It is not easy and it is not quick but overcoming addiction it is possible. As you start to chip away at addictions and bad habits and give your brain more space and time to think you start to undercover the true reasons for why you have problems with addiction.
As you start to remove the false pleasures and painkillers from life, you start to free your mind and uncover the ugly truths that you have been hiding from this whole time. Bit by bit the world that you have created for yourself begins to unravel.
Addiction: Your Deceptive Brain
It’s a highly unpleasant process and the brain, being the astonishingly deceptive and manipulative organ that it is, starts latching onto anything that it can find. Your alcohol consumption decreases, your cannabis consumption increases, your cannabis consumption decreases, your caffeine consumption increases. Your caffeine consumption decreases and your sugar intake sky-rockets.
Sex, drugs, and rock and roll, your brain will find any way it can to regain the pleasure it is so desperate to feel.
The brain is the master of mind games and will try to confuse you and avoid the truth. It will do whatever it can to mask your insecurities. The brain will go to extreme measures to trick you into thinking there is nothing wrong with you and stop you from overcoming addiction.
It is only when you remove these cheap pleasures that your brain has nowhere to hide. It cant hide behind false euphoria and distraction. You are forced to confront what you have been hiding from. As you begin to remove your masks any pain, trauma, and negative emotions that you have bottled up will surface and there is no way to stop this.
You start to question your relationships with people. You start to question how you have treated people and how they have treated you in return. You start to realise the damage that your selfish actions have been causing yourself and your loved ones.
The resentment you hold towards those you believe to have mistreated you is totally inversed as it dawns on you that the one doing the damage has been you. By damaging yourself you have damaged those that you care about, whilst believing that you are in fact the victim in this situation.
Addicts are selfish, self-centred, and self-absorbed because their brains have put them in survival mode. They are unable to view the outside world for what it is and how their actions affect others, as this causes them even more mental damage. The shame, self-blame and guilt is bottled up and thrown down a deep ravine.
Playing The Victim
Addicts play the victim because they are victims, victims of their own self harm, self-loathing and self-hatred. Victims of their own selfishness and the problems they burden themselves with. When you see repeated patterns of selfishness, lack of empathy, lack of understanding and sometimes outright ignorance in a person you believe to be a good person, understand why.
Understand that that person’s internal struggle and addiction has caused their stress levels to rise, which in turn shuts down the brain, and puts the person into a state of self-protection and self-obsession.
The brain expends no effort taking into consideration other people emotions or feelings because it is totally inundated with its own stress, anxiety and fear.
There are no moments of silence, no time for self-reflection, and certainly no space for loving, healthy relationships or friendships.
The Brain In Survival Mode
The brain is doing everything it can to keep itself safe from external threats and so the outside world becomes the enemy.
The problem is that the brain likes this state. This state of high stress is a deep-rooted intrinsic survival mechanism. We are born to survive, and our brains will do anything they can to protect us. The safest way for the brain to ensure protection is to consider its own needs before the needs of others.
A World Filled With Addiction
Unfortunately, when you have a world filled with addiction, a world filled with people trying to escape reality and a world distracted from reality, you end up with a damaged world filled with greed.
Greed, another key characteristic in the addict´s survival handbook. Addicts need money, they don’t just want it they need it. They need to consume – food, drugs, clothes, material objects. This need to purchase and consume is just another way to satisfy the brains craving for that metaphorically cheap dopamine fix. Depleted levels of natural Dopamine and Serotonin caused by the consumption
The outside world cannot make us happy. Only we can make ourselves happy, and we do this by beginning to truly understand and accept ourselves. To accept our flaws but learn to love them. To work through our wrongdoings and regrets.
This whole process takes a lot of time, patience, support and willpower. There can be breakdown after breakdown and days, weeks or months without any feelings of happiness but never let go of that glimmer of hope for better days.
Overcoming addiction is an arduous path to take but no matter how many times you fall, once you make the decision to begin you will not want to turn back.
We are a work in progress, but just putting the effort in to chip away at the outer greedy, selfish shell we can begin to focus on the wonderfully creative, intelligent, and truly confident person that we are waiting to become.
