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Allan McDougal

If anyone you care about is struggling, it's so important to let them know you care and are there for them. These conversations aren't easy, but if you need to determine if you or a loved one has an alcohol addiction, the 20-questions assessment from Johns Hopkins University is a strong indication of a drinking problem.
Addiction is misunderstood, and it leaves those suffering from the condition stigmatized. Society makes the assumption that an addict has a personal problem, not a medical one.
I was a hard rock miner at the time and fortunately my union, the United Steelworkers, had an Employee Assistance Program whose staff guided me to the treatment I needed. They accepted me as a person who has a problem, not a problem person, and put me on the road to recovering my sobriety and my dignity.
For anyone who truly feels stuck, who lacks motivation, or who honestly doesn't see a way out, here's an adage to take to heart: "The anticipation of change is worse than actually undergoing change." I should know. I am the poster child for turning around a ravaged life.