I can really relate to the posts on here about substance abuse. I once was a recreational user of cocaine and also percoset and lortabs. I think noone can relate unless you've been there yourself first. I think looking back on it that my anxiety was the main factor in my drug use, which was never really heavy, only occasional. I stopped all pills and cocaine cold turkey 3 years ago after a severe overdose and major panic attack which led to hospitalization. I have been clean from cocaine since 2009. This was my wakeup call that the drugs were doing more harm than good, but sadly the root cause of my problem, my anxiety has never been addressed. In more recent years I have taken to carrying around a flask with bourbon or vodka in it for social situations, which I can take a swig from and feel braced to face whatever comes my way. I even did this the day I graduated college, which should have been a happy event, and it was, but I was so consumed by anxiety the morning of my graduation that I swigged bourbon in the parking lot before my family arrived and because I was so terrified of being around so many people at once. Of course I carry lots of strong mints and gum to mask the bourbon flavor. I only do this when I feel cornered, but I know self medicating isn't a good thing to do. The funny thing is I am NOT an alcoholic, and rarely drink except for special occasions. I only take a shot or swig when I feel cornered. I am on no medication and have not had any therapy. I was raised to think therapy is for weak people and I have tried my whole life to be strong and not burden anyone else with my problems, but I am wondering if I will have to be on medication for this terrible anxiety. I will NEVER consider using cocaine again, but I want to stop having to take a swig of bourbon when I am faced with a scary social situation. I tried zoloft and it made me feel really hyped up and gave me night terrors. I am hoping to try medication again but am scared I will have bad side effects.