Tag Archives: Seether

The Story So Far – Chapter 1 – The Slide


I guess this story starts somewhere around October/November 2009, at that point in my life everything seemed fine, myself and Victoria were totally in love, in fact we were even trying for another child, a brother or sister to our son and daughter.  But then things began to unravel, it wasn’t as though I wasn’t drinking at that point in my life, I was, just the reasons were ultimately different, at that point I was a recreational drinker, I know I drank almost every evening and even at that point more that was normal, but as I say I wasn’t drinking to escape at that point, it wasn’t a crutch or pain reliever, it was just that I liked a drink, did I have control over it at that point?  The truth is I don’t really know, I never tested that resolve to go without.

I was self employed but on contract to an Architect, which was full weekly work and regular monthly payment, there were a few bills piling up, but otherwise we were okay.  Then sometime in late October I was told there wasn’t the work to keep me working full time, I would only be needed when it was necessary.  At that point I signed on as unemployed as a similar contract like the one I was on was unlikely, due to the financial crisis that was hitting the whole world.

Attending the dole office was a real downer, that was the first time that I felt like I had failed, I hadn’t had to do that in my life at that point, I was demoralised.  But having been self employed complicated things, I was sent so much paperwork to fill in it was unbelievable.  By that time the architects come through with a little bit more work, I decided not to fill in the paperwork and sign off before I had even received a payment.  I also applied for a number of permanent jobs, but I never even received a reply or any acknowledgement, which simply made things even worse.

As 2010 came around I was beginning to struggle, I tried at first, when I was working things were okay, as long as I had something to get up for I was fine, but that was only odd days at a time, maybe a week or so of work, then nothing for a while.  That’s when I became distant, where I began to withdraw from family life and I guess drinking became more than a recreational thing and actually I began to use it to get by.  As bills became unpaid and money became scarce, I would struggle to sleep through the night without waking with reoccurring dreams of stress and struggle, that’s when I became aware that the more I drank, the less frequent those kind of dreams became, instead of dealing with what was actually causing those dreams and getting my life in order, I began to chose to take a different path and bypass the problem.

It was around that time I made my first big mistake, Victoria had been attending Church for some time and had decided to get Baptised, she never asked me to attend, she shouldn’t really have had to, I should have been there by her side, I never offered, I never asked and I never went, I regretted that immediately, I knew I had made a big mistake, I couldn’t admit that to her, so I withdrew even more.

Come the beginning of April we had to have the family dog put down.  He had developed a tumour in his back end, which was getting worse and worse, it looked a mess.  But we didn’t have the money to get it treated, until we could ignore it no more.  Victoria arranged for a visit to the Vet and I took him one Monday morning.  I never brought him home.

It was beyond treatment or treatment that we could afford and given Wylie’s age, the Vet advised we have him put down.  It was a hard decision, but it was one we couldn’t disagree with.  I looked into his eyes as he slowly went to sleep, I kept crying how sorry I was, I blamed myself.

If I hadn’t wasted money on drinking we could have afforded his treatment earlier and all would have been okay, but I knew deep down I had let him down.  His death hit me hard, I didn’t do anything for a week or so, I had work to do from home, but I couldn’t do anything, I just sat there in all my self pity and the only way to escape it all and put it out of my mind was to keep drinking, numb the pain, remove the guilt, remove myself from everything.

Work and money wise, things never picked up, it remained the same way over the coming months, just a few days here and there, money came in as and when.  As I began to drink more and more, I don’t know where the money came from, by now I was in that frame of mind that my alcohol consumption came before anything else, I made sure I had enough to drink each night, before I considered paying any bills, I managed to pay the rent each month, but other bills were being missed, but my drinking continued.  I was borrowing money from everywhere to bankroll my drinking, everything else I left Victoria to deal with.  I left her to deal with all the dept letters and phone calls, I didn’t want anything to do with it and couldn’t bring myself to do anything about it.

Sometime during July I began sleeping on the settee, I just began to fall asleep there watching TV and drinking, some nights I would just fall asleep on the living room floor.  It wasn’t a conscious decision to do that, but eventually it just became the norm, my bed was the settee and actually, it still is, five years on I still sleep on the settee, I could sleep in a bed in one of the bedrooms, but even now I can’t bring myself to do that, so I remain here on the settee.

At one point during the year a bailiff for the Inland Revenue knocked on the door, I was out working, Victoria had to deal with that, she rang me at work to let me know, he was only interested in taking any car I owned to cover what I owed, which by this time was around £8000.  I don’t drive, I never have, I have never even taken a lesson or owned a provisional license, it just never interested me, he left empty handed.  By that time Victoria had been working with the Citizen’s Advice Bureau, who had taken on our dept management, they contacted everyone we owed and made repayment arrangements with them, small enough that we could manage and we started repaying the dept we had amassed at that point.  Money was tight, but still I made sure I had my alcohol provisions before I paid anything.

There were times when I had no money at all and I tried to get through the night without drinking.  Those were bad nights, I would be irritable and short tempered.  Some nights I would pace around the house, wringing my hands continuously or scratching at the skin on my arms, sometimes enough to take the skin off and draw blood.  There were night’s when I was so bad, Victoria would dig out the money she was saving and give it to me to get something to drink, she would say she couldn’t have me in the house like that, she even on one occasion called me “Fun Bobby” referring to the character from the TV show Friends, who was the life and soul of the party when drunk, but depressed and miserable when sober, that was me, it really was and I would say even at that point I knew it!

