I always thought that binge drinking was a completely normal activity for teens to partake in. Like a lot of kids, I enjoyed partying in high school. I always looked forward to the thrill of going to parties on the weekend,. Through the high energy environment of these parties, my friends and I developed a pattern of binge drinking, without a doubt that it was a normal thing to do as a high schooler. Primarily, it was really fun. I would get serious FOMO if I was out of town or busy, as these parties were glorified through Snapchat and Instagram.
I never thought of drinking as something that would cause a disruption in my life, because it only brought good times, and I don’t consider myself an addictive person. However, most arguments between my parents and I throughout high school stemmed from my partying habits. They always said that these behaviors were irresponsible and dangerous. I was always happy with my life balance, between school, friends, and partying, so my parents’ words of advice meant little to me. I thought I was invincible! As I went to college and continued to party, I felt that same balance, and that same invincibility.
My first year of college was an amazing experience, living for the first time without my parents, learning, partying, and making new friends. It was the best year of my life in every aspect, but my habits ended up catching up to me. Some nights I would drink irresponsibly while thinking nothing of it, which caused me to have trouble controlling my actions, and not think decisions through. I was not concerned about these nights because I pride myself as being a good person, and thought that I would make the right decisions no matter how intoxicated I was. The feeling of being invincible was stronger than ever, and ultimately led to me making irresponsible decisions.
Because of my inability to recognize what binge drinking did to my decision-making abilities, at the end of freshman year I ended up making a mistake that turned my life upside down. In hindsight, I am fortunate for this mistake, as it shattered my invincibility shield. I came to terms with how drinking was affecting my behaviors and decisions, and finally took to heart what my parents were saying for years. As unfortunate as the situation was, it changed my life for the better. It provoked me to actively think and be cautious. I came to one of the most important realizations of my life, which is that invincibility and irresponsibility go hand in hand.
Everyday I wish that someone had taught me this when I was in high school, as I would have not made the mistakes that costed me so much. If you wake up in the morning and have a hard time remembering certain events that took place the night before, or even the night as a whole, think about what possibly could have gone wrong. If you were walking around drunk, think about what could’ve happened if you ran into a cop. If you got into a fight, think about how badly you can hurt yourself or others over something stupid. Legal trouble and school punishments are no joke, and can be avoided by simply reflecting on your habits and being cautious.
From personal experience, I know that when your parents say something you don’t necessarily agree with or want to hear, it often goes in one ear and out the other, so I hope that hearing about my story about excess drinking pushes you to reflect on your outlook on partying. No matter how invincible you think you are, irresponsible drinking will eventually lead to mistakes. I hope that this article will prevent you from learning this the hard way.
Note: all Families Connected teen blogs are written by teens or young adults. In order to protect their privacy, especially when they share a story of their personal struggles with drug and alcohol use, we do not publish their names.