Bec’s Story of Alcohol Addiction Recovery
My name is Bec, and I am grateful to say that I have been sober for one hundred and seventy days and counting. Thanks to the ninety-day alcohol addiction treatment I received at Hader Clinic Queensland on the beautiful Sunshine Coast, I have been able to reclaim my life from alcohol addiction. However, for twenty-three years, I lived a vastly different existence, one that not even those closest to me had a single suspicion of.
On paper, my world looked perfect. Semi-retired at thirty-eight, married, a great circle of friends, a beautiful house, and a car. But behind closed doors, I spent my afternoons alone on the couch, lost in the grips of addiction, drinking until the next day. This was the harsh reality that nobody knew.
Until I went to Hader Clinic Queensland, I had no inkling that I was a blackout drunk. For twenty-three years, I religiously consumed a bottle of wine every day, and after ten of those years, two. Yet I was completely ignorant of my disease, along with the people in my close circle. To be honest, I think I knew for fifteen of those years that I had a problem, but my denial was strong. I was still active, I ran five kilometres every morning and managed my own business – in terms of life, I was on fire! There were people out there way worse than me – I was ‘functional’!
The truth is, my addiction was slowly killing me. Though I presented a carefully crafted image to the world, inside, I was dying.
Every day, the world saw the successful career woman, happily married with a vibrant social life, a lover of adventure and spontaneity. They had no idea that as soon as the workday ended, I would retreat to my home, craving the solace of my couch and a bottle of alcohol. Society’s perception of me checked out, while the real me indulged in alcohol, losing consciousness, and repeating the same destructive cycle day after day.
I struggle to pinpoint the exact moment my addiction took hold or what triggered it. Growing up in the countryside with traditional parents, I was exposed to drinking as part of Australian culture, but it never reached excessive levels during my teenage years. Yet somewhere along the way, my relationship with alcohol transformed into an all-consuming daily ritual, dictating my entire existence.
Alcohol had a numbing effect on me. It provided an escape from my thoughts, feelings, and stresses. It became intertwined with every aspect of my life. Going out for a meal, celebrating birthdays, after-work catch-ups – alcohol was always involved. Simple activities like ten-pin bowling required finding a venue with a bar – I wouldn’t attend any event unless alcohol was present. Society readily accepted my drinking without question, making it the only drug I didn’t have to justify consuming.
Occasionally, my husband would express concern about my excessive spending on alcohol, but my friends and family remained oblivious to the extent of my addiction. I didn’t fit the stereotypical image of an alcoholic portrayed in the media. Financially, I could afford my addiction, and I maintained the illusion of functionality. This only fuelled my denial further.
Around seven years ago, my partner and I sold our business, which removed the need to justify missed appointments or manipulate others to maintain my façade of normalcy. This newfound freedom seemed like a green light to indulge in alcohol without restraint. As a childfree woman in addiction, I sometimes wonder if motherhood would have acted as a barrier to my drinking, with responsibilities and daily routines interrupting my ‘medicine.’ But in my independent and financially stable state, nothing seemed capable of stopping me.
In the end, my decision to seek help was driven by several factors. Drinking was no longer a source of fun as it had been in my younger years. Instead, I turned to alcohol to escape from my thoughts, feelings, and anxiety. I vividly remember my anxiety being so overwhelming that I questioned why the medication I was taking had no effect. Little did I know, it was the alcohol itself that was fuelling my anxiety, rendering the medication ineffective.
Once upon a time, I was a vibrant and buoyant person, full of zest for life. However, that version of me had faded away. I no longer desired social interaction or any activities that once brought me joy. In the end, I reached a point where I didn’t even want to exist on this planet anymore. The drinking and isolation had consumed me. The alcohol had lost its magic; it no longer provided the escape I sought.
My journey to recovery began when I completed the ninety-day Alcohol Addiction Treatment at Hader Clinic Queensland. Today, five months sober, I am filled with gratitude for the vibrant life I now embrace. This is my story of recovery from addiction, a testament to the strength and resilience I discovered I was indeed capable of, thanks to the split-second courage I found one otherwise typical Sunday evening.
In a stroke of fate, two events converged and played a pivotal role in my choice that day. First, a close friend of a friend shared their own experience at Hader Clinic Queensland. They spoke passionately about the transformative journey and newfound happiness they had discovered. My friend would excitedly tell me of her journey and amazing transformation; they painted the clinic as an incredible place. Deep down, I knew that if I ever decided to seek help, that would be my destination.
The second event was a spontaneous decision to spend two months in Bali. While I continued to drink during my time there, living among Balinese families exposed me to a different way of life. The simplicity and serenity of their existence left a profound impact on me. I observed that their happiness didn’t rely on alcohol or material possessions. This realisation planted a seed of hope within me. Perhaps there were alternative paths I could explore. Maybe my life story didn’t have to be one written in the ink of alcoholic-fuelled pain; perhaps a different way of life was possible for me also.
