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Alcoholism, Anxiety, and Blackouts

I have been worrying myself to death for the last 96 hours over something that is probably made up in my head. It is making me scared and has brought fear into my life. For about 8-9 years now, I have been a heavy drinking on and off. More often on, rather than off. In the recent year or so, I have noticed that I have had a lot of anxiety episodes. For awhile I thought it was too much caffeine or nervousness, but it seem to get worse when I drank. It made for a lot of worry. I obsess about everything. Diease, health, dying, ect. I'm newly married and my wife thinks I am a big worrier and overly obsessed with negative things.

I Have had ups and downs with alcohol in the last year and a half. I have been in the hospital three times for alcohol related problems (dehydration, really high blood pressure due to drinking, and finding out I had Gerd/Acid Reflex.) The last few months, I have been pretty good on the drinking. I have a new job that keeps me somewhat busy. However there have been a few times where I feel like I need a break or a deserved night out, and get completely wasted. I'm usually with my wife and friends, so when I do have blackouts, I am not worried so much. I wake up the next day hung over and of course feel on edge, and it does't help my GERD. But my wife and friends are able to fill me in on the nights activities.

This brings me to this past Sunday evening, June 28, 2009. I had just finished a huge project that I had been staying up to finish till 4am most nights, for three weeks. I didn't go out at all, just working hard everyday to get this project done. I was very happy that I was finished and had made plans to see Transformers with a friend Sunday afternoon. We went to the movie and as I normally do with my friend, brought along a Gatorade bottle, half full with vodka, and half with Gatorade. I was pretty drunk when I left the three hour movie. I should have gone home, but my friends, who work at a local bar wanted me to stop by and hang out. Of course that didn't take to much arm pulling. I went to the bar around 8pm and only had one Sake Bomber, with probably two extra Sakes. This is where I started to have blackouts. I hadn't eaten anything all day, so it obviously made me twice as drunk as usual. I know I didn't do anything stupid or make a scene. In fact I completely seemed normal, according to my friend the bartender. Unfortunately, I don't remember most of my time there. I had asked my bartender friend to give me a lift to another bar, so I could meet my other friends for a drink. I arrived at the other bar at 10:30pm. I only remember arriving at the bar and first part of the conversation with these other friends. I think I only had half a Bud Light. I don't remember my friends leaving the bar, but I do remember myself leaving. The bar is a block from my apartment. It only takes me around 10 minutes to walk home. I don't remember the actual walk home except for two instances. I remember seeing a helicopter flying over head and myself wanting to jump into our apartment complex pool (since it was hot and I was even hotter from walking fast. I didn't.) I also remember when I opened the door to our apartment, my wife yelling at me. She wasn't happy because I was really drunk and the fact I forgot to tell her where I was going. She had to call a few of my friends to figure out that I was at the bar down the road. I only remember part of the fight, but not going to bed, but only when getting up.

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Avatar universal
And this is where things for me get scary....

I woke up in the clothes I had from the previous night, which tells me I passed out in bed. My wife slept on the couch cause she was mad. For some reason, I felt like I had done something awful on my way home. Maybe I murdered someone, maybe I raped someone, maybe I assaulted someone. The fear of that came over me like a ton of bricks. I checked myself to make sure that there were know physical harm to myself. There was no blood on me, nor my shoes, nor my clothes, nor my hat, nor on my skin. There were no scratches on my face or arms or legs or hands. There wasn't any blood underneath my nails, nor was my knuckles bruised. The first thing I checked was the news channels/websites to see if there was any murders, rapes, assaults in my neighborhood. Nothing. I then checked the local Police Departments websites to see if they posted anything. Nothing. I got ready and drove down the block towards the bar to see if there was any police caution tape, or detectives, or news media, ect., ect. Nothing.

So at this point a normal person would say, hey, thank God I didn't turn into Dahmer and kill someone. But it didn't. In fact it made things worse. I started thinking that I killed someone anyway. I must have. I must have snapped when I blacked out and killed the first person I saw. I must have killed someone without a weapon of any kind and strangled them with my hands or hit them with a rock. I must have buried the body or thrown it in a trash can somewhere.  Or maybe PD found a body already but hadn't reported it to the news yet, or posted on their websites. I was thinking, they are going to show up at my door and take me away to jail for life. My life is ruined from one night of drinking too much. I will be leaving everything I love behind and rot in a cell. I don't think I can handle prison for the rest of my life. What hell.

