Tag Archive: Substance Abuse


http://www.sobernation.com/5-celebrities-who-bounced-back-from-a-relapse/

5 Celebrities Who Have Bounced Back From a Relapse

celebrities who have come back from a relapse

Being famous definitely has its perks. But, it also has its downfalls. Some might argue that fame and drugs go hand-in-hand and that it’s probably a common occurrence to see, be around, or use drugs when you’re famous. And no doubt, there have been numerous tragic stories of celebrities who have succumbed to their drug addiction. But, we’re here to talk about something positive: Celebrities who have relapsed but who have also bounced back and are thriving!

But first, a word about addiction and relapse. One of the main working definitions of addiction is that it is a chronic, progressive, relapsing disorder. Now, that doesn’t mean that everyone who is recovering from drug addiction will relapse at one time or another. However, keep in mind that addiction is an insidious disease that can sneak up on you and the statistics don’t lie: Information gathered by drug and alcohol rehabs show that the percentage of people who will relapse after rehab and even after a having had a period of sobriety ranges from as much as 50% to an astonishing 90%.

Being in recovery can be tough, no doubt. Being a celebrity in recovery is possibly tougher. We’re told we need to change “people, places, things” but, it’s got to be hard to do that if you’re a celebrity in Hollywood. As a member of an exclusive group, you’d have to mingle with some of the same people as before, visit a lot of the same places and attend the same events (think: Oscars and all those before and after parties and all of that alcohol), as well as be a part of the same microcosm of other famous people.

Here are 5 celebs that relapsed but are sober now.

Robert Downey Jr.

robert downey jr sober

RDJ was the epitome of achronic-relapser. After repeated attempts at rehab though, the actor has been drug-free since 2003, proving that recovery is possible. He credits his family, therapy, a twelve-step recovery program, yoga and meditation, and the practice of Wing Chun Kung Fu.Downey is an inspiring role model to many in recovery: after struggling for so long with a raging drug addiction and its consequences (Downey is no stranger to the justice system), he is thriving in sobriety. With over four decades in the business and an amazing list of credits to his name – the Iron Man franchise, Sherlock Holmes 1 and 2, a hilariously memorable role in Tropic Thunder – RDJ has managed to stay relevant and fresh and is more successful than ever.

Eminem

eminem sober

Several years ago,Eminem was struggling with alcohol and painkillers and decided to go to rehab. Within the first three weeks, he relapsed and within a month his addiction was worse than ever.”I don’t know at what point exactly it started to be a problem,” Eminem said in an interview. “I just remember liking it more and more. People tried to tell me that I had a problem.” He eventually began mixing pills, which led to an overdose. The rapper was rushed to the hospital when he went into organ failure. A month after being released from the hospital, Eminem experienced another relapse.

He says he effectively got sober on April 20, 2008 and considers Elton John to be a close friend and mentor during that difficult time.

Gerard Butler

gerard butler sober

Before becoming an actor, Butler accepted an offer from Glasgow University to study law and, upon graduation, he earned aposition as a trainee lawyer at a law firm in Edinburgh. But, due to his alcoholic lifestyle, hefrequently missed work and, one week before he would qualify as a full-fledged lawyer, hewas fired.Around this time, Butler’s father passed away. Butler has said of this period in his life: “I had gone from a 16-year-old who couldn’t wait to grasp life to a 22-year-old who didn’t care if he died in his sleep.” The 25-year-old unqualified lawyer then moved to London in order to pursue an acting career.  Butler has admitted that, “When I started out, I’m not sure I was actually in it for the right reasons. I wanted very much to be famous.”

Although Butler quit drinking 15 years ago, he was in rehab just a few years back – this time for an addiction to prescription painkillers. Butler began taking painkillers after an injury while shooting the movie Shattered in 2007. “I started taking more. And I started taking them very quickly.” He says he sought treatment through a rehab before it got too out of hand. Butler has been clean and sober ever since.

Kelly Osbourne

kelly osbourne sober

Singer-songwriter, actress, television personality, and fashion designer, Kelly Osborne has madequite a name for herself. However, it wasn’t without its struggles – namely – drug addiction. As the saying goes, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree and Kelly unfortunately takes after her dad, musician Ozzy Osbourne, when it comes to substance abuse.Both father and daughter are clean and sober today. But not without their respective relapses.

