What I Learned in High School

Kristin - Lander, Wyoming
Entered on May 21, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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This I believe.

I’ve learned two things in my highs school career; you can’t fix people and alcohol only brings bad things. Alcohol is usually the major cause of conflict in my experiences and those conflicts can have serious consequences. Alcohol used in excess at this age can also lead to an addiction, now or later in life. People who have problems with alcohol aren’t going to be fixed easily. There is no wand you can wave to make it go away and a heart-to-heart won’t fix it either. They say the first step of fixing a problem is admitting there is a problem, and that is only for the one with the problem to decide.

I had a friend who was a fifteen year old alcoholic. She still is. She can’t stop with one drink; she drinks to get drunk every single time. At first it didn’t bother me I was figuring out what alcohol was all about for myself as well. After I got into trouble a time or two I started slowing down. As I was slowing down she was speeding up. A year or so passed and I realized she had a problem. She would only go to certain events if she was drunk. She would go to school drunk and start drinking as soon as she got out. She was also drunk at work. She would brag about throwing up blood every morning because of the amount she drank. She would shake if she didn’t have alcohol and if there was no chance of drinking that night she would ask to be taken home.

If there wasn’t enough alcohol to go around she would be grumpy. She would be mad that she drank and wasn’t drunk. Her idea of how much she could drink was also off by about a mile. Thinking she could drink a whole bottle of hard alcohol to herself with no problem often led to puking and ruining the night for everyone with her. What was worse is she would throw up and reach for the bottle again. She would do all of this with and eleven o’clock curfew. I had to pick her up at the most random and sketchy places because of her drinking and I’ve had a door or two kicked in my face for trying to take the alcohol away.

She told me she was a normal teenager experimenting with alcohol. I would disagree. I tried helping her out until I didn’t even want to look at her anymore. From this experience I learned you can’t change someone, and you can’t make them want to change. Everyone has to do it for themselves. You can tell them they’re killing themselves and they’re hurting everyone around them but they don’t care. The only thing you can do for someone with a problem is to support them, or tell them the truth and have them hate you. One day they are going to wish they listened.