The Mosaic of Alcohol Abuse

We talk a lot about all of the things you may be medicating with alcohol. The list can be nearly endless and will commonly include anxiety, loneliness, boredom, depression, trauma, physical pain, PTSD, alcohol induced bi-polar, unbalanced personal and/or professional relationships, loss of role, self-image, habit, and so on and on and on.

Of course, it’s never just one of these conditions which is why addressing it can seem overwhelmingly impossible, depressingly exhausting, or just plain frightening.

But consider that it could also be viewed as an adventure of discovery into a different view of both yourself, your life, and your future.

How different that is from the bleak life known as “in recovery” and the adherence to the rules of a rigid, conformist, cult.

We work with individuals and couples and occasionally with families because it is impossible to address the unique mosaic of medicated issues with groups, one-size-fits-all Steps. Nor is it possible to do so by disempowering, degrading, terrifying and humiliating individuals. Nor is there any magic that will effortlessly transform you regardless of how nice the accommodations, the beach, the mountain or the vortex.

But there are logical and effective ways to address the problem which are also life affirming – specifically affirming you, your strengths, interests, abilities, successes, and complete history. This starts with identifying what your unique personal list of medicated issues includes.

Having done that, the next phase means matching your personal resources to solve rather than medicate, and, where they are lacking, adding new coping skills, perspectives, and skills. These may include Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Assertiveness Training (anathema to AA and all traditional “rehab” programs), revising your self-image to a more accurate one, practice in habit change and replacement, management of diet and activity, and other changes specific to you, your situation, and preferred outcomes.

Imagine expanding and enhancing your life rather than degrading and diminishing it as AA and other cults do.

Mary Ellen and I both work with you, as does our consulting physician Dr. Tom Norcross, D.O., to provide exactly the workable mosaic of skills and approaches which allow you to fully recover.

Regardless of whether this has been a long term problem, or you simply wish to preemptively derail a troubling trend you see developing, we are pleased to help you regain control and move alcohol problems into your own personal collection of “been there, done that, don’t need to anymore” life diminishing activities.

Remember, free consultations are always available either in person or by phone. You can easily talk to one or both of us and decide if what we offer is what you need. No pressure, no marketing, no intermediaries. Just Mary Ellen and I. You have nothing to lose and, perhaps, a life to gain.

An Urge is an Urge, is an Urge, is an Urge

Most people seem to think that a craving for alcohol is “different” from every other urge we feel. Somehow, it “different.”

It’s not.

How often we’ve heard, “But I had an urge so I had to drink the …..”

Sorry, that’s simply excusing a choice as though it weren’t one.

Frankly, no “urge” in this lifetime surpasses that of most adolescents to have sex. Yet most manage to suppress this urge before doing something that has them registering as sex offenders.

After sex, the “urge” for a cigarette ranks up there pretty high but most of us quit without meetings, Steps, confessions, or other trappings which simply excuse continuing the behavior because one is, after all, “powerless.” Again, hogwash.

It does, however, help to understand what the urge or craving is actually about and how they may occur simultaneously so you are being assailed by a combination or triggers which you confuse as one.

The best example is the 5:00 o’clock cocktail hour. This is usually three separate “urges” mistaken for one. These include your bodies demand for sugar after you’ve gone too long with little or nothing to eat. Your body sees alcohol as predigested sugar so it doesn’t care the form – just feed me!
Second is an urge for the relaxing and energizing effects of the alcohol which are quite understandable.

Third, and most insidious, is our unconscious wish to replicate a familiar habit or ceremony marking the end of the day.

That considered, one of the things we do with you is dissect your urges and cravings and addressing them just as we delve into what issues you’re medicating. Dr. Norcross will also toss in a few months’ worth of Naltrexone to help manage the process with less distractions.

As always it is about you and your life and trading the current jumble for a much more satisfactory day-to-day one.

Why not do a free in-person or telephone consultation and see how to make 2018 a major improvement over 2017?