I started drinking as a social crutch after first making the connection that drinking made me less shy and awkward. I always wanted to fit in, and when I'd had a few drinks, I was able to chat with strangers and make new friends with ease. Looking back, I was never one to drink in moderation. I went to the drunk tank for the first time on my 19th birthday. I only had one speed: Go, and go hard. Over the years I struggled with depression and anxiety and used alcohol as my coping mechanism. I knew this wasn’t right, but its the only thing that temporarily helped me escape. Any attempts at moderation or breaks from alcohol over the years were just attempts to convince myself I didn’t have a problem. If I could take a month off drinking, obviously I wasn’t an alcoholic, in the traditional sense. But during the times I did allow myself to drink, it was almost always to the point of blackout and injuries. While I didn’t have a specific event as my “rock bottom”, I’d say mine was the whole period of time where I was depressed and suicidal. Without getting sober, I eventually would have drank myself to death.