Meet The Discovering Alcoholic

I used to post an updated introduction every so often for new readers, but with the new format a “Meet TDA” tab is available so now all you have to do is click on the tab above. You have probably already guessed by the site name that yes I am a recovering alcoholic, clean and sober without relapse since the fall of 94’ and I keep feeling better every day. I am proud of my recovery and often share this fact not as a boast, but in an attempt to lessen the stigma and encourage others to share in this confidence or feel more inclined to seek help. I started the site back in March of 2007 and it has been updated daily with very few exceptions since- it has become a big part of my recovery. These days though I have been concentrating on another line of advocacy, so most of the writing is done by my good friend “Screedler” also a recovering alcoholic with a unique style and new direction for TDA.

I consider most substance addictions as birds of a feather, not making great distinction between drug addicts and alcoholics. It is my belief that any step toward recovery is a smart step and I support most programs including AA, NA, MA, religious groups, self-styled, and rehabs. I am a member of a substance abuse task force, hold a recovery class every week at a local methadone clinic, always have at least one or two alcoholics/addicts to which I act as a sponsor, and of course there is TDA. I have found through my efforts of attempting to help others that my own spirituality, confidence, and appreciation of life greatly increases.

Addicts and alcoholics have the same foibles and frustrations as everyone else, but the negative repercussions that result from these are usually exponentially greater for those whose coping skills have been limited to drinking and drugging. The key is to know oneself better, understand what pulls the trigger, and to adapt one’s lifestyle and actions into a preventative maintenance program. And it’s not only about staying sober; when these lessons are applied in other aspects of life (business, relationships, parenting) combined with the confidence gained in recovery , one cannot but help to feel empowered.

In recovery, I have discovered that the very act of reining in my disease has enabled me to become a much better person ergo, The Discovering Alcoholic. I am many things; husband, veteran, advocate and blogger, but also a recovering alcoholic and this condition has affected all aspects of my life.

So hello my name is Gavin, and I am The Discovering Alcoholic.

{ 68 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Pam Zuber August 1, 2016 at 12:34 pm

Your site is a great forum for allowing people to help and support each other.

Your site also discusses substance abuse and popular culture. I write about substance abuse and popular culture (Prince, substance abuse in movies, etc.) for sites and blogs. I think we could be a good fit.

Please let me know if you would like me to contribute a guest post to your site. Thanks for considering me.


2 Andy June 2, 2016 at 3:31 pm

I myself am i recovering alcoholic and i believe there were moments in my life that i could avoided one more drink and It would have led me down a completely different path road. I’ve been researching and reading a lot of different articles. I came across a good one about why alcoholic addiction is so hard to beat. And the reason i mention it is so people are aware of why things might be so hard to turn down that extra drink. I’ll post it just in case anyone here wants more education.


3 Andy May 21, 2016 at 7:26 pm

Hey there Gavin,

First of all, thank you for such a wonderful blog. I’ve read through a lot of your posts and I can see how your readers and yourself get a lot of value out of each post. It’s amazing that you find the most intriguing ways of putting things into perspective for addicts to help them out.

Takes a lot of courage for you to write about everything. Articles so vividly describing experiences about all the toughest moments and how to get through it is admirable, I wish to do the same one day.

Anyway, I’m writing to you because I’ve been 8 years sober and I wanted to share my story with your blog. My post is over 1,000 words. If it is a must that it be condensed I’ll do so, but I thought I’d give it a shot and send it over to you the way it is now.

Please feel free to give me feedback and/or constructive criticism (I’m an aspiring freelance writer).

Thank you,

Please feel free to contact me at


4 Screedler May 21, 2016 at 8:26 pm

Send it on – we would love to read and post it


5 Matt Mendoza April 14, 2016 at 11:31 am

Hi Gavin,
I just came across your blog recently, and I really like your style of writing, even more so, the topics in Recovery that you cover. You are obviously a talented writer, and I wanted to invite you to a relatively new site for bloggers in recovery to be able to extend their reach and grow their readership.
The site is , and we are simply gathering voices in recovery and concentrating them in this one place so that everyone wins in a way. You can still link to your website, and our publishing platform is right on the website itself. You get to see your live stats as well, right now stories average 2,000 reads in their first month, although some have gotten as high as 31,000 in a month. In addition, stories from users on our site have been picked up by much bigger publications like TheGuardian, Huffington Post, LA Times, among others. And our site is 100% user generated content.
In any case, i just wanted to invite you to come check it out, and hopefully we can give value to each other. We can provide a large audience/readership level for your writing and our site is helped out by getting to spotlight your quality content. There’s no fees or anything like that, and our #1 mission is to give people affected by addiction, a place to read content that will help them, content they can relate to.
If you have any questions, feel free to email me:
Best regards,