At the age of 17, Kelly became addicted to Vicodin – something that had been inadvertently documented on the family’s reality TV show, The Osbournes.

After a fourth stint in rehab in 2009, Kelly said that she finally felt optimistic about her chances at recovery. “After 30 days, I left rehab. For the first time, I felt hopeful. I knew I’d been given another chance at my life, at my career, at happiness. I wanted to grab it.”

Keith Urban

keith urban sober

Musician and American Idol judge Keith Urban is no stranger to rehab – he has been there three times to treat addictions to cocaine and alcohol.“The truth is that I wasn’t even aware of where it was at in my life and how it was just going to come down and take me down like it did,” he told Ellen in 2010. “I was probably in such a state of denial that I consciously wasn’t aware of it.”

After experiencing one relapse, he checked himself into the Betty Ford Center in California in October of 2006. At that time, Urban issued a statement regarding the nature of the disease of addiction, saying: “One can never let one’s guard down on recovery, and I’m afraid that I have.”

Urban has been clean and sober for the better part of a decade now and has continued to enjoy great success. Urban has two daughters with wife, Nicole Kidman, and continues to tour as well as sit as judge for one of America’s most popular television programs.

30…part 1

I am not 30 years old.  Last Wednesday night I was  afraid to go to sleep.  If I went to sleep then when I woke up I would be 30.  Like by staying away I could avoid it.  It’s just a number I know, but for some reason 30 was a scary one.  I was watching TV and trying to keep it together.  I had taken Thursday and Friday off work, so my lack of sleep was not hurting anything.  I was trying not to keep my husband (who still had to go to work in the morning) awake with my panic attack.  I remember how I felt as 9pm and then 10pm rolled around.  The panic was almost too much for me.

I got pretty interested in what was on the TV at that moment (can’t tell you what it was now) And I looked over at the time to see it was 1:30am.  OMG, I was 30!  Nothing felt different, the world had not come to an end, no one was calling me telling me what a failure I was.  I was 30 and everything was just fine.  How could I have been so scared and nothing happened?  I had some how let my thoughts do me in.

As of today I have been smoke free for 70 days and saved $230.  It feels amazing to have made it this far and not feel like I can’t go another day and I know that’s what I can do.  Today I am smoke free, I can only live one day at a time…so I wanted to write down a list…or two…or three  Here are my 30 things…

30 Things that I am thankful for – in no particular order

  1. To be alive
  2. my parents
  3. my husband
  4. my sister
  5. My Sweet furry children
  6. Devereux (Foster care agency)
  7. my job
  8. a roof over my head
  9. my health (as bad as I feel today, it could always be worse)
  10. my friends
  11. al-anon
  12. AA
  13. being able to pay bills and some what on time most months 🙂
  14. My Hubbies substance abuse counselor and his wife who have become very close friends.
  15. being nicotine free
  16. loving my job
  17. a bed to make
  18. food in my house to eat
  19. clothes on my back
  20. people willing to donate items to others in need
  21. a husband who understands my migraines
  22. an understanding Boss
  23. supportive family
  24. being able to express my creative side
  25. strangers who smile back
  26. strangers who smile first
  27. warm spring days
  28. waking up to a Boxer who wants to snuggle
  29. falling asleep in my husbands arms
  30. hearing someone say they think I will be a good mom

 

New Month, next step…

The 3rd step is also the 3rd step in my little cha-cha dance.

Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God as we understood Him.

We made a decision…  this says to me that it is truly up to me to make this choice.  I can choose to be sick and crazy, or I can choose to get better and ask for help from my higher power.  If I ask for help then I have to be willing to get out of the damn way so that He can do what He needs to do to help me. And it’s the care of God not the full control, not the ultimate fix all.  We still have to play a part in our lives, we just have to be willing to ask the right questions and listen to the answers.  It may not be what we want and it may not even be something that we understand at the very moment.  But it is there, if we ask for it.

If I ask for the ability to understand my husband, He is going to give me a situation where I have to be understanding.  If I want to forgive my husband, He will give me a situation where I will need to forgive.  If I ask to be more patient, He will give me a situation where I have to show patience.  He is not going to magically give me what I ask for, He is going to give me the tools to show myself that I have the ability to do it.  Al-Anon has shown me that when I asked for strength, He showed me that I am strong.

