Worn Out & Welcomes

Friends to the End / The Butt of the Joke

Something i’d realized long before i started recovery was that i’d used up all my old friends. My binges had been so taxing, my behavior so exasperating that people i was close to no longer wanted to be close to me.

While those people are less afraid of me now, i still don’t get invited to their parties. While not an outcast, i’m still not accepted.

Of course there are people bound by love to suffer me like a disease, and i bear no animosity against those who turned their backs on me after i stabbed it several times over. i have the life i deserve.

There is a room, however, where i am always welcome. Where people can truly appreciate me because they, too, have escaped the personal apocalypses of their own making. There’s something about sharing hell with someone that forges the strongest bonds.


About Al K Hall

Like a battered drinker or a punch drunk boxer, i am here for another round. For those of you who don’t know me, i’m a semi-professional writer on the rocks and a non-practicing alcoholic (if after 30 years of practicing, you still can't do something well, it's best to just give it up). For those of you who do know me, thanks for stopping by anyway and where’s the ten bucks you owe me? Welcome to my Bar None. A hole in the wall where we can hang out and trade the kind of stories you swap only when you’ve had one too many and either can’t find your way home or are afraid to. Hell, it’s cheaper than therapy and plus the pictures are prettier. Here we’ll crack open bottles and jokes and ‘last call’ are the only dirty words you’ll never hear. Pull up a stool and make yourselves at home.

Posted on October 18, 2011, in Alcoholics Anonymous, Alcoholism, Lessons in Recovery, Recovery and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. sadder still are those who “befriended” you at your lowest point because
    They needed an excuse for their own bad behavior
    You were the sad comic relief of their evening

    I’ve never questioned why someone wanted to be my friend until they “suddenly” disappeared.

  2. Here Here Wayne. I was surprised at how many ‘friends’ I lost once I got clean. Being with them in that in between time ( not exactly sober, but sorta ) It was exhausting to watch the idiocy.

    Family though… they stick. I found out Family is larger and deeper than blood once I was clean. That was and is a blessing.

  3. That’s strange. The only friend I’ve lost is a pothead. I guess he liked me being a stupid as he was when we hung out. On the other hand, I find that drinking does not help me become friends as readily with other drinkers that I meet in the course of business. But oh well. With a stocked beer fridge at work and vodka in the freezer there, having drinking buddies at work would be a very bad thing for me.

    • ITSB!

      Sorry, i think i was a little vague in my post. What i was getting at is that i lost my friends when i was drinking because i acted like an asshole. Now that i’m not drinking, they’re warming up to me but i’m still not invited to their parties and stuff. That said, the people in AA are becoming my new inner circle and that works out well because we’ve got lots in common.

      Keep coming back, brother,

      Al K Hall

      • Oh, I see. Reading that again, it makes sense.

        My biggest fear when I quit drinking is that I would lose my friends (including the ones I used to binge with). What I found is that they are happier to see me since I was as much a trigger to them to drink as they were to me. I hadn’t “used them up” but they had grown weary of my excessive consumption and my need to be taken care of at the end of the evening.

        Hell, just last week a friend of mine from high school and college came to town and wanted to hang out for the afternoon. He hadn’t known I quit drinking. Somehow the subject came up and he told me he was thinking about quitting too but was conflicted. (I’m sure you’re very aware of the conflict). Anyway, he had made plans to see a concert for the evening but did not invite me along because he was afraid we’d drink too much together. When he saw that I had stopped and demonstrated it by having an O’Doull’s when we visited Jumbo’s Clown Room, he invited me along.

        So… It takes time for the memories of your drinking binges to fade with your friends and knowledge of your sobriety to kick in; they might worry you’ll relapse at their parties. Once they know you’ve been dry for 9 months, and are unlikely to binge at their parties, I’m sure they’ll warm up.

        There was a reason they liked you in the first place and it wasn’t because you were a drunk.

        • i’m sure you’re right that once they see how well behaved i’ve become, i’ll start to get out more. And that was a really cool thing you said about there being a reason we became friends in the first place. Thanks for that.

          Keep coming back, please,

          Al K Hall

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