From the April 2011 magazine.

April 2011: Help

It can feel like the dirtiest four-letter word in the English language

"In the space of a few hours that night I had asked for help twice: first I asked God, then my husband."

The night I hit bottom I had just returned home after a month’s stay with my parents in another state, where I had gone with the intention of ending my marriage but was cajoled back by sweet, conciliatory phone conversations with my husband. And there may have been another incentive to leave: My parents had noticed, and frowned upon, the amount of alcohol I was consuming. At home I could drink as much as I wished. As I saw it, my problem was my husband, not my drinking.

The morning I left my parents’ home, however, my mother cornered me in her small kitchen. “I’ve never asked you for anything,” she began. “But now I want you to promise that if you can’t control your drinking when you get back home, you’ll go to AA.” I saw no way out of it, so I promised.

-- Marcia J.

Phoenix, Arizona

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