by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
Grapevine : September 2011
I started smoking pot at the age of 12. Alcohol was quick- ly added at 13. By the time I was 15, I knew there was something wrong, that I had a problem. Hiding my use was easy. I got good grades and manipulated my way through childhood. I even managed to get a two-year degree, drinking and drugging the entire time. In college, every day was a good day to drink. I usually found some- one to do it with, but either way I al- ways drank. At an end-of-year dorm awards party, I was named "dorm drunk." I was mildly ashamed and embarrassed, but also confused. No one at college had ever said a word to me about my drinking. When I was 21, my aunt sent me a Big Book and "Twelve and Twelve." She didn't even live in the same city as I did. How did she know about my drinking? It wasn't from my parents. Don't ask, don't tell A quarter of a decade sober and they still don't talk about it Perhaps it was from something I said or did when I visited. From age 13 onward, my visits always included hangovers. I did not open the books for many years, but I did put them on my bookshelf. A year later, I dropped out of the third college I had attended. I was working three part--time jobs: at a youth center, a county youth shelter, and a baby store. I had no insurance. In the youth services jobs, I was work- ing with kids who were drinking. I taught them about AA and the Twelve Steps. I talked with their families about recovery and family roles, and every night I went home to drink. My supervisor advised me to drink in a different city so I wouldn't run into the parents of my clients at bars. I drank daily, often continuing late into the night. I liked hard li- quor; straight shots were my favor- ite. They did the trick much quicker than wine or beer. At 21, I was out of 34 September 2011