Updated: February 26, 2013 6:28AM
Dr. Wallace: I’m 20, and in love with a beautiful young lady. Someday soon I would like her to be my wife. We have been dating for about a year and have great times together. She says she’d marry me if I stopped drinking. Actually, I learned to drink responsibly when I was 17. My parents encouraged me to drink at home and not with friends. I now drink with friends, but I rarely get out of control. I do not have a drinking problem, but how can I convince my girlfriend of this fact?
Rick: The National Drug Awareness Program says a person has a drinking problem if the following signs are prevalent. Do you:
■ Have an inability to control your drinking? (Regardless of what you decide beforehand, you often wind up drinking too much.)
■ Use alcohol to escape your money problems?
■ Change from your normal character into the “life of the party”?
■ Change from Dr. Jekyll into Mr. Hyde?
■ Have a high tolerance level for alcohol and the ability to outdrink everyone at the party?
■ Have blackouts or an occasional inability to remember what happened when you were drinking?
■ Have problems in school or at work because of excessive alcohol consumption?
■ Hear words of concern from family members and friends about your drinking?
If you answered yes to even one of these questions, you’d be a better person if you eliminated alcohol from your life! You are not a problem drinker if all of your answers were “No.”
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