Radio presenter Yumi Stynes has opened up about her 27-year battle with alcoholism in a candid essay printed in the Sydney Morning Herald.
In Thursday’s paper, the 42-year-old writes she began drinking at 12 years old – seriously at 15 – and has been heavily impacted by her habit ever since.
The mum-of-four says as a teen, she had drunk almost every weekend.
“Sometimes I was very funny. Sometimes I was extremely fun. But oftentimes I was hammered, that messy girl at the party, the slurring idiot,” she writes.
Stynes says there were a number of warning signs her drinking was becoming a problem she ignored.
One was a friend’s mum being worried about her when she was 16, another time she passed out at a rock concert at 17, but the biggest were the blackouts: spaces of time she couldn’t remember the following day.
The radio presenter says she first realised she may have had a problem when she became pregnant at 26 years old and for the first time, spent an extended period without drinking.
“The pregnancy break didn’t cure the addiction though, and I returned to drinking with a vengeance.”
Stynes explains she tried to quit drinking several times, but never sought help and would eventually each time resume drinking.
“The shameful truth is that one of the main reasons alcoholics don’t want to talk about our relationships with booze is because we don’t want to be judged if we ever decide to start again.”
While making an episode of her new ABC podcast, Ladies, We Need To Talk, however, Stynes spoke to women with similar problems, and has since been to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, saying she feels like she’s making progress.
You can read the entire article, ‘I’ve had a problem with drinking since I was 15, now I’m finally ready to talk’ here.
Listen: How do you talk to your teens about boozing responsibly? Jackie Lunn shares how she navigates the tricky topic.