Column: One more drink from disaster

Since people say bad choices may lead to good stories, it’s easy to see why drinking alcohol is glorified by the media and the general public. But the reality of binge drinking is mostly drunken stupors, unintelligible words and horrible decisions.

Alcohol consumption is portrayed as such a great time in media. People are usually seen with red solo cups and a big smile on their face while loud music blares on throughout the night in a cramped space. It’s an opportunity to share some laughs with friends and create memories that will last a lifetime. But what happens after that? When the lights go back up and the party is cleaned out, what happens to all the drunk party goers? Some have a good time, but many do not. 

The difference between creating fantastic memories and horrible nightmares, when it comes to alcohol, is the ability to refuse to say “one more drink.” 

Since I’m usually the first to stop drinking during the night, I’ve witnessed many of my friends under the influence. While some of them simply become an unstoppable force of humor, most of the time they just stumble around and lose all sense of balance and direction. One time, especially, I had a drunk friend simply run out, which caused my other friends and I to worry greatly about where he ran off to. He fortunately returned safely to his dorm, but it could’ve been a situation that turned for the worse.

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As a friend, it’s my responsibility to take care of them while in their drunken state. While I do get a good laugh here and then, I feel bad for how awful they feel when they emerge from their drunken state. They complain of mind-numbing headaches and non-stop vomiting. 

Being under the influence also causes people to continue making questionable decisions. Decision-making skills are anything but optimal when drunk. People make regrettable decisions ranging from professing their still-undying love to an ex to actually going behind the wheel and getting in an accident. 

While the euphoria you get while under the influence can be an experience unlike any other, that short moment of ecstasy isn’t worth risking a lifetime of regret for something you didn’t even really mean to do.

According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), 10,265 people died in drunk driving crashes in 2015. 

Can you imagine? At one moment, you think you’re having the time of your life. In the next moment, you lose your life or end up taking somebody else’s—and you have to live with that guilt for the rest of your life.

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If not drunk driving, then let’s not forget about complications of alcohol-related sexual assault cases. In colleges, sexual assault often occurs when both parties are under the influence. It’s hard to determine consent when the brain is numbed by alcohol. 

According to a survey by Antonia Abbey, Ph.D. in the Department of Community Medicine in Wayne State University, at least 50 percent of college students’ assaults are associated with alcohol use. In one instant, you could not only ruin your life but also devastate that of someone else’s. 

The common thread about the negative repercussions of excessive alcohol consumption is that it doesn’t only affect the user but another party also. The tragic part is that they never asked for anything to happen to them. It’s important to think about what all can happen when the decision is made to drink heavily one night. 

Think hard, for it’s difficult to predict what the outcome may be. You never know how your life could change when you go for just “one more drink”.


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