Editor’s note: TLAP offers confidential assistance for lawyers, law students, and judges with substance use or mental health issues. Call or text TLAP at 1-800-343-8527 (TLAP) or find more information at tlaphelps.org.

It’s hard to remember a time when I didn’t feel uniquely awful growing up—where I felt deserving of happiness, friendship, and love. I was a weird kid growing up, which probably made the isolation feel worse. But then I discovered alcohol. And alcohol was the miracle for which I had always been searching.