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I should be making progress by now
August 1, 2005
12:12 pm
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gingerleigh
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I've been coming here since 1999. And I would think that I should have my shit together by now, but I don't. Well, depends on one's perspective I suppose. I have a steady job that pays decently and own my own home, although it's tiny and old, but it's still in the brilliant City of Seattle. Old city limits even. I'm 29 now. Over the last six years, what have I done?

I moved to Seattle. I got out of a bad relationship which broke my heart completely. I started drinking more and more frequently, and more and more in quantity. I started drinking alone. I met a man who was nice, but in the National Guard. He got his orders to deploy to Iraq. We got married at the courthouse several days before he left. While he was away, I continued to drink. I had an affair with a married man who was 38 years older than me. I found out that I had herpes, although I apparently had it for years as I did not contract it from the married man. My husband returned from Iraq. He found out about the affair, and I could not talk to him about it, and so he filed for divorce. It will be final this month. I continue to drink alone, every night. I wake up each day feeling miserable and hating myself, but getting to work and doing a passable job. I continue to be involved in my musical activities, which gets me home around 9 or 9:30 each night, and then I start drinking. I don't feel a physical craving for it. I just feel unhappy and empty and so lonely.

I'm in therapy. I've been in therapy before. I've tried meds for depression, but I would drink with them which would cause wild behavior in me, and blackouts. So I went off the meds.

I am just so lonely. I feel so different and weaker than everyone else. I'm a cheater and a liar and a drunk. And, according to my therapist, an extremely self-abusive one. She says that all of this behavior stems from an intense self-loathing. Duh. I wonder what year in school she learned that one. And for that I pay her how much an hour? Shit.

I've been given so many gifts. I'm extremely intelligent, and got scholarships and graduated from an excellent university. I'm apparently good at my job, although every day I go in there feeling like a big faker and that at any point people are going to discover that I don't have the faintest idea of what I'm doing, or maybe they already know and I'm just the department joke that they keep around for amusement. A girlfriend of mine who is 33 was recently diagnosed with cancer, and yet she battles bravely. And here I am blessed with good health and I'm drinking it away.

If something happened to me on a Friday, no one would realize I was gone until about 2pm on Monday when I didn't show up for a status meeting at work. By then I'm sure that the wild dogs would have broken into my house, a la strange fantasy scene from Bridget Jones Diary.

I know I should look on the bright side. I did finally file a police report with the West Virginia police over the sexual abuse I suffered there as a child. Nothing came of it, but at least I confronted it and reported it. My relationships with my mother, father and grandmother are good and solid, although their relationships with each other are completely dysfunctional. I am fully in control of my destiny, but I don't have the faintest idea of what I want, other than to be happy with someone, to love and be loved. And not to be lonely any more. I have never felt so hopeless in all of my life. I've been upset, but never just so numb.

My mother tells me that things always change, and to just ride it out. I feel like I've been "riding it out" for 6 years now, and I'm still riding.

Stop the world, I want to get off.

August 1, 2005
12:37 pm
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Rasputin
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Hi Ginger,

I am sorry for the way you feel about yourself. You sound like smart, interesting person!

Have you ever considered developing your relationship with God/HP? Life will become much more interesting and meaningful. You will start to love yourself when you discover that He has plan for your life. That does not mean that you will be trouble- free, but you will have purpose and meaning in your life. You will be able to cope diffrently with life's stresses and disappointments and there will be many. You will begin to learn, wonder, ponder, grow, trust, get wiser...instead of solving every obstacle with drink, booze, denial or any unhealthy pattern.

Wishing you all the best, sweetie!

~Love, RAS~

August 1, 2005
12:39 pm
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Notsure
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Hi GingerLeigh, I think that you (except for your drinking) have your shit together, have lots of gifts and seem normal. We all have our differnces and problems. From my read of what you wrote you only need to give up alchohol to make the biggest and most poitive and significant change in your life. If you do that for 6 months you'll be amazed at how healthy you will have become and recognize that booze is only a dependency that you don't need. I suggest that you try AA. They will make a difference as long as you too want to. Regards. Notsure.

August 1, 2005
12:45 pm
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staying hopeful
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Ginger

My biggest hug to you. I can feel your lonliness. You sound like a person who has many gifts....use them. I wish I could tell you how.

Sometimes I get so lonley also and yet I live in a family with a husband and have 2 grown children. But still the loneliness is there.

