Chocoholism. Is there any portmanteau more misleading in the English language? (It is English, isn’t it? Should’ve fact checked that…)
The word just sounds so fun. So silly. Something cute that a child sings while skipping to school.
And yet it is also a horrible affliction currently tearing my family apart in unimaginable ways.
Until now, I’ve been wrestling with my chocoholism in private. But it’s time face this decadent demon out in the open. And so, for the first time ever, I have decided to confess to all the ways in which my chocolate addiction is casually destroying my family…
I’ve lost my family’s trust – the most important thing a family can give you
As my long suffering wife and children have learned, I cannot be left alone with chocolate. If it’s anywhere in the vicinity, there’s no use trying to save it for a later date. That chocolate will be eaten. It could be a wedding cake or some kind of religious wafer… if it’s made out of chocolate, it’s going into my tummy.
As a result…
Chocolate can’t be in the house at any time under any circumstances
Given how dangerous it is, this feels like a positive to me. But my family loves chocolate. They don’t love it to the terrifying degree that I do, but they would like to have it around as a tasty little treat now and again.
But they can’t.
Because I can’t control myself.
If there is chocolate in the house, it must only be the darkest of the dark – and only tiny amounts
But the fact is that dark chocolate is the easiest on the system. The body can process dark chocolate much more easily than all the other kinds. And in small amounts it can even be good for your heart or whatever.
(In large amounts it can also kill you!)
But, as discussed, whatever amount there is available, I will be eating all of it. So if there’s only a small amount, no one gets hurt.
I have torn apart my home – my home! – in search of hidden chocolate
There are things you can tell about my wife by just looking at her. Like if there is chocolate in the house, for example. All you have to do is ask her. At first, she’ll lie – a common maneuver of a chocolate-hider. But then you’ll see a drip of sweat come down her forehead and you know she’s brought chocolate into the home and she regrets it - because she knows what comes next:
I am going to rummage turn the entire place upside down to find it. And when I do, I’m going to eat all of it. It doesn’t matter who’s screaming or crying – I won’t hear any of it. I’ll only hear the voice in my head that tells me to eat until it hurts.
Baking with chocolate needs to be done under cover of night
Normally, baking is something that brings families together. So many movies feature amusing flour fights and children laughing and whistling and smelling baked goods.
Not in my home.
If anything is baked with chocolate – cake, cookies, banana bread - I will eat all of it before anyone has the chance to scream “That’s for charity!”.
So baking has to be done in some off site underground lab I don’t know about, Breaking Bad-style.
I have taken chocolate from my children – my children!
I love my children. And in theory, I love my children more than I love chocolate.
In practice, you would be forgiven for thinking otherwise.
If I eat all my ice cream first – which is almost always the case because my children eat slowly and sensibly and I eat like a monster coming out of hibernation - I will start digging into their bowls. I will take another bite of their ice cream sandwich. I will finish one child’s cake when he’s not looking and convince him that his brother did it, sewing sibling discord and resentment.
My house is a house of fear – and disappointment
At this point, my family knows what happens to me when there’s chocolate around. Have you seen the movie A Quiet Place? That’s what it’s like – except with chocolate.
First Halloween chocolate disappears – then comes the lies
At the end of every October, my children get very excited about dressing up and asking strangers for candy. It’s a genuine delight to watch them sort through the treasure from what is surely the sweetest of holidays.
A few days later, they’ll notice that a lot of the chocolate is missing.
What happens next is a bout of falsehoods and gaslighting so bold and brazen they could be confused with official statements from the Trump administration.
“Daddy didn’t eat your Halloween chocolate.”
“Halloween doesn't exist.”
“You’ve been robbed!”
We are running out of money
Look, I'm not a "financial expert", so I couldn't tell you how much my chocolate addiction has impacted my current fiduciary predicament. What I do know is that a pint of Ben & Jerry’s costs approximately $300 AUD, which is, in its own way, a Crime Against Families.
And so I’m compelled to tell you that I need to borrow $8,000. No questions asked. No strings attached.
I’ve spent a great deal of time in prison
A prison of the mind! A mind obsessed with chocolate...
For more chocolate-related agony, follow Nick Bhasin on Twitter.
To better get to know the people expertly enabling chocolate addiction all over the world, watch Secrets of the Chocolate Factory: Inside Cadburys at SBS On Demand: