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Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Any tips or advice to prevent a relapse, alternatively any of your stories about your own relapses.
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DannyD
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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by DannyD » 11 Nov 2017 10:01

I’m feeling stressed and tired (very late night). And drinking thoughts are drifting in. Because a drink is SO going to help stress and tiredness. Fast forward to waking up sober on Sunday.
be selfish in your sobriety.

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Shadowlad
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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Shadowlad » 11 Nov 2017 11:08

I hope you can get some rest today Danny and do something extra nice just for you <:)>
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

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pickles
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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by pickles » 11 Nov 2017 11:47

I saw your post Danny , if you are going to work today ( haven't read in for a few days ) take a flask of soup or hot chocolate , keep full . I do understand the thoughts, I can hear my OH getting the vodka from the freezer right this moment ....

Hope you catch up on sleep too !
' Normal ' is just a setting on the washing machine .

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DannyD
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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by DannyD » 11 Nov 2017 12:49

Thank you ladies. Taking food is a good suggestion Pickles. As is getting some sleep Nicky.

Senior daughter is visiting, so we’re planning to visit junior daughter (I have her keys, then return so I can have s couple of hours before work.

I feel much better when I have a plan. It puts ‘stress’ into a queue.
be selfish in your sobriety.

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Shadowlad
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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Shadowlad » 11 Nov 2017 14:48

A plan is such a good idea. Just recently i have been lax on making a plan for the day and have been procrastinating and lost a bit of direction. Must get back to writing a list and planning the day. Hope you have had a nice morning with your daughters xx
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by apples7000 » 16 Nov 2017 20:46

DannyD wrote:I’m feeling stressed and tired (very late night). And drinking thoughts are drifting in. Because a drink is SO going to help stress and tiredness. Fast forward to waking up sober on Sunday.
Yeah funny though. I often drink when struggling with tiredness as well as stress. Weird really. Action point one : make sure I always think of the consequences before starting to drink rather than the immediate yearn for a drink

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Shadowlad » 29 Oct 2019 12:51

Bump x
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.

Dennis P. Kimbro

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by tee » 11 Mar 2020 19:20

It's early morning. You have drank your bodyweight over the weekend and suddenly come to at 3am. Heart pumping, sweating and believing you will die at any minute. You try to get back to sleep with no chance. You worry about your blood pressure and again think what a shame and what a sham. Those poor, poor beautiful children. How will they face life without their mother? How could you possibly have done this to them?

You get up as sleeping is clearly off the table. Then you worry how you will cope all day on 2 hours sleep, is that even possible? Nope something needs to be done. Yet clearly you are still here after so many years of this cycle. So you rummage the cupboards to find something, anything, that could take the edge off and just get you some sleep! Nowt there, cos you drank it all last night.

So now you're in damage control. If no sleep is possible, how can you get through the busy day before you? You can pledge to never be in this situation again. You resolve. You come on forums. You remember the year you had AF and rue the day you ever went back to it. How could you be so stupid? You declare that never again will you be in this mess. You mean it. Hand on heart. You decide that this is the last time you will ever feel this shit again. You pour any remaining alcohol down the sink. Maybe... :oops:

No really. This time IS IT! \:)/ Then you have a busy day at work. People are awful to you, you know you may still look a bit pissed so you try to assuage them, go the extra mile whether they are right or wrong, to delete the paranoia and assure yourself it really is them not you, although no they are really just horrible. When they leave you are on a high. Until the next one shows up...

Finally you get to the end of your shift and you want to put it in newspapers that, despite challenging conditions, you still have a job. Go you.

Then the memories set in. The skewed thinking and the rumination. I cant believe they said that to me! How could they? What is honestly going on in their life that they find it so necessary to be so vile to a person who is clearly just trying to help them? You work in a supermarket. They have ailes and ailes of wine that just hours before you were determined to never set foot in again. However tomorrow is a late shift and you need to get groceries. What's to stop you from tottering up the booze aisle again?

Answers on a post card please xx
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by tee » 12 Mar 2020 02:45

Yeah I was a bit pissed when I wrote that. Cue 2am anxiety wake up. Omg I was on BE last night, wtf was I saying? :oops:

I think the point I was making in a round about way was, when you are really there in the depths of trying to get one day AF under your belt, cravings are bloody hard! The slightest wee thing can set you running up the booze aisle as we all know. :?

An issue I’ve frequently struggled with lately is, that fait accompli thinking. One minute you’re all “omg I’m officially a raging alcoholic now something must be done. That’s it! Me and booze are over!”

Then the next it’s like “omg that horrible person was mean to me, how very dare they. That’s it! I am buying wine!”

The rational mind would say - no you do not need wine to cope. You are enough. You can do this.

