D Day has arrived (or should I say No ... - British Liver Trust

British Liver Trust
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D Day has arrived (or should I say No D Day!)

Archie1962
Archie1962

So, after several years of struggling with alcohol I have decided to totally quit. I’ve tried the cutting back, cutting out for a few days, and finally realised I cannot drink at all anymore. I have all the early signs of someone with liver damage. Already know I have liver cysts, gall stones, high bp and intermittently been on meds for irregular heart beat.

I had it relatively under control pre lockdown, but now out of hand again. And now I work from home, so even more opportunity to drink. No excuse, but also no access to my main coping mechanism (aka the gym) has also not helped at all.

So I am starting today and, I know it’s going to be hard, but I’m determined to break the hold it has on me.

I’ve planned ahead and taking two weeks off work too so that I can focus on clearing my mind, long walks, exercise at home, signed up for Zoom calls through AA website and just generally completely focus on getting it out of my system and head!

Just wanted to share as this site has helped me a lot in understanding the impact on others, on my own health and mental wellbeing and most importantly, there is light at the end of the tunnel if you fight for it, so thanks 🙏 all x

94 Replies
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Trust9
Trust9Administrator

Thank you for sharing! good luck - I am sure you will get lots of support here.

Take care,

Trust9

Sounds like a great plan. It won’t be a pleasant two weeks, well the walks will be nice, but there’s no way to sugar coat how awful withdrawal is. I don’t mean shakes or any noticeable symptoms, just irritability and cravings. But it gradually gets better as long as there are no sneaky drinks or “rewards” in there as this resets all counters to zero. Well done and good luck for the next two weeks and onwards.

Great plan Archie. You can do this! It's hard but 100% with the effort.

Thanks all. Well I think the irritability has already started 😂 and not sure if the sweats are from lack of alcohol or it’s just humid today. Drinking lots of water with ice in and trying to keep occupied. No doubt tonight will be tough for sleeping...

But hey, I’m focussing on how wonderful you say you all feel for those of you who have managed to do it. I know it does not end there. Taking each hour at a time 😀 x

Hi Archie, I have a few detractors on here so I don’t talk about myself much 😀 but we’re talking going from obese slob to triathlete and going back to uni for a career change. No chance of any of that if I’d just carried on drinking every day. Now you don’t have to do triathlons (unless you want to), but there’ll be pleasant surprises ahead.

Wow triathlete! That’s amazing. Well done you! I’m more a gym bunny and mainly do weights. Not too great at cardio, BUT that could be the alcohol impacting my ability to physically function cardio wise. Well I’m impressing myself....got past the time when I would have had my first drink. Small victory I know, but thought that was going to be psychologically tough.

I wanted one, but I’m determined to get past the withdrawal bit.

I am melting though and really shocked at how much I’m sweating. Can’t be just the weather.

Anyway, thanks for chatting. Giving me a boost to have people to chat to 😀

Gym will be open again soon 👍

Gym/exercise in general was another reason to quit booze for me. I started using treadmills and after 30 minutes of boredom, the screen would say I’d burned 250 calories, which is about a pint of ale. Easier to skip the ale.

Hope you got no booze in the house?

No, no booze other than no alcohol budweiser which I don’t like anyway. I’m really determined. Even did a shop today and thought the final bill was too low and checked the receipt ...and then realised it was because no alcohol in there 😂 Really had no idea how much that was bumping up my bills! Another bonus. 👍

Now I’ll be in trouble with those detractors, although they use a different forum now, a nice quiet one. You mentioned alcohol free. You get used to it, and if you’re having a crave, it can be the difference between drinking or not. That brand you mentioned is a bit sugary (but not the worst by a long way) and there are less sweet and healthier choices. Some say alco free is the devil incarnate, and they’re entitled to an opinion.

That is the best news I’ve had all day! There are lots of forums which can support you. Well done you!

Thanks Isabelle. Are they any forums you can recommend please? I’m ok at moment but no doubt will get trickier day two to three onwards as withdrawal sets in.

Laura009
Laura009
in reply to Archie1962

Liver4life

I like the forum "sober recovery"

Thank you 🙏 I will check those out.

It’s sobering in all meanings of the word. There are posters on there who relapse time and time again. They really believed that one drink wouldn’t hurt or they can beat all the research and odds and drink moderately. Not many success stories there, but it certainly reinforces the point that alcoholics can’t ever drink again.

Hi Archie. I haven't had alcohol for the best part of seven years now and I don't even think about it.

