Alcohol Addict: Often Begins in College

Alcohol AddictBy Ned WickerI enjoy listening to Steve “The Homer:” True, the host of a Milwaukee sports talk show on ESPN radio. Homer is the announcer for the Marquette basketball team, and has been on the air in this town for a lot of years. I’m sure Homer’s followers are loyal because of his crazy antics and the great guests he has on the show every weekday. However, a few days ago while listening to the show on my way home from work. I was a little put off by the topic of conversation.Understand that “The Homer” is a very funny guy, so take this with a grain of salt. He and his producer Mitch were talking about getting drunk before some sporting events. Recalling their days of being young and foolish, the two talked about getting drunk before football games, missing most of the first half, but being just sober enough to enjoy the second half. Mitch said the first half didn’t count anyway. But what was ringing in my ears was the truth of it all. That’s Wisconsin. A walk around the neighborhood surrounding Camp Randall Stadium, hoe of the Badgers, will give you every piece of evidence you need to come to a solid determination that drunks rule the streets. They clutter in tents, hang over apartment building terraces, stand shoulder-to-shoulder in smoke-filled bars, and of course they tailgate in any spot large enough to park a car. Mitch and Homer discussed the merits of an 11:00 kickoff, especially since that time slot (mandated by television) necessitates early morning drinking in order to have the time needed to get thoroughly marinated as the game rolls around, not that it really matters. No alcohol is allowed in the stadium, so people have to get their drinking duties done before they walk in, assuming of course that they can walk. Now if the kick off is at 11:00 am, serious drinking doesn’t have to start until later in the morning. Either the early or the later start is acceptable, because one can take a nap and regroup for blowing their brains out that evening. If there is a late start, say 3:00 or sometimes even 5:00, now that requires planning. Being drunk is mandatory, so you can’t really start until after lunch, but you run the risk of starting too early and drinking so much that you miss the game entirely. By the time the game is over, the serious drinking football fanatic may be able to walk, but only long enough to find a restroom, public or otherwise. Post-game in Madison is a drinker’s fantasy, as there is beer everywhere and the party goes until the last one falls down. Some fans do a double dip on fall weekends, taking in a game at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, also a drinker’s paradise because beer is highly encouraged by vendors all over the park. You can go into Curly’s Pub for a few shots as well. You have to plan that trip, because many of the Packer fans come from southeastern Wisconsin, some 120 miles away. After the game, the drunks take to the highways.Mitch and Homer had some fun with this topic, and Homer can make this subject funny and entertaining. But there is an element of truth. Even when they were describing how people’s drinking habits on game day are thrown off, even as they got more and more outrageous, there was truth to what they were saying. Wisconsinites can’t do anything without drinking. Their lives have no purpose, no meaning unless they have a drink in their hands. OK, that’s hyperbole, but it seems to me that in order to be funny and worth talking about, there has to be enough common truth to it. I was laughing at their antics, but I soon stopped because it was too close to the truth. At that point, it wasn’t funny anymore. It was just sad.12-Step Recovery for Alcohol AddictDrug addiction is such a lonely disease!As they become more dependent on their drug of choice, people isolate themselves, cutting themselves off from family, friends and activities they used to enjoy. Even when they want to come out of that world, they think they can or must do it alone. Not true!The last thing a person needs at the very beginning of recovery is to be alone. The addict will say, “I’ll cut back,” or “I just have to have the will power to stop doing drugs.” One addict told me that the only way for him to get clean was for him to do all of the work, there was no other way. What he was not considering is that as human beings, we are not wired that way. We are wired for relationship. We are not meant for isolation. Moreover, what if I told you that you can’t do it all on your own strength, that you need something from somebody else? The Alcohol Addict 12-Step process for recovery was first created in the 1930’s, by Alcoholics Anonymous, but over the last 70 plus years, over 250 self-help groups have adopted these steps.Why? Because they work!In my group discussions at a residential drug rehab center, we discuss how people are body, mind and spirit. Granted, our spirits can be strong and our determination staunch, but the greater power is outside of us. That is the power that only God can provide.

Learn how addiction is like drowning, read more…

Alcohol Addict 12-Step — What is it like?Imagine yourself in the kitchen to make yourself a piece of toast. You have everything you need. But when you push down the lever to lower the bread into the toaster, nothing happens. You have done every correctly, so you double check — bread, butter, jam, knife, plate – and you see that everything is in place. But there is one item missing. You have no power to make the toaster work. After a brief “ah ha” moment you plug the toaster in and shortly thereafter enjoy your toast.The Alcohol Addict 12-Step process is similar to making toast in one respect, you have to plug into a power source, and when you do, everything can start to work. We believe that people are not meant to be alone, to handle the everyday challenges of life. It follows that people are certainly not meant to be alone during the very hard times. Whatever the power source, it is vital to the process.

Please consider using the addiction 12-step program There are an abundance of web sites and books written about the addiction programs, and we’ll share a few of them with you to give you a broader base of understanding and point you to a few excellence resources. The 12-Step program is steeped in tradition and firmly supported by spiritual truth, give us all a model of humanity that points us to a better life, a stronger relationship with our neighbors, and an eternal loving relationship with the one who made us.As you look through the Alcohol Addict 12-Step program, think of them as a process. Like a path you walk on to go from A to Z, only you must take all of the steps and go through each in order, otherwise the path does not lead to your final destination. You go at your own pace and move forward as you see fit. Along the way, remember that these steps were written by people just like you, who needed help and had the courage to accept the help. Regardless of your addiction, 12-Step offers improvement for the human condition.Enjoy your reading. Maybe you like Rev. Buchman and Bill Wilson will go through a spiritual experience of your own. If you do, please share it with us.The 12-Step ProgramPlease review each step and try to either begin following them yourself or enroll in a local program. Let’s take a look at the steps. You will see quickly that the process includes others and that we are not meant to go through this alone.These 12-Steps were written for alcoholics. When you see alcohol, insert your drug of choice.
Step One: We admitted that we were powerless over alcohol–that our lives had become unmanageable.

Step Two: Came to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.

Step Three: Make a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God, as we understand Him.

Step Four:Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

Step Five:Admitted to God, to ourselves and to another human being the exact nature of our wrongs.

Step Six: Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character.

Step Seven: Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings.

Step Eight:Made a list of all persons we had harmed, and became willing to make amends to them all.

Step Nine: Made direct amends to such people whenever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others.

Step Ten: Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.

Step Eleven: Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.

Step Twelve: Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to addicts and to practice these principles in our affairs.

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Read these five pages and learn what you need to know to spot drug addiction in: Yourself… Your Family… Your Friends… Your Community…The rest of the pages are there for your reference to explain important topics in more detail.

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