By just trying to change, we are always as perfect as we can be.
This article was written on 24.04.20 but re-published due to a site update
I would like to start this by saying that I AM NOT completely sober. I take a mind-altering substance every single day to help me live a normal life as well as recreational Psychedelic drugs from time to time because they FASCINATE me.
What do I take? I take Strattera, (Atomoxetine), which is a Noradrenaline Reuptake Inhibitor. This is a medication designed for people with ADHD who are expected to have an imbalance of Noradrenaline. Noradrenaline, amongst other things is responsible for our fight or flight response.
I have however passed through various stages of (almost) complete sobriety.
Complete sobriety I think is very nearly impossible. Everyone has their vice
Starting with the biggest killer in the world…
Followed by the next most popular poison of choice
After these come all of the “bad” drugs. The other drugs that all have very similar mind-altering effects but are considered damaging to society and thus illegal.
At least one of the “big 4” is freely available to purchase or consume in almost every part of the world and they are the “socially accepted” drugs – but by far amongst the most powerful.
I do not drink alcohol, I do not smoke (weed or cigarettes), I do not consume caffeine, I do not use cocaine. I do however use Psychedelic drugs from time to time.
So What´s It Like Be Sober With ADHD?
When I came back from Brazil I had come off my medication and was going somewhat crazy. Read about My Strattera experience here. Strattera can take up to 2 months to take effect in your body and so the changes that it makes are slow but quite drastic on a neurological and physical level. Coming off it was horrible.
For long term prescription drugs such as this it is highly unrecommended to suddenly stop, because although it is not a physically addictive drug, (there are no physical withdrawals or cravings), it does change how your body functions and so there can be a lot of side effects.
The first few days I noticed my anxiety levels shoot through the roof – partly due to the fear of uncertainty – but partly due to the rise in Noradrenaline.
Within a fairly short space of time I started to feel more and more out of control. When I am “sober” and not medicated I feel like I have adrenaline surging through my body.
I can feel it pulsing and if I try and sit still my muscles get cramped and agitated and I get restless leg syndrome. Some part of my body is constantly moving, twitching, shaking. Sometimes I will be sat “still” and my entire body will be vibrating.
It can be exciting, it feels like you are supercharged and unstoppable. It feels like being on a stimulant drug such as Cocaine or Amphetamine. However, being “high” like this all day causes me to be agitated and anxious. I talk incessantly, blurt things out, say totally inappropriate things because the “filter” that the Strattera gives me goes.
Those are the irritating parts but not the dangerous parts. The dangerous part is that I start WANTING danger. I start to search for any possible way to occupy my mind and give me pleasure. Anything that will stimulate me and excite me. I start craving alcohol, I start taking drugs, I start looking for sex, I start arguments, I start doing absolutely anything that will distract me from myself. I WANT the danger and I want the stimulation and I do anything to find it.
I got through this after a couple of months of insanity and then went to speak to a private therapist for the first time as I needed help and answers for some problems going on in my life. When I explained to her that I had been using recreational drugs from time to time she explained to me that it is not possible to give any sort of accurate evaluation until I had passed 3 months of sobriety – as a sober mind is a mind that is free from any sort of drug.
This made total sense and so I decided to stop absolutely everything that was mind altering in any way. I stopped having sex, I stopped taking any sort of drug, I stopped consuming caffeine, and then I even stopped consuming sugar by living off Huel (a vegan, organic, meal replacement shake), and then a diet almost 100% free of added sugars.
Quitting sugar and caffeine was absolute hell and made me realise how savagely addictive these substances are. The withdrawal symptoms are horrible and the depression that they cause is far worse than that of any other drug withdrawal I have experienced. Caffeine withdrawal for me lasted roughly a month and drinking caffeine was on my mind most of the time.
The whole point of this story is that by being as close to 100% sober as possible I was forced to see myself fully unmasked, without the added confidence and stimulation of caffeine, without the buzz of sugar, without the exciting thoughts from psychedelics, without the affection of sex. I was forced to experience life without any unnatural “buzz”.