6 Marco February 11, 2016 at 9:12 am

Hi There,

Great resources you have here. Do you allow for guest posting? If so, we would love to contribute an article someday. Check out my work at as we have a number of in depth addiction articles!

Keep up the good work and reach out if we can do anything for you!



7 Screedler February 12, 2016 at 8:28 pm

Hey Marco – anytime you would like to do a guest post here you are welcome too – we would love it. Just register as a user or send it in a comment marked “guest post” and I will get it on the site and include any visuals you want.


8 Palo Recovery February 16, 2016 at 4:32 pm

Great! Thanks! I will look at it This week and have a post to by next week!


9 Raphael TDOR January 3, 2016 at 1:52 pm

Hi Gavin,

I want to say that I´m very glad too see that there are more people like me. To be so honest and put so much effort in showing the world how horrible drugs are. You can be proud of yourself.

I want to share my YouTube channel with you: The Discovery Of Recovery – (TDOR)

Below you´ll find some personal background information about me:

Probably you´ve just met me or haven´t heard from me (for a long time). The last 9 years contained some ups, but especially lots of down moments. I suffer with addiction problems. With this I haven´t only harm myself allot but also the people around me.

I´ve always tried to escape from reality and tried to cover this problem. I´ve always weard some kind of a mask. Starting from today, I´ll put this mask off. I will, at least a year, film every day. The time has come that I dare to be furnable and will change my life in a positve mather.

Although I´m already off harddrugs for some weeks now. I know that I´m not there yet and the ´craving´ will always last.

I like to share my journey of finding the real Raphaël. Hopefully it will lead me to a point of recovery from hard drug addiction.

Because there´s one thing I do know now: DRUGS is DEVIL! The recovery, ass well as the drug-related problems from the past, I want to share with the world. For myself and hopefully for this person out there that is on his way to walk in the same direction as I´ve been walking. I can´t live with hushing this up. Hopefully I can make something positive out of all this negative and clarify the seriousness of the harm of these substances!



The Discovery Of Recovery – TDOR


10 Screedler January 3, 2016 at 6:11 pm

Good luck Raphael and keep coming back.


11 Tracey Harris December 29, 2015 at 4:47 pm

Hi Gavin,

My dear friend Linda started her recovery process 10 years ago. You can read her story on her teamworld vision page here:

Thanks for sharing your story.



12 Jenny December 21, 2015 at 9:22 pm

Hello Gavin,
Through my work supporting addiction clinicians, I have been privileged to meet so many inspirational people like you who have found their own path to recovery. The journey is a very individual one, and I am constantly amazed by the routes that people have taken to reach the satisfying and happy lives they lead today. Keep up the good work.


13 Clayton LeMasters November 16, 2015 at 1:26 pm

I am a therapist at an outpatient rehab in Orlando FL and am fascinated by your blog. I too am in recovery and recommend that all my patients read and subscribe to your site. I have started a blog for our companies website but of course it is nowhere near the quality of yours. However I think of your site as inspiration that maybe one day I can reach thousands of alcoholics with my experience and hope. Take care!


14 Anonymous November 11, 2015 at 1:53 pm

I’m Marc and I am Alcoholic.
Your pages are a fun read.


15 Screedler November 12, 2015 at 2:05 pm

Thank you Mark – Your site very interesting as well, keep up the good work!


16 Madison August 17, 2015 at 5:36 pm

Hi Gavin,
I like your blog!
I too am a recovering alcoholic, as of this year 2015, I have 7 years of sobriety from alcoholism. Also like you I have created a blog since day 1 of my journey and it is a part of my life as well as a key tool for my sobriety.
I like that you are honest about who you are, I think it does help fight the stigma, it’s brave and bold of you, a move I haven’t yet made! I write under a pseudo name and have done from the beginning.
Keep up the good work and congratulations on turning things around!


