“Don’t Drink And Math”: Student Reveals How They Recovered From Substance Abuse After Failing Math Class


Substance abuse is dangerous. It creeps on you slowly but can completely overwhelm your life if you let it. And this student did. Eventually, drinking and getting high started taking a toll on their personal life.

“Drugs and alcohol became an unhealthy coping mechanism,” the student who wanted to remain anonymous told Bored Panda. “I drank to become comfortably numb and deal with negative emotions. It got to a point where it was just continuous.”

Failing their math class was one of the warning signs. “I started going to AA meetings (I didn’t think I was ‘hardcore’ enough for AA since I only used marijuana, cocaine, and alcohol). I got a sponsor, and started working the steps.”

When they decided to rebuild their life, they knew honesty was the main material. The one that holds everything together. So, instead of making excuses, they told the truth, which really resonated with the professor who failed them.

“Dr. S is very warm and charming. She seems to genuinely care about her students and makes herself available outside of class to help students that are having trouble,” the student said.” She started a ‘Math Appreciation Society’ and often buys food for students with her own money. She sees it as her moral duty to help people.”

Below is their inspiring story, which shows just how far people can go when they talk to each other.

I remembered Dr. S said that if anyone failed Math 25 she would work with them for the rest of the semester. I went back to school after missing two weeks, asked if the offer still stood, and got to work immediately. I had a complete meltdown and ugly cried in front of her because I was so tired and frustrated. Turns out withdrawal is no fun and I was angry at myself because I felt years of alcohol and drug abuse had made me… dumb. I used to love math and I was good at it. Now I was struggling with things that should have been easy for me.

I felt I owed her an explanation after the ugly crying incident and wanted to give her an “out”. I knew I had earned my failing grade and didn’t deserve help.

Dr. S has been super kind and supportive. I met with her every day for the rest of the semester and did all of the exams over again. My withdrawal symptoms were relatively mild. My hands were a little shaky, I couldn’t sleep, and I couldn’t eat much of anything. Thankfully they didn’t last too long and with Dr. S’s help, I was able to get a lot done over the last month.

I took the final this morning and scored a 98. Now I’ve gone from an F to a B. This e-mail hit me in the feels and made me cry tears of joy. I got a B?!?!?! Thank you, Dr. S, for being so incredibly kind and patient with me.

People had a lot to say about the recovery



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