I was faced head on with even more personal problems and insights into my personality and toxic behaviour traits. There was literally nowhere to run, and I found myself struggling to get out of bed as it was all too much.
What´s It Like To Be Sober
I was trying to stimulate myself in healthy ways, by going to creative events – poetry, comedy etc. and meeting new and interesting people. I was exercising, trying to get work done, and trying to be a normal human being. Sadly at the end of the day I was still miserable.
I was going through some family and relationship problems at the time as well and so this obviously didn’t help but I realise that I was, and have been for my whole life – DEPRESSED
When I realised this, it made total sense and seemed obvious as day. I had always thought I couldn’t be depressed because only depressed people get depressed. But obviously I was one of those depressed people.
Sane people don’t become addicts at the age of 12. This was actually something that my Therapist had to make me understand.
Depression and Sobriety
Depressed / people suffering with personality disorders / identity issues turn to drugs as an escape method. This of course does not mean that all people that take drugs have issues. Drugs are a wonderful pleasure of life so long as you use them responsibly. The tough part is using them responsibly.
The more troubled a person is, or the more toxic their environment the more likely they are to turn to drugs.
In my case these problems stemmed from the inability to control my brain and my thoughts. I have had major personality and identity issues my whole life and this has only started becoming clearer very recently through therapy.
On that cliff-hanger I will end the article. I have been writing more about my discoveries through therapy but that is for another day so stay tuned!
I always thought of alcoholics as those old men with red pimpled noses that I would see at 6.45am in the morning as they wait (im) patiently for their local bar to open. Alcoholics were those men and women who sat in the big Wetherspoons in my home town (Aberdeen) all day drinking halves, talking to themselves and sometimes pissing themselves at the bar.
They were alcoholics, I was just someone who really enjoyed a drink and yeah I got myself into a state but who doesn’t. It didn’t mean I was an alcoholic, I was just the same as the vast majority of the people I would see in the pub at the weekend.
It only really occurred to me that I might be an alcoholic when I was discussing the subject with a friend of mine who said that “well we are both alcoholics mate, we might only drink once or twice a week but we cannot control it when we do so that makes us alchies” I thought about it for a second, agreed and moved on.
I just casually accepted that yeah ok fine I am an alcoholic in that sense but that’s better than being that old man waiting for a bar to open pre 7am… it’s different isn’t it, I don’t wake up craving that taste, that feeling, I can get up, go to to work, play football, live normal life without the need for booze on a daily basis.
Turns out that only because I had some semblance of routine like going to work every morning was saving me from becoming my own definition of an alcoholic.
I started drinking like most kids do at friends houses and in parks when I was 15/16. To be honest though, it didn’t really do it for me. I didn’t massively like the taste of beers and I could only really manage to force down 4 or 5 on any given night. Yeah I know what a lot of people are thinking, ‘only 4 or 5’ trust me, that was a ‘few’ beers watching the football for me.
Now, yes I did get drunk on some of these nights, sometimes embarrassingly so but I would probably go weeks/months without another similar drinking session. Along with the general dislike for the taste of alcohol I also woke up one morning after a friends 17th birthday party with a kidney infection.
My doctor was of the belief that I was drinking too much… it was one night so either I did indeed drink an obscene amount or my kidney’s were trying to tell me something early doors. I think this scared me off a little bit at the time because the infection was particularly painful.
I don’t really have any recollection of any big nights out or anything stupid until a month or so after my 17th birthday. I had already left school and was working full time. I was still very shy back then but was slowly coming out of my shell and beginning to speak more and more to the other staff there.
One Friday a couple of lads from the workshop invited me for beers on the Saturday. 17 year old me was so stoked that these two guys who were both older than me (one a year or two the other would have been in his early/mid twenties) wanted to hang out with me in the pub.
We met at lunch time for beers and we. got. on. it. I was so proud of myself that I handled my drink so well that day, managed to stay upright all day/night and stay out until about 2am after an underage trip to the strippers. Despite the hangover on the Sunday I felt like I was both a fully fledged adult and most importantly that I had been accepted.
These Saturday sessions quickly turned into any day of the week sessions, after work of course but I would find myself clock watching the last few hours of the day away so I could go and hang out with my new friends. I say hang out but really it was to get black out drunk.
