For as long as I can remember my mum has been an alcoholic. I spent my childhood worrying about what was going to happen when I got home from school, never knowing what sort of mood she’d be in when I walked through the door. I held things together for her and my younger brother for as long as I could, until I was struggling to look after myself.
When someone mentioned Young Oasis to me I was unsure; I’d always found opening up to people very hard. But it was the best thing I could have done. At my first meeting I met my fantastic support worker, Kim, who immediately put me at ease and explained that I could talk freely about how my mum’s drinking affected me. That was the first time I’d ever felt understood, and I knew that I didn’t have to deal with it on my own anymore.
Young Oasis became my safe place. There was no judgement, I was always listened to and help was there whenever I needed it. Over the years that I worked with them, Kim really went the extra mile to help me, and taught me coping strategies that I still use today.
She said to me over and over again: “You’ll make it out the other side of the tunnel”. I never believed her. But now I’m studying at university, and it was Young Oasis that made it all possible.
The thought of talking to a stranger about a family member’s drink or drug misuse can be scary. But once you’ve taken that first step and you’re talking to someone who understands what you’re going through, it’s so much easier than you’d imagine. For anyone thinking about talking to Young Oasis, doing so completely turned my life around. It can yours too!