Getting Sober

How I Stopped Being a Chronic Relapser

I am 35 years old. I have been sober for almost 5 years. The first time I tried to get sober was when I was 27 years old. Between the ages of 27 and 30 years old, I must have relapsed at least 20 times. I picked up enough white chips at AA meetings to tile my bathroom. I was a chronic relapser. Why wasn’t I able to get sober?

It wasn’t until I completed a rehabilitation program that I understood why I kept relapsing. I had never sought treatment or help outside of myself. I had never really committed to recovery. Sure, I went to a few meetings here and there. But I never got a sponsor. I never tried to do the twelve steps. I never went to a rehabilitation program. I never got counseling or therapy. I tried to get sober on my own each time, and each time, I failed.

It wasn’t until I got into a rehab program that I was able to really even do the first step: admit that I was powerless over alcohol. I always had the idea that I was in control of my drinking. It was okay because I was choosing to drink. I didn’t realize how wrong I had been until about the second week of rehabilitation when I finally stopped trying to resist sobriety and surrendered to the path my life had to take for me to get better.

And I can tell you, since that shift, my life has gotten 800 times better. I have a great job now. I live in an amazing house. I have a beautiful wife who is pregnant with our first child. I have great friends, and I have a much closer relationship with my family. My life is so much better than it ever was when I was drinking.

So if you are a chronic relapser, I encourage you to get involved and commit to your sobriety. Do a rehabilitation program. Get a sponsor. Work the steps. Put some work into your sobriety, and I promise you, you will see results.