I very quickly became enamoured with the reputation that came with being a young prolific drinker who could out drink the older people in the group and then get up again the next day and do it again.
I was very proud of my drinking streaks (30 nights in a row don’t you know) and the sheer amount of booze I was getting through. To give you an idea about my level, if I was half way though a pint and I noticed the bar getting busy I would go up to order my next one so that I had it ready for when I finished. I didn’t want to have to wait a few minutes with no drink in my hand. Mentally I could not cope with it.
This was my life in Aberdeen for 15 years. Booze/nights out over everything. I would always find someone to drink with, always find an excuse to go out and always find an excuse to stay out more importantly.
It really didn’t matter to me that I had girlfriends, friends, work, plans the next day, money to save for holidays, booze would win out over all of these things. I would rarely justify any expensive purchases for things I really wanted but I’d always have treble that value readily available to spend on drink.
I mentioned the kidney infection earlier, these were a regular theme in my life through these years of drinking. Do you know what I did when I got them… drank more. What kind of logic is that?! The pain was excruciating and to most people it would mean slow down, stop for a while but not me, I would drink through it… like trying to walk off an ankle sprain.
Just for info, a ‘regular’ say Saturday night would involve between 10-15 beers (pints) and then probably about a litres worth of gin…sometimes a little more, somehow.
I’m not really sure how much detail I need to go into about my nights out, there was a lot of obnoxious attitude, mouthing off constantly at people, falling over, the usual I suppose.
In my early 20’s I was an extremely angry drunk but I mellowed (at least a little bit) during my 20’s and into my 30’s. It really didn’t take much for me to fly off the handle though, I would misconstrue almost any innocent comment and become a total asshole.
It’s actually surprising I managed to maintain relationships of any sort to be honest. The biggest problem at the time was that no one called me out on my behaviour when I was drunk so I just passed it off as being acceptable. At most I’d offer a token apology and move on.
Lack of Confidence
One thing I was very aware of was alcohol’s ability to drain any energy and confidence from my soul when I was sober. So many plans, so many ideas, so many things I wanted to get involved in that sober anxious me just couldn’t bring myself to do. The drunk me would speak to anyone, talk relentlessly about ideas and plans and things I liked. Sober me would always be on the wrong side of the anxiety of course and that little voice in my head would always tell me to not be so stupid, you can’t do that, you don’t have the talent for that. And repeat ad nauseam.
One of the many dreams I had was to move abroad and at the very least try living in a different country. I had spoken about this sooooo much but had never even taken tentative steps to do it. Suddenly at 32 the company I was working for were going through a hard time and were making redundancies. I basically just blurted it out to my boss, get me out of here if you can, tell them to make me an offer and I’ll go. I don’t know why but I think subconsciously there was something telling me it was now or never. A few months later I was living in Barcelona.
So I moved to Barcelona with grand plans – see the correlation here – to take a few months off to rest, explore the city, learn Spanish and start a business. If I needed to take a job in the meantime, just to keep money coming in then I was happy enough to do that for a few months. On my first day in Barcelona I met my new flatmates and stayed out partying with them until 8am…
This was my life for the next almost 2 years. I never bothered to look for that job, never really bothered to learn much Spanish and most certainly didn’t start a business. With zero structure around me to keep me from my worst self I fell apart.
Now, I wasn’t drinking every day so again I could find reason enough to keep telling myself everything was ok. However, I was finding myself drinking for breakfast, baileys in my coffee or breakfast beers… Breakfast beers were the name we gave the mini bottles that you can get in Spain. In the UK a night out would finish at 2am, here in Barcelona my nights out would end the next evening, or later. I would find myself getting up after a few days of tranquility to go for a shower, find my flatmates having a party and join in. At 7am.
I blew 30K in those two years. 30 fucking grand, the things I could have done with that money! Hindsight eh! Sunshine, new foreign friends, cheap beers and too much time on my hands meant pretty much non stop days/nights out over that time.
All the old traits were still there too, flying off the handle for no reason, falling over in bars, walking home obliterated, wearing headphones through the most dangerous of neighbourhoods. I was Indestructible when drunk, incredibly arrogant too.
