I thought I would post this here re: substance abuse. After being dependent on alcohol (varying degrees) since 1994, I finally went to an AA meeting the other night. I was quite nervous and younger than most there. I wondered if it was like in the films and it actually is! Hi my name is and I'm an alcoholic...then the person 'shares'. Well, they said I could share for a few minutes at the end if I wanted to but there was no pressure. The stories I heard were truly shocking. A guy said how his wife was in a bad child labour, he went to the hospital for ten minutes then left to buy booze! Another guy would fall asleep in hedges drunk and almost died of hypothermia. When I thought about it my own stories are up there with the worst in that room. How could I share at the end and not break down in front of these strangers? Well, I did manage to share and I felt a lot better for it. They were all so nice and non judgemental. People would come up to me and shake my hand and say thank you for sharing. At the end one lady gave me a hug and made me promise I'd be at the next meeting. The bugbear for me is...how the f**k have these people managed to not touch a drop since 1991, 1998 etc etc?? It never ends which is why they still attend and they get comfort from helping others. I shal attend the next meeting but I am still drinking the same atm. That is not unusual from what I heard but at least two of them looked me in the eye and said "I really hope it doesn't take you as long as it took me". Right now I cannot seriously imagine a life without alcohol. No matter how many success stories I read about how wonderful sobriety feels, I know I'm not even close yet However, I was inspired and it seems doubtful they were all lying and they have a sneaky drink now and then. It really didn't feel that way. If what they say is true it's truly astonishing to me that it can be achieved. I thought I'd post this so others in the same situation might go to their first meeting also. And maybe others could help me get past this feeling of "Well it's great you did it but I honestly can't see it happening for me"