I started out with a fatty liver at the start of my journey and I didn't listen to what the specialists were telling me.

I gave up unhealthy eating and drinking when I was faced with Cirrhosis and liver cancer and given the harsh reality of only having 5-6 months to live without treatment, possibly 18 months if I responded to treatment, possibly longer if I went on a trial called TACE 2.

I was classed as terminal with no hope of transplant.

After nearly 5 years of very debilitating illness I got a reprieve at what I refer to as the Eleven and three quarter hour, I had a liver transplant. I was so weak and muscle wasted that my recovery after was slow, but I know that by sheer good luck I'm here to tell the tale.

You are doing the right thing Archie. Change your lifestyle while you have the chance.

You already have some problems and the problems that will more than likely follow are far, far worse.

Stick at it, you can do it and this forum will support you all the way.

Keep posting and let us know how you're doing.

Wishing you all the very best with it.

Alf

Thank you Alf. Another inspirational story. That must have been a very scary place to be in. I will keep posting especially over first 2 weeks. But please tell me if you get bored with me going on everyone 😂

Still no drink other than water 💦 nearly 9pm and not long till bedtime. Very sweaty 🥵 but hanging in there. Will see how I sleep. That’s usually worse time when mind goes into overdrive.

Sleep well all and will keep you updated.

You're doing great Archie.

You'll get up tomorrow with a day under your belt.

Keep posting, we certainly won't get bored. We will be with you and giving you support and spurring you on to a much more enjoyable, healthy life.!

Hang on in there!

:-) :-)

Alf’s certainly an inspiration to all with his positivity. Plus he nags and nags to make sure you’re not tempted to get a sneaky drink in!

Hope your evening’s going well, Archie. Not much sleep tonight probably so time to read a book or two 👍 I’m waiting for Alf to write his story as it would be a great read.

Kind words Coco but I rabbit on enough :-) :-) Plus I always seem to have a project on the go. I don't know where they keep popping up from :-( :-(

Sqwarks
Sqwarks
in reply to Archie1962

sounds like your thinking about it to much to me! it’s still controlling your life, forget about it, don’t let the demons in and take yourself for a walk.

your going on about withdrawal symptoms they ain’t painfull, stop thinking about them, if you carry on drinking i’m telling ya then you know what pain is. make nice non alcoholic drinks for a treat, you can do it ive done a year and dragged myself out of decompensated liver to compensated, it’s not worth a drink beleive me, good luck x

Well,try getting different flavoured diluted fruit juices in,if you get fed up with corporation pop, tap water lol,you'll find many different people are at different stages of soberity on here,and of course those who have lost loved ones through the demon drink,and others who have had liver transplants,we all have stories that would shock many people,I don't know how things always work out in life, and I think a good mindset really does help things along the way,but I was a chronic alcoholic at the time and I didn't use my brain, but I'm now 8 years sober, and I recieved plenty of outside help,and during this lockdown I emptied the ashtray one evening, and I thought well,25 years of smoking, stopped,just like that, absolutely nothing but willpower, and if you can tap into all the necessary resources around you,and avoid the trap falls that come with drinking you can increase the odds in your favour,I really hope that you can feel the benefits of abstaining from alcohol, and slowly but surely, health wise things you will also feel the difference, keep the good work up!

Brilliant, you have made a huge decision that will change your life and your health👍 There will be challenges, but you have put coping mechanisms in place and are going to get support! My first time in a pub after I quit was for a friends party! I put things in place to help and that was a really good thing to do!

I don’t know how much you drink but if you think you are having any withdrawal symptoms then do get medical advice!

We are all different and will cope differently and I follow quite a few people on Twitter who are sharing their experiences and I find that really useful too!

Stay well and safe and everyone here will be supporting you👍

Lesley🙏

Thank you all so much!

Well good news I am officially over 24 hours sober! Had the most rubbish sleep of my life. Only about 4 hours sleep according to my Fitbit (other makes are available ;p).

Slight headache, itchy face (?) and torso. Still sweaty. But I’m going to start the day with a morello cherry 🍒 cordial which is very yummy and a protein shake.

I just wanted to share a moment from yesterday’s shopping trip. Besides noting the drop in my shopping bill and my heart stopping moment in the booze aisle where every fibre of my being wanted to buy the vodka on special offer “for a future BBQ”!!!I had a moment at the traffic lights as I can out the car park.