There were a few steps towards sobriety for me. First was and I mean this with as little offence as possible but a lot of my social group just seemed to age rapidly in front of my eyes. And I mean rapidly. Every so often I would see photos of myself and see me going the same route and it started to play on my mind.
Hangover Anxiety – The Fear
Secondly the hangover anxiety was through the roof! I had always suffered with the hangover fear but it was manageable, I could still function. In those times though I could not cope with it, I would hide in my room for days after a night out. Only sneaking out of my room to grab the pizza from the takeaway guy at the door. I wouldn’t even look at my phone during those times, just watch films, sleep and feel like my world was falling apart.
Thirdly and this was the biggest one, I had a panic attack one afternoon. Long story short I love street art and graffiti and at one point in BCN I started working with one of the street art tours. I had done a couple and after some initial nerves was beginning to become a bit more comfortable with them.
The tour was on a Monday and I had a pretty heavy Friday and Saturday so Sunday was ground zero for the hangover and Monday was the beginning of the anxiety. I planned on cancelling on the tour but last minute decided that I could handle it. I appeared at the meeting point and saw the group, there must have been 50 people.
My heart immediately started racing at a rate I had never experienced, my breathing became really fast and really difficult and I had to crouch down in a doorway. I dragged myself home, cancelled the tour, got fired on the spot and spent the next hour lying in bed trying to calm down. Being fired did not help haha.
The Start of Sobriety
After that, the next few months although I didn’t stop drinking (obviously d’uh) I really pushed myself to call it quits after a reasonable amount of drinks. My idea of reasonable of course but still a huge improvement on my previous lifestyle.
From memory I got drunk twice in around 5 months and both times the hangovers were obscenely bad. I had been speaking about getting sober for a little while but every time I was banging on about it I would always claim that it was impossible and that I just needed to get it down to a beer here and a beer there and I would be fine.
These conversations continued though so obviously something inside me was pushing me to call it quits. Then it happened, I woke up on a Sunday and decided, no drinks this week. And that was it, honestly, that easy. I didn’t drink for two years after that point. I kept giving myself check points where I could start drinking again but when I got to them I would just keep going.
Is It Hard To Stop Drinking?
I’ve thought about this a lot, Is it easy to quit drinking? I just stopped one day, boom, but only because I had got to a point where my mind could not handle anymore. If I had kept going like I was I would probably have done something stupid by now the way my head was.
I have had so many friends say that they wish they could stop and that I had a lot of strength to do what I did. I didn’t really see it that way, probably still don’t, I needed to stop and I did. But really it took 17 years to get to that point so no, it’s not easy. Especially if like me, socialising always revolved around drinking…
Losing Friends From Stopping Drinking
Stopping came at a cost. I lost loads and loads of friends, basically my whole social circle disappeared overnight. I was a little bitter about that for a while but thinking back in reality it was my lack of ability to socialise whilst sober that was the problem.
It occurred to me whilst at a gig one night that I had never ever been sober at a gig or a festival or, well at pretty much anything I could think of actually. I had zero experience at socialising sober (work doesn’t count) and was absolutely fucking useless at it. Honestly, 3 years in I still am. I went from 100 to zero and then tried to go back to 100 on the socialising part and it was such an alien feeling to me.
I don’t think I’ll ever become comfortable with it if I am being honest, I am FAR to aware of the drunks in the room and too often, their ability to switch from happy to angry in a split second. It leaves me on edge and it’s almost like a sensory overload when I am in bar, it’s pretty overwhelming. I can see why alcohol helped me so much, I was rarely aware of any of this stuff when I was drinking. That being said, I don’t miss the big nights or hangovers, not one bit.
One and Done
I mentioned earlier about having a beer here and a beer there. Well last year I decided to test myself with a beer to see if I could be sensible with it and just ENJOY one. Well I did enjoy it but the feeling of MORE was gone. After I finished it I was satisfied and I knew that I had gotten over the final hurdle. So today, I have a beer now and again (I’ve not had one for 3 months) if I am out for dinner or if I just fancy one but it’s just that, one and done.
