Jan 03

The ‘Dryland’ Games…

As New Year’s Resolution fever grips the public attention once more, 3 leading UK charities are making the most of the opportunity to raise awareness of the dangers of excessive drinking, particularly the implications on our long term health.

Cancer Research UK has launched what it’s calling ‘Britain’s first Dryathlon’, and is asking people to sign up to its pledge to avoid alcohol for the entire month of January.

Meanwhile Alcohol Concern are launching their ‘Dry January’ campaign, once again asking people to sign up and pledge not to drink for a whole month.

And the British Liver Trust is also getting in on the act with its ‘Love Your Liver’ campaign, a national awareness initiative aimed amongst other things at encouraging drinkers to have at least 3-4 dry days each week.

One thing that all 3 charities readily admit is that simply by going dry for one month of the year, or even cutting back for a few weeks is unlikely to have any long term or lasting benefits if the drinker returns to heavy or excessive drinking patterns for the rest of the year.

However, for the ex-drinker, drinker in recovery, former alcoholic, or whichever term you prefer to use,  it provides a pleasant opportunity to be amongst the majority for once, albeit only for a month!

But on a more serious note, it is a timely reminder that alcohol, and more specifically alcohol consumption is a trap – one that we are lured into because to a large extent society encourages a warped view of the impact of drinking alcohol. Collectively we are brainwashed into underplaying the negative consequences associated with drinking alcohol and we exaggerate the perceived positives.

This is in spite of all the esteemed medical experts across a number of medical fields publishing damning statistic after damning statistic regarding the harm that both individuals and society as a whole are causing through our current attitudes and behaviours towards alcohol consumption.

No doubt for most people, the ‘dryathlon’ and ‘dry January’ will come and go, and will serve no more than to assuage the conscience of thousands of ‘almost alcoholics’ across the UK, and to convince the heavy drinkers that they don’t have a problem and that they can give up ‘any time they want to…’

Sadly though it takes more than a few statistics, or even mass peer pressure to really create a paradigm shift in our alcoholic thinking – as anyone who has been through the journey themselves will surely testify.





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