Annoyingly lights turned red as I got there. Having stopped, I became aware of two individuals sipping from extra strong lager cans (yes, us alkies do tend to home in on the strong brands, expert on those!). My immediate thought, and I’m ashamed of this, was “what a pair of wasters”.

Then it dawned on me, I am NO better. Who am I to judge? I don’t know their back story, I don’t know what hard times they might have faced? Maybe they lost their job. Maybe they never had one to get them started in life in first place? Big lesson to me and those thoughts and that image will stay with me.

I also wanted to say that I’m mindful that people on here have different reasons for being here and I deeply feel for you all. I hope that those of you whose circumstances were not of your making, like those borne with conditions, have lost loved ones, have fallen ill through no fault of your own, do not feel offended by those of us who technically have bought it upon ourselves. I’m sure some of us have some heart wrenching stories too of why we ended up this way, but may seem thoughtless to those who are presented with no choice in the matter in the first place.

So I just wanted to say that every single story on here is helping me to either understand my addiction or appreciate life and respect my body.

I’m going to do this for myself but also every single one of you 😀

Lam1e
Lam1e
in reply to Archie1962

Hi Archie

Well done on getting through the first night and for not buying alcohol! Several times when I tried to quit, I had the night sweats, felt like I was snoozing not in a deep sleep and constantly waking! I think it is your body’s response to not having alcohol! I tried to use mindfulness when I really struggled, but whatever works for you! I’m sure you will get helpful suggestions here👍

Everyone has a different reason for drinking and we can’t change our past. Acknowledge it, make amends if you can, but don’t dwell on it!

Thank you for sharing your experiences with us👍🤗

Remember also

Yesterday has gone

Tomorrow is not yet here

Today is a gift

That’s why we call it the present

Lesley

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to Lam1e

Thanks Lesley 😀

Well done, Archie 👍

Interesting you have a Fitbit. Me too. I don’t swear by its accuracy, but it’s good for day to day comparisons, and a couple of differences I noticed between my drinking days (nearly a year and a half ago) and now:

- My amount of deep sleep is way up. I don’t think drinkers get much deep sleep at all.

- My resting heart rate is ridiculously low now, about 47. The last time I drank, on holiday in December 2018, it went up to 58 for a few days.

Four hours isn’t so bad for the first night. Sleep is one of the first things to improve.

Thanks. My resting heartbeat on Fitbit at mo is 84 today, which was better than last week but seems poor now I’ve seen yours. But, as you say, maybe not so accurate. I’ll see what it says after 1 week.

Mine was around 70 when I was in full drinking mode (and 22Kg heavier!). Heart rate’s not a big issue, but it’s interesting to see the difference between drinking and not.

Poppy234
Poppy234
in reply to Archie1962

Speaking as a wife who doesn’t drink I am finding your quitting very encouraging indeed. I’m wishing you the best of luck and all the willpower you need. Watching on I am convinced no one would choose this addiction and there is always some reason for it. I feel lucky it’s not happening to me. So I pray for your full recovery from this.

It just sort of happens. You’re right, no one would want to be controlled by drink which is how I was and your husband unfortunately. The big step is realising alcohol has a hold on you and doing something major about it.

As for the lads with the cans, at the start of last year, I had to pop in to an alcohol and drugs centre to collect some tablets (Campral) which I only took for 6 weeks anyway. I got talking to a recovering drug addict, nice enough bloke, and he’d done well to come off his drugs. Anyway, I was thinking how bad it’d be to be like him. Then I realised he was probably thinking the exact same thing about me!

Good to hear Archie, will be the best decision you'll ever make I can vouch for that. Only just one thing is I don't know how much you were drinking or how long etc but going cold turkey from heavy regular drinking is not the recommend thing to do medically its very dangerous, you probably already know, but it was for me anyways, I had to cut down slowly and then medically get detoxed, so just take care buddy, but you sound so positive and that's brilliant 👏 keep us posted on your progress. Wishing you nothing but success with it. Take care

Ashley

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to Ashw88

Thanks Ashley. I did know but decided to try and do it myself. I had not been drinking as much as I did about a year ago, but was ramping up again in lockdown and it was getting out of control. Not sure I even know how much I was drinking at worst. That is quite a sad statement in itself.

I’ll keep a close eye on side effects and will seek help if any fits, hallucinations etc.

Well done on your sobriety 😀 cannot wait to get my first year under my belt. Lots of family celebrations to get through over the year but my approach will be to be the designated driver or say I’m on meds that don’t mix well with alcohol to hopefully stop the pestering by others to drink.