That has been my mind for the last 96 hours/4 days.

But even after reviewing the actual evidence in my head, over and over and over and over again, I still think I did something awful.

Here is the actual evidence;

It took me 10-15 minutes to walk home. I know it took me this long cause I checked with my friends and my wife of when I left the bar and when I got home. Usually, the route I use to go home, there is, never ever anyone walking around at 11:30pm on a Sunday night. The main block is an empty baseball stadium (which is gated) and offices, which no one is in at that time. I think I have seen maybe one person walking their dog at that time in the 8 months that I lived in this area.

I woke up with no physical harm whatsoever to my body. There was no evidence that I was in any altercation. I have checked the local NEWS (all 5 channels TV and Websites), as well as, the local PD's websites, for any incidents that happened in my area for the last 96+ hours. Nothing. Nothing at all. Not a single thing about a murder, rape, or assault. And they report every little incident in my city. There was no police tape, detectives, nor news vans, nor flowers for someone who may have died somewhere around there. Nothing. I checked the papers for obituaries, and no one, from what I can tell, died of a murder, on that night. They were mostly all older people who died in their sleep or cancer.

I even wrote down a logical thinking list to kind of ease my anxiety. I wrote things like; I had no reason to murder a complete stranger, nor a reason to be mad or violent. I had a great day at the movies and apparently had fun at the two bars. Even if I was in a murderous violent mood, I most likely won't run into anyone walking around at 11:30 at night. Even if I did run into someone walking down the street alone, they would be on alert. Cautious of anyone strange or any one walking in general, down a dark street. I guarantee that I would be on alert for any stranger walking my way. Always on guard. And even if I did try to attack someone, in my condition (being drunk), I wouldn't exactly be in the best shape to attack someone. Not only that, people (myself included) would not go out without a fight. I would use Pepper spray, keys, kicking, screaming, fists, running away, knifes (if I had one), gun (if I had one), cell phone, ect., ect. No one would just sit there and let me kill them or assault them. So,  if I did do something, it doesn't make any sense to wake up with no marks. If a body was found, I would be caught in two seconds, due to finger prints and DNA. I am on probation (have been for awhile for non violent crime.) I've blacked out before and never hurt anyone, in fact. I can only think of two times I was mad. One time I punched a fridge (hurt my hand) and the other time I punched my parents wall. But those were times I was really really angry, young, and not really use to alcohol yet.

As a younger drinker, in my early twenties, I use to black out, and drive. That came to a stop once I got into an accident and was arrested for DUI (no one was hurt.) I remember I woke up in the middle of a street, when a cop picked me up in the early morning. There were many crazy things I did. But even though I did crazy things, I was never violent or caused violent acts...such as murder or assault or rape.

In fact a sober me is probably the nicest person you'll ever meet. I love my wife, I love my parents. I take care of my father everyday, since he's 81, and starting to loose his memory. I love my cats and dogs. I love my friends. I hate yelling. I hate violent acts. I hate being mad. I hate being depressed. In fact I was going to go into boxing as a teen, cause someone said I could punch well at the gym (heavy bag), but I didn't like sparring with people I liked and knew...as well as people I didn't know. So I quit after a few fights and knew it wasn't for me. I don't like confrontation. In fact I always try to make friends or be nice to people I don't know. I seem to get along with everyone.

I know that alcohol tears downs those walls and your inhibitions. But mine would be letting my guard down in social situations. Since I am nervous around new people and don't always lead in conversations, that is one thing that is lowered. It also, before I got married, let me talk to women at bars, without getting nervous, and sounding dumb. But my inhibitions were never violent and wanting to kill people.

Avatar universal
I know this is a long post and if you actually read this...thank you. If you ignored it...I don't blame you. But I really am having a difficult time with this for some reason. Everything is pointing 110% at NOTHING HAPPENED...but my mind keeps telling me SOMETHING DID HAPPPEN. Even with all the evidence and logical thinking...the illogical thinking over takes it. I get depressed thinking about it. It is on my mind constantly (for the last 96hours.) It makes me want to give up and wait for the police to show up at my door, who probably won't even be coming in the first place. I loose sleep over it. It really is effecting me. I even thought I would call the police to see if there was anything that happened right around my neighborhood, but thought it would do more harm than good.

