"There's nothing wrong with drinking. We're only having fun."
I’ve heard this many times throughout my adult life, and I agree to a certain extent. There’s nothing wrong with consuming a couple of drinks while socializing with family or friends. However, it becomes an issue when you do not know when enough is enough and you transform into someone you are not. In addition, you realize your urge for alcohol increases.
Enjoying a couple of drinks appeared harmless to me since I came from a family where many of the members consumed alcohol during family gatherings. But when one of my relatives grew dependent on alcohol to deal with his everyday problems and his inappropriate behavior damaged the dynamics between his spouse and children, I realized how easy it is for someone to lose himself. Even though the family remains together today, the journey to mend the broken pieces took a lot of hard work and support.
Alcohol abuse is a serious matter from which many shun away. It is hard to admit you have a dependency on alcohol and you are losing control of who you are. Drinking doesn’t only affect you, but your spouse and children. When children see their parent inebriated all of the time, there is a possibility they will follow in the same footsteps. They will believe alcohol solves problems.
If you are showing any of the following signs below, chances are alcohol is already tearing you and your family apart.
You begin to shut down lines of communication with your spouse and don't relate your problems or concerns the way you once did. Instead of seeking support in the one person who has had your best interest at heart all this time, you choose to turn to the bottle.
Suddenly the things that never bothered you before begin to do so. You feel as if your emotions are out of control, and you are easily overwhelmed. But, you ignore those feelings and pursue drinking. In your mind, a few drinks will calm you down. It will numb you, and you will gain control, again. Unfortunately, that is not the case.
When you are not drinking, everything around you is annoying. Your mind is preoccupied, and you have no time to listen to what your children have to report or what your wife has to share with you. Work appears more annoying than usual. You come off nasty and respond abruptly.
Whether you are drinking at that moment or not, you begin to experience mood swings. One minute you are sweet and ready to take on the day with a positive attitude. The next minute, something strikes you the wrong way and you immediately react negatively. You become grumpy and put a damper on the day.
For no reason at all, you are inclined to start an argument with your spouse about something you have discussed in the past or pick on her for something she is wearing or not doing. Perhaps, you get angry with your children for not having all their homework done at a certain time or you feel they are taking a longer break in between chores.
If alcohol is dividing you and your family, do not hesitate to seek help through a support group for alcoholism or family therapy. A family’s bond is worth saving.
Mayra Colón is a freelance writer, former independent author and avid reader. She holds a MBA from the University of Phoenix and completed the Freelance Writing and Selling Online course from Rutgers University of Arts and Sciences.