Poppy234
Poppy234
in reply to Archie1962

I’m interested would you think about being honest about the reasons why you aren’t drinking to get others support. Or are there difficult family members perhaps. I have heard people say even drinking friends are supportive once you tell them why. Still I guess you have time to consider this and need to focus on the task in hand.

Hi Arch just

just wanted to say good luck, I'm sure now you have set your mind to it you will beat the hold alcohol has on you.

My mum was an alcoholic, it was really difficult growing up and seeing the damage it can do, not only to the person drinking but to those around them too. My eldest sister drinks very heavily, she doesn't see how it changed her personality, she knows she has NAFLD already but won't stop, she doesn't think she has a problem!?!

With determination, the help of AA and the lovely people on here I'm sure you will succeed!

One day at a time 😊

Take care, Sam

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to In-Shock

Awww Sam. That bought a tear to my eye. We forget how difficult it must be for those around us and I hope your sister eventually seeks help.

I have amazingly managed to keep this under wraps and my partner does not know. They just think I like a drink socially. They have no idea of the hidden bottles around the home in past, the sneaky drinking when they were in the shower, at work, shopping or gardening. It’s a horrible addiction that turns you into a very unlikeable manipulative individual.

Not surprisingly my father drunk heavily too. I use to think I was better than him as I didn’t drink in the mornings 🙄 but sure made up for it after.

Big hug 🤗 Hope that reading about other people helps you understand your mum even if difficult to forgive.

Poppy234
Poppy234
in reply to Archie1962

I didn’t say anything to my husband for years. It could be possible your partner knows something of it and would strongly support you. Something to think about but every situation has differences I suppose so you might be right of course. My husbands father drank much more than my husband and I know that is a comparison he makes too. It’s sad because his father would be the last person he would aspire to.

Can I just say, I was sitting watching TV last night and I was shocked at how many references there are to drinking! Decided I would watch a serial recommended by a friend to binge on instead...which was even worse! Peaky Blinders. Great series but there was someone drinking shorts every minute or so! I was going to turn off and then decided I would make myself watch it as this is going to be my life going forward and I cannot avoid seeing it. Got to face it head on.

Lam1e
Lam1e
in reply to Archie1962

References to alcohol is everywhere! TV ads still making it look like you can’t have fun without it! Cooking shows on TV, supermarket bargains, everyone just going for a drink after work! Cheap alcohol in pubs, get a double for the price of a single! Then on the adverts on tv In the tiniest letters ever “drink aware”!

My friends supporting me were totally shocked at the amount of promotion alcohol gets!

Stay well and safe👍

TT-2018
TT-2018
in reply to Lam1e

It gets worse, drinkaware are actually funded by the alcohol industry and supported by Public Health England. The treasury receives £13-16 billion a year from alcohol taxes versus a direct cost to the NHS of around £3.5 billion.

You still don’t see any health warnings on alcohol products, unlike cigarettes.

Lam1e
Lam1e
in reply to TT-2018

They do really need to treat alcohol like they have cigarettes, with raising awareness of the damage! I watched a programme about the success of the minimal alcohol pricing in Scotland. Showed the price of cheap bottles of booze! In England it was under a fiver, but in Scotland it was £12!

TT-2018
TT-2018
in reply to Lam1e

You can buy a 2.5 litre bottle of Frosty Jack for £3.70, that is 22 units at less than 17p a unit. The proposed change would make it 50p a unit, raising the cost to £11. It would not affect pubs etc but it’s aimed towards problem drinking. It has been successful in Scotland in its first year but you still have people driving over the border and filling their car boots with cheap alcohol.

Clear health warnings and restrictions on advertising would also make a difference.

Laura009
Laura009
in reply to Archie1962

Yes its been said on here numerous times, every soap revolves around the pubs and drinking in the homes. I have said if this was real life, with the amount the characters drink they would all have cirrhosis. They missed a great opportunity to highlight the dangers of alcohol consumption when it caused Carla to require a kidney transplant. When she came back she was back on the red wine !!!

When Princess Di became part of our lives she highlighted the fact that soaps and other tv shows should not be promoting alcohol the way they were. .... her remarks were ignored !

Hi Archie,

Please don't think I wrote what I did was to make anyone feel bad for drinking, as you say it is an addiction, one that sneaks up on you, I don't think anyone wakes up in the morning and suddenly decides to drink to excess.

