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Palmolive Offline
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Exposure therapy and relapse. - April 10th 2015, 02:50 PM

I've been in hospital for two years and I'm currently on a DBT ward for women with Borderline personality disorder. I'm having trauma work which involves exposure therapy.

I used to be an "alcoholic". Badly. Spent a good 100 pounds a week on alcohol to the point where i passed out every day and self harmed badly. I go to AA meetings when I get the chance and this is something Im going to do when I come out of hospital. But the exposure therapy Iim doing is like going out for a drink with my mum where she drinks alcohol and i dont, then having a bottle in the house with no one drinking it, then having a bottle in the house with mum and her partner drinking etc. Im so scared Im going to relapsed.

One glass and its all so easy to go back to the way I was.

"Only in the dark, can you see the stars..."
Josie 12/3/2014, always in my heart. Sue 19/2/2016; Peter, Ellie, Hannah, Andy, Kirtsie RIP.

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Kindred Offline
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Re: Exposure therapy and relapse. - April 12th 2015, 10:32 PM

Although I haven't had any experience with alcohol addiction, I do know how hard it can be to try and kick and addiction to the curb. You're making brilliant progress and the fact you're in treatment means that the therapy will be supported, I'd imagine there are going to be people there hopefully preventing or at least giving you the tools and skills to avoid relapse. There will be steps in place, for example say you did slip, they'd probably go back a step as you weren't quite ready yet. I'm just guessing here by the way! But everything is going to be supported and if you feel something is too far and it's really tempting to relapse, speaking to someone before you start planning ways is probably going to be your best bet and they'll probably reduce the intensity of the therapy and help you overcome that step. You're doing really well, I know you can do this. Be brave, my love xox

Take as long as you need.
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Re: Exposure therapy and relapse. - April 13th 2015, 12:42 AM

Hey Jessie,

I used to be an "alcoholic" too. It was really bad from the time I was fifteen until I turned nineteen. I quit for an entire year and a half before I turned 21 (legal age in U.S.) because I was determined to be free until I was legal to make my own choices. Now I drink every once in a while. I'm able to have alcohol in the house without drinking it. I can stop at one drink. I owe it all to exposure therapy. Although it wasn't "prescribed" exposure therapy, E helped me with it a lot. She helped me focus on the recovery aspects and made sure I wasn't doing anything negative to hurt myself.

Exposure therapy is really hard. I'm not going to lie to you. However, it's worth it. It's made me a different person. As I said, I can have one drink and stop. I don't suggest you start with that. Just do baby steps. Allow yourself to know that alcohol is in the house, but do something to occupy your mind. When you want to drink, do something positive. Talk to someone. Write. Color. Read a good book. Drink water. These are all small things, but when you substitute them constantly, it will help. Find something that works for you. It's all about will power and doing what's best for you.

I'm around if you ever want to talk about it. I really do understand where you're coming from.

Much love. <3

There is no beauty without some strangeness.

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