A cocaine addict whose reliance on the drug left him feeling ‘worthless’ and suicidal has told how he used the coronavirus lockdown to get clean.
Jonathon Macleod, 24, from Motherwell, Scotland, began using at 15 and would regularly take it when out with his friends at pubs and football matches.
While he initially became hooked to the ‘buzz’ it gave him, he admitted he ‘rapidly’ spiralled into depression and would cry himself to sleep because he felt he ‘didn’t deserve to be alive’.
After coming close to taking his own life, Jonathon sought help this summer by attending Cocaine Anonymous (CA) meetings and embarked on a 12-step programme to beat his addiction.
Jonathon Macleod, 24, from Motherwell, Scotland, began using at 15 and would regularly take it when out with his friends at pubs and football matches. Pictured in the grip of his addiction
He recently marked his 90-day sober milestone and shared his story on Twitter, and is urging other people in his situation to seek help.
Speaking to UNILAD, Jonathon said his cocaine addiction left him anxious and paranoid, as well as ‘riddled with guilt’ at how he was treating his partner, family and friends.
‘It didn’t matter who was in my life or what I had in life, I couldn’t stop even although I wanted to,’ he explained.
‘I would sometimes cry myself to sleep or not sleep at all, trying to tell myself to stop and use my willpower to not do it again, however I would always return to using – I would often cry even while putting cocaine up my nose.’
He added that the false persona he adopted to cover up his addiction ‘crippled’ him, especially when he was alone with his thoughts.
Jonathon recently marked his 90-day sober milestone and shared his story on Twitter, and is urging other people in his situation to seek help (pictured now)
Jonathon told how he would regularly lie to facilitate his drug use, and felt stripped of his ‘hard-working, honest, confident, funny and caring’ qualities. He also got into trouble financially as he struggled to pay his dealers.
He added that he was so consumed by his addiction to he lost all pride in his appearance and stopped doing any exercise.
There were a number of occasions when he realised he needed to get help; Jonathon recalled being admitted to hospital several years ago after suffering a minor heart attack following a four-day cocaine binge.
But rather than tackle his problem, he admitted the first thing he did after leaving hospital was take more drugs.
Jonathon came very close to taking his own life, but told the publication that a photograph of his girlfriend in his wallet stopped him going through with it.
The experience left him feeling ‘utterly destroyed’ – and the onset of the pandemic didn’t help, with him taking more drugs to combat the boredom of isolation.
Jonathon said his cocaine addiction left him anxious and paranoid, as well as ‘riddled with guilt’ at how he was treating his partner, family and friends (pictured in April)
It was at this point he tried to take control of his addiction and used his spare time and the absence of ‘triggering’ football matches and pubs to begin attending CA meetings.
He is now on step 10 of the 12 steps and credits his family, friends and girlfriends for helping him on his journey.
On the day he received his 90-day chip, Jonathon shared two photos of himself to show the difference from being ‘slap bang in the middle of the madness’ to ‘being clean and sober’.
‘Speaking out and admitting I needed help saved my life,’ he wrote on Twitter, telling UNILAD he would have ended up dead if he hadn’t stopped taking drugs.
By following the structured programme, which wasn’t easy but is ‘easier than the life he was living’, Jonathon said he is confident he will stay on the right path.
For confidential support, log on to samaritans.org or call the Samaritans on 116123.
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