half and half

Most women alcoholics live a double life

Women’s Alcoholism Has Big Impact on Families

The topic of alcoholism and the damage it causes to families are most frequently looked at from the standpoint of the alcoholic male. Less in focus is the phenomenon of the alcoholic woman, even though the recorded cases are steadily growing in numbers.

The social stigma attached to drunkenness in women is much more severe than for men. The stigma encourages everybody to deny that something is wrong. Even husbands cover up the reality of their wives’ drinking, and the children, confused and anxious, learn not to believe their own perceptions. For the woman herself the social attitude is a strong incentive to hide reality from all, including herself.

The profile of the woman who abuses alcohol is surprisingly similar to that of the woman who marries an alcoholic. Both are likely to come from families disrupted by alcoholism or death and desertion. Both types have problems with poor self-esteem. While men in such circumstances tend to be angry and look for somebody on whom to take out their anger (a drinking wife conveniently serves that purpose), women typically turn their anger on themselves and blame themselves mercilessly for their own abuse. The self-disgust and attending hopelessness can easily serve as justification for alcohol abuse, regardless of the ensuing further self-blame.

Full story at the Daily Local

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