Quote:"Clearly, not everyone defines “alcoholic” and “sobriety” the same way.
When it comes to researching how such terms might fit me, I’m done with research. Thank you very much, I’d prefer not to drink again so I don’t have to see where it might take me!
Jayster" End Quote.
This is just one persons opinion. And it is based mainly on Jaysters post. Yes, I agree Jayster. I was very gung-ho in the12-step programs the first ten years, and I still am to a point. As weird as it sounds, it took me years in the programs to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am an addict. When I was smoking crack and doing powder I had the same experiences that I saw other addicts I met every day had. I was living the lifestyle of having my life revolving around finding and using drugs. But I just had that nagging doubt I was not truly an addict. Because like I said, I never considered myself a REAL hard-core user. Never mind that I was always spending my entire paychecks on drugs. And often walking at night alone back and forth a couple miles to the ATM to empty my bank account $20.00 at a time, walking back and forth from a very bad town to the ATM. Never mind that I rented my car out to people who I had met a 1/2 before for a night in exchange for a pittance of crack. Or that when I went to my schizophrenic support group at the clinic I walked in late several times because I was in the clinic restroom smoking crack for 15 minutes before the group. I could not control my using, once I had crack I has to use it all up. No saving any for later. I think literally in 3 1/2 years I managed only once to keep a quantity of crack overnight in my house without touching it. And only because I was so sick from my meds, not eating for a day, and not sleeping that I couldn’t take a hit without throwing up. So I went home with a couple of rocks and smoked it the next morning in my own house. 'But yeah, when I first got in the program I thought it was the only way that worked permanently to get clean. And here is what I intended to say but I got side-tracked on a little more of my story.I was under the impression that a clean & sober ‘true’ alcoholic or addict could NEVER take even ONE drink or ONE hit of drugs ever again or it would trigger a relapse. Maybe they could control themselves for one day or a few days but it rapidly started their addiction over. I was also under the impression that you are only clean and sober if you don’t do ANY drugs, or no alcohol. I saw a million times in meetings when a newcomer, or sometimes even people with a little time clean announce that they were clean and sober, but just smoking a little weed occasionally.The old-timers were polite enough to muffle their snickers but they knew that is not true sobriety. But going back to Jayster, I thought sobriety was TOTAL abstinence. No exceptions. I thought you were not recovering if you are taking any drugs. Maybe I got worn down by how many people do not follow these guidelines and call themselves recovering addicts. But for me, after trying to quit on my own and taking that first hit which turned into binges, my personal story is that I can never touch alcohol or drugs again. One day a time. For those who are not sure if they are addicts or alcoholics, I would recommend going online and researching alcoholism and addiction and-taking one of the NUMEROUS self-tests a for dependency. The internet was not around when I was using!! Or at least not what it is today. Or I would have cleared up years of wondering if I was realy addicted. If you suspect you are an alcoholic or an addict do some research, talk to someone in the substance abuse business. I can only look at it the way I learned. Sobriety is total abstinence. Addiction and alcoholism has several criteria but what categorizes it is not being able to control your using. that’s what I’ve lived by. But I don’t have all the answers obviously.