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Anxiety / Alcohol

Specific emotional or mental health problems, like anxiety, depression, insomnia, confidence etc. Along with bodily health, exercise, nutrition.
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Rachel
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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Rachel » 02 Jan 2015 13:00

Hello Em Louise

Coming to this a bit late, as have been somewhat preoccupied with Christmas relatives etc. (urgh!)

I am another of those who suffers from depression and anxiety. These predate my drinking, so not surprisingly they haven't disappeared now I've stopped. But, and I sometimes forget and need to remind myself of this, things are so very much better. The depression dates back to my early teens and comes and goes. I didn't seek or get any help until my early 40s when the alcohol thing got really out of control, so dealing with it since has been starting from scratch really. Obviously not easy, but progress is being made which it never could be while I was in the very short term (hours) repressing it, and, in general terms, feeding it with alcohol.

I was in a vicious circle of drinking with anxiety. Extreme anxiety the day after I drank, which would lead me to drink to 'deal' with it etc. (It was a terrible day when I realized that a glass of wine at lunch time would mean I didn't have to suffer horribly until tea time, and a much worse one that I realized the same logic applied to first thing in the morning.) Obviously that sort of anxiety has gone. I no longer wake up on the morning with a jolt of anxiety. General anxiety (although to be honest I doubt it's ever really general. There is something subconscious going on usually, I suspect) Well, I have bouts of it still, and when I do I am, alas, thoroughly conditioned to think about drinking. Fortunately though, when I think about it further I realize that all I want is for the anxiety to go, rather than a drink per se. I am still reaching for my 'everything is alright' button. This is annoying, but not dangerous, on the whole. It's also lessening. And I hope will lessen further as I continue to recover.

The overall, I suppose message is that alcohol effects your brain chemistry. Take it away, and I think it's more than likely that you will recover. But obviously if there were issues that predate that you will need to address them, which it sounds like you are doing. Gosh, I have not said anything non-obvious at all, in fact :(

Recovery from alcohol is not an overnight thing, but it is fast enough for you to get really pleasant, gratifying moments of realization at how much better things are.

Holidays are notorious as relapse traps, but in a way they could be great opportunities to stop drinking as you are being taken away from your usual routine. I really hope you are having a good time in spite of the anxiety, Em.

Apologies for the cliches, but I hope not platitudes.

Rachelxx
Rachel

Em Louise
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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 02 Jan 2015 21:21

Thank you Sunny, Pickles, Gerard and Rachael :-)

Your insights are not wasted. Like i said earlier, i came here a few years ago unready but now i feel i am ready, both for the journey into sobriety and also to work with my counselor.

I am feeling a bit sad at times here since this tinnitus started up a few days ago, i fear it won't go and you can imagine how anxious i then feel... It's a bit like when i first experienced anxiety, the more you focus on it the worse it gets! The only advice i have is to accept the high pitch and distract - so am trying to not let it annoy me as then just like anxiety it becomes a monster. I think i am always worried about being trapped in anything, a job, a relationship, any kind of illness... So this high pitch thing is using up energy and i'm trying to work with it and not worry, but ...

On this holiday i am drinking less than i do at home, trying to start afresh. My friends don't drink much - we all had water at dinner!

I really liked the fear analogy of false evidence appearing real, relaxation and positivity is a vital part of contentment i think.

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 02 Jan 2015 21:29

The Gorski text is an interesting read too, thanks for that. It's like reading an autobiography - explains what's been happening all these years. It's crazy how hard it can be to square up to a problem and really act on fixing it. But unanimously you all agree it's worth it. So i have this bit of ringing in my ears but at least i'm not drunk or stuffing my face with rubbish.!

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pickles
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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by pickles » 02 Jan 2015 21:36

http://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/ring ... -treatment" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Hi Em Louise, I cut the tinnitus link as well; Sorry. Anyway here are some things hopefully to help. In another place it said about wearing ear plugs. Something about herbal supplements as well.

Hope you have a nice weekend and the 'ringing' does calm down.
' Normal ' is just a setting on the washing machine .

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 02 Jan 2015 22:19

Thanks Pickles, have to say i'm nervous to look
In case it gives me things to latch onto and be paranoid about, know what i mean? Maybe i'll feel brave in a few days.

So Sunny, yes, when you see your life written out like that it makes it easier to see the future you can have through change. It's becoming so clear for the first time. One day at a time for me, big ideas have always fallen flat so slowly i'll rebuild and improve. Thanks all for being my rock out here!

