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Posted: April 18, 2012, 7:43 AM
The causes of alcoholism vary with the individual. Some are driven to drink by psychological traumas in their life or from overwhelming stress at home or at work. Some are encouraged to drink from a tolerant atmosphere, whether it's frat house parties or drinks at a social club. Some alcoholics have a biological proclivity to drink, determined solely by genetic factors. And many alcoholics embody a combination of these factors, any or all of which may lead to the first stage of the condition.
The first stage arises when the alcoholic starts drinking in circumstances other than social settings: as a means of relieving stress, for example, or to calm nerves before an important meeting. It also entails a significant increase in the amount of alcohol consumed, along with an increase in tolerance to alcohol. In many cases, the alcoholic's ability to imbibe becomes a source of pride, accompanied by boasting and active searching for drinking opportunities.
The second stage of alcoholism is marked by an increased need to drink. Alcoholic beverages appear earlier and earlier in the day, and raised tolerance levels mean that the alcoholic consumes liquor out of increasing dependence rather than just a need to relieve tension. Signs of guilt may arise as well, marked by efforts to stop drinking. The increase in alcohol consumed translates to increased physical effects during the second stage, including blackouts, hangovers and occasional loss of control over one's drinking.
Stage three shows the first real signs that the alcoholic has lost control of his drinking. One drink turns to many with distressing ease, and the alcoholic begins adopting evasive behavior such as drinking in secret and inventing elaborate lies to cover it up. Drinking also starts to spill over into work and home life, as previous important commitments fall by the wayside. In many cases, the alcoholic's physical appearance begins to deteriorate as well.
By the time the alcoholic reaches the fourth stage of alcoholism, he can no longer control his drinking at all. He often goes on lengthy drinking sprees lasting for days, which usually precludes the ability to hold down any kind of a job. Physical symptoms such as shakiness and hallucinations may appear, and drinking becomes an all-consuming obsession dominating the alcoholic's life.
Thank God for what you have. Trust God for what you need
Posted: April 18, 2012, 12:07 PM
This is awesome, gosh, I can relate to all of them.
And it didn't take long at all for me to go from Stage 2 to Stage 4. I was just up last night at the jail sharing my story and looking back, it was only a matter of a few years where I progressed from Stage 2 to Stage 4. Where I would wake up at 6:30am and get the kids dressed for school & get ready for work and probably still had a blood alcohol level of .4 or so. When I hit Stage 4, there was always alcohol in my system.
I remember, the overwhelming desire to quit drinking but not being able to, I hope I never forget how bad it was, how the obsession & compulsion held me prisoner for so many years. I am so very grateful that I have been freed from the bondage of alcohol & self today.
Great post, Marie. Thank you.
Happiness is not in the bottom of a pill bottle. It's inside you.
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