17 Bill L August 11, 2015 at 12:56 pm

Gavin – Thank you for your site and forum.
You and your readers my be interested to learn of the new book, just launched in Atlanta at the International convention, Steps & Stories – History, Steps, and, Spirituality of Alcoholics Anonymous by Sandy Beach. This edited transcription of a talk which Sandy considered to be his quintessential work and we are sure you will agree. He recounts the remarkable confluences of people that lead up to Bill W. & Dr. Bob first meeting in Akron and tells little known stories from early AA history and along the way. Did you know that during the first Canadian convention in Montreal the nearby Seagram’s Distillery flew its flags at half-mast, or how the Serenity Prayer came into use with AA? Sandy’s perspective on the Steps makes clear that from Step One that you are beginning a spiritual journey. His “slide projector” provides wonderful imagery and clarity to Steps 4 through 12. Sandy offers a message of hope in a way which makes the steps accessible to all and spirituality a desirable goal.


18 Leslie H August 10, 2015 at 9:08 am

What a fantastic website! I am so happy I found you 🙂 Thank you for creating this space. I have thoroughly enjoyed going through your posts (and music recommendations!) As someone who has struggled with addiction my whole life I am always looking for websites, blog posts, and books that inspire me and remind me that there are so many people out there going through the exact same thing. It is nice to share with others what has worked and hasn’t worked throughout recovery. I would like to wholeheartedly recommend a book I just finished entitled “Addiction is the Symptom” by author Dr. Rosemary Brown( It is amazing that after all my years of programs, counseling and books that there is a new concept still to be discovered. This book truly showed me that the tried and true 12 step program is, in fact, incomplete. Emotional “freedom” and independence is so crucial to the healing process, and reading this book has given me insight and tools necessary to find that freedom within myself. After finishing this book I feel reinvigorated, I was feeling very frustrated hearing the same old lines and advice, it was refreshing to hear this take on it. I hope this will make it on a future book recommendation list of yours or blog post. I strongly feel it will helps others as much as it has helped me. Thank you again!


19 Penny Reid June 28, 2015 at 5:51 pm

Those of us in AA have begun an extraordinary, life changing journey in sobriety, and it
all begins with the 12 Steps. After two years of writing and re-writing this book entitled
“The 12 Step -12 Week Plan” , I’m hoping will help others gain a better understanding of
each step as they incorporate them into their daily lives. Sobriety is so much more than
abstinence from alcohol. The good news is that people no longer have to remain stuck in their
pain and dysfunctional attempts at living. Today I know my life will continue to improve,
but I have to take the action and do the work. People can check out my book at:


20 Annie April 11, 2015 at 4:34 pm


My name is Annie Jensen and I’ve recently finished my first book. The topic is how to quit drinking with little pain. In a (very brief) summary I look at addiction and alcoholism in a new way. The basis is:

– At some stage, in a drinkers life, alcohol starts to create problems.
– The drinker tries to cutback, or quit, but it’s not as easy as they thought, in fact it’s downright hard.
– The difficulty in quitting comes from cognitive dissonance, holding two contradictory beliefs in ones mind at the same time
– The contradicting beliefs are; your conscious decision to drink less vs. your (both conscious and unconscious) belief that alcohol does something for you (enjoyment / relief)
– If both sides of your mind were in the same place, your desire to drink would be eliminated, and you would have as much desire to drink a pint of beer as a pint of motor oil.
– If the desire for the substance leaves, so does the addiction. It’s not hard to get on a bus, even when it stops in front of you, if you have no desire to board.

So how do you get both sides of your mind in the same place? I am hoping that reading my book will do exactly that for the reader, basically speak to your unconscious mind and eliminate your desire to drink. The science originates with a book I read by Dr. John Sarno (Healing Back Pain) which eliminated my chronic back pain, by simply reading the book. With my book (title TBD) the reader will, through reading the material, change their unconscious mind thereby eliminating their desire for alcohol.

I am brand new to this area (in marketing for my day job) but feel that I have been given this theory, and energy to write the book, not only to save myself from alcoholism, but to help others.

