I am just eighteen years old and study in college. My parents have given me everything I have asked for but they have no idea that I am an alcoholic. It started when I got dumped by my ex-girlfriend. I didn’t cheat on her but she told me I was too clingy and had no future since I’ve low grades and have no motivation to work. It devastated me. It was only in recent times that I heard she’s got a new boyfriend who’s older than her. And that he has a job and has studied abroad. I started to drink since then and now it’s been a problem. How do I stop this bad habit?
Congratulations. If you are admitting that you have a problem and that you want to get out of it, you are already in the process of recovery.
Unfortunately, alcohol problem is not something that you can snap out of. Along with alcoholism, it seems that there is a lot of emotional pain, insecurities and low self-esteem that gets entangled along.
It is important that you approach this as not just about stopping to drink but recovering completely with a renewed sense of self-worth, confidence and forgiveness.
It seems that you have a lot of respect for your parents. Tell them the truth. Most of the time, we want to leave our parents out from our misery because we don’t want to bother them or because we worry that they are going to over-react. We want to stop needing them and instead start supporting them.
However, we never stop needing them and needing them doesn’t mean that we can’t simultaneously also support them.
Talking to them might initially bring a lot of stress and outrage. However, when you fight against alcoholism together, the chance of winning is much more. When you finally win this war together, you will realize that your relationship with your parents will have become much deeper and meaningful.
You will need to consult doctors and rehabilitation centre for the problem. They will support your complete recovery. I know, rehabilitation centre can sound very intimidating and you might be concerned about putting your life on hold for this. You might begin to get angry about why your life had to take a U-turn while everyone else’s life seems to flow seamlessly. But trust me, eventually, everything will begin to make sense and after some years, when you look back to this day, you will see how even this “problem” had a bigger “purpose”.
Take a leap towards this difficult journey of recovery. There is a stronger self, and a deeper understanding of life waiting for you at the other end.
I wish you the strength to endure this journey.
Swastika Shrestha is the co-founder and head of training and support at Teach for Nepal. She has several years of experience training and mentoring youth leaders. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.