I watched three episodes of "House of Cards" last night. [Spoiler Alert] and Doug's relapse made me a bit disheartened. And angry with its implications.
Staying sober seems to be so hard in the long run. Once a drunk, always a step away from being a drunk again FOREVER. THE REST OF YOUR LIFE. That is true for any addiction: a precarious position that is iffy at best. Only 5% of people who try to become sober make it to 90 days, and of that small group only 5% make it to two years. Fuck me. Am I expected to be a super hero?
But, but...it's almost unfair. What if I slip up and have a rough patch, like Doug, and drink for a week then go dry again? So one week means complete statistical failure in sobriety even if I have 10 years behind me and then another 10 years in front of me of abstinence? That's akin to say a diet failed completely because of a candy bar, right?
But I know we are talking addiction, not candy bars. Look at poor Philip Seymour Hoffman, 20 years of being clean and then died after using again. That is sad and scary. Addicts are time bombs.
Hyper-vigilance and community is the answer, what tedium! I have to remember the benefits of sobriety and keep close the darkness of my state before I quit. This is better. I am a time bomb in either camp-a time bomb of true danger and damage from drinking or a time bomb to slip up. I will pick the latter. Risking relapse is definitely the healthier choice than risking the next black out.
-Drinking: A Love Story by Caroline Knapp -Almost Alcoholic by Joseph Nowinski and Robert Doyle -After the Tears: Helping Adult Children of Alcoholics Heal Their Childhood by Jane Middelton-Moz and Lorie Dwinell