By the time recovering alcoholic Darren, 23, from Birkenhead, realised that he had an alcohol problem he’d already failed his A-Levels and was sleeping rough on a friend’s couch. This is the story of how Port of Call helped him to find an alcohol rehab that completely turned his life around.
I don’t think I was any different to your average teenager. I had my first drink, a swig of cider, in my local park at the age of 15 and it carried on from there. I’d meet my mates at the park every weekend, with whatever alcohol we could get our hands on. We got into a few scrapes, had a few laughs, and didn’t give it a second thought.
We scraped through our GCSEs and came back for sixth form because it seemed like the done thing to do. By then though our interest in school was pretty much non-existent. We’d regularly bunk off and head into town instead. Most of us looked old enough to get served by then, so we’d head to the local friendly pub or the snooker hall and spend our lunch money on booze.
Of course, our behavior didn’t go unnoticed. We were pulled aside by teachers, shouted at by the Head and grounded left, right and centre by our parents. We were lucky not to be excluded. Not that it made much difference because we all flunked our A-Levels anyway. My parents were devastated and they made no bones about the fact that they blamed my drinking and friendship choices for my failure.
I didn’t listen. If anything, it made things worse. I stormed out of home, moved onto my best mate’s couch, and drifted in and out of dead-end jobs. Out of the blue one day my mum, dad, sisters and even my best mate sat me down with an interventionist who they’d found through Port of Call to tell me how my drinking was affecting all of our lives.
It was a real jolt. I felt thoroughly ashamed and agreed to check into rehab as soon as I could. We went back to Port of Call to arrange everything and with their support I was able to find a nearby rehab that could take me the very next day. It was a relief to be honest. I went through a gradual detox, with the doctors and clinical staff keeping a round the clock watch on me.
After that my time was split between alcoholic counselling sessions, group therapy and generally getting better. I made some brilliant new friends there, people who really understood what I’d been through. I also spent a lot of time working on me; going to the gym, learning to play the guitar. Now that I’m sober and in recovery I’ve found a new lease of life. A life that revolves around my family, hobbies and career rather than alcohol.
I owe a lot of my newfound happiness to Port of Call’s alcohol support – thanks for everything!
Make us your first Port of Call. If you, or a loved one, are dealing with alcohol addiction we can help you to access the right addiction help at the right time. Wherever you live, we can find you a rehab. Take the first step today by speaking to one of our advisers for free on 08000029010.