So that’s my story, even if one person reads it and thinks, shit that’s basically me and it inspires them to at least think about getting help/stopping then great, job done!
This article will focus on problem drinking (drinking to solve problems), and why we do this. I will try and use my experiences and the experiences of people that I have met – that have opened up to me – in order to write in a way that will hopefully be able to touch some people. The article will focus on drinking to solve problems but also mention the problem use of Cocaine – as often these go hand in hand.
I really want to make clear that I am not Anti-Alcohol or Anti-Drugs at all, for people that can use them with moderation, and are in control, they are a wonderful pleasure and very enjoyable. I just want to help people that feel they HAVE to use substances to hide from things, and that cannot control their use.
is an opiate blocker that is used in the treatment of alcohol and opiate
dependence. Using Naltrexone helps you quit drinking alcohol because, (in
simple terms), is used to block the pleasure signals back to the brain and cut
the, “reward system”. Interestingly, alcohol and opiates work in
similar ways in the brain.
specialist first explained it to me I was very sceptical about the efficacy of
the drug -and so I did not want to try it at first. I had heard of the
“Anti-abuse” drugs which made people vomit and feel extremely sick if they
drank whilst taking the drug – however the Doctor explained to me that these
are rarely ever used anymore as they simply dont work.
just stop taking the drug instead of stopping drinking.
Taking Naltrexone For the First Time
supposed to take the drug each day to block the craving signals which go to
your brain, however, as I had gone cold turkey I hadn’t used it.
went for a long weekend in Ireland I thought it would be the perfect place to
try it out. I started taking it 2 days before I arrived so that my body could
get used to it.
It is difficult to describe how it makes you feel. I wouldn’t necessarily say it makes you feel sick, but it makes you feel a bit unpleasant, (I guess if my body was used to it then these unpleasant feelings would go away).
First Experience With Naltrexone
cautiously drank my first beer, (beer not being something I used to often drink
– just neat vodka or wine),and waited. I decided I was going to try and drink
at the pace of everyone else -and that by doing that I wouldn’t end up getting
A few beers in and I realised I wasn’t feeling any effects from the alcohol, and it was actually unpleasant drinking.
I carried on drinking all night without feeling almost any effects. I could feel my body being drunk and more, “sloppy”, but I had none of the false euphoria and energy that alcohol gives you.
I also noticed that every so often I would really crave neat vodka, but that the thought would literally disappear, and I would start thinking about something else. This continued in a sort of cycle every 10 or 15 minutes.
From the airport I had brought with me a bottle of vodka, a bottle of rum and a bottle of gin – as a present for my friend whos house I was staying at / a present for myself.
No Desire To Drink
end of the night I was sat in his living room with the alcohol in front of me
and it actually disgusted me to look at it.
if I had a bottle of vodka sat in front of me it would be gone within about
half an hour. I forced myself to take a swig of it and it I hated it.
getting none of the pleasure or kick that I would usually get from doing this.
As the night continued I started to notice myself starting to feel hungover,
even though I continued drinking.
woke up in the morning, instead of starting to drink again straight away which
I would usually do – (I often used to leave a bottle of wine next to my bed so
that I would have to even get out of bed to start drinking) – the thought of
drinking again actually disgusted me.
the Naltrexone again and did the same thing again that night – not out of
desire but out of curiosity and to put it to the test.
Further Experiments With Naltrexone
Naltrexone on another 5 or 6 occasions when on holiday and it was always the
same story. I wouldn´t feel any, “drunkness”, or any real positive effects from
the alcohol, just notice the bad effects.
I realised how much I HATE alcohol – I think the taste is disgusting. Originally I thought to myself that maybe one day I would be able to learn to drink responsibly, but then I thought….
WHAT IS THE POINT?
Why force yourself to start liking something that causes nothing but damage to your body and brain? Why try and “drink responsibly” ie spend my time craving more and not enjoying the moment?