It would be great to connect – see if you were interested in a pre-publication copy (should be ready to share in about 10 days, though not yet perfectly edited). If you like what you read perhaps I could do a guest post for you, or promote the book on your blog. Once the book is written I am going to develop a web-based series of podcasts, and a video series, which will allow more people to be reached (different learning styles).

I would love to be in touch.

Annie Jensen
Twitter: @thisnakedmind

Skype: annie.jensen.travelex


21 Benjamin Sandler March 25, 2015 at 8:03 am

Is there a way i can contact you via email? Or could you email me at I would love to do a piece about music and recovery with you.



22 Sweetie March 24, 2015 at 11:59 pm
23 Curtis Cox March 17, 2015 at 12:03 am

I saw such compassion in you to save more lives from addiction. Your posts are informative and inspiring as we are continuously convincing addicts to take their first step towards sobriety. Programs and treatment centers just as Recovery Help Rehab Center aids to provide the suited care in every individual to help them become sober. Your participation in these treatments can help more people to see that there is hope and a new beginning in life.


24 Jamie Roberts March 15, 2015 at 6:06 pm

Would love to send you guys info on a music project that is relevant to what you do. To what email might i send it?


25 Screedler March 16, 2015 at 5:26 pm

Jamie – I will send an email with my personal contact info to info@elevenseven to your attention. Look forward to hearing from you – Screedler


26 Jackie B. March 6, 2015 at 9:41 pm

Hello, I am a writer and director of recovery plays. I would like to send Gavin or Screedler some information via email. Do you have a contact email you could send me?

Thank you for all you do!

Jackie B.


27 Screedler March 8, 2015 at 5:36 pm

Hi Jackie, This is Screedler I will email you.


28 Zulaikha Hasan February 5, 2015 at 3:33 pm

Hi Gavin,

My name is Zulaikha Hasan, I am an associate producer for a documentary film called CUFFED?. It is a movie that deals with drug addiction and the many possible routes to recovery. Our dual focus discusses both the medical side of methadone treatment as well as the holistic side of recovery. We are interested in partnering up with your blog, as we feel that our ideas and values are aligned and compatible.

We were hoping you could write a feature on our film, and spread awareness about it. We have launched a Kickstarter and need all the help we can get fundraising. I would like to attach our latest press release. However, I am unable to do on this form. But if you could email me back then I would be more than happy to send it to you!!

Here is our Kickstarter link:

Thank you so much for your time! I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind Regards,
Zulaikha Hasan
Associate Producer
CUFFED? Little Birdie Films

For more information on CUFFED?, please visit and


29 Screedler February 5, 2015 at 9:16 pm

Zulaikha, thanks for your interest in TDA. I am Screedler and basically run the blog these days. Gavin is still active in the methadone recovery effort (he holds a non-traditional based NA/AA-like meeting weekly with the patients at a local clinic) and I will definitely run it by him. I am assuming he would be interested and if so we will help get the word out.


30 Sandy McPartland January 6, 2015 at 1:47 pm

Hi Gavin and Screedler!
So happy I found your website. I’m an AA member with 10 years sobriety. I support any program out there – what works for me may not work for others. (But I do have a soft spot for AA! 🙂 )
Looking forward to getting to know everyone!



31 Teree November 8, 2014 at 1:47 pm

You are doing a great job and I wish you all the best in your journey


32 Jon S November 2, 2014 at 4:37 pm

Hi Gavin.

Great blog. I truly believe the sober-sphere can revolutionise recover much as it has done online shopping or electronic mail communications. I particularly enjoyed the Sober Toolbox, that’s a fantastic resource.

I’m sober 14 years in AA, although I recently quit the fellowship. A former professional musician, now a lecturer, I also blog about my experiences under the title “Leaving AA, Staying Sober” at

Best wishes, Jon S


33 Screedler September 5, 2014 at 11:20 am

Thanks for the Honor, Garrett – definitely will mention it in an upcoming post.


34 Sean July 23, 2014 at 10:08 am

Hey Gavin,

I agree about the semantics that people make about recovery as well. As long as we are staying clean and making progress and moving forward who cares! So happy to have stumbled upon your website/blog today! Check out my website! Hopefully we can cross promote some!


