Isolation is poison. Like alcohol, isolation perpetuates your confinement to the repetative thoughts of negativity, and worthlessness. Somehow you are so consumed in self pity that you invent this illusion that you are the only human being on planet earth granted the gift of existing. Meanwhile, you remain totally convinced that you are so fucking unique that you are beyond the need for acceptance of others. They don’t understand your pain. How could they? You have it so hard, and nobody understands. Am I getting somewhere?
There’s no need for you to seek therapy because only the weak give into that facade of self knowledge. Your old lady constantly nags about your drinking when it is a staple in today’s society to blow off steam at the end of a hard days work. Here’s a question, Does she go without? That overprivileged broad has no idea. You provide the food on the table. She must be under the impression that you enjoy working 80 hours a week for a shitty paycheck that you barely survive on. How dare she have the nerve to throw her unwanted criticism about your drinking! But at moments, you experience this emptiness that you cannot express; yet you let it continue to be brushed aside time and time again.
Until the culmination of emptiness and feelings of worthlessness reach a fever pitch and your relationship is left in shambles and your slick talk and manipulation won’t mend the damage done any longer. You’re unemployed because your asshole boss fired you for drinking while on the the job. It’s simple… it is societies fault. They don’t know how you feel. You don’t need some arrogant, Ivy League University prick with a Master’s degree framed on their office wall telling you that you have a problem. He can’t relate. There is no resolution without understanding; and this guy hasn’t experienced the intensity of pain from your traumatic experiences too shameful to share.
Little does he know you were sexually abused by your family member as a child. He doesn’t know the shame you feel because of your inability to do anything to take a step forward towards improving your situation. You don’t possess the tools to do such a thing. You can’t even excuse your behavior because you came from a two-parent household in the suburbs and had parents that instilled values and morals during your upbringing. You were brought up right and you know better..
How could some therapist tell you how to solve your problems? You probably feel better off drinking and leaving those thoughts behind. What’s the point of facing your problems now? Why would you want to get sober just to be miserable.
This is a story that is all too familiar around the tables in Alcoholics Anonymous. This isn’t my story, but I can’t say that I haven’t had a great deal of the same thoughts and experiences. That’s what brings us together. We may not like each other, but we sure as hell respect one another and are one phone call away no matter whenever one of our group reaches out for help.
I don’t want to be miserable, but I want to be sober. I want another human being to connect with me on an emotional level and experience simple things like a friend asking if I’m okay when I haven’t been around or leaving a group meeting without saying goodbye.
I do not want to deal with the prison of my own mind, confined to my intrusive thoughts and I never did. The community of the 5:30 PM Friendship Group of Alcoholics Anonymous and my sponsor did not allow me to show up and disappear. They made me apart of their family no matter how much I avoided it.
These people save lives. Mine included.
Inevitably, I was charged with my second DUI in the span of three years on October 26th 2017. It was only a matter of time. But…something happened. I was sentenced to Sobriety Court and ordered to attend AA. Despite the bitterness I felt and the fear of being in a group of people that are likely to talk to me and expect me to talk back, I felt as if I could contribute to the recovery of others with my own experience and insight though I only had a short period of sobriety. Still, It was a terrifying thought. 3 times a week I attended a group that interacted with each other in such a genuine fashion that couldn’t be fabricated. If there is such a thing as a spiritual connection, it existed in that room where that group gathered and shared their struggles, and victories in sobriety.
After 2 weeks of sobriety I anxiously waited for my opportunity to share and couldn’t imagine that any of these individuals could possibly care about me enough to not only accept me, but without knowing, create an environment of acceptance that is undeniably genuine. I reluctantly introduced myself, looking down, fidgeting with my fingers compulsively, “Hello, my name is L.A., and I am an alcoholic…I think I need a sponsor if I am going to make it through this. I want to be fully committed to my own happiness and I think the only way I can do that is through a lifestyle of sobriety. I feel that today is the time for me to do so”.
Appearing completely comfortable and confident, I was terrified of being an unfit candidate as a sponsee and no one approaching me to be my sponsor. I thought I wasn’t worth the effort or the time and did not imagine anyone in that room cared about me enough to become my mentor and my friend. I do not recall the moments following the Lord’s Prayer, but I know that I was immediately approached by an individual. This individual has not only has saved my life simply by being my friend and accepting me; but by exerting such a tremendous effort to understand my struggles with mental health and listening to me to understand and not just to reply. This person has sat through countless hours of me explaining the effects of my recurrent depressive episodes with attentiveness and a genuine interest in knowing more.
The key to my sobriety is the acceptance I experience in a community of people that genuinely care about me on a deeper level than most people experience in the best of friendships. It is such a beautiful thing to see a group of individuals from so many different walks of life putting aside their differences to love one another for the sake of bettering themselves. Progress is a product of a loving community. I never wanted friends, and did not think I needed anyone else to accept me for me to experience true happiness. Proof that I was wrong made me experience a connection with a community of people with the most altruistic hearted individuals. This ultimately led me to believe that without acceptance and inserting oneself into a community with a positive mission, you will be forever lost to your selfish nature.
It is time to heal yourself by allowing others to love and accept you simply because your ability to make a positive impact is irreplaceable, and your worth is immeasurable.