Using Naltrexone to stop drinking alcohol made me realise that there really are very few positives to drinking alcohol and that for the high it gives you it 100% is not worth the negative effects.
not experienced being “drunk” since September 26th 2017, (when I
decided to quit), and have not drunk any alcohol at all since mid-June 2018.
that I dislike the taste of alcohol – and realising that it has nothing
positive to offer me, I am fairly positive that I will not return to drinking.
If I were to drink again in the future it would be as a test of my self-will –
but then this is something I am not sure is even worth it.
Helping People Who are Struggling To Quit Drinking
never heard of Naltrexone before and didn’t even know drugs like this existed.
I want to try and spread the word, so that people realise there are things that
can be prescribed that can help people.
addicts often feel lost and hopeless and like no-one understands them but there
is a wealth of knowledge and help out there. You just have to be brave and seek
Naltrexone to quit drinking alcohol really changed my life for the good.
and other related projects such as the upcoming Podcast and Youtube Channel are
now my full time job and they require a lot of time and money.
If you like
my content and would like to help me to keep creating more then I would be so
grateful for any donations through my Patreon account
Please share this post on your social media sites
always, I urge you to please share this post on your social media sites
so that it can reach as many people as possible and people can see that there
is help available for them.
Comments, criticisms, questions and suggestions are
requested as always!!
If you would like to ask me anything the best way to do this is via message on the Facebook page – or via message on my personal Facebook if you know me. You can also comment on the post or send me an email. I WILL REPLY
This post is a brief overview of the steps involved in admitting you are an alcoholic, seeking help and treatment for alcohol addiction, and the path to recovery.
It was very difficult to write this as I started writing, and was going off on so many tangents it was basically turning into a dissertation.
I have covered all the points I think I need to cover and I will go further into detail in future posts. I recommend clicking the link during the post to read my experience with Naltrexone as well as the 2 posts go hand in hand.
I would like to start by introducing myself and my reasons for starting this blog about my struggles with Addiction, ADHD & Strattera, and the problems that myself and other young people face whilst growing up in this crazy world.
Throughout my life I have met countless people who have asked me to keep a record of my life and my experiences, and very recently I made the decision to start writing a journal and saving memories, so that I can write memoirs which may inspire/entertain or shock some people.
I was born as a “gifted and talented” child, and at age 5 I was diagnosed with ADHD, which was untreated and un-managed, due to the fear of medication, until September 2017. Because of this, my childhood was utter chaos and like roughly 75% of people with ADHD I was instantly addicted to everything I ever came across.
The first time I got drunk was in October of year 7, (age 11), when I drank a bottle of Sambuca until I was blackout drunk. From this moment I was addicted to alcohol. I was gifted academically, which meant that I had to expend no effort in order to breeze through school achieving everything I needed to achieve, without ever having to apply myself to anything.
This gave me time to use my curiosity to explore everything I could think of, and experiment with as many drugs as I could get hold of. I quickly became obsessed with weed and lost a couple of years to numbing and destroying my brain with skunk, until I realised I had to stop as it was ruining my personality and killing my motivation.
I also got heavily addicted to Mephedrone, the legal high that swamped the UK during 2009/2010. I used this powerful stimulant most days for about 5 solid months and lost most of my friends, abandoned my family and tried to emancipate, and also lost 25kg of body weight – which left me looking like a skeleton. I managed to kick this addiction due to a forced trip to Ireland where I could not get hold of the drug. Stopping Mephedrone caused me to leach back on to alcohol to try and calm my brain down.
This pattern of binge drinking and passing out continued as often as possible, and more and more frequently as I got older.
When I was 18 I was at a music festival I drank myself to death.
I drank all day every day for 3 or 4 days in a row and then on the final night I drank between one or two litres of Vodka in a short space of time. I remember feeling weaker and I remember my body shutting down. I remember collapsing to the floor.
My friends were used to seeing this and so they didn´t think anything of it at first but after a while they told me they thought something was different.
They went to get medical help and I was taken to a field hospital where they were told my heart was stopped. They tried three times to revive me and eventually they succeeded.
When I woke up I felt like I had lost my soul. I did not know where I was, who I was, or even my name. I was told I needed to be transported to hospital to have a more thorough examination. Upon hearing this I panicked and pulled all the needles out of my arms and ran out of the tent.