Life can be so hard at times, stressful, meaningless and unfulfilling. I don't judge people, I have an addictive personality..... My addiction, and please don't laugh (too loudly) is Jelly Babies and salted plain crisps... BOTH of which are bad for me, I have T2 Diabetes, and water retention - which has now turned into Ascites and ankle edeoma (sp), I have become malnourished as this was all I was eating, I had no appetite for anything else!

I have just had the shock of my life, I literally had days to live, thank goodness hubby insisted I saw my G.P who insisted I went to hospital!

I know that just like you no-one else can change the course of our future and just like you I have to give up my addiction to get better!

What are we like eh? I am sending you positive mental attitude vibes, when you feel stronger it might be time to tell your partner, you need support and encouragement through the tough times, I'm sure your partner will be willing you on!

Keep your chin up chuck, take care, Sam 😁

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to In-Shock

Thanks Sam, no I did not think that at all. And I did laugh at the Jelly Babies and salted crisps. That made me smile in a good way. I think people don’t realise that addiction can take many forms and across many things.

I think I generally have an addictive personality so I, like you, have had several things I’ve been addicted to even since a child. At Easter I would eat every single Easter egg i was given on Easter Sunday even carried on after being sick! Who does that?!! I also had a thing for marmite and salad cream sandwiches. Anchovies out of a tin. Curly Wurly’s!!! Raspberry liquorice...

It’s a mad world. As you say, best not to judge. We all have our flaws/faults/imperfections. The world would be very dull if we were all the same.

I would say here’s a toast to all our beautiful differences. But my toasting days are over unless it’s morello cherry cordial, which is in danger of being my next addition 😂

Good luck. Focus on something positive and think of that when you feel tempted

A very brave decision - addiction is an illness so be kind to yourself. I hope you get all the support you need and deserve

Fabulous, well done. My brother has cirrhosis and I stopped drinking last year following his hospitalisation My dog died in January and I've been drinking too much since, especially in lockdown which is very frustrating and annoying as I know how close my brother came to death and I should know better. I too have decided to pull myself together, I'm walking 6k every day and I have to say I feel so much better and the witching hour of 4pm hasn't crossed my mind (thankfully).

Stick with it ♥️

Thank you. Loss of pet hits you really hard 😢 they are a member of your family and so sorry to hear that. But glad you are turning a corner! Message me if feeling lost, both in similar boat

Hi, don't usually reply to things but thought after reading your story would do. I stopped drinking 11 months ago. Had tried to cut down, suppose I had but it took liver failure to stop me. Haven't touched a drop since, sometimes hard not for the drink itself but for the social side of it. My first alcohol free Christmas was weird. I be honest with you I am ill because of it but coping. I sleep well, no dark thoughts, in fact I have never slept like that ever like I do now. It's hard to describe literally stopped overnight no side effects no problems my body just heaved a huge sigh of relief. I know how hard this is for you but once you are off it you feel like a different person. Free of it. I look better despite the liver disease, skin great, lost weight no bloated booze red face. Mentally calm and balanced for the first time in my life. Good luck here for you if you struggle, for support friendship and empathy. You can do this I did it so anyone can ❤️🙏😁

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to Violet74

Thanks Violet. Really well done. I have heard no one say that they regret giving up and all seem to say feel better without it. I hope you are keeping well despite the liver failure? Really sad that most of us wait until too late. I suppose we just don’t fully realise the damage we are doing as often too late by time it’s noticed. 🤗 keep well x

Violet74
Violet74
in reply to Archie1962

Thanks pal😊

Forgot to mention, if you've been drinking alot, don't just stop. That's what my brother did and he went yellow, shook uncontrollably and was then hospitalised. Speak to your Dr for advice on how to quit the right way for your body to adjust xx PS I've been using the dry January app and also easy quit drinking app, both are very good xx

Hi Archie. Well done on your decision. I was a heavy drinker for years and it took me to hit rock bottom to stop. It will be a year this Sunday i have not had a drink. The first few days and weeks were hard but it has got a lot easier the longer I have gone on. I have taken up early morning walks at a time i was never awake for and have done 320 miles this year so far. My mindset has also changed for the positive.

Like you say you never notice how much it is on TV etc. But I have a before and after picture to look at. I am trying new things as well. I am still on a journey but hopefully the right one.

Good luck to you. X

Good luck!