So as we start our step 3, remember that it is in this step that we learn that God is willing to show us what we already have inside us, if we are willing to trust Him and ask for His help.  It’s like asking for someone to take the blindfold off so you can look at your self for the first time.  You get to see all the wonderful things inside you that has been there the whole time, it was just hidden behind our own blockades.  We pulled off the blinders, we pulled back the shades…seeing the true self that is there by asking God for His help, we should be ready for the next step – Our personal inventory, but more on that next month.

If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too.

 

 

February 2013…

Smoke

Smoke (Photo credit: AMagill)

Hello February – Ready for step 2?  well good because here it is:

Step 2 –

Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

Last year I explored the meaning of the word Restore…why?  Well because it stuck out to me, that’s why.  This year the word that stand out to me is Could.  It could restore us to sanity.  It’s not a false promise, is not a answer to fix all that is wrong with me.  I have to do be present in this journey of getting back to sanity.  My Higher Power can help me get there, if I let it.  I have to get out of the darn way and let him take some of this weight off my shoulders.  If I don’t let go, if I hold on with everything I have to things – how can I take a hold of the gifts of today?  How can I reach towards the future with hands full of yesterdays crap?

Could [kood; unstressed kuhd]
verb

1.a simple past tense of can1 .
auxiliary verb

2. (used to express possibility): I wonder who that could be at the door. That couldn’t be true.
3. (used to express conditional possibility or ability): You could do it if you tried.
4. (used in making polite requests): Could you open the door for me, please?
5. (used in asking for permission): Could I borrow your pen?
6. (used in offering suggestions or advice): You could write and ask for more information. You could at least have called me.
I find that even if I have read all the pages in the ODAT (One Day At A Time, Al-anon daily reader) a story will stick out to me in a different way.  I see what I need to see when I need to see it.  I can get out of a story what I need to hear at that moment in time.  It will be different for me each time, and that’s the best part about it.  That means I can read that book 100 times and still get something different each time.
If I can learn the art of letting go, this happy feeling I have today might just stay with me for a while. Last Thursday was my 30th day of being a non smoker.  I consider myself to be a non smoker now because I don’t want to go back to it.  If by calling myself a non smoker, I can resist giving myself permission to do it again.  So yes, 30 days as a non smoker and today is  30 days till my 30th birthday.  Yeah – what ya got on all my three’s!  I hope you all have a good day.
If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too.

A look at Causes of Relapse…

Causes of Relapse (as offered in AA meetings)
1. Failure to go to AA meetings.
2. Failure to take the 12 steps.
3. Involvement in an emotional relationship.
4. Association with the old crowd.
5. Failure to get a sponsor.
6. Failure to read the Big Book.
7. Desire to achieve oblivion.
8. They didn’t “want it” badly enough.
9. Etc.

I never really drank so I can not relate to all things that an alcoholic is going through.  But I do have an addiction to nicotine.  So I understand how relapsing can make you feel like a failure.  You want to blame others, blame things, blame situations.  We come up with all kinds of reasons as to why it happened to make it OK in our minds that we slipped up.

Here is a distillation of Big Book causes of relapse:
Causes of RELAPSE (according to the Big Book)
Count:
7….a. Failure to grow spiritually.
4….b. Fighting with or harming others.
3….C. Failure to work with other alcoholics.
2….d. Failure to take step 5.
2….e. Attempt to shield from alcohol.
2….f. Failure to make amends.
l….g. Selfishness.
l….h. Resentment.

~ I too can have a relapse back into my old ways.  I could go right back to letting my life be ruled by someone else.  I could go back to being sad, hateful, angry, lonely, with-out faith, with-out hope.  It is always there, ready to pounce.  I have to be active in my thoughts and retain my faith and turn things over to my higher power.  If I take my anger and turn it over – there will not be any negative soil for those nasty things to grow in.

~ I too can relapse back into the craziness that was my life for about 6 years.  Not knowing who I was going to get walking in the door when my husband got home.  I had no idea when he was going to be home and if he was already going to have some beers in him.  I had no way of knowing when he left work, where he stopped on his way home, if he was dead or alive.  I worried about him and feared him at the same time.