I was in a delusional state and the only thing I could think of was to get more alcohol in order to calm myself down. I found a bottle of vodka and necked this. This put me into a psychotic hallucinatory state and the 8 hour journey home I have no recollection of. The next 4 days I suffered from ego death, lost my purpose in life, lost what felt like part of my soul and it was horrible.
4 days was all it took for me to return back to drinking and this then carried on for another 5 years. I reached a stage at the end of my relationship with my ex-partner “S”, where I was on a downward spiral towards death again. I was crying out for help in the only way I knew how which was by drinking to oblivion morning to night for days and weeks on end. One day I woke up face first on the floor in my old flat with no idea how I had arrived there.
Before even becoming conscious and aware I got up walked to the fridge and drank a bottle of wine and 3 beers within the space of about a minute. I then realised that I had done this without even thinking and was so angry and ashamed at myself that I broke down in tears. S saw me that morning and said the words that gave me the motivation I needed to seek help. “I will not watch you kill yourself, if you carry on like this I cannot be around you”, “I will not watch you die”.
Those words gave me the courage to go to the doctors and ask for help. I was instantly referred to a specialist where they quickly recognised that I needed to be treated for ADHD (with Strattera). I went cold turkey that day and decided I would stop drinking for the time being. The following few months of sobriety were scary but fantastic.
I started to spend some time alone – for the first time ever and started to occupy my brain with different challenges like learning to read Arabic. I also started to explore Barcelona, and although I had already lived in the city for over 2 years it felt like a new city entirely. I had spent every possible moment -when not working or recovering- drunk out of my brain and so I had never taken note of anything.
Along with therapy I started to take medication for ADHD (Strattera) which really was the turning point in my life. It was a slow process but I started to be able to sleep more than an hour or 2, I stopped hearing every single sound, every single conversation and through training I learned to be able to concentrate on a conversation and appear interested – even though my mind was usually elsewhere. I can honestly say that Strattera changed my life.
Throughout the next year I used my time to really explore myself intimately and get to know the reasons for why I am the way I am. I also started to get to know my friends beyond the surface and also re-connect with old friends who had been unable to properly connect with me due to me being wasted all the time.
I have very few memories of my life up until I stopped drinking and I find it incredibly difficult to pinpoint specific parts. I spend a lot of time trying to trace back through the years and re-discover memories. This is part of my reasons for starting a blog/journal as I think that I have done permanent damage to my memory, and I am keen to record it so that I will be able to follow it back once I am older.
My decision to go to Brasil was one I plucked out of thin air, and at the time I didnt know why I had decided to go. I now realise that it is a sort of pilgrimage of self discovery. I am obsessed with languages and so have been learning Portuguese for about 4 months. Apart from this I need time alone to explore my brain and gain new skills, without any distractions.
In my life I have a lot of people that rely on me for support, and so I spend all of my time trying to sort other peoples´ problems out instead of focusing on myself and what I want. In Brasil I want to study Capoeira, Brazillian Jiu Jitsu, Samba, Language classes and also spend some time in the Amazon – where I want to learn how to survive in the jungle. I will also be going on an Ayuhuasca trip.
I know this has been a long intro but really it is only scratching at the surface! If you have any questions I would love to answer them. Don´t be shy to ask anything – I will always answer honestly and I welcome any challenges! I want to be challenged. Challenged to do things, challenged on the points I make, challenged to find out more information about a topic that interests you.
I truly believe that as a society we need to challenge each other more and not just accept things at face value.We need to stop thinking that our dreams are unreachable and that “I” could not possibly do that. We are all capable of making an impact and leaving a legacy, and this is what I hope my blog will help people to realise. I would love it if you could share this page as much as possible and spread it via word of mouth so that I can reach as many people as possible.
If you would like to ask me anything the best way to do this is via message on the Facebook page or Instagram – or via message on my personal Facebook if you know me. You can also comment on the post or send me an email.
Obviously running this blog takes a lot of time and costs money to maintain it and fulfill projects. Any donations would be graciously received via my Patreon account. I have a lot of exciting projects coming up and I want to be able to just focus on good content.