A Family History of Addiction

Alcoholism or alcohol-use disorder, is considered to be a hereditary trait by many. Some scientific studies suggest that there is a gene for alcoholism. Some scientists and psychologists are convinced that addictive behaviors are traced back to early childhood trauma, neglect and the effect that both have on our developing brain. Others suggest that addiction is based primarily in the use of substances designed to addict. If you drink often enough you will become addicted. No matter what your family history of addiction.

My 19-year-old daughter is getting ready to leave for University. She came home from a full-on day recently and had a sort of exhausted, on the verge of tears, look about her. The kind of look that only comes after a day that started in the wee hours and rolled relentlessly on with issue after issue needing attention. It was a very adult sort of day and a little voice in the back of my mind almost jumped out and offered her a glass of wine. An adult solution to the stress of life.

That would be a normal reaction for many people and certainly, it would have been for me five years ago, but I stopped drinking when my daughter was 15. One of the many reasons that I stopped drinking and stayed stopped was that I finally accepted that, in my behavior every day, I was teaching my kids that wine was the solution to all of life’s ups and downs. If they never saw me wind down in the evening without a drink how would they learn a different way to be. Coming from a family with a history of addiction that was the only solution that I had learned.

I made a choice to rewrite the narrative in my family by finally modeling behavior that did not include drinking.

There are many stories. Each of us is responsible ultimately for evolving our own. These are some of the stories of the legacy of alcohol addiction through generations that our community has shared. If you’re drinking too much too often come join us and evolve the future that you want for yourself and your family. It is in your hands. Rethink the Drink.

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“When you quit drinking you stop waiting.”

― Caroline Knapp, Drinking: A Love Story