Combating my daily struggles

Weston Hopkins, Staff Writer

I am someone who has struggled with addiction throughout my life. Most of my life, I was addicted to eating. Whether bored, upset, or if I just felt like it, I would eat. There was no rhyme or reason to it and because of that I have been heavier set for the majority of my life.

My parents, whom I love more than words can describe, were my codependents. They didn’t teach me how to eat healthy or to have discipline when it came to my eating habits.

Being young, I thought that this was normal. It’s hard to acknowledge as a child that I was forming habits that would damage my self-esteem and mental health in negative ways in the future.

According to the World Health Organization, “Worldwide obesity has nearly tripled since 1975. Over 340 million children and adolescents aged 5-19 were overweight or obese in 2016.”

The struggle of obesity is something I, and so many others know all too well. It sucks. I’ve hated my body for the majority of my life. On top of my food addiction, I began drinking when I was a junior in high school. Nothing crazy. Just a bit of social drinking I would think, and at first it was just that.

This behavior continued until I graduated, and then I began to develop a pattern. Each weekend my friends and I would go to a party and drink, but each time I would drink more and more. This continued until I had my first blackout. It wouldn’t be my last, unfortunately. I was severely depressed after high school, which led me to drink more often than I was before.

Just as with my eating habits, it became an issue that I was too stubborn and upset to address. I continued to search for the answers to life at the bottom of a bottle, and soon enough I was drinking everyday. I thought that drinking was a way to cope with my depression, when in reality it only made me feel worse.

I always knew deep down that drinking wasn’t helping me at all, only hurting me. Yet, I continued to drink until I couldn’t anymore.

The only purpose for having a job was getting my paycheck and using that to purchase alcohol or food. Day-in, day-out, this was the pattern I had created and continued to follow blindly.

For nearly 5 years, I was always on the verge of having an empty bank account. If I could be shown the number of money I’ve spent on alcohol and food in my life, I wouldn’t want to see it.

My pride wouldn’t be able to handle a blow of that magnitude.

According to Addictioncenter.com,“About 300 million people throughout the world have an alcohol use disorder.”

Just as many others that inhabit this planet, I struggled with my addictions for as long as I can remember. It is however, struggling with these issues that has ultimately helped me. I wasted a lot of time making bad decisions, but I know now that these problems can eventually be overcome.

You can get better but you need to just take it a step at a time. I remember how empty my life felt when I was in the midst of the worst of my addictions.

Now I’m getting better everyday through small accomplishments. I am working toward being healthier, both mentally and physically.

If you or somebody you know would like to learn how to eat healthier, you can visit https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/healthy_eating/index.html which explains the components to a healthy diet.

If you or somebody close to you that you care for is struggling with an addiction, please visit https://www.addictioncenter.com/ or call (888) 978-3383. This resource will help you locate treatment near you.