Monday, September 13, 2010

Don't Defend and Don't Explain

I have lots to say about this today, which shows me I should say nothing at all:)

Okay so I'm back on track now. I totally took something personally today that I shouldn't of. It knocked me all out of whack. My first reaction was to defend myself. But I learned early in sobriety not to defend or explain. Most alcoholics and addicts spent years defending their crappy behavior. I sure as hell did. But sober I have learned that defending and explaining myself is actually starting an argument. Not doing it has taken a lot of practice, especially when I feel under attack.

I did okay just leaving it alone today, but am bothered by the fact it even bothered me. I'm a such a work in progress!

13 comments:

  1. I hope your ok. Sometimes not saying something is the smartest thing.

    Take care everyone!!

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  2. Funny thing about taking a quiet ground.. We feel stronger even if we are mad as hell. Why ?? Control. Knowing when to speak up and when to let it go .. Well, that is WISDOM.

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  3. Hope I can remember this. I've always had the problem of defending myself (even one of my bosses and many colleagues notice that, but they also always tell me I am justified in my position -- it's my other co-workers who are asking too much). Tomorrow I fully expect another boss to ask me to take on yet another very time-demanding position on top of my other responsibilities. I simply cannot. I am not biased about this; my counselor who I've recently starting seeing and who is by nature very objective tells me I cannot. So I have to say "no" without being defensive and without having to explain in detail. Wish me luck.

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  4. Funny thing about these postings..I am always encouraged but see the evolving change of people. Always encouraged.. But wonder where is Annette, Randy t42 and others.. Thoughts to you all and more and am sure you are seeing this - God's blessings

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  5. We had over 7000 visitors last month. So they are reading, but it's really hard to share when you're having a hard time, or going through something that is private. There are days I don't want to say anything (note the day Annette blogged for me) So I get it. I also get that when life gets really good sharing becomes less important.

    But maybe this will help...,blog roll..,if you're reading please give a shout out! Xo, em

    anon- I know you'll do great! Once I learned how to say "no" without explaining myself it was like a weight being lifted. Good luck sweetie!

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  6. I'm still here guys...just been in a bit of a "funk" lately...but I'm coming out of it! It has to do with my step 4...I'll have 9 months of sobriety on Thursday (yeah me!!!!) and I can't seem to put my step 4 down on paper. Went to a great meeting last nite at which step 4 was the topic of discussion and I heard a lot of good stuff...I just need to face it, get it down on paper and then share it & turn it over...I know deep in my heart that preparing to do this has caused me a lot of stress & anxiety and once I do it I'll feel soooooo much better...so that's my plan. I stayed after the meeting and talked for a long time with a guy that has 18 months and is now just starting his step 4...we had a lot of things in common and it was a great, motivational conversation...I'm glad I stayed and listened to what he had to share.

    I too have a hard time "not explaining myself"..I do it because I'm a "pleaser" by alcoholic nature I guess...I always want people to like me and I want everyone around me to be happy all of the time...that's not reality, so I have to quit trying to please everyone all the time. But with this I'm finding that I have my own "real" opinions that may differ with others...and voicing them and possibly causing "confrontation" scares the hell outta me..but when I do this, I'm showing others the "real" me and that's what I need to continue to do...whether I piss someone off or not. Still very much so a work in progress :)

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  7. To Anonymous' question on Sobriety Sunday Sept. 5th (sorry it's taken me so long to respond) - I originally quit drinking on Nov. 15th '09 and did so for 30 days on my own (no AA)...I was pissed off, irritable..basically a raging bitch every second of every one of those 30 days...so I drank on the 30th day to celebrate my staying sober for 30 days...I could control my drinking, I wasn't an alcoholic...well obviously that didn't work out too well for me...I downed a whole bottle of vodka that nite and woke up feeling completely broken, beaten and full of surrender and desperation...I knew then that I needed help. I got sober "for real" on 12/16/09 and went to my 1st mtg on 12/18/09...it was completely amazing to me how much easier, nicer, more serene not drinking was once I started goin to meetings and talking to other alcoholics and finding all of the similarities in others' stories..I remember looking back to those 30 days of hell when I insisted on doin it on my own, all alone and was full of gratitude that I had found AA...it turned out to ultimately be my "easier, softer way" to stop drinking. I wasn't a low-bottom drinker so I didn't need any detox or rehab, thanks to God always for that!!!...so I don't want to say that stopping drinking was "easy" by any means, but I didn't have any physical withdrawal symptoms and my body didn't "need" alcohol to function. I'm glad I got off the elevator on the floor that I did because I was headed for the basement real quick.

