i grew up with the belief that i had to be strong and not show weakness. i’m not quite sure where i picked that up, maybe in school or maybe when my dad would tell me not to cry that i indirectly picked up that mentality. it would help me pave my way to finding independence at an early age, but i would never ever think of asking anyone for help in anything. i would figure out a way to make things happen myself. whether it be figuring out how to develop a good forehand stroke in tennis, asking about an assignment for class that i had no idea what idea what to do or needing some advice how to deal with my feelings. especially when my mother died, i would not allow myself to reach for help to soothe the grieving and pain that i felt. i heavily drank and used drugs to cope, pretending that i had everything together. that lead me to addiction, that i never fully understood that i was doing. it wasn’t until i was in rehab that i finally allowed myself to accept help. i was scared, confused and had no idea how to live life. it was through the help of my family and new friends, at the time, that allowed me to make it through the roughest time of my life. they taught me how to live and to know that all i have to do is ask for help and i would receive it.