Thanks so much for all your posts. Really overwhelmed with people’s kindness and openness 😀

I'm a year sober. I got fed up with well-meaning GPs telling me to moderate and slowly taper off due to my epilepsy because it only encouraged me to continue drinking - so I decided to stop cold turkey and I've never regretted it.

Remember to keep checking in here, and on any other groups that you might be a member of. Slipping up isn't failing - it's a learning curve - so nobody is going to judge you.

Wishing you all the best xx

Same here. The reducing/tapering off idea did not work for me either. Just left me feeling I could continue still even if slightly less. But slightly less soon become slightly more on a bad day. Best to just stop for me.

You must be really proud of yourself 😀 I’m really impressed with all these success stories albeit I know people slip up. So, well on track for 2 days. In fact it technically is 2 days as I had last drink at 2.30 pm on Sunday. But that was only because I ran out!

So I’m counting from Monday

Well done Archie, stick at it

:-) :-)

I was told that too by a useless counsellor who said I shouldn’t stop drinking straight away. I’m sure that advice applies to some drinkers who’d get dangerous withdrawal symptoms, but I reckon some drinkers will see it as an excuse to carry on.

As I say, the only good counsellor is an ex-addict.

You're absolutely right! When I was advised that it could kill me if I stopped drinking without tapering off, I politely had to mention that my epilepsy is as controlled as generalised epilepsy is ever going to be, and that the drink would kill me faster because I've already nearly died from cirrhosis once! One of those two risks was worth taking and the other wasn't.

I've even discovered that I don't even like the taste of alcohol: it turns out that I never have done. I'm very happy with my alcohol-free stout or a glass of not-whisky if I fancy a "grown up" drink :)

I had some interesting experiences in “recovery”. Firstly to be wished good luck in your “recovery” sounds odd. Then there’s the don’t stop drinking immediately advice which probably applies to massively heavy drinkers only. And when I went to get my blood taken for liver tests - I was fairly slim and well-presented - the nurse asked if I’d been drinking that morning! We all get tarred with the same brush 🙂

To be fair, I was a massively heavy drinker several years back. I never did reach that point again, and at the first sign of returning cirrhosis I quit - because that was what told me that following the advice to taper off was going to kill me. I've suffered from status epilepticus before, and a shot of Valium into an IV port is all it takes to stop it, so it just made sense to me that the seizures were less risky: paramedics can stop seizures, but they can't sort out a cirrhotic liver!

I related to your point around not even liking the taste of alcohol. Towards the end I was drinking straight out of bottle and necking it and then pulling a face as tasted terrible. Which shows to me that I was not after the taste of alcohol but purely what it does.

It’s statement like that which are very helpful to me in reinforcing my resolve to quit! Why drink something that you don’t even like...

And, more importantly, reflect on why it is that I crave to be “out of it” and what I need to do to ensure I don’t replace it with some other “prop”. Life is very precious and I’ve only just noticed how early the birds get up now! I’m normally asleep till at least 8am. Quitting has affected my sleep although last night was slightly better. And boy do cats fight around here! Never noticed that either 😂

David Attenborough’s replacement coming through!

Thats like saying only good midwives have had their own children which isn't true either !

We’re talking about addictions, not having babies.

The comparison is identical and pretty insulting to either party !

OK.

DrKiljoy
DrKiljoy
in reply to Laura009

I have seen various excellent counsellors, who have been a enormous help in dealing with my addiction issues. None of them have been addicts.

Laura009
Laura009
in reply to DrKiljoy

My husband's was never an addict either.... not even a drinker that's how he could make addicts realise life without having lived with addiction is far better.

He was never shocked by the amount the addicts drank either !

I’m glad to hear it. There are, however, stories of less than effective counsellors. Mine told me not to stop drinking and to drink “smaller bottles” of wine. That’s not counselling. That’s not going to stop anyone drinking.

Actually it is for those with severe symtoms of advanced liver disease. Stopping without tapering in these cases can be a matter of life or death with the withdrawral. But yes l am surprised you were told to taper when all you had was mild fatty liver.

DrKiljoy
DrKiljoy
in reply to Laura009

It was my Heptologist who told me to taper off, reducing gradually over a 30 day period. She also emphasised that if I didn’t stop drinking, I could expect a very short life expectancy.

You are correct in that it is not counselling, it is safe medical practice and to suddenly stop drinking alcohol for an addict is considered to be extremely dangerous.

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to DrKiljoy

I think counselling and choice of counsellor is a very individual choice. To be honest, I would prefer one that has walked in my shoes and understands from experience as to how I feel. That is not to say a non ex addict could not do a good job, just my personal preference.

