I am a drunk!

Hello, my name is John, and I am a drunk.

I want to be sober. I long for sobriety. This is how my therapist described it:silence of the heart, guarding of the mind, attention to oneself. Yes, all the things I am not.

I am drunk on feelings. They wash in and out of my heart and I revel in them. Sometimes, its joy and desire and passion and sometimes its depression, hate, and anger. Once I take the first sip, I cannot stop but want more and more and more. Even sadness and depression becomes quite intoxicating. And so, I stagger and roar from the bottom of my heart. There is no silence there.

Guard the mind? No, I am drunk on images and my mind is wide open. The media is my drink of choice. Once I take a mental sip, I want more and more. There are so many bars to drink in the images. The television is full of them and the internet is my best bottle. Movies and magazines all help to keep me drunk! My mind is so filled with images that I can hardly pray without them popping up and darkening my mind. The thing is, I’ve been an image drunk since I was a child. Mom put the bottle to our lips when we were children by sitting us in front of the television. (It was a great baby-sitter).My father kept pornography around the house, so sensuous images are a constant. Strangely, I often walk past the images of the Holy Ones that I have in my house and I barely notice them.

I pay no attention to myself because I’m too busy observing the faults and shortcomings of others. Spending all my time judging, I sit in on the bar stool of the scornful. My sins come and go with ease because in my judgmental and drunken haze, I rarely notice them. Therefore, I have no real idea who I am or what motivates me, but like strong liquor, my pride makes me swagger with the claim that I am a fine man and nothing like those other drunks. After all, unlike the others, I can quit anytime I like.

Sobriety! One day at a time – one step at a time – trust in the “Higher Power” – be accountable – ask for forgiveness from those you have offended – make no excuses for yourself – do the therapy – attend the Meetings – take the Medicine -read the Books – meet with your counselor – its all important.

Or…be a drunk!

5 Responses to “I am a drunk!”

  1. Priest Seraphim Holland Says:

    Dear Fr John:
    I am a drunk too. I would like to share your essay with my parish on our blog (with full attribution of course)

  2. bob Says:

    Hello my name is bob and i am a alcoholic. i have been sober for 12 hours now and my soul resides in the empty cases of old style left around the room. The 12 steps will work for me tomorrow, but as of now i need more help than you can offer. I give to you all the love I have to help defeat the demons in your mind, but for me it is too late and death awaits with the rising sun. (hypothetically i think)

  3. Betsy Says:

    Bob wrote: “I give to you all the love I have to help defeat the demons in your mind, but for me it is too late and death awaits with the rising sun. (hypothetically i think)”

    Bob, not sure what you are saying here, but it sounds rather defeatist. Don’t worry, you are in good company. I have felt the same! See my post on the “Style over Substance” entry…

    Still, your post reminded me that there are two aids we all seem to forget are available, when we struggle so mightily with ourselves: Repentence and Forgiveness. (I thank you for helping me with this).

    With the use of those two aids, we can always know that it is NEVER, EVER TOO LATE.

    We are at war against sin and evil, my friend. War is horrific, to be sure. But I don’t know of any war that was won in just one battle. All wars have many battles on many fronts. Some battles are harder to fight than others. Some seem impossible, when you are surrounded by the enemy (and the enemy has even infiltrated the ranks!) But fortunately for us Orthodox, we ARE ASSURED VICTORY on every front by simply repenting, rising up, battle weary though we my be, and refastening our armor.

    The steps are easy, the execution more demanding. But none of it is impossible. We have to accept this fact of “possible,” because otherwise our faith is a delusion.

    Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner!

  4. kathy Says:

    I am coming a bad drunk please help me!

  5. Fr. John Says:

    Dear Kathy,

    Please contact me at frj1951@yahoo.com

    Let’s talk further about what is happening with you.

    Hope to hear from you soon.

    Fr. John

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