35 Sunny July 2, 2014 at 10:01 pm

Hi there – just ran across your website tonight and am very inspired by it. I’m a “slowly realizing” alcoholic and appreciate you sharing your story for people like me who don’t actually want to talk to others yet (although I know I should). I keep telling myself to pull it together before it gets worse….which is exactly the problem. Great site and I will definitely be coming back.


36 Sandy McPartland January 6, 2015 at 1:48 pm

Hi Sunny! Just joined this website and saw your post. Hope you’re doing OK!


37 Evan June 6, 2014 at 10:12 pm

Hi Gavin, thanks for your blog. I could identify with tons of your writing. I wanted to send you a link to a recovery blog I’m writing. I wanted to send you this link to a recovery blog I am writing; it is a set of daily meditations based on inspirational movie quotes:

I would value your feedback. Thanks for letting me be of service.


38 Kristy Jones May 29, 2014 at 4:32 am


Hope you are doing well!

I visited your blog earlier today and just wanted to congratulate you on a well presented, and informative blog. I have an article which has content relevant to your site. I am interested to do guest post submission.

As per Google update we all know that unique and relevant content is more important for a blog. So I want to submit related article or post on your site for free on “5 ways to deal with an alcohol addict at home” and I just need one clean back link in return to my website . Suggestion from your side is always welcome. So if you are interested please inform me soon.

Thanks & regards,
Kristy Jones.


39 carolyn hannan bell December 26, 2013 at 12:49 pm

Dear Friend,
I am a psychotherapist in South Jersey. I’ve written a book to help children understand alcoholism called “Daddy’s Disease” and am hoping that you might make this information available to the many families suffering from the effects of alcoholism.
My website is and the book is available on at

“Carolyn Hannan Bell has given a gift to thousands of children and their parents with her book: “Daddy’s Disease”. A wonderful book for children who have a parent who has alcoholism. With gentle insight and poignant stories, she introduces us to 7-year-old Tommy whose father is an active alcoholic. Like most children of alcoholics, he is confused, angry and feels it’s his fault. This is where Carolyn takes over the voice of Tommy’s mother and holds his hand and heart while she guides them through these difficult waters.
This is a children’s book that everyone living with alcohol should read. Thank you Carolyn”
Daniel Gottlieb, PhD Host: “Voices in the Family” WHYY FM Author: “Letters to Sam”, “Wisdom of Sam” and forthcoming “The Wisdom We’re Born With”

Thank you so much for the good work you do!


Carolyn Hannan Bell

http://www.alcoholismhurtskids.comInline image 1


40 Glenn December 19, 2013 at 6:25 am

This site has truly been an Easter Egg on this widest of world wide webs. As flush as the internet may seem with information, blogs, opinions, stories and the like, of substance abuse and recovery this niche understandably remains a private, closed-off, anonymous if you will, area for many people.

Whether the brand, whichever I am consuming at the time, resonates well with me or not I try to take in as much of a range of content as I can based on this subject matter. However, I confess that as time allows I can often only visit and read a certain number of sites and blogs. Thankfully, this is one of those sites.

I am happy to have found this site from an article (mentioned previously in August by Heidi) by (which may contradict the Easter Egg reference but hey, it was a colorful surprise). From the well written About Page above the one thing I would like to highlight as being crucial to my recovery and is likely (although I can write only to my own life) applicable to anyone alcoholic/addict or otherwise is “The key is to know oneself better…” It is with this in mind as a personal mantra that I go about living my life in recovery, in solution.

Yours is good work whether it be Gavin or Screedler doing the posting and I look forward to enjoying it for many moons to come. Thank you.


41 Screedler December 19, 2013 at 9:44 pm

Thanks for the kind comments! Checked out your site; welcome to the world of recovery blogs.


42 Ayush November 14, 2013 at 5:57 pm

Hi Gavin- Your story n work is very inspiring and much needed. I wanted to bring to your attention a story we just shared on our talk show. I host an online talk show called ‘I AM BIG’. We share inspirational stories of every day people with our viewers. Our current episode is about Bonnie who almost lost her life due to her son’s problem with drinking. The interview talks about what happened and how she survived what she calls a mother’s worst night mare. Her call to action to viewers to get the support they need if they are impacted with alcoholism. I wanted to share this video link with you. Feel free to share it on your blog if you would like. Thanks again for everything you do.


