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  • Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Father unknown
    Junior Member
    Posts: 3
    Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2022 10:01 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Tue Sep 20, 2022 10:13 am

    Hello , my name is Matt and this is something very new to me , I don't know how much I should share straight away but I'm currently going through challenging times. Think it's about time I deal with underlying issues in my private life and I thought maybe doing something anonymous here could be a great starting point. My life isn't great at the moment I'm borderline homeless I have no friends or family I have been traumatized by past events in my life that I can't get closure with so I drink alot to put a band-aid on the pain associated with it all but that only brings resentment to the surface and I don't like feeling this way... My life is complex and hard to talk about so I really don't know how to proceed past this paragraph... I'm ok mentally I'm strong and resilant but I'm not moving in a positive direction ..... Any ideas people...
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    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 699
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Tue Sep 20, 2022 12:24 pm

    @Father unknown you've been through so much and are living with a lot of complexity. However, I can hear your strength in your words. It's great you've reached out here for support, I've responded on another of your posts with some information on support groups. I'll also tag our wonderful peer workers here @ScorpionPW @ScorpionPW for some advice and support.

    You can share as much here as you feel comfortable! Remember we'r always here for support
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    ScorpionPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 628
    Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:06 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Tue Sep 20, 2022 9:14 pm

    Hi @Father unknown,

    I take my hat off to you for reaching out for some support and being so open and honest about where you're at. It was so difficult for me to reach out and I couldn't bare to accept that the drugs were the problem for me until I had no other choice because they were my solution for so long, also using them to self medicate to cope with trauma and my thinking.

    I guess what I'm trying to say is it was scary for me to reach out for help because it meant admitting that I had to stop, that I had to face the world without the only solution I'd ever known so it's admirable that you're here reaching out.

    Myself and @PnorkelPW are both peer workers on the forum who have been through addiction and found a life of recovery free from where we once were. We're always happy to share experiences and anything that has helped us along the way.

    It'd be great to know if this is the first time you've reached out or if you've tried any other kind of support, like speaking to your GP about a detox or trying some support groups like NA/AA or SMART Recovery?
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    Sunflowerseed
    Community Builder
    Posts: 174
    Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2022 10:33 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Wed Sep 21, 2022 2:52 pm

    Good afternoon everyone~
    Welcome @Carlos, @Thyme, @Enthusiastic Spike, @Mike555 for joing our community.

    This is a safe place for you to share your concerns and struggles. You can support and connect with each other here. If you have any question, feel free to ask our facilitators(myself and @Lhiver) or our lovely peer workers(@PnorkelPW and @ScorpionPW).
    Look around the forums for some insipring stories or some fun activities~ :D
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    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 694
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Wed Sep 21, 2022 9:25 pm

    Hi @Father unknown and thanks for sharing what you were comfortable sharing. Everyone does things at their own pace and I encourage you to keep going at your pace. I found a freedom in speaking about my experiences and it's how I continue to uncover my story. I find that listening to other people's stories helps me immensely too. I learn more that way and I not only learn through the similarities of other people's stories with mine, I learn from the differences. The differences help me think that I didn't do things the same way as them but I did them my way for reasons I hadn't yet identified. See I still remember some things in my life differently to the truth so I need reminders of what actually happened. Reading what you wrote reminds me of situations I ended up in. Couch surfing. Sleeping in the park a couple of times. My car.

    I think what's important is that you have started talking. The only way people can help is if we tell them what's wrong. They need that information to help us understand what help we need. When it comes to drugs and alcohol, every story is different and everyone needs a combination of solutions. For me, speaking with my GP was where it all started. It took time but it was worth it. I was connected with a psychologist, I did a mindfulness course, I lapsed and relapsed numerous times along the way, and eventually I landed in rehab. Not everyone needs rehab though. Have you tried talking to a drug and alcohol counsellor?

    @ScorpionPW also mentioned AA, NA, and SMART Recovery. I wouldn't be where I am now without my involvement in the first few years of my recovery. I found it very helpful being around other people trying to achieve the same thing I was and sharing their stories to do so. There are people with 1 day, 10 days, 100 days, 10 years, and more all in one place supporting each other to make change. SMART Recovery is great too.

    It sounds like you've got great self awareness and if you can work with the right people you'll get to where you want to be. Dealing with the underlying causes of my problems helped me to deal with the solution I was incorrectly using to try and fix them.............drugs, alcohol, gambling, and more.