~ I don’t want to go back to that way of thinking.  It is getting better day by day.  A little bit at a time I am able to let go of those feelings.  It’s not that they might ever really go away – but it’s what I do with those thoughts and feelings that matters now.  I have to tell myself that I can control it, change it or cause it.

All I can do is pray and turn it over.  Everyone will have to face themselves in the mirror and that is the person who you have to deal with.  That person staring back at you from that shiny piece of glass.  Those eyes that show all your inner most feelings – can you look yourself in the eye?  I know that when I wake up in the morning  – I can do that.  I can face myself knowing that I have done the best that I can and that I am the only person who is truly responsible for my happiness.  I am still working on my 4th step, so I can be ready to move on to the rest – one step at a time.  Is it easy – NO.  But the right thing may not always be the easy thing.  Sometimes the right thing to do is the hardest thing you will ever have to do so far.  One step – one day – one moment – one second – at a time.

 

Circle of friends…

A few Sunday’s ago I was invited to the closed Sunday night AA meeting by a few members to see a friend get his Chip.  13 year sober birthday, I was honored to be invited.  They got a chocolate cake that I could not eat, but that’s OK – it’s what he wanted for a cake.  We had to move our meeting outside due to the regular room being full of items and no one had a key to the other room.  So we grabbed some chairs and made a big circle outside, it was a beautiful cool night in southern Arizona.  We did have to compete with the trains going by, but that was OK too.  Added a bit of atmosphere to the meeting.

Sitting there in the circle with friends, my husband, a new comer – it was just amazing.  Some of us cried, all of us laughed.  It was a night full of stories, prayers, hopes, dreams, fears – It was just amazing all the way around.  I liked sitting in a circle – being able to see everyone as we shared was just so special.

I am so very thankful for the meetings that they open up for me.  I always feel welcomed and they all say how glad they are that I came.  They know that support is a needed part of anyone’s sobriety.  I have tried to make sure Hubby knows I support him.  Now that it is getting cooler at night it might be getting closer to when we can go to the bonfire meetings that they have out here in the desert.  A meeting around a fire with a potluck – oh I am so there.  It was too hot in the summer time even at night to even think about a campfire.

I must apologize for my lengthy time between posts lately.  My life has been crazy, the amount of time I can take to take care of myself is less that I would like.  I consider this something I do for myself.  I get to unleash all the thoughts in my head and get them out of the way.

 

Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

I am very sorry about how tardy I am in getting this post done, but I have been very ill for the past week.  I have had to miss almost a week of work and have been working from home.

This step scares me, I am not sure even where to start.  I want to get the book “blue print for progress”  I think it will be better for me to have a guide vs staring at a blank piece of paper.  I do that almost every morning when I start to write these posts, but its a little different.  It’s hard for me to explain.  Moral inventory, that involves diving deep within myself and exposing all the bad with the good  I was told that every time you do set 4 it’s like peeling an onion, you go a little deeper each time.  Remember these steps are not just a one time deal.  They are something I will be working on for the rest of my life.  I have yet to find a AA or AL-Anon book with the 12 steps page either torn out or with perforations.  It’s not something that you just run through once and your are good to go.

I know someone who has been working on their step 4 for almost a year now.  There is no time limit, there is not rules as to what you have to put down.  It’s all on how far you can go at this time.  I was told that each time I go through the book “blue print for progress” write it in the book in pencil or write it on other paper, but date it so when you do the step again you can re-read the other stuff you wrote and see how much you have grown.

 

How Common Are They?

I have been wondering about the lack of sleep we get and the increased chance of abusing a substance.  So I did some googling and found a few articles on this.  Thought I might share one with you.

www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2766287/

Sleepy

Sleepy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sleep Disorders in Substance Abusers

Youssef Mahfoud, MD, Farid Talih, MD, David Streem, MD, and Kumar Budur, MD

Youssef Mahfoud, Dr. Mahfoud is an Addiction Psychiatry Fellow from the Department of Psychiatry, University Hospitals, Cleveland, Ohio;

Contributor Information.

