This blog is written for alcoholics and those who love and live with them, by alcoholics in recovery.
For those who know what it is like to live with alcoholism but would also like to know why alcoholism affects the alcoholic and those around him in the way it does.
We write this blog to help us and you understand how the alcoholic brain works and why they sometimes do the things they do, why they act the way they do?
Why is it sometimes that everything is going great and suddenly the alcoholic in your life overreacts and acts in an emotionally immature way, which can often cause hurt to others around them?
Why do they suddenly cut off their emotions so profoundly it leaves your emotions in limbo, confused and upset.?
We hope to explain this disease state and behavioral disorder, which alcoholics themselves call an “emotional disease” , a “parasite that feeds on the emotions” or quite simply “a fear based illness”.
It appears that alcoholics in recovery are aware to a large extent of what they suffer from so why do they do what they do sometimes if they know what is going on? Are there times when they cannot help themselves?
Why do alcoholics, even in recovery, sometimes engage in endless self defeating resentments?
Why do they project into future scenarios and then get emotionally paralyzed by doing so, get stuck in a cycle of catastrophic thinking?
Why do we run through the list of cognitive distortions on a daily basis?
This is not to condemn but to understand. Knowledge we believe is power. It aids understanding and compassion of another person’s suffering.
We as recovering alcoholics still, after several years of recovery, can still engage in such behaviours. We do not wish to hurt anyone, especially not our loved ones, but sometimes do.
We sometimes get wrapped up in ourselves and act in a selfish, immature and inconsiderate manner.
We need help with this, at times, distressing condition. That is what it is.
Distressing, based on a emotion and stress dysregulation, even in recovery, hence we have to manage it.
On a daily basis. It does not return to normal. To balance. To equilibrium. We have to take certain actions to restore emotional equilibrium.
Hence it can be hard work, hence we sometimes we come up short and emotionally overreact.
We have a distress based condition which has to be managed.
We also have to give ourselves a break, don’t distress ourselves further with perfectionist ideas of “should” – just do your best! That is usually good enough for most people. Why not us?
We are not saints, progress not perfection!
Or as progress not perfectionist!
Recovery changes the brains of alcoholics for the better.
As we are personally well aware, self knowledge does not bring recovery – only action does.
This action could be helping others, praying, meditating, going to meetings, talking to someone who knows what you are going through etc. Connecting with others, in the same boat as you.
It does work, if you work it. It removes the distress that feeds alcoholism and addiction.
The distress that makes us catastrophic thinkers, to having intolerance of uncertainty about the future, struggle with our emotional natures, etc
Recovery helps us deal with negative emotions and anxiety in a rational manner via the help of others.
We become different people in recovery. More considerate of others, more emotionally mature and emotionally sober.
We learn to deal with situations which used to baffle us! In dealing with these we deal with our alcoholism because we solve the problems that used to make us drink or use in the first place.