43 Cathie August 16, 2013 at 4:34 pm

Any one who is, or knows someone who suffers from any kind of substance abuse should read To Soften the Blow by Lynnie Vessels- it is an amazing true story that holds wisdom and advice for anyone, regardless of their walk of life.


44 Heidi August 10, 2013 at 11:24 am

You may not realize this (I didn’t) but you’ve been elected as one of 15 best Alcoholism Blogs by Here’s the blurb.

his top-rated recovery blog, The Discovering Alcoholic, covers a wide range of issues from alcoholism and substance abuse to treatment and recovery issues.

The blog was created by Gavin, the original “discovering alcoholic,” who has been sober since 1994 and wants to share his perceptions and road to success with others.

The site offers posts from Gavin and his friend “Screedler,” a fellow recovering alcoholic. The posts reflect the writers’ philosophy that “the road to recovery is not a dead end.”



45 Screedler August 11, 2013 at 4:21 pm

Thanks – we see your on there too. Congrats as well!


46 Fred Ziffle March 24, 2013 at 1:31 pm

I am a recovering alcoholic, with almost 11 months sober this time around, and many slips and bottoms in my wake. I am finally letting the spirituality that I get from the program take hold on my life. I have always had an issue with the ” GOD ” reference in the steps and readings, never taking time to find a GOD or HIGHER POWER of my understanding. Turning it over to a power greater than myself has always been hard to grasp, but we must realize, as I honestly do now, that doing it my way was not the best idea. I have had extended periods of sobriety in the past, but isolating, not really letting anyone in to know the real me, not going to meetings or talking to other alcoholics, always ended sadly. Having survived my most recent bottom, the basic collapse of my family life, has made me realize that I can`t do it alone and, having turned my life over to a Higher Power of MY understanding, has helped me to turn the corner in my recovery and changed my outlook and perspective on life. I realize, finally, that I can`t do it on my own. Spiritually, I am coming to know peace.


47 Amanda February 24, 2013 at 10:51 pm

I love how you say that your recovery had made you a better person. I had this conversation with the addict in my life today. It’s amazing how the 12 Step programs truly make us all better people, more capable of handling everything that life throws at us. It’s not just a disease change, it’s a life change.


48 Lou December 21, 2012 at 3:45 pm

Hi, I just wanted to ‘pop in’ and tell you how much I enjoy and admire your blog…..and it’s always enjoyable to meet a fellow Craig Ferguson fan!


49 Lynne D. September 13, 2012 at 12:05 pm

TDA, So happy to have stumbled upon your website/blog today. I have bookmarked it and already read, studied and shared several of your insightful articles. Bless you for giving back! I send you best wishes for continued recovery, good health and peace. Thank you so much for helping me through my fiance’s most recent relapse (near death detox again, 8 days in hospital, majority in ICU). As usual, I get through the crisis/emergency well, supportively and handling things in my own recovery, then the anger, resentment pain follow the shell-shocked pain feelings. Today, I choose life and recovery for myself. I cannot say what he will choose today…and it’s none of my business. Peace & Blessings, L


50 M September 11, 2012 at 1:48 pm

In as much as AA is a spiritual program, you may want to embark on another path into the Spiritual Self as an adjunct path of soberness. Do the 12 steps and take it further – take it into the Silence of Your Being and become Enlightened too.


51 HT Gillis September 4, 2012 at 3:18 am
52 Heidi August 10, 2012 at 8:58 am

I came here a while back to quickly let you know that I saw you listed in the 17 Best Alc. Blogs list by healthline. com, since they hadn’t notified anyone of making the list.

Now I’m back to gain tips from your menus, layout, etc and read for fun a little. I’m on a blogcation and am using the time for inspiration and improving my blog, technically, a little.

I really enjoy reading the diverse topics. There is so much help here for anyone close to the situation of addiction. Good deal. I’ll be back!


53 Christina August 1, 2012 at 8:55 pm

Trying to subscribe to tda but link does not seem to work. Please contact me and let me know how I can follow.



