LifeRing Recovery

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LifeRing Recovery: a self-help alternative for recovery from alcoholism and other chemical dependency. Group support for abstinence from alcohol and “drugs” by empowering the sober self within you. Completely secular: no prayers, Higher Powers or Steps.

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Going Forward (with clarity)   Sobriety/Recovery Journals

Started 2/16/14 by Elsie (Elsiek); 50980 views.

From: MaryLouise3


Rae, I'm fine and we have a slow summer underway, the garden filled with pelargoniums and salvias, my herbs doing well -- I have taken on too much work and feel tired much of the time, not enough energy to hang out on forums or relax with online groups!

I do know that many of us have spent years being undermined  by those closest to us and their harsh or unkind attitudes have made us afraid to reach out and make new friends or get close to people in case we get hurt again. I tiptoe on eggshells around my sisters in emails or phone calls, and that isn't because of our shared problems with addiction but because of a childhood in which our mother played us off against one another or favoured one daughter over the other. And we as sisters know my mother was just acting out what had been done to her and that she was struggling with severe alcoholism and mental illness, couldn't show consistency or steady attention as I know she would have done if she had been able to get support or be free of her own traumas. Over the years I've come to understand from family history how terrifying and damaging those traumas were in my mother's life and how courageous she was to keep going for so long. I have tremendous respect for her, she had none of my opportunities or alternatives back in the 1950s in a British colony.

A friend of mine who has a mother living with paranoid schizophrenia once said to me that her mother may never get 'well' but  has tried over and over again to be a mother and that counts for more than any supposed 'recovery' or comparisons with what other mothers without mental health challenges are able to do.

I agree that people in your life, your old friend too, are sabotaging your recovery, not deliberately perhaps but because they can't see their own woundedness or hostility. Put as much distance there as you can and be self-protective. You have talked before about being a social worker and I know how caring and committed you were, how that burn-out has stayed with you. 

Oh, about gardening (our mutual passion) -- yesterday, I unearthed a great clump of golden turmeric and I am stunned -- it is expensive here and I didn't expect tp get so much from a single plant, I felt as if I was digging up buried ingots of gold. Am now planning spicy laksas and curries for the next few weeks.

Take care, you are much loved and deserve better


Rex (rcclark99)

From: Rex (rcclark99)


Hello Elsie,

I have thought a lot about this forum for the last few days and how much I really miss it. It seems like a place of sanity, peace and reflection which I need desperately at this time.

I'm afraid the last three years have left me bitter and hateful in many ways. I have broken off almost all communication with my three politically conservative siblings and while it has left me somewhat isolated and sad I cannot and will not tolerate those kinds of people in my life anymore.

I know this probably has nothing to do with this thread but I just wanted to get back to reading and posting here and guess I picked one of your posts to butt in on. You might have noticed my bitterness about the current state of our country on my Facebook posts.

While I am sober and will celebrate my 11th sober year on November 15, I am tired, discouraged and sad about the world in general and of course Covid19 has done nothing to improve those feelings. Here in the central U.S. the disease is currently rampaging through the population and we face the possibility of more closures and shutdowns of various kinds of businesses.

Anyway, I just wanted to let you know how much I appreciate several of you folks still being here including yourself, Mary, Brian, Rae and others. I hope to find time to read a lot and catch up with some of you in the next few weeks. I have found that I need this sanctuary from this world we're living in at this time. I am quite busy with working part-time, workouts at the gym and a personal trainer and napping ;-). I will soon be 74 and of course wonder about all the lost years I struggled with alcoholism and how things would be different without those. But as they say "it is what it is" so we'll move forward from where we are today.

Love to you and all my friends here


From: MaryLouise3


Hi Rex and so good to have you posting here again!

I haven't been able to access the site for a while, my system at fault I assume but finally I could get in today.

You're not alone in the disillusionment, I think  that is global as well as American. In this year of a pandemic, I have been struck by the unselfishness and generosity of so many  in healthcare and service industries and  at the same time appalled by the indifference and stupidity of  so many who put others at risk in public places. The handling of the pandemic and related issues of unemployment and loneliness etc has been so bad. I hope 2021 sees some kind of turn-around.

You've had a rough time  with health recently, Rex, and I'm hoping you're back home now and doing well. I'm busy working on a number of editing and writing projects and reading fiction -- looking forward to new biography on the poet Adrienne Rich that has just been published. I'm also gardening, have put in a new forest lily known as Makaya bella, a lovely white flowering plant for shady places. After staying at home so much this year, I find (ominously) that I dread leaving the house for any reason, not a good sign.

Love to Judy and yourself,  keep well and stay safe.