He has started drinking again. I was understanding when he fell off the wagon 21 days ago -- but he is still drinking. Not everyday -- but at least once a week.
When he originally fell off the wagon after over two years of sobriety, it started like this. Once a week. He can't just drink one beer, he has to drink multiple beers. I do believe he is drunk today.
What am I going to do? I don't know. Here's my minds ramblings about the situation.
- His mama says -- search everywhere and find his stash and pour it out. Well I don't have time for all of that and it in itself is an effort in futility - if he wants it that bad, he'll get it another way.
- Threaten him -- remind him the divorce is still active and has never been dropped?
- Sit him down and talk and tell him how I really feel -- while he avoids the subject, changes the topic, does something else...
- Give up
- Run away
- Play little Ms. Mary Sunshine and say -- "Oh, it isn't that bad." and ignore it (Oh yeah, that's what my Mama would do.)
- I'm inclined to tell him to leave and go live with his dad, drive his dad's car and take care of his dad until he can grow up and put us and God first in his life.
Rates of Alcohol Relapse - My Angst In Red
Approximately 90% of individuals who had a problem with alcohol experience at least one relapse in the four years (4 years, hell it ain't even been one year) following treatment (What treatment?) (Polich, 1981). Similar relapse rates occur for recovering smokers and heroin addicts. This suggests that many addictive behaviors may share the same behavioral, biochemical, and cognitive components (Hunt, 1971).
Reasons for Alcohol Relapse
In a study done by Marlatt, GA; it was found that the shift from the first drink (following a period of abstinence) to excessive relapse drinking is dependent on an individual's reaction to that drink. The study found that a majority of relapses were triggered by three situations that the researchers deemed high risk: anger/frustration, temptation, and social pressure. (When he first started back -- I don't really know how any of these were factors -- our money situation was good, we were doing things together as a family -- I think the social pressure and the craving was getting to him.)
Preventing Alcohol Relapse
* Maintain stability - resist the urge to move, travel, assume a new job, or make any drastic life changes that could induce stress and drinking (NEW JOB? yeah he got a job but he never had a real job before this, now I fear he'll end up losing this one.)
* Join a support group (choose one that is a good fit for you) (He refuses)
* Have a daily reflection period (Nope)
* Take responsibility for you actions (Blames everyone else right now, his parents, me, the kids stressing him out, no sleep, his coworkers, you name it.)
* Take control of your life, don't procrastinate and let things slide -- PLEASE!!!
A Great site with some great insight -- WOW - RELAPSE SIGNS.
Relapse Signs and Symptoms - Things I've Noticed are Highlighted
Experiencing Post Acute Withdrawal: I start having problems with one or more of the following; thinking difficulties, emotional overreaction problems, sleep disturbances, memory difficulties, becoming accident prone, and/or starting to experience a serious sensitivity to stress.
Return To Denial: I stop telling others what I’m thinking/feeling and start trying to convince myself or others that everything is all right, when in fact it is not.
Avoidance And Defensive Behavior: I start avoiding people who will give me honest feedback and/or I start becoming irritable and angry with them.
Starting To Crisis Build: I start to notice that ordinary everyday problems become overwhelming and no matter how hard I try, I can’t solve my problems.
Feeling Immobilized (Stuck): I start believing that there is nowhere to turn and no way to solve my problems. I feel trapped and start to use magical thinking.
Becoming Depressed: I start feeling down-in-the dumps and have very low energy. I may even become so depressed that I start thinking of suicide.
Compulsive And/Or Impulsive Behaviors (Loss Of Control): I start using one or more of the following- food, sex, caffeine, nicotine, work, gambling, etc. often in an out of control fashion. And/or I may react without thinking of the consequences of my behavior on myself and others.
Urges And Cravings (Thinking About Drinking/Using): I begin to think that alcohol/drug use is the only way to feel better. I start thinking about justifications to drink/use and convince myself that using is the logical thing to do.
Chemical Loss Of Control (Drinking/Using): I find myself drinking/using again to solve my problems. I start to believe that “it’s all over ‘till I hit bottom, so I may as well enjoy this relapse while it’s good.” My problems continue to get worse.
Adapted from Terence T. Gorski's Warning Sign Identification Process
THE TEN MOST COMMON RELAPSE DANGERS
1. Being in the presence of drugs or alcohol, drug or alcohol users, or places where you used or bought chemicals.
2. Feelings we perceive as negative, particularly anger; also sadness, loneliness, guilt, fear, and anxiety.
3. Positive feelings that make you want to celebrate.
5. Getting high on any drug.
6. Physical pain.
7. Listening to war stories and just dwelling on getting high.
8. Suddenly having a lot of cash.
9. Using prescription drugs that can get you high even if you use them properly.
10. Believing that you no longer have to worry (complacent). That is, that you are no longer stimulated to crave drugs/alcohol by any of the above situations, or by anything else – and therefore maybe it’s safe for you to use occasionally.
SOBRIETY IS BORING
I’LL NEVER DRINK/USE AGAIN
I CAN DO IT MYSELF
I’M NOT AS BAD AS …..
I OWE THIS ONE TO ME
MY PROBLEMS CAN’T BE SOLVED
I WISH I WAS HAPPY
I DON’T CARE
IF NOBODY ELSE CARES, WHY SHOULD I?
THINGS HAVE CHANGED
I CAN SUBSTITUTE
THEY DON’T KNOW WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT
THERE’S GOT TO BE A BETTER WAY
I CAN’T CHANGE THE WAY I THINK
IF I MOVE, EVERYTHING WILL CHANGE
I LIKE MY OLD FRIENDS
I CAN DO THINGS DIFFERENTLY
NOBODY NEEDS TO KNOW HOW I FEEL
I SEE THINGS MY WAY ONLY
I FEEL HOPELESS
I CAN HANDLE IT
IF I HIDE BEHIND EVERYONE ELSE’S PROBLEMS, I WON’T
HAVE TO FACE MY OWN
I CAN’T DO IT
I really need to think this one over and sit him down and have a long long talk. I do love him. I'm disappointed in him, but... I'm going to ask him -- what's it going to be bud? Me or your bud?