I know this is a triggering subject, but it certainly has been studied to death and found possible. Okay, here goes: I entered AA in about 1980, was on and off for a couple of years. Moved to another city and stayed sober for 20+ years. I sponsored lots of teens (I was one of the youngest women in that city, so was present during the huge influx in the early-mid '80s of teenagers), almost all of whom are sober, happy and successful now. Anyway, a while ago, I relapsed. I found myself drinking...normally. Didn't think about it when it wasn't there, never have gotten really drunk, never have blacked out, haven't had any life-damaging consequences from having relapsed. It didn't get worse, I'm obviously not dead. I was really confused.
As many of you know, that LAST person you want to go to about this is someone fully immersed in AA. My experience shows me that it's a bad enough trauma for relapsers who are dying and turn to AA members for compassion. Me? I am doing well...not kosher AA dogma for sure. So I researched. A lot. Found that it happens, being able to normally drink after years of abstinence. I would LOVE to hear from others who have returned to drinking without their entire world ending (other than their AA friendships). So, give!