But the fait accompli mind sticks two fingers up to that, screaming release is here! Buy the wine! Cue the age old battle we all face every day on day 1. :lol:

I guess I need to find a way of bypassing the fait accompli thinking. Sitting it out. Distracting myself long enough to leave work without buying wine. Even if we do need groceries. It is possible to purchase them without ever setting foot in the booze aisle, I know this because I managed it for a year when I was AF in 2019. What strategies did I employ then to get a day under my belt in which I did not buy booze? Hmmmm. :shock:
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Topcat » 12 Mar 2020 06:06

tee wrote:
12 Mar 2020 02:45
Yeah I was a bit pissed when I wrote that. Cue 2am anxiety wake up. Omg I was on BE last night, wtf was I saying?
It made perfect sense to me Tee and really hit home too. It reminded me in graphic detail of the pain/struggle and downright despair that alcohol addiction brings. How can a rational/intelligent person get to those levels? Common sense flies out the window and in comes a jibbering wreck of a human being. I read your words and my past was laid bare. I feel for you. That is the great thing about this forum. We all know and understand <:)>
tee wrote:
12 Mar 2020 02:45
I guess I need to find a way of bypassing the fait accompli thinking. Sitting it out. Distracting myself long enough to leave work without buying wine. Even if we do need groceries. It is possible to purchase them without ever setting foot in the booze aisle, I know this because I managed it for a year when I was AF in 2019. What strategies did I employ then to get a day under my belt in which I did not buy booze? Hmmmm
Stick with BE in the early days Tee. Stick with BE whether things are going well (or not). It really does help. Hold off buying any alcohol for 10 mins, then extend it by another 10 etc. Remind yourself that you can have a drink if you really want to, but just at this moment, you will postpone having one. Whatever it takes in the early days ......just get through them and things start to level out and it will get easier (it's never going to be easy though, but it is doable). TC xx
#5 on the 2020 Challenge
When life kicks sand in your face, build a castle.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by tee » 12 Mar 2020 07:02

Thank you so much for your kind words and support Topcat. <:)> I always find having summoned the courage to post, there follows a few agonising hours where I doubt myself for having been a bit too honest and wonder if I should delete the post. I feel so much better having read your lovely words tho so thanks again <:)>

You are of course right I need to hold onto the despair and use it as my leverage - I never want to feel like this again and the only way round it is through it. I will stick close by on BE this time and hopefully be able to string a few days together which will give me a good start. ;)?
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Leslans » 12 Mar 2020 07:30

Tee, your post sent shivers down my spine, it really did. I can relate to a lot of it a lot of us can. Topcat is just that a Top Cat. Experience in this goddam thing speak volumes, I always listened to TC. I’m only 123 days down this road again, although I have enjoyed long spells and you know there’s a lot to be said to “no pain no gain”. You have to dig deeper than ever in your life to get through and you know that one day you will wake up and it won’t be quite so difficult. Then the day after that even less and so on. You can do this, you know you can and you’ve got to see that better life in front of you. You’ve got to want to break the cycle, truly break it and see you can be that person who is strong, better than booze and wants to change their life and probably that of those children.

That mid night anxiety is horrendous, that thought of “I’ve just got to get through the day and I will be ok” makes me feel anxious reading it. I don’t live like that now. I am happy, confident, healthy, bright eyed all because I don’t drink.i have down days, disagreements with people, shit days but I can handle it without a drink because underneath I’m alcohol free and I know feelings pass through and it’s just life.

I do hope Tee that you stick with it. I felt your pain and I hope you can feel my relaxed (most of the time) carefree (nearly most of the time) love of my life and what I have in it today. Shit happens but it doesn’t need to be anywhere near so bad as when you mix it with alcohol. I posted a photo the other day of me today on the 6 month challenge or 100 day thread of how bright I look. I’m proud tee and that’s because I’ve walked away from alcohol and I’ve got my life back. I’m thinking of you 🥰🥰🥰
"Don't look back, you're not going that way"

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Mark. » 12 Mar 2020 08:12

Topcat wrote:
12 Mar 2020 06:06
It made perfect sense to me Tee and really hit home too
Me too, Tee, me too!

Can't add a lot to TC and Leslans' excellent advice, other than to repeat their encouragement to hang out here - I am sure that this will help you, and it's always great to have you about ;)? <:)>
Nie chwal dnia przed zachodem słońca.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Topcat » 12 Mar 2020 09:12

Thanks so much for the kind words folks <:)>
tee wrote:
12 Mar 2020 07:02
I never want to feel like this again and the only way round it is through it.
Stick those words on the fridge Tee <:)>
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When life kicks sand in your face, build a castle.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by tee » 12 Mar 2020 11:09

Leslans wrote:
12 Mar 2020 07:30
You have to dig deeper than ever in your life to get through and you know that one day you will wake up and it won’t be quite so difficult.