I think what Ras is saying just may be the answer.

Please find an AA group and stop the drinking. It is depressing you and making you feel more and more disappointed with yourself.

Wish I had some words of wisdom. So I'll just send huge hugs and prayers your way.

Love, SH

August 1, 2005
1:27 pm
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gingerleigh
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Thanks Rasputin, Notsure and StayingHopeful. Sometimes we just need to know that there's somebody out there who has heard us.

Ras, I've considered the spirituality, or rather the lack of it, in my own life. I know that something greater than myself must exist, but I am completely cut off from it. I've always been puzzled by those with faith. It's this extra sense I don't think I was born with. I imagine that those who cannot see and were born that way are also puzzled by descriptions of sight by others.

I have been to AA a few times, and just could never get to the point of turning my life over to a higher power because there just didn't seem to be one in my life. I don't feel like part of anyone's plan. I will never have a family, as I cannot bear children.

You are right though, drinking so excessively is hurting me terribly. It's not good for my body, and with every evening that I fail, my self esteem sinks further and further. I feel like there is no purpose to life, or at least to my life. I just don't seem to care enough about anything. Is that all it is? Just a hangover of the soul, unable to really feel anything even when I'm not drunk? And if I start to feel something then I'm inclined to stuff it back with a drink?

August 1, 2005
1:57 pm
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tooscared
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Hi Ginger, Maybe you are at a point now in your life though where you realize that you do need God/HP. Your life does have meaning and value, but you have been so badly beaten down by the world and circumstances that the lies are easier to believe than the truth. The truth is that you have been put here for a purpose. You have the ability to touch lives through your music and have the ability to touch your own soul through the music you play.

Maybe AA is not for you, but you do need help with your drinking. Not only is it destroying your body, but it is destroying your ability to see things clearly. It doesn't sound like you connect very well with your therapist or have a very close relationship with her. I know that my relationship with my counselor has been a lifesaver many times when I felt so alone and like nobody would really understand me. It just helped to know that she was there and would go through those times with me.

Just keep trying and don't give up. You have made some bad choices as we all have, but it is never too late. You can choose to get help and to do positive things in your life that will build you up, not tear you down. The alcohol will just destroy you.

Please know that others do care and you are worth any amount of effort and encouragement to make you see things differently.

Take care and keep writing.

Love, TS

August 1, 2005
2:25 pm
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jack122064
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Hi ginger---

It's those darn "should" statements again. That's a trap we can get into which can leave us frustrated. The fact is, the drinking will drag us down, I know, I used to drink a lot, and it made it even harder to cope.

In fact, if you've been drinking, it's not surprising that you're not making the progress you'd hoped to make...I'm not trying to lecture, I just know from experience... and it can be hard to cut back the drinking, but I have focused on my physical health, and that's helped... been working out like crazy, and I feel good. I also have a ton of work to do (PhD student, trying to finish up SIX papers...ugh...), so that keeps me busy...

Also, something I had to get through my head is that things are never quite the way they seem... things are in fact better than I'd realized, but when I was in the middle of all the drama with my "ex," I couldn't see past all her BS...

Anyway, hope you're feeling better - keep telling us what's up... 🙂

Jack

August 1, 2005
2:44 pm
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kathygy
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It seems to me that you won't start feeling better until you stop drinking. You choose - alcohol or your sense of well being and love. As long as you continue to drink you are not feeling in your feelings. No wonder you feel awful. You can't develop a loving relationship with yourself while you are drinking. If you don't like AA look on the internet for other sources of help to quit drinking. Its up to you. You can learn to be happy on your own but not while you are drinking so much. It sounds like you are not serious about getting help to quit drinking or that's what you would be talking about. You are a worthy person who deserves to feel happy. Your first step towards self love could be to get help to stop drinking.

love,
kathy

August 1, 2005
4:52 pm
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gingerleigh
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I know that the alcohol is poisoning me. But stopping was so painful, I felt so much worse being sober. The loneliness is absolutely crushing.

This week I will be away at my musical retreat, and binge drinking alone at night will not be an option, unless I don't want to get any sleep at all. The days start early, and each day is crammed with activities. So I will hopefully be able to get out of this element, out of myself.

It doesn't make things any better that the divorce is not final yet. My husband is doing his same old passive aggressive shit, and if I were driving this divorce we'd have a date set, but he wants to be in control because I am the one who erred, and now he's using this to punish me. Or that's what it feels like anyway.

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