ADDRESS CORRESPONDENCE TO: Youssef Mahfoud, MD, University Hospitals, WO Walker Center, 10254 Euclid Ave., Suite 3200, Cleveland, OH 44106; E-mail: youssef.mahfoud@uhhospitals.org

This article has been cited by other articles in PMC.

There are some interesting things in this article.  I will post a few things and then talk about it a bit.  If you would like to see the full article please see the link above.

Abstract

Substance abuse is a major public health problem with high morbidity and mortality. Comorbid disorders are suspected to cause a high relapse rate. Subjects with sleep disorders tend to self medicate with alcohol and tranquilizers to promote sleep or abuse stimulants to stay awake during the day. Substance abuse can, in turn, cause sleep disturbances, which can result in relapse. No studies have systematically studied the prevalence of various sleep disorders in these subjects.

Methods: This is a cross-sectional study conducted at the Alcohol and Drug Recovery Center (ADRC) at Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, Ohio. Subjects with active substance abuse and the ability to consent were recruited to complete a comprehensive sleep disorder questionnaire, including a general medical, psychiatric, and substance abuse history as well as validated scales (e.g., Insomnia Severity Index, Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI), Berlin Questionnaire for sleep apnea and restless legs).

Results: Thirty patients completed the survey so far. The most commonly abused substance was alcohol (80%) followed by narcotics (40%); about 66 percent were polysubstance users. Forty-six percent of the patients reported using substance to self-medicate sleep problems. The prevalence of various sleep disorders in this population along with the prevalence in general population in parenthesis are as follows: Sleep impairment (PSQI>5) was noted in 96 percent (15%) of the subjects, and 56 percent (10–15%) had insomnia of moderate-to-severe degree. Symptoms suggestive of sleep apnea were reported in 53 percent (4–6%) of the subjects and restless leg syndrome symptoms in 33 percent (10%).

Conclusion: Substance abuse is on the rise and affects every aspect of society. Our study has, for the first time, systematically evaluated various sleep disorders in these subjects who seem 5 to 10 times more likely to have sleep disorders. Diagnosing and treating sleep disorders will have a huge impact in inducing remission. However, this study has significant limitations, including a small number of subjects, subjective data collected via questionnaires, and no long-term follow-up, which makes it difficult to draw conclusions.

 

sleepy fairy

sleepy fairy (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I had a feeling that there would be a link here.  I know on many nights my hubby would say that he could not get to sleep unless he had a bit to drink.  Well that “bit” kept getting bigger and bigger.  It’s the self medication that some times can make the issue at hand worse and if we are being treated by a Dr for the condition, taking the RX meds and still self mediating we could be causes the medication from the Dr to not work, or making even work in a negative way.  We might just be over all making the situation worse.

The sleep aids is a big grey area with me.  I take some over the counter ones once in a while if I can not sleep.  Most of the time it is either stress related or migraine induced.  I play a game on my lappytop or read a book to help unwind my brain, but if my head is pounding the book is not going to do me any good.  I try not to take them very often and sometimes I wait till it’s too late to take them.  I have to be able to drive to work the next day.

Introduction

The relationship between substance abuse and sleep is emerging as an area of great interest for researchers. According to the 2007 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 7.6 percent of Americans older than 12 years met the criteria for alcohol abuse or dependence, and the prevalence of illicit drug use in the same year was as high as 14.5 percent.1 Similarly, sleep disorders are also very common. The National Sleep Foundation’s Sleep in America Poll, 2008, showed that about two-thirds (65%) of working adults reported experiencing sleep problems at least a few nights a week within the past month, and 44 percent reported this occurring every night or almost every night.2

I am part of that group that has an issue getting to sleep more that a few nights a week. 

