Yes, it is that time again. I’m back to talk about why drinking is bad for you. If you don’t believe me, Google “Why is drinking alcohol bad for your health” and open the first webpage that comes up. If I’m right, there is going to be a pretty good sized list why not to drink. My last post, I talked about how alcohol trashes your body. (No pun intended there.)
This week, I’m going to talk about how drinking can hurt your family.
If you drink more than one* alcoholic beverage a day, have you ever stopped to think about your family? Be it your wife, your kids, your husband, your parents, etc. So maybe you’re single and live by yourself, no friends, no job, basically no real life. But, for argument’s sake, you’re married with two kids, okay?
You come home from one heck of a day at the office and have a beer to start things off. Apparently you think this ‘shot of courage’ is going to ease some stress. During dinner, you partake in a couple glasses of wine, because come on, you’re having pasta for dinner, and all real Italians drink wine by the bottle, right? Well, by the time your favorite TV show comes on, you’re feeling invincible. But what kind of drunk are you? Loud and obnoxiously talkative? Angry and abusive? Stupid, yet you think you’re having a ball and are the life of the party? Feeling like you need to pick a fight, not caring with whom or what the consequences might be?
You’re family may not say anything to you like, “You’re drunk, you moron.” “Go sleep it off; you’re being a bad influence to our son.” “I’m not talking to you anymore.” or “I hate you when you drink.” But have you ever considered what they might be thinking on the inside? Behind their masks of normality? Can you feel their pain and sorrow? Don’t you see that when you drink, you are not you anymore? And your loved ones have to live with a person who looks like you but is a completely different, and probably worse, shadow of your true self. When you drink, that is all you are. A shadow. A reflection. A mindless being, aimlessly controlled by hard liquor.
Perhaps you and your spouse both drink. Put yourself in your kid’s shoes; “Why is Mommy and Daddy talking like that? Why are they so loud? What is wrong with them? They’re scaring me!” Is that any kind of life for a child to have to live? A better question to ask is: do I want my child to drink? Am I okay that she/he takes to drinking alcohol? Do you want your sixteen year old daughter to assume it is alright to go out parting with her friends and come home completely drunk? No, that’s wrong, isn’t it. You may argue, a sixteen year old is too young to drink! Okay, here’s another example: your twenty-one year old son goes out to a bar with one of his buddies and gets plastered. He then gets behind the wheel to come home. I’ll let you finish the story. Maybe he makes it home safe, no problems. Or maybe he gets pulled over and his license is revoked. Or he could get in an accident and someone loses with life. Whatever the case, you are to blame. When a child grows up in a house where alcohol is drunk as freely as water or soda pop, what kind of message is he/she getting?
Come on guys. Choose. Your loving spouse and adorable toddlers, or that shot of whiskey. Which one can make you happy for longer than the next twenty minutes? What are you really getting out of that little shooter? Yes, maybe your ‘happy place’ was when you were twenty-five, hanging out by a bonfire, music blaring in the background, with your friends passing around the bottle, but think of now. Do you think that trying to recreate those days here with your family is wise? No. it is not. You’re driving a wedge between yourself and those people who should mean the world to you. Think about it. Maybe you should just have a nice glass of lemonade from your kiddo’s lemonade stand, or a cup of imaginary tea with your little princess.
* “One drink” breakdown as follows:
12 oz of beer (one can or bottle)
10 oz wine cooler (one bottle)
¼ oz of hard liquor (rum, whiskey, vodka, etc.)
4.5 oz wine (small glass)