But, as I say, it’s a personal choice and not judging anyone’s preference.

I already had cirrhosis when I was told to give up drinking. I didn’t know, I went to the docs with a terrible cough. The cough was fluid on my lungs, further tests were done and I was given the diagnosis of cirrhosis. They tested my lung fluid and said it didn't have anything to do with my liver.

Even after diagnosis of cirrhosis I didn't give up, it was like a bomb had just exploded. Where had this come from, how do I deal with it, will my life change for the better, can I do it. I told my closest friends (this I regret) and my husband. I haven't touched alcohol since October 2017, I went to bed and decided enough was enough. I didn't have any withdrawals and the one thing I noticed very quickly was my sleeping improved dramatically . I had acites and varices, this has gone away. The one thing that hasn’t and I hate it is spider nevi (nevus, angiomas), I keep having laser treatment but they just appear somewhere else.

I hope each day will getting easier and it will start to feel like normality for you. If you need support always take it, don’t feel ashamed or worried, we all need help at times.

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to jazzjam

Thanks JazzJam for sharing. That must have been a very scary time. That is so great to hear and well done!

My first night was terrible sleep wise. Got better since and losing head fog too in the morning 😀

Sweating is still an issue but I can live with that.

I have only told two very close friend and they have been supportive albeit one is an ex alcoholic, so knew was safe there.

Not told my partner. They are too judgemental and have no sympathy even for a simple cold! So I stand no chance with this 😂 Plus no sympathy for any addict portrayed on TV. So I’ve chosen to deal on my own with support from elsewhere.

The irony is that my partner said to me last night “Don’t you think you are drinking too much water?!!!!”. 😂😂😂 can’t win! But I’m hanging in there. One day at a time...

Hi Archie, doing well 👍 Why not tell your partner? It can’t do any harm and might even help?

My wife’s never drink in her life so definitely didn’t get what all the fuss was about, but it helped me to tell her I’d quit.

Laura009
Laura009
in reply to Archie1962

Actually as the wife of an alcoholic. I WAS very supportive and caring but once you reach the point of realising they won't help themselves, it's everyone else's fault and stealing vast amounts of money to get his fix, sympathy and support can easily run thin. He was a grown man and needed to take responsibility for his own actions. I had 2 children who needed caring for too and l will make no apology for putting their needs 1st.

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to Laura009

Hi Laura, absolutely there are some very supportive people out there and your husband was lucky to have one and I’m sorry how things worked out.

But I know my partner very well, and they definitely would not be supportive,

Laura009
Laura009
in reply to Archie1962

That's sad ... sorry

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to Laura009

Don’t be. I am so determined to do this after reading all stories

Laura009
Laura009
in reply to Archie1962

You need to. Leave it and you will live to regret it

jazzjam
jazzjam
in reply to Archie1962

Oh the clearing of the head fog, it is good. I honestly could never imagine going back to that or the awful sleep which I thought was normal then. I understand about the support, you just think about it and take your time if you ever choose to discuss it further with other people. I found not one person responded how I thought they would, I didn't have expectations I just thought I knew them better. You just look after yourself , do what you know you need to do. It is hard enough to deal with what is going on without worrying or thinking about what others think.

I actually always drunk a lot of water so that wasn't new but Ive found some nice juices, elderflower cordial surprised me, very tangy 😋

CocoChannel
CocoChannel
in reply to jazzjam

You mentioned sleep. I overdid it on the naan breads at an indian meal recently 😀 I didn’t sleep well that night and had a bucket nearby just in case. I felt awful the next day, no energy. Then I remembered that’s the way I often felt as a drinker! Drinkers don’t get much quality sleep at all.

jazzjam
jazzjam
in reply to CocoChannel

No not whatsoever although at the time you just think your sleep pattern has just changed because you are getting older or the job is more stressful. Oh garlic naan and a curry, I couldn’t do that now with all the salt but I will dream about it tonight 😂, not the after effects though 😮

Hidden
Hidden

Wishing you luck good on you 👍👍👍

Thanks all. Well I’ve managed it to day 5. Small victory I know but this is all about baby steps and pleased to say I’ve gone from watching the clock watching each hour go by until bedtime and wondering how the hell I’m going to get through it!

But for anyone reading this, I just want to share what I have already noticed in these few days, but accepting everyone is probably different.

