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Angels tell


Since May 28, 2016, I’ve not had to drink any alcohol

I grew up in the city. My parents were academics and well off from an external perspective. What no one knew was that they both drank way too much and that they were both alcoholics. As a child and teenager, I did everything in my power to preserve the family secret of which I felt enormous shame.

In my teens, I came into contact with alcohol myself at the age of 13. I was drawn to older friends who’d already developed pretty advanced habits and already as a 14-year old I didn’t have to wait in line at trendy clubs. There was something about club life that attracted me deeply and I didn’t have to think about my problems at home.

I experienced early consequences from my drinking and my first memory lapse occurred in my early teens when I also got pregnant and had to get an abortion. During the years up until 20 I kept a deliberate distance to drinking. I was terrified of losing control and instead fled into relationships with guys who were kind and safe. I was looking for some security and compensation for my absent parents.

Moved away from home early and the years between 20-28 my club and nightlife escalated to the extreme. Hanging out with like-minded people, memory gaps and crazy stuff was part of my mundane life. During this time, I also consumed cocaine and ecstasy. Cocaine to clear my mind and be able to drink even more and ecstasy to dance. When I look back at those years, I had a lot of fun but everything was overshadowed by serious consequences. Ended up in dangerous situations often at after parties with criminals, often lost my things, hurt myself, fell, memory gaps and loss of control. Began to understand that I had a serious problem but didn’t know how to live without alcohol as it was so fully integrated into my life.

During those years, I also studied at university and college and lived abroad.

How it changed

Met my first husband when I was 28. A new period begins in my life and I soon became a mother. During pregnancy and breastfeeding I drank nothing but I was constantly yearning to start drinking again and when I did, I was back in the same dark place as before. Club life was moved home to apartment parties often with children and I lost control again. The shame I felt now is hard to describe in words. Being a mother and at the same time an alcoholic that just cannot stop drinking is among the darkest places I’ve been.

Day care, football matches and parent meetings soon became routine and I was often hungover and absent. Also made a career during this period and got a managerial assignment. I was constantly tired, worn-out and stressed. The rescue became wine that I comforted myself with often just to cope with the situation. From the outside, we were a happy family with a nice apartment, country place in the archipelago, boats and cars. However, my closest friends and my husband knew that I was in a bad state. I knew I couldn’t keep drinking but I also couldn’t stop.

Finally, I hit my rock bottom. I woke up one morning after a rough weekend of partying, a big memory lapse and with the kids at home. My husband was at the country house and I felt that this must end now. Either I die from this and become like my parents or I seek help.

I chose to live and went to a 12-step meeting.

It is by far the best decision I have made in my life and since that day I’ve not had to drink a single sip of alcohol – and it’s now been 4 ½ years. I’ve been given the tools to live sober and I’ve begun to heal myself.

Me today

Today I feel better than ever. Training has become extremely important and I regularly attend 12 step meetings where I speak to others who’ve experienced the same issues. I have a job I like a lot. My three children are the most important thing in my life and they are doing very well today. I have a rich social life and actually more fun than I ever had before. It is possible to live completely sober but for me it took a long time to realize that I needed to give up and ask for help to cope.

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