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Pete: Well as far as drinking goes, the first time I ever got drunk was I was 14 years old. I was as an extremely sensitive kid very. I have always been a very sensitive person growing up, it was really tough to deal with that sensitivity. Boys are not supposed to be sensitive, you're supposed to be tough and take no bullshit from anybody.
When I started drinking as a teenager. I learned quickly that alcohol made that wall come down, it numbs my sensitivity to the world around me. I was open to everything, I felt like it was revealing my emotions. It allowed me to communicate with other people as I thought they wanted me to communicate with them. As time went on, I learned that drinking was a good way that to make friends. Friends equal alcohol, right? Whether they're just drinking buddies or people that you have lasting friendships with, I have established relationships by drinking and partying.
When I had a girlfriend, alcohol was always involved. It allowed me to emote, It allowed me to feel those feelings that I wasn't supposed to feel. I got married when I was 28, my wife and I both worked at the same grocery store. My drinking only got worse, it really hurt my wife to watch me self-destruct. She was watching me slowly kill myself. I couldn’t stop, I couldn't set the drinks aside. I tried many times but I just couldn't do it, I would always go back to it.
We would at an important dinner or something like that, and she wouldn’t want me to embarrass myself in front of the guests. She would ask me “can you please not drink tonight” and I would say “yeah, sure”. I would often sneak off and have a drink or two anyway. If I wouldn’t drink, I would end up resenting her and the world around me the entire time. If I'm in a social situation, damn right I need a drink, I deserve a drink.
Throughout our marriage, I took many stabs at trying to get sober. Trying to quit never took because I never wanted to get clean, I never really wanted to be sober. The way that I look at it now is, I had one foot in the sober World and one foot in the drunk world. I hadn't done enough damage to myself. I hadn't done enough damage to the world around me or to the people I love. Enough damage to see that I couldn’t keep doing this. I still thought that there were benefits to drinking.
Interviewer: Do you miss it?
Pete: Do I miss drinking? That's really a difficult question. The scales have tipped for me. I have finally reached a point in my life where, when I look back on all the devastation that I caused and all the physical harm that I've done to myself. When I look back at all the relationships that I've destroyed or loved ones that I've hurt.
Seeing people partying on the beach or whatever, I wish I could do that. Yet if I did drink, I would fuck people over, hurt people or I would just hurt myself. Back in those days, I was in a bleak dark place that I never want to go back to it again. I'm getting my life together, I'm on my way to feeling like I'm living for something larger than just myself. It's not all about me anymore, it's only 95% about me now. I'm learning that there's a reason that I'm here, there is a real big reason that I was put here on this planet and all I can say is just reach your hand out. Just reach your hand out and I guarantee you, somebody is going to take your hand. They will take your hand and they're going to help.
* This story was submitted voluntarily to share hope and inspire others. This story is of their own experience and does not represent the point of view of Freedom From Addiction. Freedom From Addiction believes recovery is a personal journey and peoples experiences vary.
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