Alcohol ruins marriages and destroys families

Full story: Chicago Tribune

Dear Amy: With regard to "Frustrated In-Laws," whose son-in-law was drunk and rude during Thanksgiving, I can tell you where this might be headed.
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jane

Elmwood Park, IL

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#1
Jan 9, 2008
 
Thank you notes for Christmas cards? NOT
steph

United States

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#3
Jan 9, 2008
 
First of all: Jane is right.

Second of all: maybe the families of the children have nothing to do with any of it, and their parents, of their own volition, attach their names to things that they buy. It's obvious that the LW is fishing for "this is completely inappropriate, and they should each buy their own gift for me and send their own card, shouldn't they?" as evidenced by the "What do you think of this" question. It makes me think that maybe the thank-you card question is secondary and masks the REAL "aren't these people tacky?" question.

Point being, the kids have no control over whether the parents sign their names to a Christmas card or gift card. Not everyone sends out their own Christmas cards. My husband and I don't, and I really wouldn't give it much thought if my parents sent out a card and put our names on it. I'm sure that if my parents are wishing people a merry Christmas, we probably would as well.
Alex Rychlewski

Saint-didier-en-velay, France

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#4
Jan 9, 2008
 
I completely sympathasize with the reader who warns of the dangers of alcoholism, and the ruinous effect it had on her marriage. I would just like to add, however, that the moderate consumption of alcohol is an entirely different kettle of fish and there are plenty of people (I'm one of them) who enjoy a reasonable amount of wine or beer at mealtimes. I live in Bordeaux, and I confirm that it is entirely possible to consume wine as an intelligent accompaniment to food.
In other words alcoholism is a disease, but alcohol is not in and of itself something inherently bad. It's the abuse of alcohol that leads to problems.

A reader in Bordeaux
Traffic

Washington, DC

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#5
Jan 9, 2008
 
Aiuppa wrote:
Alcohol DOES NOT ruin marriages or destroy families, alcoholics do! The fact that the world is full of cry babies that have had such horrible lives and that they can't stop after a drink or two is not the fault of the alcohol or the alcohol manufacturer. Alcoholics need to GROW UP and learn how to get their lives under control and stop being a bunch of passive aggressives with repressed anger for the way their father mistreated them 40 years ago. Otherwise, blow your brains out and stop making everyone else miserable!
You are a sad and angry individual. And I understand, my father was/is an alcoholic due to his childhood. His alcohol abuse angered me, embarrased me; hurt me. But now I choose to understand the why. I chose not to let the way I was treated effect my relationships. You can never understand a person until you stop being myopic and see them for who the really are, just as hurt as you. It is true, hurting people hurt others. I am no longer hurt.
Jennzy

Brockville, Canada

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#6
Jan 9, 2008
 
It depends on how your mind is stabelized when you are intoxicated, wrong judgement is a big factor when it comes to alcohol.....if you have repeaditly screwed up by drinking and driving or cheating on your spouse then it is not the alcohol it is you! you are disturbing the lifes of people, not alcohol!
Gloria CT Ex-Patriate

United States

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#7
Jan 9, 2008
 
Singular Christmas cards from a group of people are bad enough, but what about the frequent situation where several people (or a couple) by you as an individual one birthday gift & card, yet you have to buy each of those individuals a separate b-day gift & card? It is lazy and annoying on their part, but if you try to bring up the discrepanacy in thoughtfullness you are seen as a grump and selfish.

