My time in the army were the best 12 years of my life. I served with the 1st Battalion of the Kings Regiment and was always so proud to be a Kingo. I loved that we worked hard and played hard.
By that I mean, we drank hard. Towards the end of my service I was demoted because of my drinking.
Once I came out into civilian life, all the good jobs that I did get I also lost, due to my drinking.
Eventually I lost the love and respect of my wife and sons too. I had 6 inpatient detoxes and never followed up on any kind of therapy or help. I saw myself as a soldier and us soldiers don’t get vulnerable and admit to needing help…we “soldier” on.
When I lost all self-respect in 2015 I knew that I could not do another detox and go straight to the pub on the way home from the hospital, like usual. I had to do something different in order to get something different.
I was told about THH and I went to see them. I was slightly inebriated as I needed a drink to steady me when I went up there but straight away I just felt the camaraderie and the genuine concern from the staff and the lads there.
It was such a relief to be admitted to THH. I almost immediately got my self-respect back. I was able to share my feelings. I cried in front of others. I asked for help. I said sorry to my loved ones and I meant it. I learnt knew ways of living. I started to see everything in a completely different light. I became part of a whole new community that saved my life and saved my marriage. We were all in the same situation and we were all learning and recovering together.
Today I can go for a walk in the park with my wife, hold hands and plan the future. Just over a year ago I thought the only option for me was a slow painful death. My parents have said they are over the moon because after such a long time they have their son back.
I am so grateful to the team and all the community at THH. As a graduate I will now be supporting those who come through. We can do together what we could never do alone.