With September being National Recovery Month, Instagram celeb Kyle Krieger (1.5 million followers) shared a YouTube Q&A about his own journey with alcoholism, drug use, and getting sober.
Proudly 11 years sober, Krieger shares in frank terms how talking about his addictions literally saved his life as several of his friends he used to do drugs with are now dead.
Asked about any valid associations between addiction statistics and the LGBTQ community, Krieger says the data he’s read shows LGBTQ folks can be twice as likely as heterosexuals to suffer from drug and alcohol abuse.
Krieger sees the stress gay folks experience from dealing with coming/being out to family, coming/being out at work, discrimination in the workplace and more as a significant trigger for ’self-medicating’ with drugs and alcohol.
Krieger admits he turned to crystal meth and alcohol to help him “break down” the stresses in his life.
Asked what led him to finally seek recovery, Krieger shares that it was when he had lost just about everything in his life: dropped out of college; was losing friends at a quick rate; and stopped communicating with family.
The hardest thing about maintaining his sobriety was sticking to the principle of ‘no drinking no matter what.’
Swapping one addiction for another is common for folks with substance abuse, and Krieger says ‘vigilance’ is the key to avoiding that trap.
Whether it’s calling a friend, calling a sponsor, or just sharing on a regular basis, he says those things help him address his personal issues of the moment, and the interaction with others provides feedback and dialogue that helps battle the personal demons back.
Krieger also addresses more questions including whether he believes he’ll ever be able to drink socially again and how siblings can be most effective in in recovery, healing and sustaining sobriety.
Definitely worth the watching.
If you or someone you know is coping with addiction, a valuable online resource is the Los Angeles LGBT Center which offers anonymous online chat every weekend day from 1pm-5pm, as well as one-on-one in-person therapy and therapy groups.
There’s also the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration hotline (1-800-662-4357) and Alcoholics Anonymous.