So – I Finally Quit Drinking. Why am I so Angry?
By Claude “Hoot” Hooten aka: Brad Edwards

Believe it or not, when we drunks finally quit drinking, we're angry. I remember thinking, "alright, I'm not drinking, what else do they want?" "I was giving up all the knucklehead things I did, manage to keep my job and I'm doing what THEY want, so why am I so angry." It was as though there was a conspiracy to get me to quit drinking. How dare them!

Speaking as an alcoholic in recovery, now twelve years sober, the fact is, subconsciously, we're angry we had to give up the one thing we could depend on: Alcohol. Personally, it made me do crazy things, I was a lousy husband, not a good father and I almost lost my job, but it got me where I was comfortable. Drunk. It's a very real loss. The parties, celebrations, so called friends at the bar. We've been let down.

Alcoholics, whether they realize it or not, begin the stages of grieving -- denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance -- the same stages most people go through when they have a great loss in their lives or have been told they have a terminal illness.

Some of us never make it. It's sad, sometimes many years later, still stuck in their anger, bitterness, and resentment at having to make the change in their lives. They haven't had a drink in years, but they have also never had a "sober" day, in the true sense of its meaning. It’s called Dry Drunk Syndrome.

You even see them in the 12-step rooms... been in the program for years and years and their lives seem to be a constant unmanageable struggle. All those years and they have no more of a spiritual awakening than they did the first time they walked into the room.

"Dry Drunk" has been described as "A condition of returning to one's old alcoholic thinking and behavior without actually having taken a drink." Or as one wise old drunk put it, if a horse thief goes into A.A. what you can end up with is a sober horse thief. Or a personal favorite: you can take the rum out of the fruit cake, but you've still got a fruit cake!

Those who quit drinking but are still angry about it wind up living miserable lives and usually make everyone else around them miserable too. If it has been said once in an Al-Anon meeting, it has been whispered thousands of times, "I almost wish he would go back to drinking."

We have a little saying that is helpful to newcomers: It's HALT. Four things someone in recovery needs to avoid: Try not to get HUNGRY - ANGRY - LONLEY - or - TIRED. These are danger zones where we need to slow down because a relapse jumps off the curb and turns our lives back upside down.

See your sponsor, or anyone who has a measure of sobriety and talk to them. There is no such thing as justified anger. Not for us. Not for us..!

Claude “Hoot” Hooten aka: Brad Edwards Author of Drunk & Disorderly, Again – My name is Hoot, I’m an alcoholic.

Author's Bio: 

Radio personality Brad Edwards, who spent his boyhood in both Oregon and California, is now back home, living on the Central Coast and writing under his given name, Claude “Hoot” Hooten.

His life is the phenomenal story of a boy who began his drinking career as a child, not knowing this was the beginning of what life held in store for him. At ten, he was attacked and beaten viciously by a predator, and his world changed forever.

Radio and the world of broadcasting was his escape from reality, as well as a career and his chance to “be somebody.” It took him back and forth across the United States with a harrowing and even hilarious side trip, working for the Republic of Iran.

“Hoot” brushed shoulders and worked with some of America’s greatest radio personalities. For many years, just as he’d reach the top of his personal and professional ladder, the rungs would dump him back to the bottom.

Drunk & Disorderly, Again, “My name is Hoot, I’m an alcoholic,” reveals how he beat his demons and went on to fame and fortune. It is a roadmap to sobriety and a shortcut to a better life.

Brad Edwards (Hoot) – KFI Los Angeles – KKBQ & KRBE Houston – Nominated to the Texas Radio Hall of Fame - WHQT 105.1 Miami – KDBC CBS (reporter/booth) El Paso, Texas and WTVJ NBC Channel 4 Miami - A variety of formats including – News Talk – Has a doctorate in drunkology.