I first started drinking when I was about 13 with friends. We would drink at the park on a Friday and Saturday night. It was the normal thing to do and everybody was doing it. There was no indication back then that it would ever become a problem. I drank the same amount as my friends and could take or leave it.
By the age of 25 I recognised that I had a problem. I was drinking heavily and couldn’t go a day without it. My drinking time got earlier and earlier until I was drinking all day, every day. It had started affecting my life, as I was unable to work and it was causing arguments between my friends and I.
I have experienced many problems as a result of my drinking, including arguments, blackouts, being arrested, being fired from work, being unable to see my children and getting into debt to fund the drink. At first I ignored the signs, but it soon became clear that I couldn’t carry on as I was; I just didn’t know how to stop.
After trying and failing to reduce my intake and stop drinking, I referred myself to Cirtek House in the hope they could help me deal with the issue once and for all. I found my key worker very helpful and knowledgeable, and he always put me at ease. He suggested I try the Intuitive Recovery course.
I loved the course and found it very beneficial. Each lesson gave me new knowledge and skills I could use in my day-to-day life to deal with the problem. Learning about the brain on lesson one was fascinating and I now understand where the craving comes from, and that it is natural - I’m not ill. The skill of addictive desire recognition is vital, as previously I had failed to spot it tricking me and therefore I would drink. Now being able to spot it a mile off and knowing that I am in full control is brilliant. The final contract was a turning point for me. It made me realise that I had wasted too long already and I needed to put this to bed once and for all.
I haven’t drank since the last day of the course, and feel fantastic. My life has changed so much for the better; I am seeing my son, going out with friends, applying for work and getting on with the normal things people take for granted. The course made me realise that only I can change my future and I must take responsibility for all the choices I make, not just the alcohol.
Looking forward, I have put new goals in place for the next 6 months. These include the ambition to get back into employment, to book a holiday to Majorca and to start saving to buy my own place. I’ve wasted too long already and am committed to making my life a success. Everybody has commented on the change in me, I’m actually better than I’ve ever been. I’m confident and have ambition for myself, and will achieve it all.