Hidden in plain sight… Journey of Addiction…

Hidden in plain sight…

True Life Story.michael.tzortzakis_1439033543_6

not fighting the old but living the new new-logo-bannerPeople often ask me how I not only survived the years I lived in addiction. But how it was possible for me to hide it?

The answer is as simple as the question itself. I did not hide!

I created a life around my drinking. At the time I started drinking I did not drink because I was happy. And I did not drink because it made me happy. I drank to ease the pain. The pain that I felt in my heart. I drank to fill the emptiness inside of me. So I did not have to look and find the answers to those questions I had about myself. I was afraid to ask those questions. I had found my way to self-medicate and to sedate myself. That’s why the process of getting addicted to the alcohol was quick and swift.

As a young man in the age of 17-18 I started choosing the events that I would go to. Whenever there was drinking involved I was always present. To every party I got invited I went. In that age somehow I was popular because of my good looks so I was told. And there was always alcohol present. While I was still in school I started taking part-time jobs and local bars. So had one more opportunity to get to my drink. And there it was the one answer to all the questions I was scared to ask. The alcohol.

So I decided to make my living in the hotel and catering industry. Where the alcohol was always available. In the first years I did not drink during work. After I graduated and finished my apprenticeship. It all speeded up. The colleagues from work and I always drank after our shifts. Every single day. On my days off  I went to other bars and got wasted easily cause I had always enough money. That industry was from the beginning the perfect breeding ground to let my alcoholism grow strong with no interference.

As the years went by and I was climbing up the stairs and building for myself even a successful career in the hotel business and the drinking got constantly heavier. The more money I made the more I could spend on booze. I did not drink anymore beer or wine anymore to get drunk. For I would have had to drink a massive amount to reach the alcohol level I needed to feel happy. I started drinking hard alcohol because it took less effort to level up. My choice fell on vodka because it did not have such a strong smell. It looked like water so I could easily carry in a water bottle that I filled up with. I did this for many years until the point that I needed 1,5 to 2 Liters of vodka day. That is equivalent to 400 to 600 grams of pure alcohol per day. A quantity that can kill a non drinking grown man.

Sometimes I could not eat for days. I felt hunger but the moment I swallowed food I felt sick and ran to the restroom to get rid of it. At that point people around often started being aware that I had a problem. Sometimes people spoke to me about this, but I could easily trick them with the story about stomach sickness or the flu. I started lying. I started telling lies more often than I was telling the truth. Today I feel very bad about this and I wish it never happened.

But I had no choice. For I was powerless. It was never a conscious desission I could make in that matter. I was already sick and deeply addicted. The only drive I had in my life back then was to get the drink and get drunk. But not for fun. Because otherwise I would have killed myself.

During those years I met many beautiful women. I met them in the bars I worked or the bars and places I went to get my drink. And strangely there was always a girl or a woman who liked me. And although I felt the need to have somebody in my life I never let any of those women get really close to me. For that they would stand between me and my addiction. They would stand between me and my drink. So I always chose the drink. And let them go.

The same went on with the friends I made over the years. Some came into my life, most to them left. I did not care, but deep in my mind I always knew it was my fault. Because people are not blind and you cannot always hide behind a lie. That worked pretty well at working places, but not in the private environment. They saw me drinking and realised how much it was. The moment they spoke to me about it was the end of any friendship. For that they would stand between me and the only real friend I thought back in those days I had. The Alcohol. Today I am sober. I made a therapy and I know for what the alcohol and the addiction did stand in my life.

I will never return back to that. For I would not be able to control even one single shot or sip of alcohol ever. And I am happy about that outcome.
I found my way and I try to do as much as I can to protect others to go down that road. Not many survive it. But I did.

Continue reading…  

About Michael Tzortzakis, click to read his full story

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