Mental Health: Searching for Answers at the Bottom of A Bottle – By Patrick Bailey (Guest Post) #mentalhealth #addiction #alcoholism


Searching for Answers at the Bottom of A Bottle


Credit: Nicolas Pereyra via Unsplash


The Solution in a Bottle

A bottle can be the answer to a lot of problems. The issue for alcoholics, however, is whether or not their solution to life’s problems comes from good counsel. Among countless questions, they can ask themselves is if their next series of drinks makes them feel better now or long term?

Feeling better right now is a normal desire, especially when a person hurts; it’s instinctive. Physical pain, for example, signals our brain to ‘take our hand out of the fire!’ It is a form of deep desire where we react involuntarily, and don’t pause to consider our reaction. We simply do.


Sacrificing Well-Being and Health

Nevertheless, too much alcohol consumption can override our instinctive sense of self-protection.  If a person drinks compulsively, they can harm each realm of their well-being and health — emotional, mental, physical, social, and spiritual (etc.). One’s entire humanity can be damaged with enough bottles of liquor. Often, a person’s quest for ‘answers’ is the core reason alcoholics seek the bottom of a bottle. Sought after solutions become pressing issues — not just for answers, but wise ones.

It’s interesting that people soon don’t recognize what came first when they began chasing answers through overconsumption of alcohol. It’s the proverbial issue of the chicken or the egg, and drinking becomes a sequential cycle. Their need for a ‘remedy’ leads to alcoholism, and alcoholism leads to a need for remedy. Eventually, heavy drinkers spin in circles, and the exit ramps speeding down a deadly highway, disappear in a blur.


Credit: Sanjeevan SatheesKumar via Unsplash


Seeking Answers and Confronting Trauma

Moreover, it’s not only that the pursuit of a remedy that is hard-wired into people’s brains, but wanting a thoughtful answer too. People want to improve their minds, seek meaning, and to have assurance for their decisions. The ability to perceive information, analyze it, and problem-solve is key. But some people have their exquisite mental abilities hijacked and compromised due to alcohol addiction. Bottom line, people can’t access their best decision-making skills nor find a peaceful mental place in a bottle of booze.

Some people also come to ‘a bottom of a bottle solution’ compromised due to trauma in life. Trauma, particularly longstanding trauma that occurred when adults were young, effects how they learned to cope in the world. Many people who chase their solutions through heavy drinking have had traumatic childhoods. They arrive at a bottle having problem-solving abilities, which are stunted. It is vital to discover solutions for people’s mental and emotional difficulties—from managing bad feelings to making healthy behavioral choice. Nonetheless, this can result in a lifelong and desperate struggle for those who wrestle chronically in their heads and hearts with alcoholism.


Seeking Hope and Support Through Alcohol

Consulting oracles is a longstanding practice in human history, and by no means has disappeared. Everyone searches for hope when they’re afraid, confused, in pain, and worried. People seek answers that will relieve them of difficult feelings and will calm their agitated minds. They want their unknown questions to be answered, and a way to move forward despite life’s difficulties. Most alcoholics desire something or anything, to find serenity and relaxation in their days.

Sadly, alcohol is not often a reliable resource for short-term stress. Why else would we continue to ‘consult’ it? If a way of coping works for people initially, they will continue to turn to it; they will reach for it to work again and again. Every compulsive drinker once was supported by alcohol in a better way, no matter how short-lived that support lasted.

At one point, alcohol was a solid, accessible, and steady support system. It worked, improving life for a time — even for an evening. But often, alcohol is never a reliable support-system for people; still, they cling to it despite knowing better. Sometimes copious drinking is only helpful for a gulp before it’s magic fades, but alcoholics appreciate that brief moment if life feels terrible enough.


Credit: Ben Hershey via Unsplash


Finding Sobriety and Support Outside the Bottle

Former alcoholics, such as myself, can be loyal to liquor to a fault. I can hang on to it until I’m shaken loose, clinging, kicking, and screaming. Until I finally, chose a road to sobriety, which also provided me with satisfying answers and wisdom (from a variety of sources) about life’s larger questions. I let go of alcohol, my ‘trusted friend,’ who had betrayed me too many times to count. Prior to rehab, my release from alcoholism was a bone-shattering experience. It’s not a mandatory way to become sober, but that’s how I did it. I was frightened to see how huge the iceberg underneath me was. I wanted to stay on the tip, happy in my denial of what lay beneath the waves.

One of the aspects about AA I liked was that members were encouraged to visualize alcoholism as more than drinking — as an iceberg, where the bulk of their problems were hidden underwater. I found this difficulty in my over-drinking. No matter how much I drank; in the end, there was still horrendous pain I couldn’t drown with any amount of liquor. Drinking was my problem, but it was not my key problem. At the root of my alcoholism was my life and how I lived it. No matter how worrisome my emotional state or my behavior while drinking, alcohol seemed as if it were always a suitable solution for my personal issues. Even in my desperate days, when alcohol failed me more often than not, I still clung to it.


Solutions Beneath Alcohol Addiction

Moreover, peering beneath my drinking solution, peeling back the layers through detox and early recovery, I discovered I was a scared and vulnerable person. I was ill-equipped to handle everyday life, haunted by trauma, and filled with deep shame. In addition, I was angry and sad. My regular excursions to the bottom of a bottle had induced tremendous stress, but I came to the solution of ‘the bottle’ already weighted with pain. The first time I became drunk was the first time I can remember feeling at ease; I was a young adult, and my over drinking continued from there.

