Angie’s Story

My name’s Angie and I’m sixty and a half. I’ve always been a hard worker, always enjoyed a drink and always enjoy socialising in between times when I wasn’t working or bringing up the children.

But unfortunately for me my drinking became too much of a habit, and instead of me having control of the drink, the drink had control of me. That was until I decided that it was time to do something about it.

What led me to drink to that degree?

Exactly what led me to drink to the degree I was drinking, well I honestly couldn’t tell you. Other than it was an explosion of a lot of traumas that I’ve gone through in my life.

On an average week I was drinking approximately three and a half litres of whisky, which is why I’m quite surprised I’m still here today.

My drinking caused problems between me and my husband. It also stopped me interacting with my grandchildren as well as I used to. It prevented me from being me, basically. I’ve always been happy go lucky and the life and soul of the place. I lost my personality completely.

I realised I needed to seek help when I started falling down and hurting myself. It was also the realisation that I couldn’t start the day without having a drink first and this went on for quite some time. I realised I had to stop, but I knew I couldn’t do it on my own. That’s when I went to find help and believe me the help is there if you want it.

I went to Drink Wise, Age Well on the spur of the moment. I thought I needed professional help and I knew I needed support from people that could understand what I was going through and would know how to help me. The support is still in place today and without them I don’t know where I’d be.

Admitting to myself I had a problem

For me, the hardest part of tackling my drinking was admitting to myself I had a problem.  That was a nightmare because of the way I felt about drinking at the time. But I knew I needed help, as I had tried to tackle my drinking on my own and couldn’t do it. So I went to Drink Wise, Age Well as a first port of call and from then on other places I needed to go and the help is out there for all of us.

The biggest stumbling block for me during my recovery was the stigmatisation. For a lot of people when you say alcohol dependant or alcoholic the first thing they think of is the little old man in a trench coat, sitting on a bench with a brown paper bag, necking green bottles. That is not today’s alcoholic because we do it in private, usually in our own home.

In the beginning when I first admitted my dependence to myself I couldn’t bring myself to tell my friends and family. When I finally did admit it to them they all told me it was about time. I came clean and they’ve all been absolutely brilliant support ever since.  No matter what I’ve wanted to do to support myself in getting sober, they’ve supported me 100%.

Life at the moment

Life at the moment is absolutely brilliant. My health is improving, my personality has more or less came back to what it was.  I can laugh and joke, I can cook and clean, I can do whatever I want to now.

I’ve been out of detox now for almost four months and I feel absolutely brilliant about it. I’m not afraid to talk about my drinking now, whereas I once was. No more hiding behind closed doors, or sweeping it under the carpet. Please admit to yourself and you friends and your family. Most importantly, seek help from your GP or a local support group. Just please get the help you need.