Several studies have reported sleep problems associated with the use of several illicit drugs, and the vast majority of alcoholic patients entering treatment reported insomnia-related symptoms, such as difficulty falling and maintaining sleep.3,4 For example, the prevalence of insomnia ranged from 36 to 72 percent in patients admitted for alcoholism treatment, depending on sample characteristics and instruments used to measure insomnia.46 The polysomnographic features after drinking alcohol, during withdrawal, and during abstinence are well defined. Alcohol intake increases slow wave sleep and suppresses rapid eye movement (REM) sleep. During periods of acute withdrawal, sleep latency (time taken to fall asleep) is increased, total sleep time is decreased, slow wave sleep returns to baseline while REM sleep either rebounds or returns to baseline. Sleep fragmentation and REM sleep disruptions can sometimes persist for 1 to 3 years after achieving sobriety.7 Similarly, opiates, despite their sedating effect, interrupt sleep by increasing wakefulness and decreasing total sleep time, slow wave sleep, and REM sleep.8 Some researchers debate the cause and effect relationship between sleep and substance abuse disorders. Sleep problems might predispose an individual to alcoholism.9 Sleep problems can sometimes be severe enough to reverse alcohol or drug treatment success and precipitate a relapse to addiction or dependence.10 Disturbed sleep is a significant predictor of relapse even after controlling other factors, like depression, and the severity of alcohol dependence and relapse was greater in individuals with alcoholism who had insomnia versus those with alcoholism without insomnia at baseline.11 However, paucity of information is noted regarding the prevalence of sleep disorders in subjects who abuse other drugs, and very little information is available on the prevalence of other sleep disorders even in subjects who abuse alcohol. It is in this context that a cross-sectional study was conducted to determine the prevalence of various sleep disorders in subjects who were admitted to the ADRC at Cleveland Clinic, a tertiary referral center.

I remember that when my hubby was detoxing he said that he hardly slept.  He went to bed very late and was up very early.  Now that is a much different story.  Mind you we are both in the 28-34 age group and yet we are ready for bed at like 9pm at night and more than willing to sleep in, till 7am.  Yes, 7am is sleeping in for us when we are used to getting up at 5am during the week.

Hubby has said a few times lately that he remembers being about to stay up sooo late when he was drinking or right when he got sober.  I remember having to stay up till 1 or 2 am and having to drive home from a friend’s house or my Brothers.  I would still get up at 6am most Saturdays to go out with my mom and then come home, take a quick nap and then start it all over again.  Sundays I would be so dead that I could not do anything.  Most of the time from the lack of sleep I would have such a bad migraine that I would stay in bed all day.

I've had a migraine/headache for 6 days straig...

I've had a migraine/headache for 6 days straight. Today was so bad I couldn't concentrate on what I was saying. I'm not even sure I knew WHAT I was saying because of the pain. I even mixed up two people's names and felt really dumb afterwards. Anyone got a migraine cure? 🙂 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Discussion

The results from our study show a very high prevalence of sleep disturbances among subjects with substance abuse or dependence, with almost all of the subjects reporting impaired sleep quality. Also, more than half of the subjects had moderate-to-severe insomnia. This is much higher than what is found in the general population (17–30%) or in a general medical sample (16%, severe insomnia; 34%, mild insomnia over the prior 4 weeks).18,19 More than half of the subjects had a high pre-test probability for sleep apnea, which is again higher than in the general population (4–6%).20 Of note, the prevalence of symptoms suggestive of restless legs syndrome was also very high (33%) compared to the general population (10%).21 Almost half of the subjects admitted to abusing a substance to promote sleep, and this is consistent with the findings in the previous studies wherein subjects reported consuming alcohol to help them with insomnia.

This study has several limitations, including a small sample size, collection of data from self-administered questionnaires, and lack of objective sleep metrics, which reduce the ability to apply the findings in clinical practice. A follow-up study with a larger sample size and with objective sleep metrics, such as Actigraphy, Polysomnography and Multiple Sleep Latency Test (MSLT), is warranted to further elucidate the findings of this study.

Well that is all that I will post from that article, if you would like to read more of it please check it out. I know that with my migraines having a sleep schedule that really don’t change is what I need to make sure that I am giving myself the best chance to avoid a migraine for that day.  It seems that might be a clue towards substance abuse as well.  It seems that when I was told that a lack of sleep messes with your whole system, they were telling the truth.  So if it be migraines or substance abuse, we need to try to get to bed the same time every night and get sleep.

I know easier said than done.  Most nights I spend a long time looking at the fan in the bed room.  I found that having the TV on low helps me, if it is too quiet in the room the ringing in my ears is too much for me to handle.  If the room is too warm I will not be able to stay asleep at all.  If I have clothes on that are too tight or restrictive in any way then I can not get any rest.  I hope this might shred some light on what might be keeping you awake at night.

