Alcoholism is a Disease?

What is Alcoholism?

Alcoholism is widely recognized as a disease of compulsive drinking, which can be arrested, but not cured. It is a progressive illness, which will get only worse as long as the person continues to drink. Total abstinence from drinking is the only way to arrest the disease. Alcoholism affects the entire family; indeed, everyone who has contact with the alcoholic is affected. Unfortunately, the only person who can stop the alcoholic from drinking is the alcoholic himself or herself.

Who are Alcoholics?

They could be anyone, from all backgrounds and walks of life. Over 95 percent of alcoholics have families, friends, and jobs. They may function fairly well, but some part of their life is suffering. Their drinking causes a continuing and growing problem in their lives, and the lives they touch.

Why is Alcoholism referred to as a Family Disease?

While most of us have heard that alcoholism is a disease, too few recognize it as a "family disease" which may emotionally, spiritually and often physically affect three or four people in each home, each office or workplace, or each group of friends.

The disease affects all those who have a relationship with a problem drinker. Those of us closest to the alcoholic suffer the most, and those who care the most can easily get caught up in the behavior of another person. We react to the alcoholic's behavior. We focus on them, what they do, where they are, how much they drink. We try to control their drinking for them. We take on the blame, guilt, and shame that really belong to the drinker. We can become as addicted to the alcoholic, as the alcoholic is to alcohol. We, too, can become ill

Al-Anon Family Groups, Al-Anon and Alateen give us the assurance that no situation is too difficult and no unhappiness too great to be lessened if we are willing to keep an open mind. With the understanding that alcoholism is a disease, and with the realization that we are powerless over it, as well as over other people, we are ready to make constructive decisions regarding our own lives. Only then can we be of help to others.

Without support and spiritual help, living around or with a problem drinker is too much for most of us. We may become nervous, irritable and resentful. Our thinking often becomes confused, and our perspective distorted. A change in our attitude may be of boundless help and is often the force for good that finally inspires an alcoholic to seek help.

The Al-Anon program is a spiritual way of life based on the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous. Study of this program and its Twelve Steps strengthens us and guides us in solving many difficult problems, some of which we might once have thought were hopeless.

Remember You Are Not Alone And There Is Always Hope!

                                                              "Let It Begin With Me"