Next week the youth of our ward are leaving for Youth Conference! (Look out Nauvoo!) And I ?ve got a question. How much Diet Coke is acceptable for me (the Young Women president) to drink on the trip? I drink Diet Coke. Lots of it.

For weeks now, I have intended to start cutting back, so that on the youth conference five full days on a large bus, sleeping in hotels I would not look like a crack addict searching for a fix every time we hit a truck stop. Now that we are two days away, I ?m thinking its kind of late to begin that process.

Most of my young women know that I drink the stuff. It ?s not something I really hide. Certainly my own daughters know. It ?s just that I don ?t want to admit to anyone including myself, really how much I drink. And just so you ?ve got the full picture, it ?s around 60-70 ounces a day. Heck that ?s not even two Big Gulps, once you count the ice, right? My problem is that as a Young Women president, I think I am supposed to show a better example.

So I have been racking my brain trying to figure out whether to try to hide it (I have been considering taking a couple of 12 packs in my suitcase. Do you think anyone would notice if I wear the same clothes every day?) or just come right out, grab that microphone in the front of the bus and announce, Welcome to the trip. I'm Sister H and I have a drinking problem. ? I ?m not really in love with either option.

At this point, it would be appropriate to use a paragraph or two about how addictions of any sort are bad, and it hurts us physically and spiritually, and convince you that I really understand that this is a problem. Really, I could do it, but can we just agree that I already know it ?s a problem? If we can skip the comments and emails telling me it ?s a problem, I could really use some advice.

Do you think that it ?s more important for the Young Women to see a better example, or for them to know that we all have things we are working on doing better? Or am I making this a bigger deal than it is? After all, I read my scriptures, don ?t swear in front of children, have a modest bathing suit, and even shave my legs. What ?s a little (or a lot of) Diet Coke?