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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Western Australia

    Default Don't Call it Al!

    Alcoholism has a lot to do with numbers. I've been an alcoholic for about 10 years (though really it's probably been alot longer. I'd been toying with the disease for a couple of decades at least) It's been 7 years since I joined Smart. My last post on the Smart Forum was 2 and half years ago. And I've been sober for about 1 and a half years.

    I first recognised I was an alcoholic when I noticed myself counting the DAYS. The days since my last drink. Somehow it gave me comfort to mentally tabulate the time between the present moment and my last drink. Because that meant I was keeping tabs on my drinking, it gave me a (false) sense of control. Until I realised I would start off each morning doing this mental calculation. The numbers of days between drinks were getting smaller and smaller, until 1 day was a tough won battle.

    Alot of my time was spent thinking of alcohol. It had grown into an entity....I called him Al....a conniving enemy that I battled with daily. I had tried multiple times to unfriend myself from this guest who had definitely overstayed it's welcome. It had all progressed so slowly that I hadn't noticed when drinking had changed from being an occasional, controlled and entertaining pastime to a frequent, uncontrolled and horrible lifestyle. I would bargain with Al, rage against it, befriend it, try to outwit it. But really, while it's presence was strong in my mind, it was always in control.

    The 4 and a half years I was actively posting on the Smart Forum were very important in my recovery. It helped me share my battle with members who became close online friends. It gave me tools for identifying triggers and patterns associated with my addiction and ways to replace it with positive plans and actions. I had months of sobriety which gave me hope, but unfortunately I would find myself slowing falling back into old patterns and habits until I pulled myself together for another attack. But each battle took a bit of my confidence with it.....until I felt Al was taking over. I lost my positivity and stopped posting on Smart, as I felt ashamed for my repeated relapses.

    "But then" (it's a life changing phrase!).....a month or so later, I was walking through my local bookstore, and I saw a book there called "The Cure for Alcoholism" by Roy Eskapa. Hmmm.....this sounded abit too good to be true, I thought, but bought it anyway. It outlined "The Sinclair Method" which uses the drug naltrexone in a specific way to 'cure alcoholism' (though it's more of a preventative measure than a cure). I read it. I discussed it with my doctor, who prescribed naltrexone for me. And I carried out the instructions in the book. It took about 3 months for things to start changing....and another 6 months for me to finally say goodbye to Al. I don't think I would have been ready to apply myself so well to this programme if it hadn't been for my experience with Smart Recovery. The book came at the right time for me. It might be the right time for you too. I don't know. I just felt I had to write here to give back something to Smart Recovery for all the strength, information and friendship it has given me.

    It's been 1 and half years now since alcohol lost it's grip on my mind. I don't count days anymore...that's the big thing.
    Now I rarely think about Al. Because there is no Al. There never was an Al. It was all in my mind. There is an addictive substance called alcohol. It comes in bottles. It's only through frequent drinking that it takes another shape.

    Good luck to you all out there. I sincerely hope you will find your "But then" ...
    "Alcohol gave me wings to fly and then it took away my sky."

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    smack dab where Time begins


    Bravo! I am so happy you kept at it and found what works for you and shared you success.
    Wherever you go, there you are

  3. #3


    Hi Sarah. I have also been taking naltrexone. I have 9+ months off all alcohol + drugs. Read the book but did not use "The Sinclair Method". Been abstinent. I plan on taking it for at least a year everyday. Anyway I to am very glad you found what works for you. Enjoy your new life, hope to see ya around.

  4. #4


    It's nice that you have post your experience on Smart Recovery. Have a good time ahead...!!

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