As far as destructive alcoholics go, they are the angry and selfish people, not some like Aiuppa, who nailed it on the head. This pathetic excuse of oh-dear-I-had-such-a-bad-child hood or similar excuses are just that. Everyone passes childhood and then makes ADULT decisions and have to live with the consequences. Unfortunately, with druggies and alkies, those bad choices impact innocent people. My dad was a self-destructive alcoholic, and thank God my mom had the courgae and brains to divirce him in the late fifties when that was very much a no-no. He built up a great career and reputation, then tore it down repeatedly until he died too young. Watching that and seeing the appalling waste, I made sure I never followed the same path - I didn't suck down booze and continue the destruction. That was my CHOICE, as his life was his choice.
Gotta Love It

Pittsburgh, PA

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#9
Jan 9, 2008
 
BAN BOOZE! come on jump on the anti-booze bandwagon! It MAY ruin your marrage

Ban Smoking!! come on jump on the anti-smoking bandwagon! It May cause you health problems, it is not for you to decide how to run a business it in the majorities!

Ban Cussing!!! come on jump on the anti-swearing bandwagon! Gotta keep the language clean, it might hurt someones feelings

Ban Sugar!!!! come on jump on the anti-sugar bandwagon! I have had enough fo the twikie defense, plus it could cause ou health problems

Ban Speach!!!!!come on jump on the anti-speach bandwagon! YOu can't say waht tyou want on what the majority wants to hear

Ban SEX! come on jump on the anti-sex bandwagon!
Sex is bad period.

Ban non-marrage relationships!come on jump on the anti-immoral bandwagon! IMORALLITY enough said

Ban Cars!! come on jump on the anti-car bandwagon! YOu might get run over someday... plus all the crap they put out hurts the environment

Ban it all NOW!!!!
Belle

Leesburg, FL

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#10
Jan 9, 2008
 
Alcohol, in the hands of some people, becomes a very destructive thing. Most people who choose to drink do so in moderation and it is a boon to their lives. Others cannot handle it, and it's not a matter of them being 'big babies' or 'passive-agressives' or whatever. It's a fatal disease, and no amount of anger at the havoc they wreak while they in the throes of it will change that fact.

It affects most of the people in contact with the alcoholic, and sadly, too many people will stay with an alcoholic partner much, much longer than they should. When children are involved, this becomes really tragic.

If your spouse or SO has a drinking problem, or any addiction problem, it will not automatically or magically get better. I'm sorry for LW1's pain but how much better for her and her children if she had left the relationship years ago. Easier said than done, I know, but true.
Dienne

Chicago, IL

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#11
Jan 9, 2008
 
I agree that alcohol can be a major problem or it can be just fine - depends on the person and their susceptibility to alcoholism. The problem is that in the original letter, it was highly disputable whether the guy was anywhere near alcholism. If I recall correctly, I think the specific complaints (besides being drunk) were along the lines of "he ate his turkey with his hands" and "he wasn't dressed properly for the occasion". Now maybe those are signs that the guy is a budding alcoholic, but I'd say that's quite a stretch and I certainly wouldn't just assume it.
ANON

Henderson, NV

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#12
Jan 9, 2008
 

Judged:

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To LW1,
I would love to hear his side of the story. I have a dear friend
who was drinking too much, but only at home.
His wife kicked him out and wow what a change. There maybe the occasional beer in the evening, but no more aclcohol binges.
His side: it was the only way he knew to deal with her constant barragemant of do this, do that, make more money, you can't have a nap in the middle fo the day,
He actually asked me if when he went to heaven was he going to have a nagging wife following him around.
And yea, he made up stories about why he was drinking ...anything to get her to shut up.
So, there are two sides to each story.
ANON

Henderson, NV

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#13
Jan 9, 2008
 

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TO Gotta love it in Pittsburg, Could we please not ban sugar or sex? ;)
News Flash

United States

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#14
Jan 9, 2008
 
ANON wrote:
TO Gotta love it in Pittsburg, Could we please not ban sugar or sex? ;)
Or should we ban .... Ban roll on deodarant
Mark

United States

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#15
Jan 9, 2008
 
"If things turn bad," depending on how "bad" they are, you should stay calm but treat the situation seriously.