I am happy, confident, healthy, bright eyed all because I don’t drink.i have down days, disagreements with people, shit days but I can handle it without a drink because underneath I’m alcohol free and I know feelings pass through and it’s just life.

I do hope Tee that you stick with it. I felt your pain and I hope you can feel my relaxed (most of the time) carefree (nearly most of the time) love of my life and what I have in it today.

Yes Leslans thank you for your lovely post am I nodding along with all of it. Love that you are enjoying your AF life and I do want to get back there myself. For leverage I have made a list of how shitty I am feeling today. Sometimes you really do have to visit the pits of despair to inspire change don’t you?

Hi and thanks again to Mark and TC for listening to me banging on haha. Just a quick post from the loo at work but can’t wait to get home and have a good peruse round the site again xx
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by tee » 12 Mar 2020 19:03

Leslans wrote:
12 Mar 2020 07:30
I don’t live like that now. I am happy, confident, healthy, bright eyed all because I don’t drink.i have down days, disagreements with people, shit days but I can handle it without a drink because underneath I’m alcohol free and I know feelings pass through and it’s just life.

I posted a photo the other day of me today on the 6 month challenge or 100 day thread of how bright I look. I’m proud tee and that’s because I’ve walked away from alcohol and I’ve got my life back.
Proud indeed you should be my lovely Leslans, I just checked out your photo and you do look fab! \:)/ Well done you on your 4 months! (::) Thanks for inspiring me to get my sparkle back too <:)>
Perseverance is not a long race, it is a series of short races one after the other.

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by stuckinbeer » 07 Apr 2020 18:44

Hi All,

Pardon my newbie post if I say anything really already repeated to death on this thread. :lol:

I'd just like to support the above posts by tee on the idea of a massive trigger often feeling 'put upon' in some way - those 'bad days' have often lead to my 'worst nights' of drinking, and bad feelings waking up later at night as you say above!

I'd just like to also add another fairly mundane trigger for me personally - a fairly normal boring family 'evenings in' kind of life. I never drank so heavy and regular in my life until I had kids, spent countless hours every evening in front of a TV. I love my kids, wife, family in general, but boy do some evenings over the years drag on when you have just kids and a TV. Even as they get older we still sit around and watch a load of TV every day. I know we could probably change that, excercise etc etc, but you're knackered at the end of a kids/work day that's often not what you want. I love chilling with my wife, eating...and drinking.

That's why normal life at home has been a 'trigger' to me over the years. :|

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by SoberBoots » 08 Apr 2020 08:55

some evenings over the years drag on when you have just kids and a TV
The trouble is that alcohol reduces your energy levels and your interest in things so much. When I drank, I was bored anxious and lonely almost contiually. These days it's really rare for me to feel any of those things, but when I do I have learnt a really important skill. This is known as distress tolerance, sitting with your feelings, urge surfing - a number of things. But essentially it means accepting your feelings, acknowledge them, and then either allowing them to pass by like the weather or doing something to actually really alleviates and addresses them rather than drowning them.
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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by Rachel » 08 Apr 2020 14:31

Boredom was a massive trigger for me. I find boredom actually really stressful. And alcohol seriously lowers your boredom threshold. Compare time spent with drunk people when you are also drunk to time spent with drunk people when you are sober.
My last big relapse was triggered by being stuck in the middle of nowhere with nothing to do and reliant on OH for tranport.

My energy levels have not gone up really since I've stopped drinking (they've got worse, but I assume this has nothing to do with sobriety), but my brain doesn't cease to function properly halfway through the evening, so I can do more albeit sitting down :)

SB I have come to the conclusion that the main source of my drinking was to numb negative feelings. Boredom, anxiety, depression. I am still not up for confronting them head on, but little by little I am building up more tolerance. Becoming more resiliant even (although I definitely still have my limitations.) I avoided situations that made me anxious, stressed etc as far as possible in the early days. I do think it's important to avoid triggers early on until one has built up strength. I learnt this the hard way :shock: Hum but I still try to avoid them, even though these things are no longer a trigger.
Rachel

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Re: Triggers: how do you cope with them?

Post by stuckinbeer » 08 Apr 2020 17:06

Rachel wrote:
08 Apr 2020 14:31
I do think it's important to avoid triggers early on until one has built up strength. I learnt this the hard way :shock: Hum but I still try to avoid them, even though these things are no longer a trigger.
I understand avoiding some triggers, e.g. parties, casinos etc, which are easy enough mostly. But avoiding triggers that are more everyday is the really hard one - like sitting down to watch evening TV for instance, or a meal even. We could avoid those ones, but not easily. :?:

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