Rachel’s Story

Hi I’m Rachel and I’m an addict. It took me a while to admit to myself I was an addict I just thought I was a party girl who enjoyed drugs and alcohol and could out last all of my friends. I started drinking at the age of 12 but didn’t start using drugs till my early twenties. I never really thought I was an alcoholic/addict till I came into CA and realised that ‘normal’ people can have a glass or 2 of wine
and leave the rest of the bottle for another night, they also have the ability to stop using drugs at a given time and go to bed and get up for work the next day.

Growing up you would have thought I was popular but the reality is that I never felt like I fit in with any particular group so I would flit from one social group to the next not really feeling a part of any of them. I was bullied throughout my school years and suffered abuse. These things I don’t believe made me an addict but they were a good excuse to justify my drinking and using. ‘If you’d been through what I had you would drink/use like I do as well’ was what I told myself and others. I simply couldn’t cope with my feelings or life on life terms.

When I first tried cocaine it was like something clicked in my brain. I could participate with the kitchen counter talk till the early hours, I could drink more and I felt like I finally belonged. It didn’t take long for my using to go from every weekend to every day. I did have times of sobriety during my 14 years of using when I thought I could control it but these only lasted a few months at
best and then I was back to using every day. I just couldn’t stay stopped. The consequences of my using began to be overwhelming I was in thousands of pounds of debt, my nose was bleeding every time I did a line and I was missing work more days then I was in. I would wake up every morning filled with guilt and shame over using again when I promised myself the day before today I wouldn’t use. My using took me to dark places and I did things I said I’d never do; the moral line I drew would constantly move further away.

I came into the rooms in July 2019 having hit my rock bottom and reaching out to someone who had got clean the year before. I was welcomed with hugs and cups of tea and told if I got a sponsor, service and did what was suggested I wouldn’t need to use again. That was over 4 years ago now I haven’t had to drink/use since I walked into that first meeting. Today I have a daily reprieve from my addiction the obsession to use has been removed but I work my program daily to the best of my ability and I can now deal with my feelings and life on life’s terms. In recovery I’ve been able to cope with the bad times and the good. Now I smile, laugh and even dance which I never thought I’d do sober. When I first got sober I thought my life was over but actually it was just beginning.