Sunday, November 25, 2012

Anger in Early Sobriety

***Submitted by Anonymous

I am very very angry.  

I am super angry with my mom because (among many other things I shalt not list) she put all the dishes from the dishwasher away and the cycle was half done. 

I am ready to kick the dog for getting under foot. 

I have pretty much had it with my husband!  He is wearing the same shirt today as he wore yesterday. The nerve!  

I have a pain across the middle of my back that feels as though barbed wire has been inserted in my skin. 

Anyone who doesn't respond just so, sends me reeling to drown in an ocean of tears. 

I am too old for this.  

I am 53 truth be told and that is a very adult number. I have attended yoga classes several times a week for many years. I know all the "be in the moment" and "gratitude for what you have" messages. 

I have been in therapy for most of my adult life.  I have worked through the emotions of anger and rage toward my mother, I have learned in marriage counseling how to communicate intelligently with my husband and I know the dog is completely innocent.  

You see I quit drinking wine two weeks ago.  

If it weren't for the posts here and information on line, I would be back to drinking.  

I don't know when my happy drinking "turned" on me, it was a long and slow decline.  But I suspect the "alcoholic" behavior occurred when my older daughter went to college and I went back to work full time to cope with feelings of loss.  

Since then, I have quit the full time job, she has graduated from college and is living home. 

My younger daughter is now a college sophomore and living away.  

I have stopped for weeks, maybe months at a time, but returned to the drinking because I have decided I really don't have a drinking problem. After all, I didn't have the shakes or headaches, didn't need to go to rehab.  

OR, because I felt lousy without it (like now) and needed to self medicate.  

I feel like medicating. I am uncomfortable and overwhelmed by my ugly feelings.  I was drinking a bottle of wine or more most nights and I had my tricks to disguise it.  

My yoga friends would never suspect.  

I would never tell them about this demon that meditation and asana could not undo. I am waiting to wake up feeling well, for these emotions to pass, and to feel at ease in my body.  

I don't want to go back to drinking ever again. 

It wasn't fun anymore.  

Thank you for all your support. I cannot believe how common this struggle is! 


  1. Hi There, l am 53 as well and 30 days since my last bottle of wine....yes nightly as well. I also feel more angry then before l quit. I know that l am well inti this and never want to go back to that life. I think that mood is very tied into this. I feel more bitchy toward my husband and less tolerance for foolish behaviour. Things are clear all the time and that is new. I to have no idea how this happened. I do know that this is me now...crabby some of the time but highly functional most of the time. As l am only slightly ahead of you in time sober, if you are angry because you feel crappy because your body is still in transition. This will fact around day 21 l stopped thinking so much about it. However, l still wont have an alcohol in the house and make a plan when l go out. l really can relate to your feelings of anger....just be patient and yes selfish if you need to be alone. I have really listeneded to thvice on this site. I had no idea there would be such honest help from women l.have never met before.

    1. Sorry for the phone and still learning how to edit on a mobile. Best of are in very good company here.

    2. HI!!
      So bitchy towards my husband!! And no tolerance for foolish behavior..omg, I totally relate.
      I too am 53. The things I used to think he said or did when I was drinking, sound and look stupid to me now. He is a saint for putting up with me these days. I am moody, quiet,"down", and bored. There is nothing to look forward to in the evening. My "me time" is gone! As I have made it to day 120 on my first attempt. I know this will pass, and I know I will stop cravign so much. I also know I have to have activities in place for me during the time I used to drink. I DID NOT do that the first time. This is my new day 2!!!
      I too LOVE this blog and NEED it to connect and write. Thnk you to all of you!!

    3. I am glad I found this blog. I googled "why do I cry so much in early sobriety" I am nearly 4 months sober and I go to heaps of meetings and have a great sponser. Yet I'm still an emotional mess. Is it healing taking place inside me? was I crying before but instead of tears I was drinking and drugging? My foster mother's ex husband died recently of pills and drink. Heart attack in a shitty caravan. I hardly knew him but I can't stop crying. I'm crying more than his own kids..the grief is overwhelming. Yet I hated him when he was alive. He stole scripts off his daughter and told many lies and plotted to kill my mum. Awful stuff. Why can't I stop crying about it? Also the anger in me is crazy. I rarely use the F word but this morning I used it in every way possible. "why the F?" "where the F is?" "F this" it's crazy...How long in recovery does it take to become emotionally sober?

