Clean Date: May 31, 2018
From: The Netherlands, lives in Austin, TX
“I guess it started with alcohol. The first time I ever drank, it made me violently ill. I just wanted to be as drunk as possible. Then, when I was 18, I was diagnosed with ADHD and prescribed stimulants. That’s when it really got bad. After about 10 months, I started taking just one more with every regular dose so that I could academically compete in college. Soon I was taking 3, 4 even 5 times the regular dose. I was staying up all night high on stimulants, and smoking [weed] to bring myself down. Then the self harm began, brought on by extreme paranoia… picking at myself was particularly challenging. Towards the end, I was taking seven times the normal dose and was always either stoned or high. I was not in touch with reality. Then, one day I met a woman in group therapy who had been sober for a year. Her story was similar to mine, and she told me about Recovery Unplugged. I just felt this pull- which I now attribute to a higher power- to call Recovery Unplugged. Three days later I was in PHP, ready to get sober. It was difficult at first, but the more I was willing to be open minded and listen to what people had to say, the more secure I felt in my decision to start my recovery.
After that, my life started to improve really fast. Now, 10 months clean, I have all the things I thought I would never have. I landed a job in a field I’m interested in. I sleep regularly. I’m eating healthy, I’m exercising. I have all these friends, and this really strong community around me. I used to think that I needed substances to do what I had to do. I thought I needed them to finish school, I thought I needed them to socialize, but what I didn’t realize was that the substances were a crutch that I was using to regulate my emotions. It was the lie my brain was telling me and… It’s just not true.“