Biraspati Parsai Senior Secondary School, East Sikkim.

I am a student from the Biraspati Parsai Senior Secondary School; I’m in class 12 now. I was under substance addiction from class 7 to class 9. Here is my story of how I got into addiction and how I came out of it, it was through my friends I got introduced to the substance it was cigarette at the beginning. I use to smoke whenever I meet my friends and then I started smoking even at home not letting my parents notice whatever I was doing. 

By class 8 I was into drinking and smoking too, we would gang up, contribute money and would drink extensively this was a happy time for us, if I don’t drink I would feel so lazy and bored with everything. After drinking I would go to class sit in the last bench and sleep off. It was becoming a usual thing for me, I remember one day we were caught for smoking on school campus, we were called for a parents meeting and after that I got trashed from my parents. I was sober for some period and thought I’ll leave addiction, but it was not as easy as I thought.

I was still sneaking out and smoking, drinking with my friends, bunking the classes. It disappoints my teacher, I was a good student with high grades at the beginning, but now my grades were going down every single exam. I was not receiving much attention from my friend and family, everything was getting worst. It was just for the sake of enjoyment that I started smoking and now I was addicted to smoking, drinking. I was at the lowest point of my life where I wanted to stop this bad habit but it was not helping. 

A teacher coordinator from SAATHI once called me to discuss about my problems. After talking to him once I felt relieved he listen to what I was going through I felt good sharing my problems and started attending his counseling sessions, I felt like everything was getting better. Now I was even motivated to leave my addiction. In right time SAATHI organized a camping and I was a part of it, learned about the health issues that substance addiction is causing to us, and how our brain gets affected and damaged by excess consumption of substance. 

SAATHI helped me quit my alcohol addiction and also made me an active member of SAATHI as a peer educator, my friend who was close to me got influenced by my progress asked me what he has to do for leaving his addiction and with the help of SAATHI my friend has got his new life too, we are clean now. Thank you SAATHI.

******** Disclaimer: Names of the students have been changed in order to assure confidentiality.

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