Oh. You already knew that? Yeah. I’ve always done a crappy job of hiding it. Good thing I’m a playwright, huh? The onslaught of big news events, both good and bad–from Caitlyn Jenner and marriage equality to South Carolina and beyond– have caused a firestorm of online conversations. And I’ve happily engaged in them especially on Facebook. I am a talker, a big conversation haver, a shit-starter. Always have been. So when the opinions are flying fast and loose, in a consequence free zone, my big mouth, admittedly likes to put his two cents in. Which is fine. Considering the fights I used to start back when I was drinking, a little online drama isn’t that big of a deal. Only problem? It started to make me feel really crappy.
One of the lovely things about being sober for a few years is that when now a behavior feels toxic or unmanageable or toxic or just icky, I recognize it fairly quickly. Please note that I said “recognize it” and not “change it”. Knowing I have gnarly, pig-like behavior and changing that behavior are two totally different things. Look, I knew for YEARS my drug using and drinking were out of control but didn’t change it until I was in total hell and forced to do so. Luckily, hitting bottoms in sobriety aren’t nearly as painful today. Last week, when I found myself checking Facebook and chiming in on every topic whenever I had a free moment, it stopped being fun and I started to feel like social media’s bitch. I started to not feel present in my life and like I was looking for something to check out with. And that fucking scares me.
Now would be the right time for me to mention that I know this isn’t Facebook’s fault. Facebook’s gonna be Facebook. And I’m always going to be an addict. You could bet me that I couldn’t get addicted to dryer sheets but that’s a bet you would 100% lose. I often joke that end I only ended up in AA because “Everything-Aholics” doesn’t exist. The fact is I can exhibit addict, un-sober behavior while still being physically sober. Hello. Go to an old-timers meeting and chances are you might bump into some folks who’ve been doing that for a few decades. So something had to be done about it, I knew that. But what?
Like all moments of rock bottom in my life, it started with a decision. I made a decision to take 60 days off Facebook. Starting today. Last year, a sponsee and I took a 10 day break and it was eye-opening. We both found a freedom and a surplus of time to do more fun, real-life stuff. So big deal: I’m getting off Facebook for a while. What do I want a parade?
No. Actually. As little fanfare around this is probably a good antidote for the addiction to drama. But I did thinking sharing it was a good idea. Why? I don’t know. Mainly because people taught me early in recovery that if I open my mouth and say what’s bothering me, my chances of recovering and not drinking have increased. I’m only as sick as my secrets and a Facebook addiction is a secret I really don’t want. Plus, without hours devoted to Facebook everyday, I’ll have time to put the drama where it belongs: in a new script.