; I had my first drink at the age of 9 – Zoleka Mandela – The Citizen

I had my first drink at the age of 9 – Zoleka Mandela

WARRIOR. Zoleka Mandela hopes to save lives by raising more awareness about breast cancer. Picture: Refilwe Modise

WARRIOR. Zoleka Mandela hopes to save lives by raising more awareness about breast cancer. Picture: Refilwe Modise

The granddaughter of Winnie Mandela has been candid about her journey to sobriety and is set to celebrate this milestone in August.

Taking to Instagram, Zoleka chronicled how she had begun drinking at the very young age of 9 and how she had moved on to toxic substance abuse.

“By the age of 13 – I was an alcoholic and a cigarette smoker, that led to experimenting with marijuana at 13 … then laced weed, ecstacy, magic mushrooms, kat, heroine, prescription drugs (anti depressants) with alcohol and a decade long addiction to cocaine that gave me the high I was looking for (sic),” she wrote.

A mother of two, Zoleka is also an author who has detailed her drug abuse and sex addiction in her autobiography, When Hope Whispers, which is considered a bestseller.

“I may be well into my recovery, but the actual damage, humiliation, disrespect and pain I have caused my family and children remains irreparable. I’m smiling right this moment because I know that although I may never be able to right my wrongs, I can use my life to remind people that they can make better choices – they can look at my life as a cautionary tale and be grateful that it is not too late for them,” she wrote.

 

August this year will mark another milestone! I had my first drink at the age of 9, by the age of 13 – I was an alcoholic and a cigarette smoker, that led to experimenting with marijuana at 13 … then laced weed, ecstacy, magic mushrooms, kat, heroine, prescription drugs (anti depressants) with alcohol and a decade long addiction to cocaine that gave me the high I was looking for. It came at a unfortunate cost, being too drunk or when the effects of it wore off – depression and suicidal thoughts and behaviour consumed me. I became violent and emotionally abusive towards others, participated in criminal activities. I may be well into my recovery but the actual damage, humiliation, disrespect and pain I have caused my family and children remains irreparable. I’m smiling right this moment because I know that although I may never be able to right my wrongs, I can use my life to remind people that they can make better choices – they can look at my life as a cautionary tale and be grateful that it is not too late for them. A survivor of physical and sexual abuse, my life is no different from that of someone else who has not been afforded the platforms to use their voice, one they may not think they have – I never thought I had one, I never knew that what they did to me was never my fault. After abusing drugs and alcohol for 17yrs … In 4 months time, I’ll be proudly celebrating my 7th year of sobriety and in support of all those negatively impacted by addiction to say that it is never too late to rewrite your life story! #NeverTooLateToRewriteYourLifeStory #WhenHopeWhispers #ZolekaMandelaFoundation #DrugAddiction #RecoveringAddict #Alcoholic #DrugAddict #Sobriety #SurvivorOfSexualAbuse #SurvivorOfPhysicalAbuse #LivingSober #SoberLife #Rehabilitation

A post shared by Zoleka Mandela (@zolekamandela) on

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http://http://citizen.co.za/your-life/your-life-entertainment-your-life/entertainment-celebrities/1478090/after-spending-r2m-on-drugs-brickz-makes-a-comeback/

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