Alcohol Abuse is the New “Norm”

Christopher Newport University felt like home the minute I stepped on campus.  I feel so safe on campus, everything is well-lit and I feel comfortable walking back from class at night and I know that I will make it to my dorm perfectly fine. These are just some of the amazing attributes that CNU has to offer. CNU also is considered a dry campus. This means there is no drinking inside the dorms or on campus, unless specifically allowed by the administration during tailgate, and during this time it is well-regulated.

cnu

Thursday 9/17

According to Yik -Yak, thirsty Thursday is in full swing. I personally don’t understand why someone would get super drunk on a Thursday but it seems to be a normal thing.

I had a great experience during welcome week where we attended important seminars to educate us on social justice, sexual assault, and alcohol. During the alcohol seminar the speaker told us about his past experiences. He didn’t hound us with rants about how we shouldn’t drink because it’s dangerous and illegal to underage students. He was practical, knowing that at some point most of us would drink. He said to be safe when we drank and make good choices.

Friday 9/18

 Lots of drunk people walking down the halls tonight, must have been a tough week for some because I keep hearing stories about how stressful their week was and that they just want to forget it. When people drink I know what they are saying is true because alcohol has a way of doing that to you.  

Assuming that I wouldn’t really be around alcohol very much in college was extremely naive of me. During welcome week, after a long day of seminars, it was basically a time to figure out what fraternity had the best parties. I remember staying up late talking with my new friends in the hallway and watching people walk by completely wasted. Drunk people are fun sometimes, so it was slightly entertaining to watch them stumble down the halls and struggle to open their doors. I didn’t see any real harm, and it looked like they generally had a good night.

Saturday 9/19

“I drink because I think people like me better drunk than sober.”

“I want to drink so that maybe I can forget this week.”

I’ve heard so much this weekend about drinking. I don’t think this is normal.  

I can’t be sure why each person drinks, but I thought most of them probably drink because they like the buzz or for social reasons, but I learned that some drink to forget pain. Why is feeling numb something college students strive to do so often? This could be because of a higher level stress, in which you are expected to be able to perform at a certain standard of success. When alcohol is used to avoid problems it can no longer be called “having a good night”, because it turns into a something much deeper. This is where drinking turns destructive. The correct terminology is alcohol abuse.

college drinking

Sunday 9/20

Woke up to many drunk texts from my friends. Grammar flies out the window when people are drunk. Yik yak is also on fire this morning. Apparently another dorm was busted for a party.

The issue with drinking in college isn’t that it is happening, it’s that people feel like it’s the normal thing to do. Attaching “normal” to underage college drinking doesn’t justify the action. Media has given colleges unrealistic views on how parties in college should be, and now it becomes a competition to see which frat or which school has the best parties. Media shouldn’t encourage destructive behavior of young adults, and then blame them for their alcoholism when all they did was call it “normal.”

http://www.monkeysee.com/play/10407-isn-t-teen-drinking-normal

college

I’m not sure that the damage of college drinking can ever be undone. By making the campus dry only makes for more sneaky students, which could be dangerous if they don’t feel comfortable asking for help because the risk of repercussions are too high. Instead, I believe the first step is to call attention to the issue, and for someone to finally admit that there is indeed an issue. Throwing the phrase “everyone does it” is simply not an excuse to try to sweep it under the rug. Society as a whole needs to understand that by normalizing alcohol abuse on college campuses is only hurting our generation and the generations to come.

 

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