Why is it that people always seem turn to alcohol for comfort in the movies when they are feeling sad? It’s something that’s bothered me ever since I found my way into sobriety and recovery. Don’t people know that alcohol is a depressant and only makes one’s despair even worse the more one consumes it?
Every time I watch a movie now and see someone get fired from a long-time job, or experience a death of a loved one, or go through a terrible break-up, or face any other difficult circumstance in life, I know it’s inevitable that I’m about to watch them head to some bar to get downright drunk or hang out with close friends who proceed to get them downright drunk or go home to get downright drunk all by themselves.
For what purpose does this serve?!
Frankly, getting downright drunk on alcohol only accomplishes one thing. It initially numbs the senses and helps to keep a person from having to face head-on whatever tragedy they’ve just experienced. But what I find is insane about this looking back on the number of times I did this behavior myself is how it never accomplished anything whatsoever, other than delaying my healing process of working through all that despair.
But even more important is the fact that during all those moments I was drowning my sorrows with booze, my sadness simply grew even stronger, and when I was done drowning all my sorrows with booze, the rebound effect usually felt even worse.
So, why does do so many people keep doing this then, when it really doesn’t help in any way to remove their pain? Because so long as people keep doing it, the movies are going to continue portraying it on screen.
Well, the sad reality is this. Most people when they experience any sort of tragedy or difficult circumstance of life that feels totally painful usually allow their ego to seek something to comfort them, rather than face it directly to begin the healing process.
Sometimes I think that’s why our world is so screwed up, because everyone keeps trying to numb the pain they experience from living life by using a bottle of booze or some other mode of comfort time and time and time again.
When my own trail of booze ended decades ago, I continued to numb myself from any of those difficult circumstances of life when they hit me by seeking sex, sweets, caffeine, casinos, relationships, and money. But none ever helped one bit. None helped to heal any of my pain that came from those difficult circumstances of life.
Sometimes I wonder if this is why I’m in so much pain now because instead of dealing with life on life’s terms without numbing myself, I kept piling it all up inside until one day, back in 2010, I opted to finally face it all head-on and boom, this wave of physical pain hit me as soon as I did. And now, as I heal from all those things I tried to hide from with all those modes of temporary comfort, I kick myself seeing how my body is having to go through a process I might never have had to go through if I had just faced it as it happened.
Nevertheless, maybe if people would just start facing their pain as it happens, instead of numbing it with a bottle of booze or some other numbing agent, they might avoid a lot more pain and heartache in the long run. And maybe the more people start doing this, the more I’ll have to stop seeing movies portray alcohol as they answer to all of life’s difficult circumstances…
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson