A year ago, Jo Stanley‘s husband had a realisation. Two glasses of wine each night had become a bottle; that bottle had become two.
“Before I knew it, I was like, ‘S***, it’s 3am’, and I was going to work half-cut,” Darren McFarlane said on Gold 104.3 this morning.
“Just to admit to yourself the A word – that you’ve become and alcoholic – that’s the hardest part.”
The producer shared his story on air this morning at the invitation of his breakfast host wife, as part of a discussion about Brad Pitt’s alcoholism.
The actor confessed during a recent interview with GQ that his heavy drinking had contributed to the breakdown of his marriage to Angelina Jolie – an admission for which Stanley said she has a “huge amount of admiration”.
While the 44-year-old said she wouldn't have described her husband of 17 years as an alcoholic, she noted that he was "disconnected" from her and their eight-year-old daughter, Willow, that he wasn't "present" in their relationship.
"For me, and I'm sure for most people, drinking is about escapism. And it's when the escapism becomes severe, such as daily, you can't help but affect those around you and those that mean the most to you," he said.
"I was lucky enough to have a moment of clarity and realise how hard that was on Jo and Willow. When I got to that point... you know, you don't want to lose or stuff up the best thing in your life. That's why I quit."
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The process of quitting, he said, was simple in comparison to admitting he had a problem.
But, noting the impact it had on Pitt's marriage, both he and Stanley are grateful he did.
"I have to praise you and tell you what an amazing courageous person you are for admitting that," Stanley told her husband on air.
"I mean really you saved our family. It's a beautiful thing that you did."