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 Post subject: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 10:44 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 25, 2015 12:58 pm
Posts: 2
I have been on nal since March and feel as if I have plateaued. I was drinking 750ml of vodka almost every day then after about ten days on nal that dropped to half that amount and has remained that way since. However, I know that is still way too much but it seems like I cannot fully shake my cravings. It's been nice to not get blackout drunk every night, but I'm still getting drunk nonetheless. Has anyone had this experience? I have had 3 AF days since March and want desperately to improve that number.


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 2:05 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2015 12:27 pm
Posts: 1691
Hi there John - I started on Nal in January and am only now beginning to feel that something is happening ! Like you, I kept getting discouraged but you have to persevere with it and have faith! The Nal is NOT a magic pill and definitely not a quick fix ... plus you really need to try and force some AF days .... from now, you have to help the Nal do it's thing ..... be more mindful about the drinking, try and cut down (I never did succeed with that one) and as I said, force some AF days!

Good luck - Hugs, Maggie

_________________
Pre Nal 40-45 wk


Month 12: 4 drinks TOTAL (Dec '15)
13: 2 drinks (nearly) for Jan '16 !!!
None since Jan '16 I feel that I can safely say that I am cured!


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Wed Jul 29, 2015 2:36 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2014 5:02 am
Posts: 242
You're still too early to be feeling discouraged John. But you are at the phase now where you need to start putting the work in. I am not as big as some others on forcing (as opposed to desiring) AF days, but it works for a lot of folks so don't over look it. Instead I would ask what lifestyle changes you have made. Are you still doing the same activities/socializing with the same people? If you are like the rest of us you have centered your life around alcohol. Nal allows you to center it elsewhere. What is doesn't do is allow you to maintain your same alcoholic activities and associations but do so under control and without hangovers. That is a big misconception that a lot of people seem to have and for them NAL doesn't work out. Alcohol with NAL isn't the same thing at all and not nearly as "fulfilling" so if you continue to take the pill and live the same life, you're chasing something you can never catch. So, you become frustrated at best, or you stop taking the pill at worst.

It's not magic, that pill. It is a tool (albeit a powerful one) to move you in a different direction. By way of example, let's say NAL worked for gambling rather than alcohol. The goal should be then to get to the point where you no longer gamble or go to gambling establishments and are content not to do so. But if your goal instead is to still be able to go out and gamble, but with NAL be able to quit when you get behind, -well, that's not going to work is it? You still haven't found anything to replace the gambling so you are still going to go out and gamble, -but now it's not fun and you are unhappy. The result is predictable.

I miss alcohol all the time if I only think about the fun. But with that fun comes a whole lot of pain and when you factor that in, -I don't miss it. Not getting blackout drunk (as you call it) is a great improvement but too often we are quick to forget all the bad and wallow in remembrance of the (supposed) good.

You have to replace alcohol with something. If it is all you have, you'll always be drawn to it. Everyone needs something to look forward to. Since forever what you have looked forward to is your vodka. Now, you need other things to put a smile on your face.

Time to get to work. We're here to help.

_________________
Began: March 2014
Cured: August 2014


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2015 1:46 pm 
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Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2015 12:54 pm
Posts: 1204
John - I started March 3 and am only now beginning to have a lot of hope -- beginning to see changes in my thinking about AL. Hang in there and do not give up. Hugs, Newlife

_________________
Newlife
started 3/3/15
Pre-TSM 26 - 30 US Units/week

Month 1 16/wk av 4AF month
2 17/wk av 5 AF
3 18/wk av 6 AF
4 NT
5 NT
6 NT
7 17/wk av 4 AF
8 17/wk av 5 AF
9 13/wk av 5 AF
10 & 11 NT
Beginning tracking again Week 48
Wk 48 18/2 49 14.5/2


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 9:02 am 
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Joined: Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:15 am
Posts: 97
I agree with what Clarion said about the importance of lifestyle and environment playing a role in successfully cutting back on your consumption. I have been recently feeling a bit frustrated as well because I had successfully decreased my numbers to a safe level, but then I put myself in a less stable environment and the numbers shot back up. Like others have said it's not so much a magic pill as a helpful tool and a piece of the process. Personally I'm still trying to figure out the remaining pieces, so I can empathize.

