Murat: Sober and Loving It
Growing up in the conservative Muslim nation of Turkey, Murat had no gay role models or any understanding of his sexuality. When he was 17, he had his first sexual experience with a man, and he thought they might be the only two people in the world who were doing this. He left Turkey for Saudi Arabia to discover a thriving underground gay scene. It wasn’t until he arrived in the United States that he understood what it meant to be out and proud.
While living in Los Angeles, his newfound freedom introduced him to crystal meth. The drug took over his life, and he eventually lost everything. For two years Murat slept on the streets and dealt drugs. After getting arrested, he had to choose between jail or rehab.
“Meth makes you care about nothing else,” Murat recalls. “Choosing rehab was the best decision I ever made.”
His quiet apartment, provided through the Alliance, has a small balcony outside his bedroom. It is the perfect refuge while he works to regain his health, and you can bet he keeps it tidy.
“I am a Virgo, so I like to be organized,” he explains.
He has now been sober for five years and is active in recovery meetings, speaking at them whenever he can. He has a new goal now: to restart his life. He is thinking of enrolling in classes in the next academic year to become an accountant. Still, he takes it one day at a time.