Binge Drinking and Its Effects on a College Student

Listen, I’m all for having a drink with dinner or while hanging out with family. I probably wouldn’t shy away from going out with friends and knocking back a couple of shots, and I definitely don’t have a problem with a friend wanting to have a “lit” night while I enjoy being sober.

What I do have a problem with, however, is the way in which college students “get lit”-- a nice little friend called binge drinking.

I think we are all familiar with the word “binge” itself, and most importantly “binge drinking,” thanks to all those years of DARE programs during our years in school. I did a little digging on the website, and there is no stand-alone resource/program for alcohol abuse, since it is mostly included under drug abuse. I personally think that it should be its own program, since we are in a time where drinking is becoming very glorified in the media, and should not be overshadowed by term “drug abuse” which covers a lot as is.

Alcohol Awareness Month is coming up, so educate yourself on the culture of alcohol and its consumption in the U.S. and maybe say goodbye to the binge drinking habit in the future.

Here is some personal tea that encouraged me to write this for you all to enjoy:

I’ve gone around the sun 21 times, and I can finally take my legal sips of alcohol and enjoy a margarita when I go out to dinner with my parents, but turning 21 wasn’t that big of a deal. My friends and family always ask me how it feels to finally be 21, and when I’m honest about it not being a big deal, they always freak out. The secret is, I’ve been drinking for years. I can just finally do it legally now.

Now, before someone gets into too much trouble, let me explain. My junior year of high school, I studied abroad in Ecuador. Now, I was 16 at the time and their drinking age is actually 18, but if you had the money to buy your alcohol chances were that you weren’t going to get carded. However, last fall (2018), I spent my semester in Chile, where things were different. Their drinking age is also 18 and I was finally 20, but the thing is, I would actually get carded when I went to the bar or bought alcohol.

“But Sammi, I thought we were talking about binge drinking on college campuses?” Yes, but why did I include this? I included it because I’ve lived in three different countries, with very different alcohol regulations, and they each have their own binge drinking cultures. After the last couple years of drinking, I gained a weird tolerance and strong dislike of vodka as well as the realization that I have put myself in way too much danger to keep living my life like every weekend is a get lit, blackout party.

I am guilty of being a part of the binge drinking culture in the equivalent of a “get rich quick” type of drunkenness. It has become so ingrained in the party culture on campus, that if you don’t show up drunk then you are not going to have a good time. But you don’t need to be blackout drunk to have a good time.

The real long island iced tea to be spilled today is that being able to outdrink someone is not a personality trait (we’ve all seen this post before), and being able to get blackout drunk without vomiting is not actually cool. Binge drinking is irresponsible, and even worse when doing so alone, but has been over glorified in the media, and it’s about time something has been done to decrease the statistics of underage drinking.