Name: Melody Munoz
From: McHenry, Illinios
Addiction can have many consequences when you let yourself out of control. I remember being very young the first time I realized my uncle had an addiction. I remember watching in horror as he fell off the balcony. He was just having fun like any ordinary person does while they drink but then he fell and that is what ruined him for life. He drank every night, knowing he had to work at 5:00 in the morning. Not only was he a danger to himself but often he would take drives endangering others because he needed more. He lost friends and family because he relied on it, he needed alcohol to feel happy.
There are many reasons our nation suffers from so much addiction. For instance, how we think we deal with depression. People do not take care of it properly as well as others not taking it seriously which can result in people who suffer with mental illness to turn to any mind-altering substance they can easily get. Alcohol is way too easily accessible. Kids can just go to any random stranger on the street or even more easily to a sibling and ask that person to buy alcohol for them. I’m told often I look incredibly young and when I rarely do go to a liquor store, they don’t card me. It makes me wonder how often kids go in and get alcohol no problem. Society needs to be more responsible and aware of what is going on.
Americans love their television and electronics. This media is where all the alcohol rave often comes from; ads, TV shows, movies, video games, as well as many other outlets. I often found my uncle with a beer in his hand watching movies with drugs and alcohol at the center of the story. It is like we almost romanticize substance abuse. Younger people see it and think, “Hey, that looks like fun!” Then it starts, just like my uncle who started when he was 14. They go out to parties, not regulating their use and may possibly not realize how much they are consuming. This causes people to make irresponsible choices like driving or hanging off a balcony. Addiction can be dangerous and turn someone into something that they’re not.
How do we fix this problem? The major issue here is that we idolize drinking and narcotics. We are showing young minds that using constantly is okay. We need to educate them more at an earlier age and be more consistent about it. Adults need to learn too. We need more consequences like longer jail time, and bigger fines for disruption and property destruction while under the influence.
Addiction can become your only friend. Things are easier that way and our society makes that statement with too much ease. Addiction is a norm and things need to change. We need to think about how drugs and alcohol affect those around us as well as how it affects the addict. Compassion can go a long way and our world could certainly use more of that.