It was on a Sunday afternoon, shortly after returning from Bali, that I mustered the courage to search for Hader Clinic Queensland on Google and make that life-changing call. The experience was nothing short of incredible. After leaving a voicemail, I received a prompt response the following day. Initially, they informed me that they couldn’t accommodate me until the following week. However, I expressed my fear that postponing my intake might cause me to lose the courage to try again. The compassionate staff at Hader Clinic Queensland understood my concerns and rearranged my admission to that very Wednesday. Their unwavering support touched me deeply.
Hader Clinic Queensland saved my life—there’s no exaggeration in that statement. As I walked through their doors, I had no idea what to expect. But the ninety-day program transformed me from the inside out. It wasn’t just about overcoming addiction; it was about gaining a new perspective on life. The impact on my outlook has been profound – I find myself radiating with happiness.
The staff at Hader Clinic Queensland were nothing short of amazing. Being educated by individuals who had personally battled addiction was an invaluable aspect of my recovery journey. Mark inspired me immensely with his unparalleled ability to connect with others. His classes were captivating, and he genuinely wanted everyone to succeed. Prue, Wade, Riri, Jason and Maria – truly, every staff member I encountered was approachable and willing to lend an ear at any time. Even the nurses in the detoxification unit provided the most comforting hugs, making me feel safe and loved, regardless of my age. I had the opportunity to engage in counselling for the first time with Sally, and I can’t help but wish I had utilised such an incredible resource much earlier in life.
Hader Clinic Queensland has been a transformative and life-saving experience for me. Through their unwavering support and guidance, I have emerged a different person—grateful, enlightened, and filled with newfound happiness. I firmly believe that everyone deserves the opportunity to embark on a journey of self-discovery and healing, regardless of whether they are battling addiction or not. Hader Clinic Queensland has gifted me with a fresh perspective on life, and for that, I will be forever grateful.
Life since leaving Hader Clinic Queensland has been an incredible revelation, like being reborn into a world filled with hope and possibilities. Each day, I wake up with the privilege of watching the sunrise, free from lies and shame, and no longer burdened by a secret life. I have learned so much about this disease, and have so much understanding and compassion for those around me now. Gone are the days I would have zero tolerance for the world around me. The Bec of today makes excuses for people’s bad behaviour – I would have been the longest to honk my horn in frustration once upon a time!
One vital lesson I learned is that if you suspect you have a problem, then you most likely do. The solution exists, and it’s possible to turn your life around. It took just one drink to unravel everything, and I experienced the devastating consequences firsthand. Another is understanding how much I truly mean to my friends. I always knew how much my friends meant to me, but never how much I meant to them. I don’t think we addicts really understand that we are loved – it’s hard when you don’t think that highly of yourself.
I went to Hader Clinic Queensland an alcoholic, and I left an alcoholic. Today I know that I can arrest this disease’s hold on my life, one day at a time. No longer do I hide from the world, alone in my room, trying to control every single aspect of my life. No longer do I look for my feelings’ off switch at the bottom of a bottle.
Maintaining my sobriety since leaving the Clinic is also manageable, thanks to the ongoing guidance from Hader Clinic Queensland. For one, taking care of my physical health has become a priority. I still see the nutritionist from my time there – she has been invaluable. Additionally, the introduction to the 12-step fellowship remains an integral part of my journey. Attending regular meetings provides me with strength and support, reinforcing the principles that guide my recovery. The Hader aftercare app also plays a significant role, offering tools and resources to enhance my ongoing efforts. It’s remarkable to think that the person who spent twenty-three years numbing herself on a couch now leads a life so fulfilling that I haven’t even had the opportunity to fully utilise these resources.
Hader Clinic Queensland has truly changed my life, equipping me with the tools, knowledge, and support needed to overcome my addiction and embrace a brighter future. While my recovery journey continues, each day brings renewed strength and a deep appreciation for the life I have reclaimed. I am forever grateful to the compassionate staff, whose unwavering dedication to my well-being has made all the difference.
For those like me, who are suffering like I once did – you are not alone. Nor do you have to overcome this alone. This disease incessantly lies. It promises us the world, yet instead delivers a colourless Groundhog Day type of existence. Much like an undiagnosed cancer, its progression is disastrous and can be fatal. If my story can inspire just one person to seek help and embark on their own journey of recovery, I would be eternally thankful.
I hope, like me, that you embark upon that different path. That you take that chance and make that call. After all, nothing changes if nothing changes. Today, thanks to the ninety-day alcohol addiction treatment I attended, my life has become a colourful landscape. It is overflowing with optimism and joy, and if I can get here, anyone can get here. You just have to take that first step.
The image of this client has been changed for their privacy.
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