There were times when she challenged me on my drinking, but I didn’t believe I had a problem and didn’t appreciate being told that, don’t get me wrong I still loved Victoria, that never changed, but the alcohol was now in control, I couldn’t open up liked I used to, I couldn’t fall asleep in her arms anymore after I cried through telling her all my problems, we were distant by now, very distant and I knew I needed to do something about it, but just couldn’t, all I did was drink.  When she challenged me, I hated it, I told I didn’t have a problem, I could stop when I wanted.  Then I would turn around angry, that sort of I’ll show her attitude, I can stop when I like and I will, but being so angry all I wanted was a drink, so that would win out, I’ll show her tomorrow, I need a drink tonight, but that tomorrow never came, I just kept repeating the same thing, it was my ground hog day, repeating the same old cycle every day.

In addition to the work coming in from the architect’s, a friend of my gave me a few days here and there labouring for him, it was money at the end of the day and I needed it, for me it was to drink and then if I had enough left to contribute to the odd bill, but mainly I needed it to drink.

On the days I wasn’t working, I would spend the day just pottering about on the computer, Facebook, games, nothing of any value, nothing to help me get out of this mess, just to indulge my disdain for life at that point.  I tried not to drink during the day, a couple of evenings a week I taught karate, so I definitely didn’t drink before that, but those days were the hard ones, the hours I spent clock watching.  I had this crazy notion that it was acceptable to drink at tea time, to have my tea with a can of cider or a bottle of wine, 6pm in the evening was an acceptable time to the whole of society to drink, before that I would look like an alcoholic who couldn’t control it, in my mind I wasn’t, but I still didn’t want the world to think it either.  But in my room, with the curtains closed to the world outside, in my isolation who would know?  Eventually I began to give in, I would have a couple of cans of cider or lager, I wouldn’t actually start on the wine, just the cans, maybe because I could get rid of the evidence before anyone came home or to be honest, I would drink wine in the evenings and rarely leave a bottle with any left in it, I would buy two bottles and drink them both, if I did leave a bit in the bottle, I would drink it when I woke up anyway, so in the daytime it was just a few cans, after all it would also be okay to have a drink or two at lunch time with my meal, well in my mind it was.

I wanted you to know I love the way you laugh
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain away
I keep your photograph, I know it serves me well
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain

‘Cause I’m broken when I’m open
And I don’t feel like I am strong enough
‘Cause I’m broken when I’m lonesome
And I don’t feel right when you’re gone away

The worst is over now and we can breathe again
I wanna hold you high, you steal my pain away
There’s so much left to learn, and no one left to fight
I wanna hold you high and steal your pain

‘Cause I’m broken when I’m open
And I don’t feel like I am strong enough
‘Cause I’m broken when I’m lonesome
And I don’t feel right when you’re gone away

‘Cause I’m broken when I’m open
And I don’t feel like I am strong enough
‘Cause I’m broken when I’m lonesome
And I don’t feel right when you’re gone away


It true that nobody ever promised that life would easy, the same can said of this journey of mine, it’s not easy and this last 24 hours or so have proved that, good moments interspersed with moments that eat away at me and drag me down.

After a great afternoon, yesterday ended with the Wedding reception, I have to be honest drunk or sober these things aren’t really my cup of tea.  I’m certainly not a dancer, I would have to be well drunk to do that and that certainly wasn’t going to happen.  Trying to enjoy myself while all around me are drinking and dancing wasn’t easy, thankfully James doesn’t dance either or drink so we sought the quiet areas with a few others and talked.  That suited me, although the reception was really nice and bacon cobs and chips is a great wedding food, sort of thing I would do, I did enjoy myself, although there was something deep down that was eating away at me and it wasn’t anything to do with drinking.

One good thing that happened was the text I received during the night, a friend who couldn’t attend the reception had read my post “Learning To Walk Again“, he asked if I wanted to walk with him in the morning.  Well it sounded like a great idea to get me back out again, so I agreed.

I met with Wes at 6.30 this morning and we set off down the cycle track, we covered the 7 or 8 miles at a leisurely pace while enjoying some great conversation.  It was a great time to walk and it certainly helped to get things off my chest a little.  Wes enjoyed it too, I don’t think he’s walked as far as that in a long while, but he’s up for it again, maybe we can make it fairly regular walk and possibly get a few others to join us, we’ll see!

I actually set off for Church in a really good mood, the walk fresh in my mind and feeling pretty positive.

Justin’s message was great as usual, he stayed seated for most of it, so filming it was quite easy, I was free to listen and take it in.  He spoke about how many lose faith in God’s promises, how Elijah had sent his servant out seven times to look for the signs of rain, until he eventually saw a cloud the size of a hand on the horizon, how he kept faith in God’s promise.

But after my filming had ended and the service drew to a close Justin challenged those who were in need or were losing faith in God’s promise to come forward to be prayed for.  I thought I was okay, but the more I held back, standing at the back of the hall, the more the tears began to flow, I tried telling myself I was okay and I didn’t need to go forward, but I had to in the end, tears were streaming so I slowly walked to the front to be prayed for by Michael and James.

Basically what troubled me last night, troubled me again today, it’s breaking me down and I’m sorry but it’s the one thing I can’t explain on here, it’s not something I really want to go into, just to say I’m struggling with it, it’s not my addictions, they’re hard enough to deal with, this is deeper than that and it hurts.

I always try to end my posts on a positive note and finish with an inspiring song, today I can’t, it’s just how I feel.