Have you been thinking that you should stop, but you can’t seem to ever follow through, maybe I can help. Call Joseph Phillips at 260.206.0809.
Joseph Phillips went into his meeting with the Fort Wayne Ink Spot with a note scribbled on his notepad: a question for and a call-to-action to anyone suffering from drug addiction and alcoholism.
“Our young blacks have been run over by drugs and alcohol,” Phillips said.
Phillips wasn’t trying to get his picture in the newspaper. He was trying to guide. “If you want to call that number, I can help you,” he said. “I want God to step into a room when I speak with someone.”
The 57-year-old retiree stands tall and sober for two years and three months. He attends six Alcoholic Anonymous meetings and church twice each week. “I’ve been an alcoholic since I was nine years old,” Phillips said. “And I lived my whole life hiding the secret.”
Phillips was a functioning alcoholic, working in the medical field for 33 years, but “the whole time I was hiding my bottle to the side,” he said. He did fine work but five minutes after he got off the job, he’d be consuming alcohol; he would down two quarts of hard liquor per day.
But the job always kept the beast at bay because functioning meant cutting it off by 9 at night. When Phillips retired at 52, and the same amount of money coming in, “life became a bigger party, and it almost killed me,” he said.
The party escalated on May 22, 2016 when a drunk-sick Phillips couldn’t even make it inside his house; his cousin found him laid out on a chair on his porch. Previously, he never sought hospital help; he worked in the medical industry and, he couldn’t be found out.
After retiring, “I don’t have to lie anymore,” he said. When the nurse greeted him, Phillip responded: “I’m sick. I’m an alcoholic. I need help.”
Three days later, home from the hospital, Phillips woke up in his own bed to pray. “Whatever happens, don’t let me be foolish enough to take a drink again and keep me sober,” he said. He wakes every day the same way.
In his sober years, Phillips has seen three of his friends die from their addictions, including a friend Jody who admitted to drinking as a result of getting angry at work. Philipps said his friend “let the gate open. It’s like getting hit by a train. And the only way to stop that is not to stay on the tracks.”
If you need help with drug and alcoholic addiction, call Joe Phillips at 260.206.0809.