Well, lets face it. This article stirred up a lot of consternation for sure. In it, it states more Americans are binge drinking than ever before, and it is causing many health problems, amongst other things.
Having had to go to ‘Addictions Counseling’ for my recent DUI, I’m kind of familiar with the subject. Quite frankly, more than one drink every two hours is binge drinking, as I have been taught. The minute you feel the slightest tingle its time to stop.
If there is a person out there that actually does this, I have not met them yet. Regardless of what the ‘experts’ say on how you are supposed to drink, its alcohol, man. What other reason is there to pour yourself a drink or open a bottle of beer except for the effect?
But according to my Addictions class, once you feel a teeny tingle, if you don’t stop you have a serious problem. You are an uneducated drinker and are putting yourself at risk mentally and physically. If you drink until you black out, you are literally causing brain damage, and whatever tiny part that dies during this you will never get back. And if you drink till you black out on a regular basis, you will change who you are over the years. You will never be the same person you were. And the nightmare about it is, you will miss your old self.
Actually, just so you know, the brain damage and personality changing facts are proven scientific facts. But if the rest is true, I’m seriously concerned, because I live in a country full of addicts. Isn’t that a nice thought?
Frankly, if you are going to have only one beer or one drink, why even bother? Beer and alcohol are acquired tastes, so to say that one drinks because they like the taste is not exactly true. Maybe NOW one likes the taste, but that person did not take their first beer or cocktail and say, YUMMY!! Even a nice Pena Colada is a little much for a first time drinker. So, with the exception of a nice bottle of wine, I don’t buy the whole ‘its cause I like the taste’ thing.
Nobody I know really thinks about if they are drinking right when they drink. They just drink. When I was younger, back in my drink 3 or 4 times a week at the club days, I don’t really recall thinking ‘Man, I need a drink.’ I drank because all my friends drank, and we would all meet at the bar and socialize. It was great. It wasn’t exactly a small club, and I knew literally hundreds of people. But you know, thinking back, I got drunk every time. A moderate night out at the club was 5 or 6 drinks. A heavy night was 10-15. It was pretty expensive too, come to think of it. And when it hit me in the wallet till I decided to stop and recoup, it was next to impossible to do so.
And that is the thing to remember about drinking. In addition to building up a tolerance for it, it is habit forming. If you have a problem going six months without drinking, you DO have an alcohol problem.
I am older now and don’t drink as I did in my younger days. Until my DUI last year, however, I was still stuck in the habit of going out at least once a week to socialize and drink. I am no different than anybody else, I binge drink. I drink for the effect. There is no other reason to drink, I mean, come on. But since my DUI, I don’t drink out anymore unless I take a cab or have someone to drive me. What was a weekly night out is now, quite frankly, once or twice a year. And even drinking at home, while I still have 3 or 4 drinks over maybe a couple hours, I only do it every three months or so. Because it IS habit forming. Stopping for a while as a condition of my Addictions Counseling made me realize that. And thinking back, I knew it when I was younger as well.
So if you are a binge drinker, which is more than one drink every 2 hours, ask yourself some questions. Can you stop for 6 months without a problem? Don’t just say sure, do it and prove it. Would stopping for a while drastically effect your social life? It shouldn’t. At all. If it does, your life and your friends revolve around alcohol. There’s a lot of life and a lot of things to do out there. And finally, have you found yourself short of cash because of a night out? You shouldn’t. That means your finances revolve around alcohol.
Does this sound harsh? Well, do what you want with your life. But alcohol is a drug, and like any drug, its sneaky. If your gonna play with it, you better know what your doing.
Writers note: Yea, it’s a sloppy write. I’m pretty caught up in life right now, and can barely find time to write, let alone edit and proof read. I appreciate your patience with thatJ