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Readers Respond: What Were Your Toughest Alcohol Withdrawal Symptoms and How Did You Cope?

Responses: 7799


Updated April 10, 2014

37 days strong

I am so pleased to see Rock Bottom doing well. Keep it up and to everyone else taking the right steps to deal with this life stealing addiction. We are stronger than it. I Have to say the first 3 weeks were ok, but I hit week 4 and I could have sold my soul at times. But at the worst, this weekend, where I paced the house, cried in frustration and knew that if there was alcohol around I would not have resisted. But there was none and I did not go out for any. I drank a liter of fizzy water and a cup of tea [my favorite tipple these days]. Mood dip really bad in week 4 and doubts, no fear, crept in. I can not go down that path again. I read my journal from day one and that helped. Feel on track again but the message is that i think i stopped planning how to handle 'my recovery'. I am in recovery and it will tie at least three months to feel any kind of normal before my future really begins and I really break free. Clue love your posts, you're an inspiration. Love to all.
—Guest Bernie

Day 19

Going really well, feel great. I wouldn't say I have had any real tests yet though, no parties etc. One thing I'm thinking about today though is how far away the withdrawal symptoms feel now and I know this is dangerous thinking. I can't imagine how I felt when I was on day 2, but I know it was horrific. Sweating and shaking was just the start. Depression, anxiety, really scared. Scared to sleep, not that I could. Seeing things when closing my eyes and the worst dreams in the world. This is what I have to remember and nothing would let me go back, no matter how great I feel today and how unimaginable those debilitating feelings seem to me right now. I'm just going to stick with my tried and trusted "I won't drink today" it's as simple as that. Love and support to all.
—Guest Rock Bottom

Tools I use while going throug detox

I made a plan. I bought flavored sports drinks and lots of bottled water. I bought fruit, candy and snacks I liked to eat. I ate a lot of soup to sooth my stomach. I had Melatonin for sleep. You can buy it at a health food store. I took vitamins b12-zinc D to get my body jump started. I started a journal to bitch in and tell my feelings to. I changed my grooming habits and tried to look human again. Also I prepared myself for some serious cravings by taking a walk, exercising, cleaning up messes, making a list of things I needed to do for years and sticking to it. I made sure I ate, drank and rested as much as I could. I knew sleep would not be my friend. I did things like put puzzles together, read about alcoholism, painted a room and gardened. It took a lot of pushing because I had no energy at all. Most of all I took some me time to sit and talk to myself about my real goal. It took a lot of deep breathing during the panic attack and patience with my body being so out of whack

To: runner girl

64 days is awesome! The ups and downs that now are happening are normal. Its important to eat, drink, rest and keep away from boredom. These feeling can make you think you are craving. Look up P.A.W.S. it was very helpful for me to read about it. Your Brain and body are now healing and your sides effects of drinking will go away. My feeling of doom was from many things. My best friend was booze and it had left me with many scars. I had emotions that I had no idea what they were or where to put them. I started a journal and wrote my feelings down to get them out. I joined a woman's AA group and that really help me a lot. To hear that others understand me and to see that many have beat this addiction gave me the strength that I could to. To me the quitting drinking was easy but the emotion part of staying sober is what I needed a lot of help with. I need to understand Why I drank and what I found out was not pretty but I could get past. I just didn't want to feel. I do now! hugs clue

Day 10 Still Going Strong

Found it hard today the depression has kicked in again. Plus I lost a good friend because she was always drunk and didnt like me being sober. I coped by cleaning the house and cooking a really nice meal. Feel a lot stronger, eating healthy and keeping up with everything. Lot of time on my hands I used to spend drinking. My swollen abdomen has already started going down and I have energy. Plus I have my self-esteem back dont feel like a loser at life.

64 days...

So it's been 64 days and finally I feel kind of good. I'm almost afraid to say it. The last couple months have been hellish I must admit. After the initial bad week there was a honeymoon period of feeling okay but then after that each day was a battle. And it's hard to describe because you face different crazy things like feeling out of sorts, random twitching, bouts of dehydration, coming out of your skin and just sort of a heavy fog. And now and then there is a glimpse of feeling ok. But there's also this doom like feeling like reality is slapping you in the face and you don't have your normal crutch to turn to. But I was determined and I am still determined to experience life without the poison and I must say that this glimpse I'm having on day 64 is pretty amazing; hope it lasts a while.
—Guest Runner girl


Any experience using the drug camprol in early sobriety? Been prescribed to me and I'm waiting to receive it. Any input welcome. Thanks!
—Guest chablis