54 WeDoRecover June 26, 2012 at 4:44 am

Hey Hey Super-Gavin!
I cleaned up in the Summer of 1993 so our dates are similar and it seems our paths are too.

I’m always interested how people sum up 20 years of recovery adventure in a short sound-bite of a few paragraphs. Thanks for keeping tapped into recovery and doing the work you do on this blog, not distinguishing too much between addict / alcoholic / etc and also holding the methadone recovery class weekly. You sound like a topman and next time I’m states-side (or you hit sunny South Africa?) let’s hook up for a nosh (English for: grub, food, chow, ingesting calories!) or something.




55 angie May 29, 2012 at 5:36 pm

Gavin your like one of those needles in them hay-stacks. first time visitor .i like your blog.


56 Christophe January 8, 2012 at 3:39 pm


Keep up the good work. In my limited experience (11-07-09), I have put together MY program. I believe in what you’re doing here. We should always offer different viewpoints on recovery, and not let the gurus get to us, which is probably what Trev ran into. I’ve run into many gurus, that act like only they can get someone sober. They will send a brilliant mind back out quicker than a hooker swinging a hotel key. We have to truly embrace the concept behind the first three steps, being honest with ourselves. Having them, and networking through the rooms of recovery, we’ll find that “spiritual guide” to take us through the landmines of our disease.

I can understand some of the people like Trev, who had a bad experience, lashing out at the rest of us. What they fail to understand is that there is not one person who fully represents the whole. It’s not a cookie cutter program. One has to make the program theirs. As an old-timer told me early in my sobriety, “don’t worry about getting the program, the program will get you”. I was very frustrated that I was not meeting the expectations and rhetoric of the gurus. He told me to run the other way from them. They are out to feed their ego, and nothing else. Embrace your own sobriety. Believe in self. Believe that you deserve to have a happy life. That we can put to rest the guilt of our transgressions, and the resentments of those that transgressed against us. We are allowed a confidence of being, not born from arrogance like we were before, but born from knowing that we come from a clean house. We’ve checked our inventory before all decisions.

Anyway, happy life to you, and all who read this site! Nobody is completely wrong when it comes to helping another alcoholic, except for those that tell you that “one drink won’t hurt”.


57 Craig December 22, 2011 at 9:49 am

Hello, Gavin! I’ve been reading your blog for a little while now. I just did a feature on the “Top 10 Recovery Blogs of 2011” and Discovering made the list, here:

Let me know if you’d like anything changed or added to the blog description. Hopefully it’ll send more people your way to your wonderful blog.


58 Keith August 8, 2011 at 9:25 am

Hi Gavin / Screedler

I discovered your blog some time ago but haven’t had the nerve to post a comment til now. Something to do with not feeling my opinion counts for anything, but the subject of ‘recovered’ against ‘recovering’ strikes home with me, as has been stated already, I choose to refer to myself as a recovering drunk, this reminds me daily that a. without a recovery program I am a drunk, and b. that recovery is a continuous lifestyle choice.
If I let myself into the thinking that I am ‘recovered’, then I’m fixed, and surely being fixed means I can drink again, even though I know my life is better now that I don’t. To me the fact that I think like this, means there is still work to be done, hence for me it is definitely ‘recovering’.

Keeps up the good work and God bless.

Keith aka recoveringdrunk


59 Hanna August 5, 2011 at 5:09 am

Hi, I am working on behalf of, a charity which promotes responsible drinking and aims to reduce alcohol misuse and minimise alcohol-related harm. I have just come across your site and was wondering if we could possibly work together to raise awareness. If you could contact me on the email provided it would be greatly appreciated.


60 Screedler August 5, 2011 at 6:22 am

Hey Hanna – I’ll contact you this weekend by email – looked at your site…good stuff.


61 Sol E. June 11, 2011 at 1:46 pm

“For we are not saints but are willing to grow along spiritual lines” therefore we will be recovering till death do us part 🙂

Hi, my name is Sol and I’m a recovering alcoholic since September 1984.


62 Bobby Jean September 14, 2010 at 5:03 pm

Discovered your site today and immediately made three connections: Calvin & Hobbes, recovery, breast cancer. As a breast cancer survivor of seven years, I wanted to let your wife know cancer CAN be whipped. I found two keys to recovery (both addiction and cancer): faith and humor.