  2. I hate to say this, but what you're going through is completely normal. They even have a term for's called PAWS (Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome). Google it and you'll find all kinds of articles about it and ways to cope. Anger is only one of the many emotions you are likely to feel. I remember crying for absolutely no reason in early recovery and I am NOT a crier so that pissed me off! Early sobriety feels like a bad roller coaster ride, but it will pass.

    For me, what helped the most was going to meetings and talking to other people about how I was feeling and soaking up any advice they could give me. I have no idea why it works, but it does.

    Stick with it. I know it sucks right now and it may even get worse before it gets better, but it will get better if you can just hang in there. I would even say it gets great.

    P.S. Don't kick the dog...he/she loves you :)

  3. You have a distinct advantage over many newly sober people: you actually accept the fact that it is no longer fun. When I first quit, I'm sure I had thoughts of just taking a break and learning how to drink like a normal person. But I hadn't admitted it to myself that it was impossible to still have fun with it. It didn't feel fun or good or anything. Just stone cold sober or drunk as a skunk. I had to actually hear it from someone else before it registered with me that the fun, buzzed feeling was no longer achievable. Hang in there. It gets easier. I wanted to disembowel my husband and I probably would've had to be defibrillated if my mother put the half-clean dishes in the cabinet.


  4. I was miserable when I was drinking and even more nasty when I stopped. Nasty to the same people I had hurt countless times.
    When I look back now (8.5 months) I was finally feeling ALL the feelings I tried to extinguish with booze. I won't lie it hurts, my heart was aching and breaking. I was desparate and followed the advice to go to womens meetings. I reluctently (sp) went and found the women would love me until I could love myself, the women understood and I could talk without be judged. All of the above was a huge relief. Please try AA. Just go and listen. You don't have to share. And the women will welcome you and give you phone numbers. and Yes they will pick up the phone when you call. It does get better! My life is good. I don't know how it works, but it does. You will hear countless women say that. And may think it's bs. But when you see the smiles and laughter in the rooms of AA you gotta have faith.

  5. I'm 52...I think this might all hit us at the same age with the combination of an empty nest, declining hormones, extra time and money (when I was a young mother I had neither the opportunity or the extra $10 for a bottle of wine!)...I am SOOOOO happy that I'm sober!!! It took a couple of year s to feel stable and consistent in my sobriety...and I 'crashed' a couple of times when I first tried to quit. Not pretty!!! I actually enjoy my life, sober, and NEVER thought I'd be able to say that! Hang in there, find an AA group that you like, read, read, good to yourself, order dessert...journal....The book LIVING SOBER had lots of practical hints for you!

  6. Thanks Ladies! I think this site is terrific and I feel better already! I have a friend who stopped drinking several years ago, and she said: "If you never drink, you will never drink too much." That makes all the sense in the world to me. So I am trying and will explore AA... again! I didn't feel so comfortable when I ventured in other times, but I think I have reached a place of acceptance that this is it: NO MORE DRINKING! I lost the discipline I once had. Not my best self. October, I laughed out loud when I read your post. Amanda, I promise I will not kick the dog. She loves me so much. Anonymous Ladies, you are an inspiration to me and I hope to be able to be that inspiration for some women in several months time when I feel stronger and more sure of myself! Blessings and strength to you all!

    1. One thing I found with regard to meetings...if you feel uncomfortable with one or it's just not a good fit, try a different one. Unless you're very rural, there are usually a whole host of AA options that you can tap into.

      Good luck. It is so worth it. My worst day sober is still better than my best day drinking.


  7. I only drink beer. Most often a 24 to 36 bottles a week. I didn't feel like drinking for 3-4 days and I found myself becoming really angry, and on edge. I felt like I had to go right out and get some beer to stop the anger. I would prefer to quit drinking if there were no repercussions. It appears there is something in beer/alcohol that causes a change in ones brain chemistry even if not drinking to extreme. Anybody have the same issue, and has anybody been able to over come it.