Don't you think that it's advisable that they should be propared to call the police to report in incident of domestic violence? Women can be abusers as well.
Carnac The Magnificent

El Paso, TX

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#16
Jan 9, 2008
 
Aiuppa wrote:
Alcohol DOES NOT ruin marriages or destroy families, alcoholics do! The fact that the world is full of cry babies that have had such horrible lives and that they can't stop after a drink or two is not the fault of the alcohol or the alcohol manufacturer. Alcoholics need to GROW UP and learn how to get their lives under control and stop being a bunch of passive aggressives with repressed anger for the way their father mistreated them 40 years ago. Otherwise, blow your brains out and stop making everyone else miserable!
You don't have a clue as to what you written. Alcoholism is a family disease as it impacts everyone. And make no mistake - it is a disease. It has nothing to do with anger or mistreatment by a parent. Alcoholics do not WISH to be alcoholics and it is not a matter of self control.

So if someone has MS, cancer, is bi-polar, ADHD, MD, Schizophrenia, they too should blow their brains out because they have a disease?

You are a poor excuse for a human being and I hope you get humbled by your ignorance and hatred; then maybe you will learn some compassion for people who are hurting.
irresponsible excuses

United States

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#17
Jan 9, 2008
 
"Alcohol ruins marriages and destroys families." WRONG.

PEOPLE ruin marriages and destroy families when they do selfish or hurtful or stupid things. Millions of people --the vast majority of alcohol consumers-- don't use alcohol in such stupid ways.

In fact, the same could be said for the illegal drugs also blamed for ruining lives. WRONG. People misuse drugs to ruin their lives, and drugs are not the problem. The vast majority of people who use illegal drugs also do so without ruining their lives.

Prohibitionists contribute to that minority who do ruin their lives. They do so by maximizing the dangers of those drugs by keeping the market out of legal regulation and in the hands of criminals. Just like the situation with alcohol during alcohol prohibition, which also only made things worse.
Lloyd Hansen

Bethpage, NY

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#18
Jan 9, 2008
 
Alcohol is a psychoactive drug. The difference between it and other psychoactive drugs is that it has been around for thousands of years, is socially acceptable to use in many settings and is lightly regulated. Like illegal or heavily regulated psychoactive drugs it is addictive, impairing and destructive to those who abuse it.

Banning alcohol is nearly impossible but in theory I think it should be done. Wouldn't you want to ban a substance that is:

1. Responsible for thousands of auto accident accidents and fatalities every year.

2. Found to be a factor in every type of criminal activity.

3. Can cause poisoning if over-used.

4. Would not pass the FDA's standards for safety if it were introduced anew.

5. Proven to ruin marriages, families and careers.
Jen

United States

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#20
Jan 9, 2008
 
The card thing again. Does everyone carry a check list around so they can keep track of their card grievances? Must get me one. Do they sell them at Target? ;)-
Jen

United States

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#21
Jan 9, 2008
 
BTW they did try banning alcohol. Didn't work. I think they should just make all drugs legal and let those self-destructive people take care of themselves. You can't save people from themselves.
Jenna

United States

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#22
Jan 9, 2008
 

Judged:

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The way I heard it from a member of AA, alcoholism is an inherited disease. Some people are born with the tendency to abuse alcohol and some aren't.

For those who are born with that tendency, drinking alcohol, no matter how small the amount or seldom, will destroy their life and everything in it. Society makes it difficult for them to stay sober, as nearly every social function involves somebody urging them to take a drink.

In the case of this fellow at the Thanksgiving dinner, his behavior was clearly inappropriate and at the very least he is a problem drinker, but it doesn't seem he wants to change any more than Aiuppa does. I would recommend everybody in the family go to Al-Anon, which is specifically for the families of alcoholics or problem drinkers, or whatever.
someone

United States

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#23
Jan 9, 2008
 
Jen wrote:
The card thing again. Does everyone carry a check list around so they can keep track of their card grievances? Must get me one. Do they sell them at Target? ;)-
I will send you one as a gift but I expect a thank you note that is prompt, handwritten, on stationary, personalized and signed by the person who benefits. If this is to benefit the whole family I expect a thank you card from each member who uses it.

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