Trisha's Story

“I was a secret drinker”

With a successful career in a London advertising agency, Trisha looked like she was flying high – but alcohol was her secret addiction, and it was rapidly taking her down. Now living on the Costa del Sol, she tells us her story here.

“I started round drinking when I was 16, I drank just like my friends at first, but that changed within a few years…

My first real sign there was a problem was with food as I was anorexic then bulimic. When I was 20, I started taking slimming tablets and drink was good because if I drank, I didn’t eat. And so, the cycle began.

By my early 20s I was drinking secretly. I met the man who became my husband, and we both drank a lot, as did our friends and colleagues, so it seemed to me that everything was okay.

We had a baby, but before she was one, she tragically died of cot death. She was perfectly healthy, but just didn’t wake up one morning.

I then drank to numb myself, although I still appeared to be coping on the outside. I went back to work, but I was drinking more and more.

Then I started to be sick most mornings. After a blood test it was discovered, my liver was damaged. It was suggested I go to a treatment centre.

At the centre, they told me I had to attend Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) meetings. I cried for hours as my opinion of an alcoholic was, they were low life, and I couldn’t be compared like that.

But I went and at my first meeting in London I was surprised how well everyone looked, they seemed to have jobs, families … and they were happy. Even so, I didn’t stop immediately and carried on drinking when I left the centre.

But six months later as things got progressively worse, I had my last drink – I was 40 and as a party girl I thought my life was over when I stopped drinking, but actually, I was just about to start living a life that gave new hope and self-respect.

I still go to AA meetings and it’s the best thing I’ve ever done. Plus, I’m still a party girl, just nowadays – thank God – a sober one!”