name is Cami and I am an alcoholic. I mean a serious alcoholic. I D.R.I.N.K. At first, I was a fun drinker. I was a sorority girl and liked to party. I liked people doing body shots off me. I liked dancing when I was drunk. I liked a lot of sex when I was wasted. But things changed. College ended and while my friends went on to get good jobs or go to law school or medical school, I didn’t stop partying. There’s something pathetic about being on spring break when you’re 28. But I couldn’t stop. My friends started to get married and have kids…and pull away from me.

I went to treatment after I woke up in the emergency room with a bunch of tubes sticking out of my arms. The doctor told me that I’d driven my car into a tree. Totaling my car and breaking my arm were the least of my worries. I was prosecuted for drunk driving by a DA who wanted to make an example of me, you know, that rich, pretty girls can go to jail too. My lawyer suggested Cliffside Malibu. I did not argue.

The staff at Cliffside was great. Not only did they help me with my legal troubles, but they also helped me learn to want to change my life. I was still pretty enough that I assumed that I’d marry a rich man and be a drunk, beautiful piece of arm candy. My therapist helped me aspire to more than that. Not only did my DUI case go away (thank heavens it was a first offense!), but I decided to become a psychotherapist specializing in substance abuse. My goal is to get a job at a university to help college students learn more about the dangers of alcohol and recognize the difference between “partying” and “alcoholism.”