So, on any given football game on television, there are at least ten advertisements for alcoholic beverages.   Going to chain restaurants like Applebee’s and the drink lists are in attractive booklets with colorful photos to entice the buyer.  Five star restaurants come complete with a wine list, suggested for matching with your meal.  Either way, America has an alcoholic culture bubbling under the surface that makes it hard for those of us who don’t drink or be around alcohol to go anywhere cool and fun to eat, hang out and watch football, or just enjoy that rugby game at the local sports pub with friends.

The alcohol culture of America saturates everything, ads on buses, subways, trains, and cabs.  The night lights of the city in neon lights on the bar windows advertising a brand colorfully.  I’m lucky I live in Pennsylvania, my state doesn’t have alcohol products in grocery and convenience stores where I am bombarded with prices and sales on six packs of cans and bottles or forty ounce bottles.  Liquor waiting for fun afternoons and shots of pirates and the Baquardi family woes ad to the issue that I think infects America worse than any other disease…alcoholism.

In just about every rehabilitation program out there, they expect the addict to admit that they are powerless over the addiction, name a higher power, and work a twelve-step program that just doesn’t work for everybody; and by everybody, I mean me.  I have a hard time with accepting weakness.  I refuse to accept weakness against my alcoholism.  I have the willpower and the power necessary to overcome the need to drink.  Not everyone has this.  Not everyone can work my program and the twelve-step program works for them, which is good for them.  What is true for you is true for you.  It doesn’t erase the fact that everywhere you go, there’s some alcohol staring you in the face with temptation and the inner struggle to not give in to the taste of that cold beer or that shot of Jack.

How serious is it?  Pretty serious considering that alcohol is everywhere and when is it a good idea for alcohol not to be somewhere?  When should we separate the alcohol culture from our lives?  When the alcohol becomes a problem.  DUIs are serious, so are drinking and going to work, so are drinking and beating your mate, so is drinking and forgetting where and what you did the night before.  That’s when the alcohol culture needs to change for you.  It has become a destructive point in your life.  So destructive, you stole a guy’s prosthetic leg.  That’s when your life needs to change and you can find that help here and here.

America has its alcohol culture and it’s not bad for everyone, there are people out there who do drink responsibly and are good to go.  They don’t have a problem and go the rest of their lives without one.   Those of us who have a problem are the ones who look at the ads, the lights, the bottles and fight that inner demon who wants to destroy us one drink at a time.  Get the help you need if you need it.  Drinking is deadly to some and even deadly to others in DUI cases.  You have the power to quit and the day to quit is today.

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