Given the recent correspondence on the issue of alcohol addiction in rural Ireland, Miriam has received a letter addressing another form of addiction.

“I read your column today with great interest and intrigue about living with addiction. I don't live with an addict but could relate to what some of the people were saying,” says the letter writer.

“The addiction that everyone is most familiar with is that of alcoholism, but people are not so familiar with other addictions such as drugs, food, work and gambling that can also affect people's lives so negatively. There is one more which I am also battling with and it is that of sex addiction.

"Many will think this to be farcical, but in reality it's not because it's an addiction. And when one is addicted they are not in control, which in turn leads to the addiction taking over that person’s life and that is where I am.”

The letter writer goes on to describe the loneliness of his addiction.

“I know what I am doing is wrong, not only for myself but for everyone around me, for the hearts that I break never allowing them to see this side of me, cutting them out of my life if they get too close, but I continue to do it, after telling myself I will stop time and time again. I lead a double life. I live away from home, and I don't have one friend outside of my work which in turn makes me a very lonely person. Because I prioritise my addiction, it rules my spare time.

“Am I going to be like this forever? Will I grow into a lonely old person with no one noticing when I die? What would my family think if they knew? I have so many worries going round in my head every day, sometimes I feel so lost. I'm in my twenties and successful with my career, but my life is so empty.”

Miriam will share her advice in Irish Country Living, on shelves on 30 January, but in the meantime we’d like to know what would you do if you or a loved one was in a similar situation?