Mother-of-two Susan Lung was arrested after police found her passed out in her car, parked in a bus zone in Sydney’s North Shore in November 2017.
Lung was nine-times over the legal limit, blowing 0.445 which was one of the highest blood alcohol readings in NSW history.
Speaking to 60 Minutes, the 42-year-old recalls that fateful day, and the events that led to her arrest.
That morning, her husband of 24 years had told her he was leaving her, so, after dropping her two kids, she pulled her car over, not realising she was parked in a bus zone.
“(I was) just sitting there thinking, ‘What’s happened to my life? Where did it go wrong?’”
“And then I remembered that I had wine in the back, so I just pulled it into the front and just took the first sip, and then from there I think it just went downhill.”
Lung drank almost two casks of wine between 10am and 12:30pm, however she insists she didn’t break the law.
“It’s not illegal to sit in your car and drink,” said Lung.
Controversially Lung didn’t lose her licence because police couldn’t prove that she had driven the car in those last two hours and the police reportedly did not follow proper protocol so therefore her breath test was deemed inadmissible.
I would have probably just slept it off,” she said when asked what would have happened if police hadn’t arrived.
“I wouldn’t have drove, I know I wouldn’t have, because I always have my kids on my mind. I wouldn’t do that,” she said.
Lung says the news of her marriage falling apart along with the pressures of motherhood all became too much.
“Working full time, doing the kids, never having a day off… it’s hard,” she said.
Dr Janice Withnall, an expert in alcohol abuse tells 60 Minutes Australia is in the midst of a national health crisis with nearly one in four Australian women aged between 35 and 59 consuming dangerous levels of alcohol.
The rate of women being charged with drink driving is also on the rise.
If you or someone you now needs help with alcohol or substacne abuse contact Lifeline for 24/7 support on 13 11 14 or visit the website at lifeline.org.au. If it’s an emergency, call 000.
This article originally appeared on Marie Claire.