    It'd be great to hear more from you and for you to update us on how things are going and as @ScorpionPW said...........if you have any questions or we can support in any way just tag us and we'll respond. I'm very open with my story and nothing is out of bounds.
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    ScorpionPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 628
    Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:06 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Wed Sep 21, 2022 9:30 pm

    Hi @Cakie181,

    Thanks so much for sharing with us, upon reading your posts I can see you are an incredibly resilient and strong invidividual.

    It sounds like you've been through a lot, and the fact that you managed to get off everything yourself is amazing. It would be great to hear what things have helped you along the way since November last year, if you've gotten support anywhere else or if this is your first time reaching out at all?

    I know for me, I tried to stop multiple times and it wasn't until I started getting the right kind of support that I was actually able to stay stopped and start to address the reasons I used in the first place.

    I hope you continue to share with us here on the forums :D
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    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 694
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Wed Sep 21, 2022 10:30 pm

    That's a pretty impressive list of hobbies @Cakie181

    I like @Lhiver 's suggestion of joining groups through the Meetup App...........have you used the app before?? There's another awesome app called The Mighty that is great for mental health support.

    I'm just thinking about the dreamcatchers and windchimes..............what about collecting natural materials from the beach, bush or park and making some?? Maybe you could sell them on FB or somewhere and make some money to buy materials??? Using free materials to make money.

    Anyhoo........it's just a thought. Do you think it's a possibility?
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    Ripple
    Junior Member
    Posts: 1
    Joined: Fri Sep 23, 2022 11:14 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Fri Sep 23, 2022 11:49 am

    Hi everyone, I’m Ripple on this site. I’ve just joined the site and this is the first time I’ve sought help. I don’t know where to start or what to share but I need to stop drinking and don’t seem to have the strength to do it on my own. I’ve been drinking heavily for so long. I can see it’s alienated me from all of my friends, some family and it’s destroying my relationship with the person that is dearest to me, my wife. I also know it’s killing me but for some reason, maybe shame or embarrassment, I refuse to see a doctor. I know how my drinking started and why it kept going but I don’t know how to stop. I don’t know life without alcohol anymore. Anyway, enough of my misery, I just wanted to say hi and …. I hope to find some strength here
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    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 699
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Sat Sep 24, 2022 10:30 am

    hiya @Ripple welcome to the Counselling Online Forums. It sounds like these recent realisations around your drinking have been a massive trigger for change. It sounds like you've reached a point where you're no longer enjoying drinking at all. I know @ScorpionPW has talked about having that feeling towards the end.

    It can be difficult reaching out for support, I know you're not n your own with feeling to embarrassed or ashamed to visit the doctor. Those feelings are common for a lot of people. You might find it useful to reach out to a counsellor here as a first step in speaking to a professional. It is free 24/7 and anonymous. Often taking those first few steps help assuage the fears around speaking to others. https://www.counsellingonline.org.au/fi ... counsellor

    Do you have stratergiesin place to help you reduce youral alcohol intake safely? You might find it useful checking out the information here

    Let us know how you're travelling this weekend! always feel free to tag myself, @Sunflowerseed or @PnorkelPW and @ScorpionPW if you need some support, advice or need a chat!
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    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 699
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Sat Sep 24, 2022 10:36 am

    good morning and welcome to our new members @Elowe333 , @Thalandria and @af :)

    The counselling online community is a space for you to find connection and support from others who are on their own recovery journeys!

    You can jump into any of the threads and share what's going on for yourself, or start your own!

    Myself and @Sunflowerseed are the community builders here, so if you have any questions feel free to tag us. We also have our peer workers @PnorkelPW and @ScorpionPW here for that added insight and support!

    And remember, every Saturday we have our weekend activities!
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    Sunflowerseed
    Community Builder
    Posts: 174
    Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2022 10:33 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Mon Sep 26, 2022 11:19 am

    Good morning all!
    Welcome for @Eric and Heidi, @reillysavage and @tanne123

    This is a judgement-free space for everyone who wants to get the support you need and to connect with each other. Our lovely peer workers here (@PnorkelPW &@ScorpionPW) had went through the journey themselves, so don't hesitate to ask what helped them. You can also @ myself or @Lhiver in your post, we are the facilitators here. When you are ready, feel free to introduce yourself in this thread, just remember to keep them anonymous~ :)
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    PnorkelPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 694
    Joined: Tue Jun 01, 2021 3:14 pm

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Mon Sep 26, 2022 9:08 pm

    Hi @Ripple and great start by sharing on the forums………it’s not easy to open up about this stuff. It seems like you’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the effect your drinking is having and in effect, uncovered some pretty good reasons to start making change.

