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

Responses: 7893


Updated September 19, 2014

Back again

today is day 1 for me. again! I'm really scared that if I don't stop this time I never will. So here it goes....
—Guest Tryinagin

Day 5 down, continued

The hardest symptom for me is the anxiety. Every day when I drive home from work I get a panicked feeling and I would tell myself if I could just make it home I could have a beer or a glass of wine as soon as I walk in the door. Well, this work week I had to come up with something else to look forward to when I got home. I wanted to go for a walk but most days I sat on the couch sneezing and blowing my nose, and zoning out. I'm tired of feeling so out of focus, I hope I get sharper soon. I have found every excuse in the book to drink this week, but I refused to give in. I drank a ton of water with Crystal Light, sparkling water with lots of lemon in it, Diet 7Up and milk as well. I try to stick to one to two cups of coffee because if I have more I feel crazy and the shakes are much worse. I had a realization today. It's not the fact that giving up alcohol means that I can't drink anymore, it's the fact that I no longer can get drunk, that upsets me. I always wanted that total escape.
—Guest Lucia529

Day 5 down, the rest of my life to go!

Hello to all and a happy Friday! This is my 5th night sober! Not only was I withdrawing this week, but I came down with a nasty cold. It did help to mask my withdrawal symptoms though, at work, since I looked like hell and I could blame it on all the sneezing and coughing. It's like my body was rejecting sobriety and I had a systemic reaction to having NO alcohol. haha. I kept thinking if I could have just one drink I would feel better but I knew that I would wake up feeling so much worse. The past 5 days have been a blur. I found myself just zoning out, while at work, while driving, while talking to people. Then all of a sudden last night, on night 4, it was like a veil was lifted and I felt like I started slowly coming back to life. Today I still have dark circles but the puffiness is better and my bloated belly is a little better. I had incredible gas pains for the first 3 days. I do still have that awful feeling like at any second I am going to go crazy. It's the anxiety. TBcont.
—Guest Lucia529

To: Mary

Dear friend, do not beat yourself up we are fighting a cunning, baffling disease. Put it back down!!! And learn from this look inside what part of your character has been affected? Work on it! This will strengthen your resolve. As you know I did the very same last week after 4 months sober and you came to my aid. I can only tell you it made everything 10 times worse, it only heightened my anger (fear) emotions, anxiety and made me more paranoid going into work on monday morning. Today is day 7 for me again I am grateful to be in this moment, my head has cleared somewhat, I feel a lot calmer inside honestly it just wasn't worth it. Thanks to you and the others on this site for the first few days You kept me sane! Forgivness is in our peace mind. God bless
—Guest Kenny

To Gray

I did indeed have serious memory and focus problems after I stopped drinking. I didn't remember much except how sick I was. Could not eat either. But it does get better the further away from alcohol I get. My focus and memory gets better as yours will too. It is good you are seeing a therapist to identify those things you need to work on. Please keep posting. Care how you are doing.
—Guest becky

To Mary

Mary My Friend, nothing to be sorry for and nothing to ask forgiveness for. Wipe away the tears and keep going. You know we are all here to support you. That is the only help we can give. The rest is up to you and I think you know that. Love to you Mary.
—Guest robert1952

To: mary

Hi mary, I agree with Harmony, swearing is a withdrawal symptom! Oooh that's funny ( : Good one.
—Guest Big Fish

Dear Mary

Your judgement on yourself is much worse than anything anyone here can say. I don't know what you meant by I drank whether it was a sip or a binge. And it does not really matter. Please don't beat yourself up. Tomorrow is another day and no one here can judge. You love being sober. I can tell that in your posts. You are a joyful loving person. Please post tomorrow and let us know how you are. Most of all what was the trigger?
—Guest becky

To fighting 123

Try and hang in there. The alcohol causes anxiety as it took me awhile to learn only through self education on this site and elsewhere. You can have a sober summer but for now just concentrate on one day. And after that the next. Think of it as small steps till you feel stronger. Be kind to yourself most of all. It is a hard process...no getting around that. But possible. Cliche as it sounds baby steps at first. Hang in there and keep posting to let us know how you are.
—Guest becky

To: Wholenuworld

Dear Wholenuworld, always good to hear from you. You are coming along the road great! Hope has been a devoted poster here for a long time. Yea for hope! God bless all the posters and BuddyT.
—Guest Big Fish

To boatparty

Glad to see you came back. Yes all those fluids can make you pee all the time. :) but better to pee from good ingredients than alcohol. :). I hope you come back and share your seafaring stories and how you are doing.
—Guest becky

To: Cherylgeyer911

Dear Cheryl, Sorry to here your homelife is not so good. What a shame about your mom. My life mirrors yours with alcohol/drugs in the family. Addiction is the root of all evil for me too. I suggest you go to the counselor. It did help you last time. Why wouldn't it work again? I bet it would. If you don't want to go to the last one, find a new one. Nothing wrong with getting help. Many people help me all the time. It's a good thing. I also suggest that you get out of the house everyday. Walk the dog, walk by yourself, go to the library, check out some fun hobbies at an arts/crafts store. Just get out into the sunshine and fresh air. It's important to not be alone all the time. A change of scenery. You will get ideas of new hobbies. Keep going cheryl. I already know you are smarter-than-the-average bear.
—Guest Big Fish

To: Fighting123

I can totally relate to your story. I have panic disorder and have been self medicating with alcohol for years. It's like if anyone knew how awful we felt without alcohol they'd never expect us to be sober. For me, the alcohol was the only way to feel calmer. Like you, the withdrawals from alcohol spun me into horrible panic attacks, do I stopped trying to quit drinking for fear of the panic. When you stop and look at it, this is a clear example of us becoming slaves to the alcohol. I'm just past the 48 hour mark but I'm so determined to see this through. The urge surfing BigFish suggested is going to be a big help! I'm rooting for you! We can do it!
—Guest StrangeAdventures

To: harmony

Hello harmony, coming up on 6 months! Alrighty then! Whoo Hoo! You've come a long way, baby! ( - :
—Guest Big Fish

To: Strangeadventures

Hello and welcome, the first couple days were the roughest physically for me. My anxiety was ridiculous. It's a withdrawal symptom and the worse will pass. I still tend to have (not quite) panic attacks but I learned the urge surfing (google it) so I am able to calm myself at the onset and pretty much avoid it. It gets easier. Exercise helps alot for channeling the stress. Sounds like regular withdrawals. Keep going. It will be well worth it friend! ( - :
—Guest Big Fish
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