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posted Mar 16, 2017, 8:03 AM by PHS Warrior Beat

By: Rebeka Kline


    When Brian Menish was a teenager, he would always get drunk at parties. He is now a 27 year old, and according to CNN News, Menish used alcohol to cope with his parents divorce and socialize with people.

    "When I got drunk for the first time, it felt like the key, a magical key to be able to relate to people, talk to people and have them like me for me."  he told CNN, and “I thought it [parents divorce] was my fault. I went into really hardcore drugs and alcohol because I didn't know how to cope with those feelings and emotions,"

    His parents sent him to attend a school for kids with emotional and substance problems. There, he discovered painting.

    "This art teacher at this school in Utah really brought my skill to my attention. If not for that person in my life, I don't think I would be here today." explained Menish.

    But after half of year of not drinking during his time at the program, he suffered a downfall. "The day I got back, I went out with my friends and got so drunk, they had to carry me in and put me into bed. I didn't miss a beat. I was the same exact person I was when I left." he said.

    A year later, he went through a traumatic experience that changed the way he thought. He went out drinking with some friends, and decided to go to the ATM to money for more alcohol. Menish told CNN that on his motorcycle, He was turning around a road too fast and went over a guardrail. He hit a tree and split his skull. Part of his brain had to be removed after being too damaged. He learned to walk and talk again, but his painting skills with his right hand suffered. He was no longer able to paint small details.

    "I've put in so much time and effort into painting. What am I going to do?" Menish asked his mom. What she said gave him idea. She suggested that he try painting with his left hand, and that's exactly what he did.

    "Even though my style was much looser, it felt great to be painting again. I kinda liked, and still like, my style now almost better than my detailed drawings and paintings." he said.

    After four years and a couple of addiction programs, Menish decided he wanted to get alcohol out of his life and commit to art school. "I'm making good grades, which is not what I could've done when I was drinking and using. It makes me feel really good, because I didn't consider myself remotely smart. I had really low self-esteem."

    Currently at three years sober, Menish plans to finish community college and take a fine arts program at California University.

    "I still can't talk very well without stumbling on my words. I communicate with a canvas now. It brings me a lot of peace just knowing that I can contribute something good to society."

    CNN reporter Amy Chillang described Menish as a handsome young man, with a noticeable limp and “a smile that lights up a room.” She said that Menish completed a triathlon in December, including swimming 9/10ths of a mile, biking 26 miles, and running 10 kilometers.

    Brian’s advice for recovering addicts of any kind: "The only person who would give up on you is yourself. We're not going to give up on you.


Edited by: BT

Uploaded on: 03/16/2017

Source: http://www.cnn.com/2017/01/13/health/alcohol-addiction-turning-points-brian-menish/index.html