    Guilt and shame kept me trapped in a cycle of drinking, drug use, and gambling for many years. I thought if I told people how bad things really were they’d judge the f#@% outta me. I was afraid to admit to myself how bad things actually were and if I said it out loud to someone it would somehow out me as a weak and horrible person…………I was embarrassed that things had got to where they were. The truth is though that talking about is where the change process started and my friends and family supported me in ways I never thought possible because they wanted me to get better. They wanted to help and the only way they knew how to help was through me talking about things……………and that wasn’t easy for me. A life without alcohol scared the hell out of me. I’d been drinking since I was 15 and didn’t know how to live life without it.

    There’s a lot of different options out there and different ways you can tackle this. Everyone has a different pathway to reaching the solution they’re looking for. I remember not even knowing what I actually wanted…………..I just knew I needed to make changes……………but how??? It started with a conversation with my GP. We started talking about my drinking and exploring options. The process took time, many backwards and forwards steps, many attempts, strategies, mistakes, and more. I know you said you don’t want to talk to the doctor and that’s totally cool…………I really like @Lhiver‘s suggestion of a counsellor on here. You might even want to try making an appointment with a drug and alcohol counsellor? They can help you work out what it is you want and work on strategies to help you get there.

    And remember………….sharing our misery takes away it’s power and helps us find the solutions we’re looking for. I hope you can keep sharing………….you’re off to a great start!

    I hope some of this helps and if I can offer any support, advice, or anything else just tag me in your post so I get a notification and I’ll respond.
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    Lhiver
    Community Builder
    Posts: 699
    Joined: Tue May 04, 2021 9:59 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Tue Sep 27, 2022 8:56 am

    Hi everyone! Let's start the day with a massive welcome to our new members @NailSalad @GO ME @pliam744 and @Lunatuna
    The counselling Online community is here for you to find support, advice and connection! When you feel ready you can use this thread as a space to introduce yourself and share a little of what's bought you to the forums! Myself and @Sunflowerseed are the community builders here, so if you have any questions feel free to ask us, or our peer workers @PnorkelPW and @ScorpionPW :)
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    ScorpionPW
    Peer Worker
    Posts: 628
    Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:06 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Tue Sep 27, 2022 10:05 pm

    Hi @Ripple, thanks so much for sharing with us, some of what you're saying really resonates with me...It's almost like being sick and tired of being sick and tired.

    At the end of my addiction I was also alienated from everybody in my life except the people I was drinking and using with. My life has become so small, and so many things that were important to me slipped away yet I too was afraid of judgement in seeking help like you're speaking about with seeing a doctor.

    I was also at a point where I had tried to stop in a lot of different ways but no matter what I did, would just end up back in the same place. Living in the grind of active addiction, using to live and living to use. My entire identity was wrapped up in substance use as well so I really relate to what you're saying around not knowing life without it.

    I remember when I was at the point where I literally felt I had no other choice, completely backed into a corner by my addiction which was really scary was the point when I was willing to let go of control and seek help, because one thing was very clear. My way was not working anymore!

    When I did see a doctor the experience was completely different to what I had built up in my head. They were really informative, non judgemental and just wanted to make sure I had the information I needed to so I could detox safely.

    I also found incredible solace in 12 step groups...making new, healthy connections that were recovery focussed and having people to relate to who had been through or were going through what I was, helped to normalise the whole experience and gave me a sense of not being alone.

    I'm wondering if anything you've seen on the forums has resonated with you at all? And, remember we are always here if you wanna reach out :)
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    Sunflowerseed
    Community Builder
    Posts: 174
    Joined: Tue Jun 07, 2022 10:33 am

    Re: Introduce yourself here - lived experience

    Wed Sep 28, 2022 3:51 pm

    Good afternoon all, hope you are all doing good so far this week~

    Welcome new members @pliam744, @Jimiswalls, @adamkopek, @HMP, @DjangoMan for joining this community. This is a space for all of you to safely share your story, get the support you need and connect with peers.
    I am a facilitator here same as @Lhiver, if you have any question, feel free to @ us in your post. You can also @ our peer workers to get some words about how they made the changes in their journey, @PnorkelPW & @ScorpionPW. :D
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