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Author: gapfan Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 461  
Subject: Re: Just letting the words flow - long Date: 1/17/2005 1:40 PM
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Thank you, Kerri, for sharing your story!! It is very close to the thing that got me to accept the AA idea of trying to live without alcohol. I did not (and still do not know 'for sure' that I am alcoholic) but when I heard a story such as yours I listened. I call the adventure "preview of coming attractions" just like at the movies. At an open AA meeting I could listen to a speaker tell his story. He would get to the point where I felt I might be. But then he continued. As with the movies, I considered the "previews" and thought I did not wish to "see that movie." I am a Chemical Engineer by training, am a Tau Beta Pi (honorary society suggesting intelligence), held a good position in a company, was still married (and still am), had no arrests or encounters with the law, money in the bank, drove new cars, and many other reasons why I was not "like the people in the meeting." But I listened and continued to attend meetings and did not drink. I could look back to many situations where I did something I had no intent of doing, like driving with a load of people in the car when I had too much to drink. (I had even let another person drive but I thought he drove too poorly so "took over" since it was my car.) We had been to an American Chemical Society meeting and a host company had "too much drink and too little food." (Of course I was not in the least to blame for drinking too much.) My car at the time was a 1966 Dodge Coronet, and I had placed a handful of stick pretzels on the dash. Some of these rolled forward into the defroster vents, and for the next year, when I turned on the defroster fan, they would rattle in the vents and remind me of that "driving while drunk" event. That is something I thought I would never do. We got home without incident, but I drove with one eye closed due to double vision. The following morning I was very sad as I arrived at work, our secretary asked why, and I told her. She then told me about her husband who found sobriety years earlier in AA, and how she had attended meetings with him for nearly 10 years. I read his story and later met him.

So, I heard enough stories to let me know it would get worse rather than better (progressive disease) and decided to try "their way." And their way was not to drink at all (do not take the first drink). I made 19 days, then 5 days, then 3 days, then 32 years and counting. It makes no difference whether I am "alcoholic" or not, although I call myself a recovering alcoholic. I certainly present with the behavior of an "alcoholic" which for me means I cannot drink and predict accurately what my behavior will be. If I do get in an accident some time, it will not be due to alcohol if I do not drink. (I did get stopped for speeding a year ago on New Years night, but just got a speeding ticket, my second one in my life (40 mph in a 25 mph zone). It was coming home from an AA meeting.

So thanks again for sharing your story, Kerri. You can see how you shared up to a point where I could relate well, and then continued with what happened when you decided you were "not that bad" - YET. I would love to be able to get people with problems into recovery sooner, but it is up to the individual to decide. (It did make me feel good to meet another Tau Beta Pi from our company in the AA meetings, another person who was "too intelligent" to be a drunk.) And I knew of two suicides within a block or so of our house which were alcohol related.

More comments later.

Sincerely, Gapfan
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