Why 23-year-old TV personality D'Angelo Martin gave up alcohol

Current affairs journalist D’Angelo Martin has opened up about the journey that led him to give up alcohol. 

The 23-year-old, who is a reporter for Three’s The Hui, says when he was at high school he would drink every weekend. 

“Friday, drink. Saturday, drink,” he told Re’s reo Māori series Ohinga. “Sunday was the day to reset and get ready for another week. My drinking habits were pretty bad.”

“The reason may have been because I was following my family, friends and the older generation. That was them every weekend too, so what am I to do?”

After the birth of his son, D’Angelo says he began considering what kind of role model he wanted to be. 

This shift was further cemented after he received his puhoro - a traditional tattoo extending from the waist to the knees. To celebrate its completion, his mates picked up some boxes of beer - it was then that D’Angelo decided he didn’t want to drink alcohol anymore.

“So yeah, I said to my mates: ‘that's me, I’m done drinking,” he says. 

“That night I thought: ‘maybe this is the way for me, maybe this is my path now’.”

“I want to live how our ancestors did: the way they would think and see the world, that's the way I want to do things now.”

And, he says, there’s an added bonus: “It’s a great feeling to wake up in the morning - you feel good and aren’t left wondering what you did the night before”.

A NZ Health Survey for 2019/2020 found almost 60% of teenagers in Aotearoa reported drinking alcohol in the past year. It also found a significant increase in hazardous drinking among this age group.

D’Angelo has this advice for those considering giving up booze: “You really need to think to yourself: what is my stance and purpose in this world?”.

“One strategy is to start opening up these hard conversations about drugs and alcohol with your family. If you really want to quit: be strong, be brave and be committed.”

This is part of our reo Māori series, Ohinga, created by Mahi Tahi Media, with funding from Te Māngai Pāho and the NZ on Air Public Interest Journalism Fund.

E hāngai ana tēnei ki tā mātau whakaaturanga reo Māori, ki a Ohinga. He mea mahi nā Mahi Tahi, he mea tautoko nā Te Māngai Pāho me te Puna Pūtea ‘Public Interest Journalism’ a Irirangi Te Motu anō hoki.

Stay tuned for a new episode every week.

Hoki mai anō kia kite ai i tētahi hōtaka hou.

More stories:

Is the yardie dead? Inside 21st birthdays in Aotearoa

We made a documentary series about 21st birthdays and there’s somehow not a single yardie.

You can catch Covid-19 twice in one month: Reinfection explained

“As long as we have more than one variant circulating, there will be a risk of reinfection.”

Celebrating Eid in NZ: Fashion, food and family

"Everyone wears the nicest clothes they have or they’ll buy new outfits or dress however they want."