The first Carnival of Alcohol and Relationships


We'll go with the natural high, expanding the brain with good communication.
Crazy, I know, I know.

Funny that we should celebrate this first carnival on the eve of the eve of the Passover holiday. Passover is the quintessential celebration of freedom (from Egyptian slavery, 1500 B.C.E. , after 210 years of slavery, if you paid attention in Sunday school)

So here's another equation:


Many of the contributors to this carnival would agree.

May 13, 2007 will be the first CARNIVAL OF ALL SUBSTANCES, and any of you can post a story about your experiences, thoughts, relationships, with a person, drug, favorite person, favorite drug, favorite drug of a favorite person, whatever you like.

This and future carnivals should serve deterrents, not cocktails.

If your mother hasn't told you already, Drugs are Bad.

Without further ado,

Nael, at Another Door Opens writes a beautiful post about friendship He makes it clear that well-intentioned friends don't necessarily understand that owning responsibility for the past is key.

Relentless writes about being Daddy's little girl and suffering the wrath of her mother in an anniversary post

MEG, at You and Me and Floating on a Tidal Wave, writes a very sad story about her daughter's relationship with her uncle, and how three lives were interrupted and changed forever due to alcoholism. A must read, Uncle Randy.

Then she follows it up with a post on her father, and then another on mom. Thank you so much, Meg. These are beautiful posts and we can all learn from them. I certainly did.

Syd at I'm Just Fine is an adult child of an alcoholic married to an alcoholic who writes about his life. He goes to Al-Anon and writes a beautiful post he calls The Alcoholic Love Relationship: I've heard it said over and over that co-dependents, especially those who had alcoholic parents, are attracted to alcoholics. . . I realize that I've spent a long time making others happy and what I now want to do is make myself happy. You're going to like the new glasses, Syd.

In a second post on self-worth, having been criticized harshly by his father, he writes:
We hid our feeling of self-worth deep within, and our perspective became distorted. Many of us even tried to conceal that we felt worthless on the inside to the point that we couldn't show any real warmth and concern for anyone, including ourselves. Then: if someone really doesn't like the way I am, then there needs to be communication that is clear and a discussion that is rational and loving

You never have those conversations, by the way, when someone is impaired.

Pat Santy,or Dr. Sanity, our resident psychiatrist posts the best description of enabling I've ever seen. She doesn't mind stretching the metaphor to terrorism, either. Check it out.

Brave Giant Mark, at
DrinkandDrugNoMore has something to say to teens who have to make a choice: What if you like it? Then what?

J.D. at VicariousRising wrote a heartbreaker about how people really do kick the dog, includes a great clip from the movie, Fame.

Noor, Malaysia's First Recovery Blogger, writes about his heroic recovery from heroin in prison tired of smoking drugs, I preferred to stay in prison.

Jen, at StayAtHomeMotherdom tried to adopt and was outed as an alcoholic to the agency. This was the first major issue in my life that I learned to relinquish and accept. I learned gradually overtime that I didn't need to retaliate. Read her story.

LushGirl at A Day in the Life of YoMamma in Whine and Song, Why Now writes about the challenge of working a program AND raising a troubled teenager. She's blaming herself, but seems to this doc, is doing the best she can.

Little Miss Mel on the same theme, blogs about confusing someone who is "difficult" with someone who is a difficult alcoholic".

Kevin, at the Creative Power of Thought, on the Laws of Attraction, thinks that it is a person's negative thinking that brings on negative outcomes in life, and doesn't buy the victim-hood rationale for drinking: There are far more constructive forms of coping with life challenges than alcohol poisoning. Oh yes, Kevin

Dr. Hal, a life coach at NorthStar Mental Fitness says in his post that "The first step to learning how to take care of yourself is to admit that you don't want to take care of yourself and you want adult pacifiers to take care of you." Wow. He'll beat the denial out of you! As he should, as he should.

Paul E. Coughlin presents Alcohol useage posted at Paul E. Coughlin at, saying, "Alcohol is not really an enemy so much as a poison. Enemies can be feared but poisons? Hardly. Who in their right mind wants to poison oneself?"

Lola's written a long story with surprise twists for those who can hang in there long enough at L'Undone.

And Joyce, at has a different prayer one might consider

TherapyDoc presents Alcoholics Anonymous (A. A.) and W.S.J. posted at Everyone needs therapy, asks "WSJ says AA is okay. Is it?"

