The musings of a final year medical student

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Drinking Culture

I'm 18 and living in the UK - it's safe to say that in my country and within my age group, drinking culture is a massive component to the lifestyles of those around. But I've never really understood why I actually like drinking.

Now, I've only been drunk a dozen times or so, and never have I ever drank so much that I've had to be hospitalised or had violently awful hangovers. Basically, I'm not an alcohol connoisseur, a seasoned 'Lasher'.

I went through a phase when I first starting drinking whereby I loved getting drunk. To test how much of a pint I could down, what was my best shot record, and the fun of regaling the hilarious anecdotes the day after. At least the ones we remembered.

I suppose when you're going out, particularly if you're on the pull, a little bit of alcohol can feel like a necessity; a way to let tensions go and grow much for confidence. And things are always funnier when you've had a few, too. The times that me or other friends have pulled alcohol has always been consumed. Also, if you're going to a friend's party and you don't know a lot of people, it's quite a fun and entertaining way to bond.

Like most people, I started drinking before it was actually legal to do so. So, I suppose for some, the thrill of breaking the law is another thing that entices people into drinking. The same thing goes for smoking cigarettes/weed etc.

But recently, I've really started to question why people even drink. I've been on nights out and to house parties where I drank not a drop and still had an amazing time. Granted, I usually ended up holding my friends' hair as they puked, cleaning up and finding safe places for people to pass out by around 2am. That aspect wasn't fun, but the former part of the night was great.

Last week I went skiing and fully indulged in the apres-ski on offer. But on the last night, as I was at a club at 3 in the morning, I really didn't understand why I got myself drunk. 'I just wasted €20+! I could've spend that at the Duty Free', I thought to myself. What I was really enjoying was being with my friends and having a dance and being just a little bit frivolous for once.

Why do you drink?

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