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Jake Bailey: Why I'm over getting drunk

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I don't really drink much these days. I think I've had three beers and two wines so far this year. I haven't been intoxicated more than twice in the past 2 years or thereabouts.

There's a few reasons behind it, but to name some: my girlfriend doesn't drink any more often than I do, I can't stand the feeling of being hungover because it reminds me a bit of what being on chemo felt like, I reckon sparkling water is quite nice, and mainly, because I just don't want to.

I haven't got the motivation. It's not really a health choice, or even a conscious decision I made; I just don't feel like it.

To be honest, I feel like I've got it out of my system.

Back in 2015, I drank exorbitant amounts of alcohol on the weekends. It wasn't regularly or often, it was always and without fail. There would be a handful of weekends in 2015 before my cancer diagnosis where I didn't 'binge drink', as it is defined by the government. In fact, there would be a handful of weekends where I didn't meet that definition twice over.

This isn't something I'm proud to admit. It's not something I'm ashamed to admit either. It is an action I took, a decision I made, which I now look back on and can recognise that it was wrong.

But it is a problem that is facing NZ, particularly teenagers, and so I'm happy to stick my neck out and........

© New Zealand Herald