1) I don’t wake up feeling like I have had no sleep

2) My mood is a lot better. I wake up feeling far more positive. My partner wonders why I’m so chirpy in the morning.

3) I’m actually enjoying my food. I’m eating healthy, but I’m stopping to enjoy the experience rather than wolfing it down so I can disappear to grab a swig of a drink.

4) I have so much more energy already. I’m astounded at that.

5) Dull pain under ribs is subsiding. This morning I cannot feel it at all at mo.

6) Face is already less puffy and red.

7) I can actually look myself in the mirror and not feel ashamed. That one is personal to me as I always felt ashamed of drinking so much and gave myself a good talking too every morning that I would give up that day...and usual epic fail come 4pm.

Yes there are downsides, do still sweat a bit and a slight headache. But look at the 7 benefits already!

If you are thinking about doing it, please do it!! You will not regret it! Different things seem to work for different people, so suggest you plan around what you think might work for you in advance. And then just do it!!!

Ooo, and forgot to say, do your research on alcoholism, get advice from professionals (your doctor, AA etc) as some may require support if very heavy drinking, existing health conditions etc. Some people do need to taper their drinking rather than go cold turkey.

I did just stop but, as some have pointed out, that is not always advisable.

Hope that helps.

Hi Archie - Can I ask you about your experience with the "dull pain under the ribs" As I have posted previously this is what has scared me half to death and was the catalyst for me to stop. Sorry to ask on specifics but even though I have had ultasound all around that area (clear) and endosope for the stomach (clear) my anxiety is on the ceiling almost every day as I feel that rib "twinge". I am on 30 days sober now and its reduced I think but not gone away.

I am really finding it difficult to talk to the GP - I dont think they have much time for me anymore - and as I have no "red flag" symptoms they arent interested. Bit my mind runs wild when ever I feel something. I packed up drinking because I was able to diary when it was at its worst and it was certainly worse after drinking (that two bottles of Shiraz day was my last).

But the under rib ache is nagging at me saying that stopping drinking is a waste of time and its something more serious (..... so have a drink and chill out says the demon in my head)

If anyone else has had the bloat / bruise / ache feeling that sometime radiates to the the back a bit I would be interested in how long it took to go IF drinking was the root cause.

Sorry for the long winded note .....

Hi Richymac, sorry for not replying yesterday. I did not check messages till today.

Anyway, my journey started 12 years ago. I was found to have high blood pressure. Mine hovered around the 190/110 mark. Put on medication. No questions around my drinking.

Around same time I was also found to have a irregular heart beat. Sent to cardiologist and was out in medication but they did ask about alcohol and was told to cut down. At that time I was drinking about a bottle of red wine per day.

Life dealt me a few blows and my drinking gradually increased over last 5 years or so. At worst was 2 bottles of red wine or half a litre of vodka. Never both.

Then about 3 years ago I developed RUQ pain. This was only on occasions. Went to docs sent for ultrasound and they found gallstones and liver cysts. Cysts were varying in size with largest 8cm. There was ironically no mention of alcohol again by docs BUT I knew deep down that was cause.

Do I sort help with local rehab support that gave me a years worth of counselling for past trauma and also alcohol reduction support. This worked but then funding was withdrawn and, although I coped for a while, the demons returned in lockdown and totally fell off the wagon!

Now 7 days sober.

Back to your issue, do you know if any of the organs linked to your liver were also scanned? Pancreas, gall bladder (gall bladder can cause pain if stones or blockage is present). I’m not medically qualified but the person doing the scan did have a look across that area as she noticed I winced when she applied pressure nearer to there than the liver.

Please don’t give up if you are still left with the feeling that there is something wrong. Ask for second opinion. Did you tell doctor how much you had been drinking? They might then think that investigations need extending as they will know that this can impact on several other organs besides the liver.

Keep up the sobriety. It is really worth it. My RUQ pain has ceased already. Got a slight twinge last night but I think it was more that I had eaten too much, rather than drink.

We are all different and have to do things our own way. My way....once I had decided to stop, I did. I didn't count the days ( must be around 11 years by now) and I didn't talk about it. From day 1 I was teetotal, if asked if I wanted a drink, I just said I don't . No explanations. Friends and family helped and also didn't talk about it.. Now there is always alcohol in the house for guests etc.. I have even joined the local rugby club (social member). I am driven by a determination to be around for my family and watch my grand children grow.

Archie1962
Archie1962
in reply to Jay1948

Absolutely, we are all different and cope or deal in different ways. No one approach suits all.

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