Seventeen-year-old Jess is a self-confessed binge-drinker. As My Big Decision, part of BBC Three’s Adult Season, continues, Jess embarks on a journey of self-discovery with her mum and gran.
Taking a break from everyday life, the three women embark on a five-day road trip across the UK, immersing themselves in their subject matter. Offering help and support throughout the experience, it’s the last chance the older women have to persuade Jess to think about making the right choice about her drinking.
Strong-willed and self-confident when sober, Jess says she’s even more emboldened when drunk and often consumes two to three weeks of units in just a few hours. But her drinking is having a negative affect on all aspects of her life, from work and family to her love life.
Mum Jane believes Jess’s attitude towards the bottle is of real concern and, as a nurse, she knows the damages that alcohol can cause. Despite her mum’s warnings, though, Jess is intent on enjoying a boozy youth.
As a non-drinker, gran Valerie’s stance on alcohol and how to enjoy yourself couldn’t be further removed from that of her granddaughter.
On their journey, the family are introduced to people and situations that are designed to get them talking openly and honestly in order to help inform their decision.
Jess and her family meet a consultant liver specialist to examine a healthy and a damaged liver; visit an A&E department on a Saturday night; speak to staff and residents of a “wet hostel” in Leeds; and hear first-hand about the disastrous effects of drink-driving.
Jess also visits an outdoors centre where she meets some inspirational and sober young girls who spend their free time outdoors.
Finally, after five days on the road, have the shared experiences had any affect on what Jess will decide?
My Big Decision is part of BBC Three’s Adult Season on TV and online.
Thursday 6 August
9.00-10.00pm BBC THREE