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JustTheKeags Offline
Meme a Day Keeps th Feels Away
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relapse - August 1st 2017, 06:16 AM

This thread has been labeled as triggering by the original poster or by a Moderator. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

after almost 3 months, I gave in . at first it was one sip, then two, then a whole bottle. I feel like a retard. I couldnt keep myself from it. My parents feel like Im a dissapointment. I have just given up completely. I cant go on like this. I can hold it for a little bit, but I just go straight back. drinking away my pain. I need to stop.


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Re: relapse - August 1st 2017, 08:23 AM

3 months? Congratulations on going 3 months before relapse! That's quite an achievement! You did good!

Relapse happens a lot. Focus on your achievement.

Here's what happens in the brain if you're interested. This is why people with an addiction problem literally can't control themselves. It can cause great confusion in a person when they chose not to drink or do drugs, and then they discover they do it anyway, even after they've chosen not to do it anymore!

It's because the part of the brain that chooses not to drink or do drugs anymore, is not the part of the brain that becomes addicted.

People drink to escape. Escape stress, crappy life, bad feelings they want to run away from.

Drinking becomes a way of dealing with stress.

We have a primitive mid-brain part of our brain. This is where base emotions come from. The original purpose of the mid-brain was to "keep us alive". It works very simply: If you see a tiger, you run away. If you see food, you move towards the food and eat it. If you see a pretty woman or handsome man, you are attracted to that person and want to reproduce.

That's pretty much it for the mid-brain. Basic stuff, and it generates emotions to get us to do things.

Then we have the prefrontal cortex, which evolved a bit later. This is where rational thought occurs. This is where we can imagine a future, project into the future, and make decisions based on our projections of what the future may bring.

The only drawback is the prefrontal cortex is slow at thinking. Aside from that, it's really good at thinking abstract thoughts and going to college. This works great except in one condition — when you're being chased by a tiger.

If you're being chased by a tiger, the prefrontal cortex thinks, "Hmm, that looks like a tiger running towards me. Let me think, what do I know about tigers? Tigers have sharp teeth and claws. This tiger might want to attack me with his teeth and claws. That probably would not be a good thing. Let's see if I can think of what options I have. I could fight the tiger with this stick. Or, I could run away."

In the meantime the mid-brain already has the answer. The mid-brain's response is, "Yikes! Tiger! Run!" Very fast and decisive.

The only problem is the mid-brain has this prefrontal cortex slowing it down. The prefrontal cortex says, "Hold on a moment there. Let me analyze this."

But the mid-brain is thinking, "This stupid prefrontal cortex is going to get us killed! By the time it figures out what to do it'll be too late!"

So evolution came up with a way for the mid-brain to take care of this burdensome rational thinking prefrontal cortex when it's being chased by a tiger. The mid-brain simply shuts down the prefrontal cortex, leaving the person literally unable to think rationally anymore, and just react emotionally.

This system works great if you're being chased by a tiger. This system is a disaster if you're trying to overcome an addiction problem.

The reason is, it's the mid-brain that becomes addicted. The prefrontal cortex can rationally decide not to drink and do drugs anymore. It can come up with a zillion reasons why this would be a good thing. But none of that matters if the person becomes stressed, because the moment the person becomes stressed, the mid-brain takes over control, shuts down the prefrontal cortex, and says, "What's going to get me out of this stress? I know, drinking/drugs will fix this." And the person finds themselves doing exactly the thing they already decided they never wanted to do again. The min-brain takes over and directs the body to go get drugs or alcohol.

The solution then, is to learn how to not get stressed.

Anything that helps a person stay calm and feeling good helps, because when one is not stressed, when one is already feeling good, there is no desire to go use drugs or alcohol. There's no reason for it.

This is why people go to AA meetings. It tricks the brain into thinking, "I'm with my tribe. I must be safe" and that helps calm the brain down.

This is why people also practice Mindfulness Meditation. It's a mind exercise which helps one deactivate the Sympathetic Nervous System (fight or flight), and activate the Parasympathetic Nervous System (rest & digest). By focusing one's mind on the present moment, and purposely not allowing the mind to wander and start thinking about what the latest catastrophe around the corner might be, a person is able to calm down. And when one is calm and at peace, the prefrontal cortex remains online, and the person has full control of themself.

(Yoga, Qi-Gong, Tai-Chi are all similar Mindfulness Motion exercises which achieve a similar result.)

So, that's what happens, that's why people can't control it (which seems weird to most other people who've never experienced it.) And that gives a few hints on things that may help and directions to look.

Best wishes!

And congratulations for making it 3 months! That's awesome!

P.S. here's a link:
Is Addiction a Disease? (Yes it is) by Dr. Kevin McCauley
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b2emgrRoT2c

This video explains the concepts above. (It's where I got most of my info from.)

Another phenomenon is known as "Sign Tracking". Seeing an object can trigger one to start drinking. Such as seeing a special glass one always uses to drink alcohol from. Seeing that glass again can trigger an automatic response. (It's also possible people become addicted to the glass, rather than to the alcohol in the glass. It's actually the glass triggering the action.) [They noticed this when soldiers came back from Vietnam war and they were all using drugs heavily there, and people expected an epidemic, but surprisingly the soldiers did not use drugs back home. Scientists opine it's because the soldier is no longer in the environment they were in when they used drugs. All those sights, sounds, smells, everything that their brain associates with drug use wasn't there anymore.

This is why people who've been using drugs at home, and want to stop, often have to move out of the environment they were using drugs in and move somewhere else. Staying in the same environment can trigger relapse. (Change your environment. Try redecorate your room completely different.)

More on this is in a series of 3 books called something about The Tail of the Racoon. books on addiction for younger people.
   
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Re: relapse - August 1st 2017, 09:08 AM

thanks! I really liked that stuff on the brain. As you had suggested, Ishould do yoga , ti chi, or some other destresser. problem is, I alredy do yoga. At first, yoga was a punishment for me doing drugs. Then, I started to enjoy yoga, and I do it once a week. It is very relaaxing, and I love to do restorative. my freinds thought I was gay when I started yoga because Im aa guy, but I converted one of my freinds, and we get together and practice yoga uotside our wednesday class. thank you for the suggestion though! I've decided to up my yoga to atleast five times per week.
thanks.
right now Im coping by writing songs. for guitar and vocals.
thanks for your help,
Keagan


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