People in true recovery are easy people to be around. More than just the physical act of not drinking or using, they are in emotional recovery.
As wounded healers, they have found strength through their weakness. They gained wisdom not by doing it right, but by getting it wrong at first.
The Cycle of Stress and Drinking
Bev is a medical professional in her fifties. She came to the Coleman Institute for Addiction Medicine to detox off of alcohol earlier this year and now has six months of sobriety.
For many years, Bev considered herself a “normal drinker.” She enjoyed partying and started drinking at her university. She hit the pause button on her drinking while she was pregnant with her two daughters, but started drinking more as life’s demands grew later in life, both at home and at work.
She started every day with the intent of not drinking. She never missed work because of her drinking, but she often entered the office feeling some ‘dullness’ from last night’s drinking. When juggling work responsibilities and after school activities, she began thinking about the ‘reward’ of a drink when driving home. After arriving home, she started to open a bottle of wine before she removed her jacket. She easily drank three large glasses of wine while making supper and listening to her kids’ stories from school.
Warning Signs It’s More Than a Bad Drinking Habit
When her husband got home, Bev occasionally opened a new bottle of wine to create the perception that it was her first glass of the evening. Her drinking grew to one and half bottles of wine on weeknights and two on the weekends. She started hiding the new bottles of wine she had bought, and throwing away the empty bottles far from her house.
Bev started having difficulty sleeping and increasingly intolerant of her co-worker.
COVID pushed her into a real meltdown.
While working from home, she’d start sipping wine before lunchtime. “I felt this bipolar sense of terror and relief that Amazon Prime could deliver wine to me every day of the week.”
As a medical worker, she felt ashamed of herself. Her daughters noticed her hands shaking in the morning as she made coffee. At some point, she realized that she needed to seek help, and found out about the Coleman Method online.
Suffering From Alcohol Use Disorder
Fr. Richard Rohr uses the metaphor of electricity to describe how a person suffering from life’s pain can transform it into something useful and powerful.
Bev has started working on a strong program. She attends online recovery meetings and has joined an Intensive Outpatient Counseling program (IOP) that our local physician recommended to her. She has found companionship as well as tools that are helping her both in her personal life and in her managerial duties in the office. She is fully transforming her suffering into a vehicle of help to others and of hope.
Do You Need An Alcohol Detox?
Although not everyone needs a medical detox to safely stop drinking alcohol, it can be dangerous to suddenly stop drinking if you’ve developed a strong tolerance. Some people experience tremors or sweating until they get some alcohol in their system. Please contact your doctor if you’re concerned or uncertain.
The physicians in our national network provide a safe, convenient 3-day outpatient alcohol detox program. As I write this blog during the middle of the COVID epidemic, our alcohol detox using the Coleman Method is available in Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Denver, Orange County, Phoenix, Richmond, San Francisco, Tampa and the Greater New York City/Northern New Jersey area. If you or a loved one is ready to try living alcohol-free, please give us a call at 877-773-3869.
Joan R. Shepherd, FN