Here's a picture from table mountain, out to robin island where mandela was imprisoned..
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Em Louise
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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 02 Jan 2015 22:21

Thank you Gerard - that's very comforting, fingers crossed :-)

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pickles
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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by pickles » 03 Jan 2015 08:28

Em Louise wrote:Thanks Pickles, have to say i'm nervous to look
..
I don't think there is anything to read to be paranoid about. It has other information that are handy too about other things. It did say though that if the ringing carries on, then to make an appointment with the doctor.

Enjoy your day :)
' Normal ' is just a setting on the washing machine .

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 03 Jan 2015 09:51

It was quite helpful thanks!

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Sob » 03 Jan 2015 13:22

I just joined today after many times of feeling this same horrible anxiety and self loathing. New year was meant to be a nice time but it seems that I can achieve that few and far between when drinking. My family are now very angry at me and although my boyfriend is appearing ok with me I know ddeep down as soon as something happens he will release his anger. I just do not know how to go about fixing it. While drunk I decided to try and speak to my estranged cousin. She is a recovering drug addict but this year her mum died and it has been a difficult thing to deal with. I wanted to see her because i missed her and worried about how she was feeling and it was playing on my mind all night. However, there came a point when in my head something clicked and i decided to go taking my boyfriend with me. She was happy for about two minutes before she began screaming at me and i understand why she was angry but her anger was illplaced. My mum came to pick us up and has been ignoring me since.. my dad is tip toeing around me and I don't even know where to begin in fixing it with them. I feel like No matter how well I seem to be doing elsewhere these incidences happen and again no one wants to speak to me and I feel so embarassed.

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 03 Jan 2015 20:45

Sob,

I'm sorry you're not feeling so good. Families are complicated and make me emotional quite a lot too.

The sad thing is, a few weeks back i was in such an irritable mood that inhad an argument with my brother in law and then texted him stuff i thought was relevant. It had a horrible backlash. Had i not have been annoyed about my drinking amongst other issues and stressed i doubt any of it would have happened.

Good luck sorting things out x

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Sob » 03 Jan 2015 21:01

it's so frustrating because I only had the courage to see her and see if she was ok because of the drink but at the same time that was naive and gullible and with a sober level head I could have preempted it. My sister is now in a huff although both parents are just happy i am ok. I just feel like a failure. I do well and don't drink or drink in control for months and then have one blip which always end with me feeling paranoid, anxious and upset. I think the worst thing is my sister has the tendency to do the same but i am always very kind and helpful in her situations as i know how much worse it is when no one is there to support you. Yet she seems unable to do the same back. Feeling rather hopeless but thank you for your kind words. x

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 05 Jan 2015 22:10

Thanks Gerard, i had a few sweats on my way to cape town when the sest belt sign went on at 20,000 feet!

The feelings were real but not true... As everything was ok, just a little bumpy... Let's see if i can focus on the return trip on Saturday.

Ps - i think the tinnitus going! I am hugely relieved and very thankful for everyone's help :)

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by wannabenormal » 07 Jan 2015 08:09

I think a large part of my anxiety issues were alcohol related. My experience of withdrawal leads me to believe the alcohol actually amplifies the anxiety attacks not reduce them. Im on Day 3 now and I haven;t had one yet (touch wood) - whereas before and during christmas I was getting at least 1 maybe several more per day .
My anxiety revolves around the guilt I feel for wasting time and screwing things up mostly through drinking. Its good to be calm now I really hope I can hold on to these feelings as I detox myself more and more.
You can only Taper once : Second time around your body knows what you are up to.
What doesn't kill you: only makes you strong .
Don't let the sound of your own wheels drive you crazy

Sob
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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Sob » 14 Jan 2015 19:22

thanks Agnesgrey that has definitely helped. I am now 12 days AF and the anxiety has definitely settled. I no longer have a knot in my stomach and my parents and sisters are speaking to me fine. I think they were worried and behaved in an angry way instead of concerned. I want to stop feeling guilt but remember how the alcohol made think/feel to prevent it from happening again. I find it most difficult at weekends as finding alternative things to do with friends as a grown up is tricky!! has anyone got any ideas/suggestions? Thanks again s x

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Rollercoaster » 17 Jan 2015 16:26

