Yes, we all know it has been said many times. We heard it when we were children: healthy habits are important. What are healthy habits? Obviously cleanliness and diet. But more, exercise and mental health. Let’s zero in on exercise and mental health. If you are in the process of giving up drinking exercise and mental health decisions can be of great help. Exercise? OK, not all of us like to do it. Pick something you like. Walking two miles a day is perfect. Even better walk with your friends. Have children? Walk with them. What to do on a rainy day? Invest in a second hand stationary bicycle. I know one woman who walks up and down her stairs ten times. Be determined to figure it out.
Mental health is a big one. If you can afford one on one counseling go for it. Be sure that you know your therapists qualifications. Pick someone who specializes in addiction. Check out where they trained. Can’t afford it? Have no insurance? Go to Alcoholics Anonymous. During the coffee break speak to your cohorts and ask them if they know of a therapy group. And, remember, thanks to the internet there is In The Rooms https://www.intherooms.com/ which describes itself as “In The Rooms Addiction Social Network’s purpose is to help people with Drug Addiction, Alcoholism, Prescription Drug Addiction, Pain Killer Addiction and More.” And, privacy is guaranteed. Names are never asked.
Denial is the biggest problem in any addiction. But just looking at this web site is a big first step. Remember alcoholism is a disease so do not blame yourself. Look at your family history. Are there others members with the disease? But lets get back to you. OK, so you may have an urge to drink. You may have tried giving up drinking and found the withdrawal a nightmare. Lets go a step further. If the withdrawal is tough there is medical help available. Go to your physician and ask her/him for help. If you do not have a physician attend an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting. No one will ask your name. Those who are not first time attendees have all gone through withdrawals and will help you. There will be some members who did their withdrawals with the help of a physician and who will gladly tell you who helped them. If you are far from a town you can attend an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting on line. If you are someone living with an alcoholic you may want to look at the intervention possibility. Go to The National Intervention for Drugs and Alcohol (NIDA) to seek out someone in your area. http://www.interventiondrugsandalcohol.org or phone (800) 567-5986. You may also want to attend Al-Anon. https://al-anon.org/al-anon-meetings/find-an-al-anon-meeting/
April 4, 2019
Yes, religion does help. It fills a void. You go to services with other people. There are support groups within religious groups. Religion helps you deal with tension, stress and anxiety. You won’t be the only one dealing with fears, with wanting answers. Those who believe feel someone is watching over them. They repeat, “God who art in heaven —-.” Believers often hand their anxieties over to God, let the deity handle all their stresses.
But suppose you don’t believe. Yes, there is Alcoholics Anonymous, Women for Sobriety and if you want something more, something independent of addiction groups look up Ethical Culture. They define themselves as “a humanist community dedicated to ethical relationships, social justice, and environmental stewardship since 1876.” You may make suggestions as to what the group should discuss. Addiction? Greed? Anxiety?
Albert Einstein supported the idea of Ethical Culture. He had said, “Without ‘ethical culture’ there is no salvation for humanity.” The groups exist mostly in big cities. However, you may want to get in touch with an Ethical Culture group near you to find out how to organize your own association.
To feed your addiction you sometimes are forced to lead “the life.” Want to get out? Or know someone who wants to get out? Or have a relative who is breaking your heart? There is a great organization. It’s called NoVo which means anew, refresh, revive, change, alter, invent. Their purpose is to end violence against girls and women which includes the sex trade or which women or girls call “the life.” Visit their web site at https://novofoundation.org/about-us/contact-us/ or phone them at 212.808.5400. Go for it.
Lets discuss cross addiction. Where do you go for help? First of all be aware that you are not the only one suffering from cross addiction. The United States government has a list of organizations which can help. Just visit:
https://findtreatment.samhsa.gov/locator/link-focSelfGP#.XDtb5ml7nIV to find out who can help. If your addiction is not mentioned as for example gambling or sexual problems just google the issue and a list will come up. The important thing is to do something about your issues. Yes, you may have to go to more than one meeting which is good because at each meeting you will meet people who will understand you. Go for it. Be good to yourself.
Happy new year to all of you. I learned something interesting during the holiday season. There are recovered alcoholics who do not go to restaurants which have bars in the dining area. They claim that they do not want to deal with the smell of alcohol. It makes a lot of sense. It pays to have a list of restaurants where you feel comfortable. Alcoholics aren’t the only ones with strong preferences. A vegetarian told me that he does not feel comfortable sitting across from someone who is eating chicken and he has to look at the bones, a sort of an in part symbol of what killing an animal means.
We all have our preferences. Do what’s best for you.
Time to think about new year resolutions. It also is time to remember that a resolution without a plan is only a wish. Have you been thinking about doing something about your addiction? I know it is tough. If you are a Mom you might not want to go away because you don’t want to leave your children for weeks at a time. Here is something you may want to consider – Partial Hospitalization Programs. They vary in each state. Some may have child care. What is great about Partial Hospitalization Programs you get to go home each night. During the day they diagnose your issues, have proper medical care and programs for your issues. Every alcoholic needs a thorough check-up. Are you drinking because you are depressed? Is your serotonin too low? What is your attitude and your hope of giving up drinking? Look into Partial Hospitalization Programs. Don’t have health care insurance? The Partial Hospitalization Program in your area may have information available how you can pay for your treatment. Be good to yourself in 2019. Get yourself into treatment.
Don’t like Alcoholics Anonymous? Don’t want to do the 12 Steps? AA does help people achieve sobriety. Statistics tell us that the 12 Steps do work. However, you can try other methods. Do visit WOMEN FOR SOBRIETY. This is how they describe themselves:
Women For Sobriety is “a non-profit secular addiction recovery group for women with addiction problems. WFS was created by sociologist Jean Kirkpatrick in 1976 as an alternative to twelve-step addiction recovery groups like Alcoholics Anonymous. As of 1998 there were more than 200 WFS groups worldwide.”
WFS delivers only if you wish it weekly inspirational messages to your mailbox. To learn more go to
There are women who belong both to AA and WFS.
Haven’t bought the book, The Drinking Woman Revisited? That’s OK. Ask your library to buy it and then you can take it out and read it. The book will talk about sexuality and female alcoholism, how your background may effect your sex life, it will discuss the hereditary factor, stress and family living, the cultural factor, how you can start to think about not drinking, how to pick up the pieces in your life, where to seek help and much more. Information is your best friend.
Alcoholism is a tough disease. When you have blackouts, tremors, a rebellious stomach, have to face the anger of your family who have to deal with your disease you may find https://www.facingaddiction.org a godsend. FACING ADDICTION defines itself as “a non-profit organization dedicated to finding solutions to addiction by unifying the voice of Americans directly impacted by addiction.” Imagine finding out how others feel who are facing addiction. FACING ADDICTIONS’s attitude is “being sick is not a crime.” When on the FACING ADDICTION web site do visit their https://dinner.facingaddiction.org/ Here you will be able to invite your relatives, co-workers, friends and choose what they might say. Sound unusual? Yes, but it will make you think – positively. Go for it.