We are all for having a great time on New Year’s Eve and even downing a few drinks, and if you’ve been following our blog you’d know that we only too often crack jokes about being a bunch of drunks (yeah right, jokes). But in all seriousness, we want to take the time to advise all of you out there to be responsible as you head out tonight.
Like we said, almost everyone enjoys a drink on New Year’s Eve, and alcohol plays a big part in this annual tradition. There is nothing wrong with that. But as we logged on to our computers this morning we stumbled upon an article in The Guardian that really made us stop and think. Alcohol can be a huge problem for individuals and families, and can tear lives apart.
Statistics from the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence show that alcohol is the most commonly used addictive substance in the United States. That may not be surprising to many, considering that it is a legal substance that is easy to get a hold of. What is more alarming is that 17.6 million people, or one in twelve adults, suffer from alcohol dependence or abuse. Millions more engage in risky drinking behavior that could lead to alcohol problems, and more than half of all American adults have a family history of alcoholism or problem drinking.
But the problem doesn’t only concern adults; children are also very vulnerable to problems concerning alcoholism. More than seven million children in the United States live in a household with at least one parent who suffers from dependence or has abused alcohol.
While we don’t want to be the stick in the mud or the party pooper, we think it is important that we all stay aware of the importance of responsible drinking. We aren’t going to sit here and tell you that alcohol is bad and that the world would be a better place without it. Neither are we going to say that it is the cause of, or serves as a gateway to, alcohol dependence or substance abuse, because we honestly aren’t experts on the field.
But what we will say is that we should all be aware of how alcohol can be a real problem for some people, and that we should keep that in mind as we raise our glasses tonight. Also, consider the above statistics and make the effort to reach out to your friends and family. or anyone that you think might be at risk. Offer your support to them, and help to point them in the right direction.
If you are someone who is directly affected by alcohol abuse or dependence, please reach out to the people close to you. There are plenty of support networks out there, and you don’t need to face the struggle alone. Follow this link for more info on how to get help for yourself or someone close to you, and please remember to stay safe as you celebrate tonight. Happy New Year.