Breaking The Stigma Of Alcoholism And Addiction From Within

I am a white-passing, middle-aged, professional, able-bodied heterosexual cisgender male. Therefore, I have never suffered at the hands of racism or sexism, implied or declared. I have not been denied a job interview or pulled over by the police haphazardly because of my skin colour, name or gender. I am in a place of privilege,…

Teeing Up Addiction Labelling – The Tiger Woods Edition

We’ve seen the mug shot – droopy and listless eyes, saggy face, dishevelled features. I am sure my mugshot is similar. There has been a lot of hand-wringing from barstool therapists and sober champions alike who have been quick to jump on the idea that Tiger Woods is a drug addict. I have watched many folks…

Whirlwinds And Wound Healers

  “I’m not hurting anyone but myself.” This is a common declaration from active alcoholics when confronted about our drinking and our poor behaviour. You’ll find that nestled amongst other groovy expressions like “I know, but—” and “I’m fine” in the well-worn Handbook of Delusional Lines for Drunks we often kept in the library of…

How To Get Six Years of Sobriety

  On May 4th, I celebrated six continuous years of sobriety. Cue the happy dance. “How did you do it? How did you get six years, Pauly?” someone asked me the other day. I paused and gave him a short, but meaningful answer. It fell in line with where I am in my recovery and…

The Dangers Of “Wine O’Clock”

I don’t know if I’m qualified to write this, but I’m going to do it anyways. I am not a stay at home mother. I am not even female. I don’t viscerally and emotionally know what it’s like to be a woman in a patriarchal society. I don’t know, firsthand, the pressures involved in living…

No Shame In Shame

It seems that the longer I go down this journey of uncovering, discovering (and hopefully discarding and/or applying), the less I seem to know. The more I understand, the less I truly understand. The more questions I seem to answer only creates even more questions, like bunny rabbits left unchecked with Barry White music left…

Counting On Us

So what day are you at in your recovery? 13? 9? Creeping up to one year of sobriety? When I recently returned to the blogosphere, after a two or so year hiatus, the one thing I did was to scan the sober recovery horizon and try to reconnect with old friends and their sites. I…

California (Wine) Dreamin’

I sat in the dark bar. My right leg twitched to the beat of the steel drums in my head. I clutched a beer in my shaky hands. I wasn’t shaky from withdrawls, but from the gulping-type sobs which came from the depth of my soul. “How did I do this again? What am I…

So Long And Thanks For All The Fish…

If there’s one thing I am learning to do in my life, it’s to let go of the things that no longer serve me.  But it’s not always easy.  I have always liked clutching onto things, grasping at stuff that clearly no longer did me any good.  These days, ego or pride or just good…

Cleaning Up – Makeover From Within

Prison.  Police shoot outs. Bankruptcy. Eating out of dumpsters. Violent assaults. Prostitution. These are some of the things that many alcoholics and addicts endure or participate in as part of the lifestyle of addiction.  No one chooses those paths, per se, but as the illness deepens, so does the reaction to keep the lifestyle intact. …

Searching and Fearless

Inventory. For those who aren’t in 12-step recovery, that word probably ushers in thoughts of Starbucks-fuelled grad students counting sweaters in the back of H&M as one part of their under-paid job requirements. Knit-One Pearl-Two while the supervisor, youngest of the crew, checks off the stock pars and lists any extra items or items that…

An Alcoholic’s Guide To Crashing And Burning During The Holidays

  Yeah.  Holidays.  There are countless parties and events planned.  Some of them are even fun (just kidding…ouch!).  Anyways, many folks in recovery find themselves a little fazed when it comes to the overwhelming ideals of what festivities are “supposed” to look like.  For many, especially early in their sobriety, this time of year can…