I have hesitated posting the link to this documentary for quite some time because when I first watched it, I was extremely disturbed. That being said, just know that it is a very sad story and please use discretion before watching. 

I watched it the week before I stopped drinking when things were at their worst. It freaked me out (I was drunk at the time) and a week later, I was done. I’m not attributing my quit to this video alone, obviously, but it certainly shifted something in my head at the right moment in my demise. 


  1. Hi John
    I watched the documentary this morning. I want to thank you for posting it as I think It’s easy to forget where I was, especially today when my sobriety most days feels like rainbow glitter unicorn farts. It’s been a lot of hard work, and I have so much gratitude on how far I’ve come in six months; a reminder on where I could have gone is necessary. This disease kills. It escalates. Quickly. I am mindful to keep playing the tape all the way through to the end when I even get a twinge of “perhaps one day I can have a glass of wine”. That tape never ends well. From others we continue to learn. Thank you for sharing this bleak reminder on what alchohal was doing to me…physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. Not fucking worth it.

  2. Whoa, that was powerful! My teenage daughter walked by while I was watching and got hooked, too. We were both blown away. Thanks for sharing. It strengthens my resolve and reinforces the “be wary of alcohol” message I’ve been preaching to my kids.

    1. Glad it was helpful, Julie. And what’s really scary is that it doesn’t take very long to go from heavy drinking to extreme physical dependency. When it happened to me back in 2004, I couldn’t even piece together the progression of time that got me to that point. I just woke up one day and realized that if I didn’t drink, I would have a seizure.

  3. John,

    I watched this video a few months ago and there was a point in my life which I could say I was almost as messed up as this (minus the bum leg) It’s not my intention to tell war stories so I’ll just say that the closest I’ve come to a personal hell, was that time in my life that required me to drink around the clock. If I wasn’t passed out (because that’s what it was- I didn’t sleep) I had to have alcohol in my system AT ALL TIMES, it was worse than going without water, it was more like trying to hold your breath under water for as long as you could and the only way to surface and gasp life into your body was to break through a three inch sheet of ice, while having the shakes.

    I felt like I was on an alien planet and I had to carry a reserve of oxygen (or rot gut, bottom shelf Bukoff) wherever I went, at work, while still employed, or pretty much anywhere that required me to be out of the wonderful confines of my shithole apartment. It was the place I longed for all day in my cubicle, the place my sickness and I could retreat to and isolate from the world. That was where I was safe, that was my space station on this alien planet, with all of the bottled air I could breathe.

    Anyway, I guess I went off on a bit of a tangent. This video really drives home to me, how close I was to death, how sick and sad and hopeless I was. I see so much of myself in it, like looking at a ghost. It reminds me of A Christmas Carol, like it was my ghost of Xmas future or maybe past, thank God it’s not my present.

    Thanks for being here and creating this little community, my new space station retreat (but I’m home, back on earth) and I can breathe without hesitation :p

    1. I totally can relate to everything you said here. Somehow during the six years of heavy drinking I did recently, I managed to not fall head first into the worst kind of physical dependency. But during the stretch of time I was drinking before the FIRST time I got sober, I did. And it was awful. The space analogy is perfect. Thanks for sharing.

  4. I remember seeing this when I first got sober. The fact that he was so close to my age scared me. I wasn’t in as deep as him but I was doing a lot of the same behaviors he was.

  5. Thanks for much for posting this. I thought I had seen nearly every documentary about alcoholism but somehow “Drugged – High on Alcohol” evaded my recovery radar. Ryan’s story is particularly haunting and a tragic reminder of where addiction ends for most. I lost a dear friend and former partner a little more than two years ago. At nearly two years sober myself, I’m finding now more than ever I need to remember what it was like or in my case what might have come to fruition. The yets. . .

    Thank you also for your courage and humor on your rode to recovery. Every day you don’t drink is a success. I enjoy your writing immensely and look forward to following your journey!

    1. Thanks, Glenn! So glad you are here. Yes, I remember just sitting with my mouth hanging open for several minutes when it ended. Such a tragedy.

      Congrats at your upcoming two years and I hope you come back and keep reading and commenting and saying hello!

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