Caroline, at SharpBrains thinks that all you need to do is reduce your stress and you'll be just fine. I don't buy it, but okay, take a look.

That concludes this edition. Thanks to all of you who visited and participated. Submit your blog article for the May 13 edition to The Carnival of All Substances.


Thank you my friend. I see some of my recovery friends are here too. Hi Meg (Moran), Syd, VicariousRising, YourSickMomma and the rest. It's nice to meet them all here. I'm sure to summit my article for the May 13 edition.

Keep up the good works, Doc.

Greeting from Malaysia's First Recovery Blogger.
TherapyDoc said…
Thanks Noor, I'm happy it worked out. Nobody's fallen off a ride yet!
Syd said…
Good set of articles and thoughts. Thanks for setting this up. It's a neat concept, like an e-journal of unscientific papers. I thought that the information from the W.S.J. was interesting. While success rate isn't high, if you happen to be in the 2% then it's a wonderful thing. Al-Anon and AA have done more for me than the therapists could, largely because they never understood what it was like to live with alcoholism.
TherapyDoc said…
Syd, I really think it's a works if you work it thing with any therapy, especially one as well-engineered as A.A. Thanks for joining me in this little experiment. Sure, we're going to do it again next month.
Meg Moran said…
Thanks for your effort to set this up and share the insight. You may not be "one of us" as we say in the program, but you certainly helped carry the message today.
TherapyDoc said…
If you're a therapist long enough you feel like an honorary member of many different clubs. I've so much admiration for this one. It's been a pleasure. Let's try to keep it running, if not every month, then a few times a year.
Caroline said…
Dear TherapyDoc,

Thanks for so many great articles.

I don't believe stress is the cause of it all -or stress and anxiety management the cure of it all-, but that we often overlook how high levels of anxiety and uncertainly contribute to the problem, and therefore how we must understand this from a prevention point of view. Simply my 2c.

thanks again
SoberSteve said…
Thanks for the post. Just ran across your blog. I will be back for more

TherapyDoc said…
Caroline, Your 2C are worth a lot more than 2C. No question, people say, "I need a drink." They don't say that because they're feeling happy, right? It's because of stress. So your specialty, stress management, is VERY helpful here. What the 12 steppers would say, of course, is that it's an excuse, and we don't hold by them. There's no excuse to drink/use when all you really need to do is go to a meeting, call a sponsor, etc. There's a system in place.

Unfortunately, it's a system that isn't going to be enough for everyone.

But when it works? As we say in yiddish, gevaldik, delectable. Replace crummy dysfunctional behavior with community, service to humanity, friendship? Amazing.
TherapyDoc said…
Welcome Steve, thanks for saying Hi.
6billionghosts said…

adam knows how to drive. i can only appreciate his skill and dexterity by intution because i haven't done much driving. he makes playful swings of the wheel seem fun and not scary. when we were driving down the street i trusted him. when the car was about to collide with us head-on i trusted him. i trusted him when he swung the wheel to the left and turned onto a side street i was not ready to die. i trusted him to protect us from death and dying and the cold and becoming homeless. i've known adam for a long time and he
jeanie said…
Hey there TherapyDoc - lol do you know how to increase the hours in the day, because unless that happens I am going to have to come back here and do a thorough Carnival Crawl soonish! I consider myself lucky to not suffer from alcoholism as I have seen the effects of it - and I have also seen the effects of sobriety on sufferers - joyful is a great way to describe that.

By the way - I have presented you with a Thinking Blogger Award at - of which I know you have several, but that doesn't stop you making me think... It is sort of memish which I sort of have a problem with - so if you want to do the "rules" bit, fine, but I won't take it back!
TherapyDoc said…
Jeanie, I'm dying here with all this attention. If you guys only knew how often I FAIL to think you'd TAKE THEM ALL BACK!

But thanks. It does bring a smile, who can deny that?
TherapyDoc said…
6 billion, what can I say? looks like a good story.
KumariPoe said…
Hi, I'm also a social worker, and in recovery. I just wanted to invite you to visit my recovery and mental health blog. I hope we can start a dialogue: Kumari's Mental Health and Recovery
TherapyDoc said…
Sure Kumari, I'll get there. May not be this week though. Peace.