to…

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I’ve been quietly ranting to myself for a while that any drug that came out after approximately 1980ish is clearly the work of Satan. Specifically bath salts/k2.

Remember when we were kids and trippy drugs were like tubing down the slow-moving river of your mind on a sun-lit Sunday?

These drugs are more being blind-folded, chained up and dragged from a car in one of the questionable neighborhoods of your mind.

Bath salts: “Um, thanks for the contribution, brain, I can see how there’s similiarities between the person I’m talking to and someone that I haven’t seen in five years, that, additionally, I kind of hate. You seem to keep telling me that they’re the same person, though, or at least that they’re strongly connected..You are really not helping me behave in a normal manner.”

k2: “Goddamnit, why do suddenly I think everyone can read my thoughts? Potatoes. Wait, why I am I thinking about potatoes? I KNOW. THAT GUY THAT JUST SUSPICIOUSLY SNIFFED OVER THERE PUT THIS THOUGHT IN MY HEAD BECAUSE HE’S TRYING TO DESTROY ME. Hey, person standing next to me that I’m having a telepathic conversation with, I’m totally right about that shady sniffling fucker over there, aren’t I? At least we’re not him…Christ, what’s wrong with him. Did I pay my taxes?”

And while all that is going on in your head on k2, you’re laughing inappropriately to yourself about how inane the whole thing is, but you can’t stop it/mitigate it in anyway.

You are way too overstimulated to even get things to slow down long enough to explain things to yourself. You know, stop acting weird, you’re the only person in your brain, thankfully, and that stranger who isn’t acknowledging you in any way isn’t plotting your death.

Ugh. Why did I put this crap in my body.

 

The Rape Joke

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(note: this post is a depiction of a rape, so if this is something you’d rather not read about, here’s your warning)

 

(interesting note: i had a dream about writing this post last night. Weird.)

 

I used to tell this funny story in certain company about this time I went home with a guy from a bar. Too many details aren’t necessary, but the point of the story was that I had to push him off me so I could go throw up in the bathroom and we went back to having sex.

 

Which yes, most people laughed at. I like sex, I like alcohol and drugs, these things usually gel, but sometimes there’s accidents. Right?

 

One night I told my “One time I had to stop having sex to throw up” story to a friend. I don’t really remember what we were talking about, exactly, but I think “sexual accidents” was the theme.

So, he stops me. What happened? How did you meet this guy? How did you get home?, etc.

I had to go through the entire story three times, and talking about it is as emotional to me as talking about how it rained last week, and how rain relates to the condensation cycle.

Until he told me to tell the story, but as if I had done it.

As in “I met two girls in a bar, bought drinks for us all night until the taller one got annoyed with me, but the other one really liked me because I got her “hello, world” reference, and at some point explained Descartes Three Types of Ideas to her.

We were there until bar close, and we were both pretty drunk so we walked home to my apartment. It was about a block away, she fell a few times. I live on the second floor, so she tried to get up the stairs, and after spending far too long falling, ripping jeans, and some how she miraculously falls halfway up my stairs, so I just carry her into bed.

I have to pee, so I tell her to take off her clothes, she manages to get her shirt off, but cannot manage to get her own bra off and her pants unbuttoned.

Great.

So, I get into bed with her, we start having sex and at some point, she loses consciousness and seems to stop breathing. I slap her a few times, and she’s back. I ask her if she just passed out, she denies it and seems really confused that I would ask her this.

 

Well, I’m going to cum tonight, fuck it.

 

I go back to fucking her, and at some point she starts to try to push me off. Lol, no.

Okay, now she seems really desperate and won’t stop. I let her up and she accomplishes an interesting combination of running and falling into my bathroom, it sounds like she’s emptying her stomach of everything that she’s eaten during the entire course of her life, I hear the sink start running, and eventually she walks back into the bedroom, curls up in the corner of the bed and tries to go to sleep.

 

Well, I’m going to cum tonight, fuck it.

 

I say something to her, and she says something about not feeling well.

Well, no, she probably doesn’t.

I start trying to roll her over, she starts whining and trying to get me to stop, but eventually gives up.

Back to the original story, I didn’t really consider this a rape or find it upsetting until someone made me tell them the whole story, and from the guy’s perspective.

 

I have no clue what happened after this point, except in the morning we got breakfast from McDonald’s, he drove me home before he went to work, and later that day I bought plan B and washed it down with warm beer.

Apparently at some point during the night I gave him my phone number, though, which made for an awkward phone call approximately a week later.

(Does anyone else thinks it’s weird that he was able to maintain an erection throughout this whole thing?)

I mean, I can tell this story from my perspective without problems, which isn’t…really “normal”, I guess, but talking/writing/thinking of it from the other perspective is difficult. The idea of myself being on top of a person who is severely intoxicated, and :

  1. unconscious and at some point, stops breathing long enough for me to have to slap them a few times to get them to start breathing/responding to stimuli again
  2. forcibly continuing sex with a person who had to terminate sex to vomit, and now has curled into fetal position and isn’t really communicating much beyond “I don’t feel good”…

…I cannot comprehend this man’s decision-making process and trying to follow along with it makes me ill. Not even upset, angry, or sorry for myself, just physically ill. My own reaction to getting hit on by someone who’s heavily intoxicated is “Haha, thanks, go to bed.”

I mean, I don’t feel like I’m insulting myself by saying this was probably not my peak sexual performance, and can’t imagine having sex with a person in this state is enjoyable or a thing a person would really feel good about? Is sex such a rare occurrence in this man’s life that this situation seems okay or manageable in some way?

 

I am not a huge fan of generalizations, but we should all try to operate under a couple rules:


A person who is so intoxicated that they cannot walk on their own is not really that interested in having sex with you.

Unconsciousness is not a come-on.


Water is wet.

Compare and despair

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When I’m in Narcotics Anonymous, I feel like I was too much of an alcoholic and, for lack of a more appropriate word “innocent”. Not even close to everyone in N.A. is a former criminal, but when I do get into “what is used to be like” conversations, I’m just over here as a former consensual/victimless/non-violent criminal, and whoever I’m talking to has a history that’s a little more…”crime-ier”.
When I’m in Alcoholics Anonymous, I feel like I was Queen of the Friggin’ Night.

Some of the women I talk to in A.A. have stories along the lines of ” I know I had reached bottom when I wanted to drink white wine an hour before I was supposed to pick my kids up from school.”

Basically, this made-up woman burned her hand on the metaphorical stove once or twice, and figured out that touching a hot stove was a bad idea and she should look into getting help with her compulsive desire to touch hot stoves. Smart woman.

And then there’s me: “I had to burn down multiple houses and get multiple skin grafts multiple times before I figured out that there might be a flaw in the system somewhere.”

I can’t take me anywhere.