"Who knew that the thing we loved to do together would be what took you away?"
Gerry writes a letter to his friend, Paul, who died due to alcohol in 1999.
It’s rather unbelievable that you’re gone. My drinking buddy since we were kids. I miss the fun we had, the fun games we invented together because there was more drink to be drunk and more laughter to be had. Remember the time we ate sugar puffs in the home dugout at a local football ground at 4am on a Sunday morning? It seems like ages ago now, but the fun we had was the best. The celebrations we had, things that can never be spoken about and many other great times.
I want you to know that I think of you every day. I want you to know that I miss you more than anything, and I would give anything to talk to you again and spend time with you. I still remember the last time that I saw you. I wish I had spent more time with you and made more memories. Some days are longer and sadder because I can’t share them with you. I miss you so much.
Who knew that the thing we loved to do together would be what took you away? I still remember the day the doctor gave you the news that the drinking was killing your liver and you had to stop, or it would take you down. I still remember what you said at the time “fuck it” and we both raised a glass. Had I known what was to come then I wouldn’t have raised a glass as there wasn’t any cheer after that day. To watch you pass away in the manner you did was heart breaking. Fatigue, your skin changing colour, the sickness, your muscles wasting away and the bleeding. I wish that I hadn’t been there because losing you was painfully sore, and it wasn’t worth it.
Well, my friend they say time is a great healer so let’s hope so.
Lots of Love, Gerry
Paul's death was preventable.
Gerry's story shows the devastating impact the loss of a life to alcohol or drugs has on the family and friends left behind.
We have the power to create change, especially when we come together to take action. You can support this work by agreeing to the "See Beyond" pledge below.
“I pledge to be respectful and compassionate towards those affected by substance use, including the families and friends of those who have died from alcohol or drugs.
I will show respect by using kind and non-judgmental language about those affected by alcohol or drugs.
I will show compassion by reaching out to someone who has lost a loved one to alcohol or drugs and asking them how they are doing today.”
Thank you for making a difference.
We have compiled some resources to provide support to people who are affected by someone’s drug/alcohol use as well as those impacted by the death of a loved one due to drugs/alcohol.