One day we will know the serenity of falling asleep shortly after laying down at night.  God bless you my friends.

If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too!

Tonight at our meetings, my hubby gets his 9 month coin.  I am thinking about not going to Al-Anon tonight and going into his AA meeting.  I was also thinking about maybe getting some cookies or a cake to take in – but that might have to wait till his one year – I will be bringing in a cake for that night for sure!!  I am very proud of how far we have come.  He has made a lot of changes.  There are things that are still hard, but we will both always be in recovery.  This is something we will both have the rest of our lives.  I was co-dependent and thought I had to give up my spine.  But I have learned how not to feed off of the negative and how to thrive as a strong women.

Can I live without him? Yes, where as before I thought I could not.  The key thing now is, I know I CAN do it, but I would rather not.  I would rather have him in my left and share with me all the ups and downs than to be without him.  I know I can do it now, so what is keeping me with him is love not fear.  We both know that now and it has helped.  He has told many people, even so I can hear it that he knows he can not bowl me over.  He said I fond my spine within the walls of Al-Anon and he is happy I did.  I had a very overbearing moth growing up, it was her way of the high way, nothing wrong with that, but it made me a little more timid about standing up.

I still have an issue with it sometimes, but I have been able to walk away from something, but go back and say “Hey, that was not nice.”  I have learned that not every comment needs a response, so I can keep my mouth shut when it’s not needed.  (Most of the time)  Has life been hard, you bet!  Has it been hard on us having to pay for all of his court stuff, you bet!  But we would have been in the same boat paying for his drinking too.  Do I wish we had more money, hell yes!  But I also want health more.  Everyday I wake up and have another healthy day, another day on this earth, another day to share with the love of my life and grow and learn together – well I am blessed for everyday I get.  I am just trying to get through one day at a time, cause well how can I fix tomorrow when today is still a mess.  All I can do is right at this very moment.  I can not change the outcome of things.  I can not control everything.

I used to have to feel like I had control over it all, but guess what – I don’t!  I need to work on my letting go and letting god still.  There are somethings I still have an issue with on letting go of.  I need to step back and re-look at everything.

Codependency – Part 5

This is a 5 part Post on Co-dependency.

Part 5 of 5

Control patterns:

Codependency: The Game

Codependency: The Game (Photo credit: jasonEscapist)

  • I believe most other people are incapable of taking care of themselves.
  • I attempt to convince others of what they “should” think and how they “truly” feel.
  • I become resentful when others will not let me help them.
  • I freely offer others advice and directions without being asked.
  • I lavish gifts and favors on those I care about.
  • I use sex to gain approval and acceptance.
  • I have to be “needed” in order to have a relationship with others.
  • I demand that my needs be met by others.
  • I use charm and charisma to convince others of my capacity to be caring and compassionate.
  • I use blame and shame to emotionally exploit others.
  • I refuse to co-operate, compromise, or negotiate.
  • I adopt an attitude of indifference, helplessness, authority, or rage to manipulate outcomes.
  • I have obsessive, compulsive thinking patterns and cannot focus on daily activities.
  • I use terms of recovery in an attempt to control the behavior of others.
  • I pretend to agree with others to get what I want.

This goes over most of what I have already talked about.  I didn’t trust others to take care of themselves, I didn’t trust them to take care of me and I wanted to be involved in everything.  I wanted full control but had a had time making decisions.  I wanted to think I had it all together and wanted others to see that too.  But when necessary to get what I wanted, I would use it to my advantage and use the sympathy card.  I would help my husband cover up with drinking to make sure others didn’t think bad of him.  I would take the blame for things vs letting him take the fall.  If he was too “under the weather” to go somewhere, I would just tell them I had a head ache.  Most the time that was not dar from the truth, I did so much while in pain that it had just become a normal state for me.

So in a way – while everyone just wants to be mad at the person with the addiction, it’s a family problem and a lot of us enable or are co-dependant and will never see the signs.  Or even if they do see them, they are unwilling to admit to them.  Remember – that is step one.  Admitting that we have a problem and that our lives had become unmanageable.

If no one has told you they love you today, I love you and God does too!

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