Nonetheless, I’ve learned the true solutions to life and life’s questions don’t live in the bottom of a bottle. My story is one of countless stories, all told from someone who felt worse than most other people imagine they would, as an intoxicated person. However, there is hope and recovery is a real possibility. No problem hiding beneath anyone’s stream of alcohol is too difficult to confront and solve. With the right help, recovery is a real possibility.


Credit: Syndey Ray via Unsplash.


©️Mandibelle16. (2018) All Rights Reserved.

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#NaPoWriMo Day 20/Tale Weavers: Poem – Free Verse – “Ember of Glory” #amwriting #poetry #MLMM #TaleWeavers


For #NaPoWriMo Day 20 the Prompt is: ” to write a poem that involves rebellion in some way. The speaker or subject of the poem could defy a rule or structure that’s been placed on them, or the poem could begin by obeying a rule and then proceed to break it.

Also, combining with Michael from MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie TaleWeavers Prompt “exploring the concept of longing. What is it you long for? Health, holiday, freedom, love, understanding, acceptance.”


Credit: Robert Lukeman via Unsplash


These cubicles, they’re full —

But outside there’s fresh -air and freedom.

A world to explore, to engage to the core,

Outside these thin walls is liberty.

No more work burdens to bear,

So, the mountains and city steps I’ll climb.

And these cubicles, I’ll slice them full of holes,

Tacking up scenic pictures to inspire my soul.

Nature’s vibrant purple-skies as storms roll in,

Waterfalls that crash, and streams that gurgle.

Cars that absorb the grind of the rocky-road,

Spring zipping through the highways on four-wheels.

All in all, I’m forlorn, for the wide-great outdoors,

Scented pine-needles and decaying earth.

Wings of bubble-bees as they hit the breeze,

And flutter into pale-pink roses.

I’ll knock down these walls with hammers and saws,

Because no architect supposed workers crave sunlight.

No builder thought windows were essential to breathe,

That these gray walls, dense recycled air —

Aren’t places for humans to exist;

To flourish and grow, to be creative and problem-solve.

They’re the prisons where we labor to earn —

The visage of sunlight on rippling waters.

Oceans crashing against rocks —

The flow of rivers down the banks,

And the hustle of people as they swarm live-festivals,

Scamper for cool beer and watermelon.

When we peer to the ceiling, we’re searching for the sky,

So, you can call security, but either way, I’m escaping.

The green-grass is sweet and calling to me;

My heart beats for the tides’ ankle-deep caress.

And a tangerine sunset, it lives inside me,

The ember of glory that leads the way,

Through the dull-dread of each dreary workday.


©Mandibelle16. (2018).All Rights Reserved.

Photo Challenge: Poem – Italian Sonnet – “Gentle Dreams” #amwriting #poetry #rebirth


Thanks to MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie for hosting this week’s photo challenge:

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Credit: Natalie Deprina

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“Maybe love isn’t something that comes full circle. It just ebbs and flows, in and out just like the people in our lives” – Colleen Hoover, It Ends With Us

——-

Sometimes we think, it’s easy to manage to–

Balance the flow of our lives, each passage, 

Of words and wonders we travel down fast. 

Of memories, dreams curling blissfully through. 

Of laughter, lovereason to again bloom, 

Beyond the memories trapping us, lasting; 

Never completely leaving until they pass, 

In moments they choose, new whispers approve; 

The coming of the dawn, when slumber breaks, 

Though we’re scarred and hollow, gloves of lace

Will hide the marks of yesterday; fashion

A hug giving warmth, with new love, sweet dreams. 

Yesterday fades, sparks today’s gentle stream

Brings reassurance, your arms hold me dear

——

©Mandibelle16. (2017) All Rights Reserved. 

Poem: Free Verse (Quatrains) – “Slow Sweet Burn of Life” #amwriting #poetry


Thanks to The Daily Prompt for the words Burn and Pleasure.

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http://www.pinterest.com

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Pleasure it awakes in swirls of dreams, 

Our thoughts hold the key to a slow sweet burn.

To our wildest and most tempestuous scenes.

Seductive and entralling time, causing rug burn.

——–

Who plays the Queen of hearts, the lady prestine? 

As our hearts smoke, cinder and ash burn.

Or wish we only for, human contact; no pipe dreams,

One hand holds another with compassionate concern.

——-

A tiny fist squeezes back, dressed in winter white cream.

The pleasure in the laughter of baby’s unreserved.

The precocious and precious delights of a child us appease.

Giggling with exuberance, gurgles for future ice cream.

——

Of love and light and fascinating swirls gleaned.

Pleasure seeking knowledge, conversation purred.

Inspiration; genuflection to God, alter the flaws, appease.

Right the wrongs, make what’s true everyone’s concern.

——-

Ambiant light; the truth in fog, bliss in dreams.

Lovers kiss, and delight in beloved’s eternal burn.

With desire and, touch, and scent, all streamed.

Only for a deep, true love, do some lucky, yearn.

——-

Embrace, scintillate soulmate; live in love’s esteem.

 Imperfections, what makes us human? To aid, serve.

Endorphins, serotonin, results in passionate beings.

But the true-love is rare; seeing life’s wheel turning.

——–

Adoration of fractures in each other; lost words breathing.

Pleasure in such imperfect cracks of others learned.

Pleasure in memories; in night’s hectic moonbeam.

Yourself, thinking back; ignoring anxious concerns.

——–

Of Pleasure indulge; of moments in life, redeeming.

Treasure seconds; breezy, blowing freedom unreserved.

As the light shines on, linger in pleasurable daydreams.

Feel yourself lost in thought, of life’s slow sweet burn.

——-

©Mandibelle16. (2016) All Rights Reserved.