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The Addiction

Growing up, my dad has always been a TV watcher. The television on every night, and because he is really into professional sports, there is always a football, baseball, basketball or football game on, depending on what season it is. With the sports stations, come the same old beer/ alcoholic drink commercials. Of all the commercials that have been broadcasted, the most annoying commercial has always been the old man who has an alcoholic drink in his hand and says ‘I don’t normally drink, but when I do…”

In the American culture we live in, alcoholism seem to be a big part of our everyday lives. With all the bars, and the sports, it is the natural habitat to drink. Although some people don’t drink all the time, people seem the most intrigued by the commercials with hot, skinny supermodels. It makes the drink look more attractive, so more people will buy it. For this commercial, it makes a guy look like he can get a bunch of hot girls just by having that drink. To me, it seems that we Americans rely very heavily on television ads to be told what the most popular drinks are. If we don’t see a commercial that has a particular drink, we won’t get that drink. We seem to follow what is “In Style” and keep up with the trends. When we are caught drinking something not advertised, we often scope out what is being advertised and start drinking that. The biggest combination with drinking is either partying and drinking or watching sports and drinking. Both incidents often lead to people getting drunk, especially at parties. It then leads to a very messy situation. Although I have never been near a bar and seen that happen, I have seen it in the movies and makes me think how scary that must be to be in that situation. It also makes me think how grateful I am that I can’t drink yet, and I vow to myself that I will never get into a scary situation like that.

When I first saw that commercial, I wasn’t bothered by it. I just though, oh, it’s just another drinking commercial. But now, after seeing it about a thousand and one times, it’s irksome. I’m only 19, so I can’t drink. But every time I see the commercial, I think, why alcoholic beverage commercials? Watching it, I know it is trying to make drinking more attractive. But from the experiences that I’ve seen, I have come to find that alcoholism is anything but pretty.

Though I haven’t personally experienced alcoholism with my parents, I have ben involved in a situation where a friend of mine’s dad is alcoholic. In the fall of 2012, my friends dad had a misfortune and as soon as my friend and his mom found out, his dad started acting differently and relying on drinking to cover up the situation, but it only made the situation worse. Every time his dad came home drunk, it traumatized my friend. Then, from his constant phone calls, it made me realize how much alcoholism can affect a person, physically and emotionally. As well as recently, over winter break, one of my mom’s friends also has an alcoholism problem. He went out drinking one night, and when he came back to my mom’s house, he was stumbling drunk and talking nonsense, and blamed me for things that weren’t true. It scared me, because only once before I had been around someone who drank a lot, so I feared that my mom’s friend was going to hurt me, but thankfully my mom didn’t let that happen and I had to leave her house for the night. Through these experiences, now when I see that commercial, it doesn’t just irk me, it upsets me too.

Through these few experiences, I feel grateful for the protection I have had, that this hasn’t been a dominate occurrence in my life. Though, after especially the experience with my friend, I worry for him often, hoping that never happens again. Though he has grown up in that kind of environment, I can only hope that things can get better for him. The one thing I have learned about alcoholism is you never know when the person will get drunk again, which makes it the most scary. That is what happened with my friend. He never knew when his dad would come home drunk, so the days when he would call would be very up in the air. Making those four months very unpredictable. Never knowing if it had been a good or bad day with him. But I soon found out that when he called, it would be a bad day, which could happen a few days in a row. But on the off chance I was able to call him; I would assume it was a good day, unless he said anything. Now, after that experience, I know I will never drink and become an alcoholic. As for my friend, from that experience he has told me he will never follow in his fathers footsteps and become an alcoholic. I can only hope as he will be able to drink legally this year that he sticks to being a nonalcoholic. Or I will fear for his life every day.




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