Faith will allow you the freedom to say ‘it does not matter what happens to this body, cancer cannot touch the real me spirit.’ Once you’ve released that stress, the rest is easy.

Humor? Well, humor heals. Learn to joke about the symptoms. You may be surprised to learn you can lose all the hair on your head and still have to shave your legs (what’s up with that?). You may even gain weight (I gained 60 pounds …possibly the only person on the planet to do so during chemo, but I’m weird like that).

If you go into treatment thinking you’re beat …you will be. By the way …cancer has taken every woman in my family for generations. I intended to be the first to survive, to show my daughter and granddaughters it can be done. Seven and a half years later, I’m still thumbing my nose at cancer.

Oh … just a recommendation: music by Liquid Mind. He is a Navy officer/musician that writes music specifically designed to heal.


63 The Discovering Alcoholic September 14, 2010 at 10:36 pm

Bobby Jean- it’s always great to hear stories of recovery on both fronts, more power to you! You’re right about the Liquid Mind, much needed right now.


Gavin aka TDA


64 Joe April 15, 2010 at 3:13 pm

Gavin, great blog.

Alcoholism affects everyone – one way or another, across all ‘lines’ we draw to distinguish each other.

Fortunately more and more people are getting a clue on the disease of addiction and how to achieve sobriety, how to help one another and how to reduce the harm we inflict on one another.

Guest House is an entirely lay run charity that’s been helping clergy and religious return to sobriety for 54 years – and from the beginning we’ve provided care of at least 90 days, regardless of the ability of the person to pay for it. The long term care and follow up, the personalized care etc. has given our clients lifetime sobriety rates of 75%.

There is no ‘full recovery’ or ‘cure’. But sobriety can be achieved and lived for the remainder of your life. So there’s always hope.


65 Patrick March 2, 2010 at 8:57 pm

Hi there Gavin!

I agree that arguing about semantics can make recovery ridiculous at times. I mean, who really cares as long as we are making progress and living clean?

My old sponsor would argue that it matters to some people, because the language that we use out loud can infect our thinking patterns, which may affect our actions. Seems like a stretch to me though.

Anyway, I have a proposition for you. Shoot me an email and I can show you what it is in more detail. I love your blog and I think you are one of the “realest” recovery bloggers out there. Kudos to you for your excellent work on this site.

Please keep blogging!


66 Keith March 26, 2011 at 1:15 pm

My humble opinion is that all thought, talk, and semantics are very important tools for fighting substance abuse and/or addiction.

For me personally, it helps to keep me humble. It’s essential for me not to consider myself “recovered” or “healed” because that might trigger me to think, “Ok, I’m better now, -no more problem so it’s ok for me to drink.” I think that’s why people in AA introduce themselves as alcoholics. “Hello, my name is Keith and I’m an alcoholic.”

Yeah, basically the same thing that Gavin said in his reply to Trev about recovery being “a continuous process of improvement”, but hopefully imparting the philosophy, wisdom, and motivation that helps us, or at least me, make it happen…

Keep up the great work Gavin!



67 Trev February 25, 2010 at 4:05 pm

Hi sound like you have been sober a while ,how come your still ”recovering” and not recovered yet?

The Big Book promises tyou will recover.
it tells us ”we have recovered and been given the power to help others”



68 The Discovering Alcoholic February 26, 2010 at 7:26 pm

Good morning Trev,

Sorry for the late response, I’ve been traveling abroad and my internet access has been somewhat spotty. Reading from your comment history it seems you have chosen to come more to be a nuisance rather than honestly discuss recovery issues, so even though it seems to me you are wasting my time I will answer anyway with a semi-rhetorical question of my own that seems rather fitting for this discussion.

I consider my recovery a continuous process of improvement, there is no end goal nor should there be when it comes the the quality of one’s life- why stop trying to be better, content, happy? You seem to have been “living” for a while yet you spend your evenings trolling recovery blogs leaving strings of inane comments. Does this behavior constitute a plateau or perhaps even a lifestyle crisis, maybe you should quit pondering the semantics of “recovering” and instead concentrate on how you define “living”?

(Why come to a recovery blog to be snarky, you got a problem? Maybe a drinking problem?)


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