_________________
Started April 2015
Pre-TSM: sporadic, heavy binge drinker


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 10:36 am 
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Joined: Thu Oct 30, 2014 7:45 am
Posts: 124
John - I agree 100% with Clarion. I have been on TSM since November last year - so nine months in. I was getting really frustrated, I was taking the pill religiously, yet my drinking remained the same as ever. I wasn't really getting it, some people say you shouldn't force AF days, other people say that once they got AF days under their belts it got easier and easier.

I finally realised that I have to work at this. Prior to TSM I went cold turkey a few times and tried to give up drinking and the craving was horrific - it was all I could think about all day. Now I notice that I don't have that level of obsession about drinking. Yes I do think about it (in fact quite a few times during the day), but its not a craving 'I can't wait for my first drink' it's more thinking about drinking and dismissing it.

I have started 'forcing' AF days. I say 'forcing' but in actual fact, now I've made that decision it really isn't as hard as I thought it would be - in that sense, Nal must have worked for me, because my brain is no longer gagging for it. What I am really dealing with now is the habit - it's what I 'do' drink wine whilst I cook, drink wine whilst I eat and then pass out on the sofa.

I am now trying to learn to do things differently. I'm actually looking for other things to do. Look at the TV guide and see if there is a good programme on that you can look forward too (I hardly ever watched TV before as I'm usually zonked by 8pm!) and reading good books.

You are very early days in your journey, but maybe putting in a little work now means you won't have to wait nine months before realisation hits. Good luck xxx

_________________
Began TSM on 31st October 2014
Before TSM - 18 years + heavy drinking
Approx 58 - 60 drinks a week (around 80 UK units)


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2015 10:44 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:53 am
Posts: 19
Maybe switch up what you're drinking? Stop buying vodka and buy beer instead?

_________________
Pre TSM 70-100 units/week
W1 37 units/0 AF
W2 40u/0 AF
W3 43u/0 AF
W4 48u/0 AF
W5 37u/0 AF
W6 31u/1 AF
W7 29u/1 AF
W8 30u/0 AF
W9 28u/0 AF
W10 50u/0 AF
W11 56u/0 AF


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 9:00 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 12, 2016 4:44 pm
Posts: 15
I get it...
I feel like I am standing still. Although I do have AF days each month. It is good to track...just recorded the last several weeks here so I do actually see some progress. I NEVER had AF days before.
I just want to BE THERE already. I hate the next day!! I feel a little pathetic right now, like I make some progress then just slip right back. I'm frustrated. But I do religiously take the pill. I will NOT drink before 1 hour and I break the pills in half. I even threw out some of my pills a few days ago to make myself ration and force some AF days but so far I have drank the 3 days in a row, but my brother is visiting so the bottle of jameson is here. :)
I feel so triumphant after AF days or better, 2 days in a row. I fell like Yeah! I made it. Then I go back to the daily 4-5.
Ha! After reading this know I have made progress. I wrote to get encouragement and I ended up giving myself some. But please anyone chime in...need all the help I can get!


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 9:13 am 
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Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2015 12:27 pm
Posts: 1691
Derian..... You really are early days yet. All I can say is what I kept telling myself all along! Have faith and patience. I am so glad that you DO see that you are making progress. Sometimes we don't think we are ...... Which is why tracking is so important ! You WILL get there but you also need to work at it. I said to John at the beginning of this thread that the Nal is not magic, it is a tool. Hang in there ..... It will happen eventually!

Hugs, Maggie

_________________
Pre Nal 40-45 wk


Month 12: 4 drinks TOTAL (Dec '15)
13: 2 drinks (nearly) for Jan '16 !!!
None since Jan '16 I feel that I can safely say that I am cured!


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 Post subject: Re: Feeling frustrated
PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2016 10:22 am 
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Joined: Sun Dec 06, 2015 11:28 pm
Posts: 1646
" I even threw out some of my pills a few days ago to make myself ration and force some AF days"

You shouldn't do that, you're wasting a perfectly good opportunity to drive the extinction another step forward if you white-knuckle it. Now, you don't need any more than one drink to hold up your end of the bargain, so perhaps concentrate on sticking to the one drink if you don't really crave after the first one. Otherwise, work on capping the amount per drinking session, get in the habit of doing that even if you don't have success with it at first. Just keep on hammering on it.


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