Lately, besides this time, after a night of drinking, I have been waking up thinking that I have killed someone or did something wrong, even with my wife and friends. It is really scaring me. I don't know if I should see someone or what. Am I going crazy? Is the alcohol making me crazy? Am I really insane? Why is this time much more different than all the other times I blacked out? Just because I walked home by myself for 10 minutes, means that I snapped and turned into Dr. Jeklly Mr. Hyde? What was the difference between all the other times I was alone and blacked out and this time. Please help. I think I am going to have break down or something.

I did tell my self that if I don't hear from the police by the end of the weekend then I can give up the worries. But something tells me I will still be obsessed with these feelings of fear.

Your thoughts.
784382 tn?1376934640
you need to calm down.... if you did something you would have some marks....scratches...SOMETHING!!..... a drunk person isnt going to pull off a murder perfectly....there is going to be evidence and prolly a pretty sloppy job of trying to hide anything..... i think yes maybe you need to go speak to a doctor....maybe get put on some meds for a while...good luck.....RELAX!!!...nothing happened!......
370181 tn?1428180348
While I agree completely with turkee that you absolutely MUST calm down, that you obviously did NOT harm anyone...........I also agree, 100%, that you need to see a doctor about your drinking! That you are taking these blackouts in stride is really frightening to me and should be even more frightening to YOU!
Show a copy of this post to your doctor...........he/she will know EXACTLY what you need to do. And please do it NOW!
You've been given a pretty loud wake up call and I hope you heed it.
I wish you the very best but I think you're looking at a pretty bumpy ride in the near future.
I would suggest you post over on the Alcohol Forum for some up close and personal advice from folks who've walked in your shoes.............
953067 tn?1248398108
I'm worried that you're hurting, possibly killing, yourself with so much drinking. Some people can drink, some can't..many shouldn't but can't help themselves. If you can't stop there's so much help out there for alcoholism that I am hopeful you'll reach out.
Avatar universal
Thank you guys for reading my long post and giving your advice. I know I should calm down. I was thinking today that no matter how many times I go over and understand the fact that I didn't do anything...or at least there is a 99.9% chance I didn't, I still have that fear. But I think my fear is not from that night anymore. I think my fear is more "what if?" If I had done that my life would be over. That is a really scary thought. Having no memory is a really scary thing. I would hate to wake up one day knowing that I did something awful and ruined my life.

I think this has kind of scared me straight. I for sure going to see a doctor and see what he thinks. I am still shakin' up. But I am started to realize that this has been all manufactured in my head. I think I really need to get something for my anxiety, cause it is not helping life. And I for sure need to stop drinking.

Thanks guys. I posted this also in the alcoholism section as well. See what sort of responses I get over there.
Avatar universal
Hi There,

I know this is outdated, but felt compelled to reach out to you and future readers. This is 100% "pure o ocd' ; you are not alone. Millions of people suffer from these obsessions of harm and doubt. Most people hear about the handwashing/checking stoves side of OCD, but don't hear about the invasive thoughts/false memories/constant 'WHAT IF's' that sufferers cannot shake. People who suffer from this do not produce enough seratonin or dopamine in the brain. These are the chemicals that help a "normal person" rationalize and say "man that's crazy, i would certainly know if i had done something last night!" Sufferers cant do this, but rather fall in to an obsessive cycle, replaying the night over and over in their heads, coming up with "what if" scenarios, trying to prove or disprove the idea that something happened, which usually ends with you clutching a pillow, not being able to breath. Alcohol makes this worse because it actually depletes seratonin and dopamine, and also dehydrates you. This is a terrible combo that makes things 10 times worse for the you. I've had the most success with exercise, restricted drinking, healthy diet, and oh yeah MEDICINE! You're not crazy if you take meds for it. It's no different than a diabetic taking insulin; you need something that your body does not produce naturally. Do some googling for yourself and see how common this is. I hope this all works out for you, and remember, it is a lifelong battle, but it certainly is conquerable!

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Arlington, VA
370181 tn?1428180348
Arlington, WA
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