I'm having dredful anxiety and keep feeling I'm going to die and sometimes I feel I can't inhale which really panicky me. My drinking has escalated out of control now and I know if I don't stop soon I will be dead! A month goe I drove into a ditch and the police came, ghastly business. My weight has dropped terribly too. Life is not good at the moment and it's all to do with drink. I looked haggered, I'm bruised, cut and in a lot of pain. I'm not the old me anymore, she's gone and walked out of the door, although the door is still ajar ready to be reopened to resume to a normal, happy me! I know it's an up hill struggle for to get half way to being me again. The paranoias are not good either, very suspicious of people thinking they're out to get me. No I'm not in a happy place at all :cry:
REMEMBER I AM NOT A FAILURE. I AM A SURVIVOR OF MANY BATTLES.....WALKING TO VICTORY!

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Rollercoaster » 17 Jan 2015 17:50

Hello Gerard,

Great to here from you, so appreciate your kind supportive words in this dark world of mine at present. Just have to rid this terrible existence involving alcohol. I've come to the crossing roads now and there is only two options live or die! Terrible unwell, very weak and so frail! Just got to get back on track now and take it easy. My life has been so stressful which has really rocketed the drinking to dangerous levels! So now it's time to quit and find me again. It's so frightening, but I'm not the only one going through this living hell! Thank you again, so glad to see your still going strong, well done (::) <:)> RC ;)?
REMEMBER I AM NOT A FAILURE. I AM A SURVIVOR OF MANY BATTLES.....WALKING TO VICTORY!

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 19 Jan 2015 10:39

Good morning,

Just caught up with previous posts I’m back from Cape Town now, back at work, had my second session with my counsellor who I find I connect with quite well. We started on putting a plan together last week, part of which was for me to decide if or how much I would drink. Whilst I was away I was quite good at moderating intake but it did increase as the days went on … so we decided from Monday last week when I last saw here, to Monday this week, I would drink every other day. This started off well and nose dived from about Wednesday onwards! Needlesstosay the ringing in my ears is still quite bad and I think it’s directly related to the wine, along with earache and headaches.

She asked me to think about the short and long term benefits of drinking, and to keep a diary, which I’ve done. The week didn’t really go as we planned and I will go there with my tail between my legs a bit today really. I think that moderation isn’t working for me and that just stopping drinking is the only option left, the best option. As you said Gerard you have to make it your top priority, to plan and put your energy into making it happen.

Rollercoaster – how are you getting on?

Sob – 12 days is amazing – I am right behind you (on day 2!)

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 19 Jan 2015 17:22

Gerard,

I made a plan with my counselor to not drink this week. Looking no further ahead, just this week. We talked about each night and what i would do. The importance of not going in the pub for a lime and soda! And to do other things that are pleasant... Like a sauna... A film... Dinner... Because i associiate evenings with loneliness. And to remind myself why i am nit drinking... So my ears recover, so i have full energy.

She asked me to write down any negative feelings that arise around alcohol and anxiety.

I think i need this week off to see if my ears and headache settle down, then i'll see if i need the doctor.

So abstinence it is! At least theres no discussion with abstinence!!

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Em Louise » 20 Jan 2015 08:39

Hi Agnes,

Well don't worry (though we do!) i was awake until who knows, 2am?? And i have to be up by 0630! I was worried about the tinnitus in my head so eventually sucummbed to putting the radio on and taking an anti anxiety tablet as less than four hours sleep and i will be all over the place! That worked though :-)

It's day three now of AF so happy to be tired but not hungover.

Are you in the UK? Some years ago i contactef an online group called 'no panic' and they were so helpful in helping me deal with anxiety. They ran telephone courses, i did one at 7pm every monday for example where there were about six people on the line and they taught us how to relax. You can call them 24 hours i think, or quite late in the evening at least. It was just a thought, maybe you would be a good person for people to reach out to? If you're awake and feel like some human contact anyway - just a thought, I don't know your circumstances but when you mentioned loneliness and late nights, No Panic were always there when i was panicking and for that i will be forever grateful.

Is this job in the hospital at night? I can imagine old folk sitting on trollies needing a listenimg ear and a cuppa x

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Re: Anxiety / Alcohol

Post by Chiffon » 20 Jan 2015 09:26

Hi Em Louise. Just wanted to say that I always got tinnitus for the first week or so after quitting. It did go away again though :) Hope you're ok x

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