Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Hi my name is Michael and I'm an alcoholic...

"It's about being an alcoholic.
It's about me being an alcoholic.
My lips move when I whisper the words out loud. I'm an alcoholic."

Augusten Burroughs - Dry

Probably one of the hardest things I have ever had to say in my life.  Admitting to a (massive) problem is never easy.  It's funny since I've admitted to it - I've had so many people tell me that I am brave and they are so proud of me.  I don't see why.  I have made such a complete and absolute cock-up of my life - I almost lost everything - the man who loves me, my gorgeous children.  I don't feel particularly brave - I feel if anything rather foolish - I let something take control of me...

I guess the other funny thing is when I "came out" as an alcoholic having people tell me that they didn't realise it was that bad.  I'm what's classified as a high-functioning alcoholic;

"high-functioning alcoholic (HFA) is a form of alcoholism where the alcoholic is able to maintain their outside life such as jobs, academics, relationships, etc. – all while drinking alcoholically."

Now like a lot of HFAs I was in denial about how bad the problem actually was.  My psychiatrist and I had been talking about possible "solutions" for over 6 months and I'd always find an excuse to not do it.  It took an intervention between Larry and my psychiatrist for me to finally admit that yes - I was in a dire situation.  If I didn't fix my drinking that I would lose everything - the man I love, my gorgeous children and eventually my life.  So I checked into detox on Friday the 21st of June.  I was scared, petrified.

It's harrowing releasing just how much control alcohol has actually had over my life.  I have been a drinker pretty much since I was 23 and a heavy drinker since my late 20s.  Also both my parents were alcoholics but mother wasn't around long enough for that to have an impact.  Dad on the other hand - normalised drinking for me - to me it seemed perfectly that people drank from as soon as they got up to when they went to bed.  I did hate when I was growing up but it was also the person I turned into and would have would up as.

So I went into detox for 5 days.
Apparently I was a textbook case.

More posts to follow as this is only the start of my journey and I have to relay the comedy that actually is detox =P

The photo is actually from a 365 photo project I was doing when I originally met Larry and I was diagnosed with depression and bi-polar.