At the age of forty-one Tamara Peters woke up feeling like Rip Van Winkle awakening from his sleep of twenty years. What she remembered most about the day was looking at her reflection in the mirror and seeing a stranger. She wondered how this had happened to her. She had many blanks in her memory and she felt that alcohol had much to do with this. She remembered her first taste of beer at the age of five. The supplies of alcohol to her were endless because almost everyone in her family drank. In high school she hung out with an older crowd and would party a lot. When she married at age 19 her husband was employed at the local liquor store so again her supply of alcohol was endless. When her son started to exhibit behavioral problems she thought she might have a problem. She had an addictive personality and she enrolled in college and decided she wanted to help others. She then began her recovery process from alcohol addiction. Alcoholism is incurable and once you are an Alcoholic, you are always an Alcoholic. However, it is possible to keep it in remission by living your life on a day to day basis like Tamara is doing.
Alcohol is the oldest and most widely used drug in the world. Nearly half of all Americans over the age of 12 consume alcohol. Alcohol is a central nervous system depressant, a mind/mood altering chemical. The Webster's dictionary definition of alcoholism is an illness characterized by preoccupation with alcohol and loss of control over its consumption such as to lead usually to intoxication if drinking is begun. The Webster dictionary definition of Chemical Dependency is essentially a pathological or sick relationship of a person to a mood altering chemical substance, a psychoactive drug, in expectation of a rewarding experience. A chemically dependent person is unable to stop drinking or taking a mood-altering chemical despite serious health, economic, vocational, legal, spiritual, and social consequences.