Being an alcoholic is not something that people choose to be. An alcoholic is someone who depends on alcohol to get through his or her day. Alcoholism knows no race, age, or sex. It destroys families and lives. With the help of support groups and meetings with other alcoholics, this disease can be controlled.
An alcoholic family is a family that drinks together or has one member that is an alcoholic. Alcoholic families have an inability to get close to other people. The children in these families need approval that they are doing well from other people. Children of alcoholics have sudden temper tantrums with out warning or cause (Perez 117). They grow up feeling deprived and look for people to blame it on. Most of the time it is not the alcoholic but a boyfriend or a girlfriend. They have an inability to trust others and often feel that the world is against them (Perez 118). When families try to express their emotions, the most common emotion expressed is anger (Barnard 109). To the alcoholic the most important thing in his or her life is alcohol. They will do anything to get it, even lie or steal (Perez 119). According to Karen Sandvig, a former alcoholic and now a therapist:
Just as monarch butterflies are drawn to intense light, members of an alcoholic family network may concentrate their greatest energies on the intense people who cause the most intense problems within their families. Unfortunately, as they draw close just as monarchs may singe their wings family members often get burned (Sandvig 21).


For many years, the treatment of alcoholism was something that was to be avoided. If the disease was treated people would have relapses and this proved to be frustrating to most therapists (Barnard 33). Later alcoholism was treated with medication, but this would do nothing to help the alcoholics. The drugs that they would give the alcoholics were tranquilizers. However, these drugs could prove harmful if the alcoholic consumed alcohol while on the drugs (Barnard 39).
There are many types of alcoholics in the world. There are two main categories of drinkers. The two categories are the social drinker who drinks with other people and the drinker who drinks alone. Within these categories are alcoholics who use these excuses. The overprotective drinker is someone who values alcohol over humans (Perez 36). There is the compulsive drinker; this is someone whose mission in life is to drink (Perez 37). The worrier is a drinker who always worries about being caught (Perez 38). An arbitrary alcoholic believes that they are always right and are very argumentative especially when drinking (Perez 67). The elusive drinker is someone who tells you that they will stop but not why they will stop; they will not make any commitments (Perez 69). There are many more types of alcoholics but these are the main ones.
Once you are an alcoholic, you are always considered one, no matter how long you have been on the wagon (Ludwig 4). There are many programs that you can check yourself into for help. The most common program people do is a twelve-step program. This is a set of steps that will help get away from alcohol (Al-Anon 4). Some of the groups you can join are AA, which stands for Alcoholics Anonymous, or you can join Al-Anon or Al-Ateen. You can join these local groups.
Alcoholism is a problem that many people have but do not do anything about. If you or someone you love is alcoholic get help for them. There are many programs that you can join to help you control this disease.