I am no expert or qualified to tell or judge anyone what to do. I can tell you that 19 months ago I was in your shoes. I was drinking a quart of tequila a day drunk on my butt 24/7. I to suffer from panic attacks and PTSD and I know what you are feeling. I just wanted to lay down and die. I had left a relationship of 10 years, lost my business and was loosing my house that I worked hard for and it was all because of my drinking. How could I find a job being a drunk. I could I change anything being a drunk. The booze made my panic worse, my depression severe, my will to live almost taken away. As you keep saying you have had enough. Have you? When you stop feeling sorry for yourself and believe you can not drink then the healing will begin. It is not just about quitting it is about doing, working hard. I started with AA, it is free and it works for those that make it work. Get help, you can't do it alone. The booze is bigger than you and your life is a mess. Hugs Clue

Drinking and violence

I personally am not a violent person to anybody but myself. I punish myself for not being able to find a job, for having social anxiety, for getting withdrawals so bad that I call them "floor withdrawals." Which are the day after the panic attacks, and I literally cannot seem to wake up. I spent the entire day last weekend moaning on the carpeting of my apartment, to the point where even getting up to go the bathroom seemed impossible. I'm sick of this.
—Guest Josie

Rock bottom

12 days is an awesome start! Be proud of your self! It takes a lot of guts to know what you need to do to have a better life and to actually do it. Hang on tight it is quite a ride with many ups and downs. Do not listen to your stinking thinking about drinking. That voice is a lying demon, the truthful thought is the one that has your best interest. Stay strong hugs Clue.

To igotaclue

Thankfully, we don't have kids. Times have been rough. We lost electricity and I went through such bad withdrawals again, alone, while being yelled at. I feel better today. I cleaned the house and I'm doing laundry and drinking Gatorade. But I know you are so right in every way.
—Guest Josie

My story

I was smoking cannabis and drinking every day for about a year. At first I was just smoking cannabis but then every time I got stoned i would sometimes get really bad panic attacks and bad paranoia. Alcohol helped to ease that feeling a bit. Eventually I would get the same panic attacks after I stopped drinking (hangovers are the worst). Now 10 days without cannabis or alcohol my mind has never felt sharper I have started swimming and going to the gym and never felt better. Giving up alcohol and drugs can be done but you need to want to do it. Good luck
—Guest Just me


Alcohol can be blamed for many things but being abusive is not one of them We know even when drunk that putting our hands on another person is not allowed by the law or by you either. It sounds like it is time for you both to find a rehab and to put some space between you and your drinking. I pray to god you have no children that your causing a life long damage to them. Memories can not be forgotten but can be changed. Do something before you end up dead or in jail or killing some innocent person or your own children. To post on this site you must want help. Don't wish for it, don't hope for it, don't wait for someone to fix you. Fix yourself it is your problem and your husband needs to fix himself. Alcoholism is a personal addiction, it is you pouring that crap down your throat. Be strong, get help, see a doctor, counselor, try AA. Don't waist your life on drinking and violence. It is time to grow up and enjoy living, it has much to offer. Hugs Clue

Missing the good things

My father is an alcoholic. I have developed his need for a drink which always turns into 2 or 3 or 4 and on it goes. My drink of choice is wine. Several years ago I started with White Zinfandel on a pretty much daily basis then onto the stronger winery wines, then onto dryer stuff Pinots then Cabernets and found myself actually checking alcohol content "so I wouldn't have to drink as much" (mostly a fear of others noticing) I have Store hopped and shopped in neighboring towns to avoid being labeled or judged. Then if I could get my husband to pick it up for me, even better! First thought on drive home from work is "do I have any or enough wine at home?" I've suffered the traditional hangover, but at 46 years old and having been clinically technically visibly drunk 3 times in the past week, I am now on Day 3 without wine or any type of alcohol. I've noticed weight gain in my abdomen, easily hidden by bloody tops,. but I'm not happy with myself. I know this will be hard.
—Guest Kelly

Day 6 and Feeling Great

I went away for six weeks, came back home and picked up where I left off. After six weeks dry how dumb is that? I got through the withdrawals by taking a bit of Valium, eating biscuits and ice creams, reading, and remembering how great I felt when I was six weeks dry. Lost 5 kilos and saved lots of money. Also my boyfriend wants me back which is a great incentive. Drinking achieves nothing. It doesn't solve your problems and the only thing you have to show for it is a hangover. It's fantastic to wake up every morning and have energy plus NO GUILT.

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