    Recently I have been a bit irritable about not being able to drink at social situations and with my friends on friday or saturday nites....but I've gotten thru those times and didn't drink. I think I've been sittin around thinking too much lately and trying to figure out "why me God...why did you have to make ME an alcoholic?"...well, I've figured out that I just need to ACCEPT the fact that I'm an alcoholic....I can't CHANGE it, so I might as well put myself into full-fledged ACCEPTANCE mode and move on with bettering my life....that requires me to work the steps, which I have been avoiding....I choose to go with the program, stay sober, reach for that place that The Promises tell us are attainable...my husband just said to me the other day, "I've really noticed myself saying 'thank you honey' to you all the time...I really like it...it's much, much better than being pissed off at you and your drinking all the time." Little things like that make me know that I'm doing the right thing! Hope this helps and feel free to ask away of me....I'm back and on track peeps!!!

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  8. Anonymous on 9/5 Sobriety Sunday…sorry it’s taken me so long to respond….I quit drinking on my own for 30 days towards the end of my drinking career…it wasn’t fun, I was pissed off, irritable and basically a super bitch for every waking moment of those 30 days….until on the evening of the 30th day I rewarded myself with a drink…well, as I’m sure you know, that one “reward drink” turned into the whole bottle and I woke up feeling like total dogshit the next morning….but in addition to feeling like dogshit once again, I felt something new…I felt completely & utterly beaten & broken…I had finally gotten to the point of complete surrender and desperation…I woke up knowing that I couldn’t do this on my own…that was 12/16/09...I went to my 1st AA meeting on 12/18/09.…that’s when I realized I was where I needed to be. The warmth, kindness, understanding and laughs that I found in that room that night, along with the similarities in their stories and my own, brought about a sense of peace and serenity that I will never be able to explain in words.

    I wasn’t a low-bottom drinker, so I didn’t require detox or rehab and didn’t have any physical withdrawal symptoms or cravings….my only cravings came up when we attended social drinking situations, but I got thru them with the knowledge that God was with me, my group was supporting me and my sponsor was a mere phone call away.

    I remember looking back after 30 days of sobriety “with” AA and thinking about the 30 days I did on my own and how profoundly different the two were….I saw AA as my “easier, softer way”….the way I had been trying to do on my own for so long, but never being able to do it on my own. I can’t explain how it works…..all I know is that it worked for me.

    Don’t get me wrong…there have been days in the past 9 months that I have struggled with wanting to drink….but I have my tools, my HP, everyone here on Em’s blog and my sponsor and I now utilize those tools and work thru whatever is happening that makes me want to drink….I don’t just say screw it and drink like I used to…I’ve found myself to be a much more calm, serene person these days….I stay away from the drama, stay in the moment, don’t think too far ahead (that really gets me in a funk) and try to keep my life as simple as I possibly can.

    We say it at the end of every meeting and I can’t explain it, but I definitely see it in my life and that is……”Keep coming back, it works if you work it”….and then some of us often add on after that - “and it sucks if you don’t!”

    Hope this helps! Have a great day peeps!!!

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  9. Okay...I posted to Anonymous and it said it didn't post, so I typed it out in a word processing document so I wouldn't lose it this time and my original wasn't here when I went to copy my 2nd try at the comment and now both of them are here....they are basically the same, but probably have a little something in each of them that's not repetitive....whenever I find that I've typed something really long and it "mysteriously deletes" or won't post, I find that my 2nd stab at it is more condensed because I'm pissed that the first one didn't take....so lots from Annette today I guess! lol

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  10. Annette, great to see you here, Funks are hard, you are doing the right thing and working it out. You and Emily are a great example of people pushing through. the steps are here for us to work through them, not meant to torture us. When you complete your step 4 you can always keep going back and adding, you don't have to get it perfect the 1st time. Doing the step is supposed to give us release and peace, God is on your side!!!

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  11. Thanks doggielover....I know...I need to set my "perfectionism" aside to complete this and remember that I can always do another step 4 anytime I want/need to...thanks for all your kind words sweetie!!!

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  12. Thanks to all these posts... Annettte, I figured you were still here but it always nice to read your posts.. Well wishes.. The journey continues...

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  13. What's been funny to me now that I'm working my fifth step and admiting my resentments to my sponsor, is that I still have petty resentments, but at least today I realize they're petty. I got SOOOO mad at my boyfriend a few weeks ago because he ate some of the boiled eggs that I had set aside for my week's breakfasts. Even though the crazy emotions are still there in my brain, at least I can identify my crazy for what it is and not act out on it. Progress, not perfection!

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