Why We Drink: The Truth About Our Alcohol Obsession


The Truth About Our Alcohol Obsession And Why We Drink

Drinking culture has become so ingrained in our society these days, that imagining any celebration or social event with alcohol consumption is almost impossible. This article is going to discuss the truth of alcohol obsession, why we drink and drinking culture in general.


  • Media’s glamorization of alcohol shapes societal drinking norms.
  • Alcohol’s “special” role in celebrations may be more a habit than truth.
  • Studies link alcohol portrayal in media to youth and to joy.
  • For many, sobriety offers a secret pathway to a vibrant life beyond the buzz.

Have you ever thought that you’d never be able to celebrate a special day without alcohol? In our society, alcohol seems to be the go-to for nearly every occasion. The idea of a booze-free celebration could almost seem unthinkable—or at least it was for me, for a long time.

Related: Does Drinking Really Help You Relax?

Understanding Alcohol Obsession

But as I entered my third year of sobriety, I started to wonder: How exactly does booze make a special day special?

“It’s my birthday—let’s go out to have some drinks,” I used to say each year. But you see, I also said the same thing about almost everything:

  • “It’s Friday; let’s go out to have some drinks.”
  • “What nice weather—let’s go out to have some drinks.”
  • “I’m happy/bored/stressed—let’s go out to have some drinks.”

That was a time when I thought of alcohol as the go-to answer to make any occasion special. But here comes the irony—as a decade-long daily drinker, there was actually nothing special about having some drinks. Drinking was my everyday routine.

The bar may be different, and occasionally, I may throw in a dinner date. But the drills were the same—drink, more drinks, then fuzzy memory and conversations I can’t remember. On a really “special” day, there might be some vomit next to the sidewalk.

How did we learn to link drinking with the words “special,” “fun,” and “celebration”? Three years into sobriety, I can’t help but feel baffled.

Alcohol obsession
Why we drink?

The Power of Glamorization: How Media Shape Our Drinking Decisions

To understand this, perhaps we need to look into the sociological factors that have ingrained alcohol into various aspects of our culture.

In a world where every other Instagram post seems to be a toast to something and beer commercials link their products with the promise of friendship and fun, the glamorization of alcohol is hard to ignore.

Whether it’s the refined image of a successful person sipping expensive whiskey or the promise of endless laughter and bonding over a round of beers, media and advertising have a powerful influence on how we perceive alcohol. It’s almost as if drinking has been packaged as an integral part of the “good life.”

Studies have shown that this glamorization isn’t just surface-level. In fact, it permeates the media we consume on a daily basis. So, if we’re wondering why we’re so conditioned to associate alcohol with every occasion, we should consider how often we’re bombarded with this message in the media.

Recent studies have shown that a majority of TV shows popular among teens include alcohol use or references. What’s more, drinking is often portrayed as a fun, glamorous activity without showing the potential negative consequences.

These media portrayals can subconsciously shape our views, making us more likely to think of alcohol as the go-to for celebrations, stress relief, or just about any emotion in between.

As if we have only been presented with the “happily ever after” version of the alcohol tale, these images misled many into believing that life would be somehow incomplete or less exciting without alcohol.

These glamorized versions of drinking often mask the routine nature of alcohol consumption, making each drinking occasion feel “special,” when in reality, it was becoming a habitual part of many lives.

Related: Does Substance Use Have A Purpose? How To Make Sense Of Your Addiction

The Colors of Sobriety: Discovering Vibrance Without Alcohol

Is that true though? Will celebrations really lose their spark without the buzz, or will food become flavorless without a glass of wine to wash it down?

Years into sobriety, I’ve learned that the colorless life I once pictured could not be further from reality. The world didn’t lose its color; rather, it became more vibrant. For me, the habitual, mindless sipping gave way to a profound presence in each moment, with every sip of life savored.

Alcohol obsession
Alcohol consumption

Meaningful conversations now replace fuzzy memory. I traded throwing up by the sidewalk with actual adventures into the woods and exchanged next-day hangovers with morning jogs at the crack of dawn.

I argue that it takes courage to rebel against the drinking culture. Today, I invite you to ponder with me: How exactly does booze make our special day special?

Ready to drink less without living less, visit my website and grab your free 7-Day Sober Curiosity Toolkit. Check out Jeanette Hu’s blog for more such informative articles.

Written By Jeanette Hu
Originally Appeared On Psychology Today
why we drink

— Share —

— About the Author —

Leave a Reply

Up Next

4 Reasons Why A Drinking Log Can Be A Powerful Tool To Cut Down Your Drinking

A Drinking Log? Powerful Reasons Why You Should Have One

If you’re struggling with cutting down on alcohol, then maintaining a drinking log is one of the best and most effective things you can do. Explore the benefits of having a drinking log and how it can help you change your relationship with alcohol.


The main purpose of keeping track of one’s alcohol consumption is increasing awareness. Some habitual drinkers pick up a drink by default.

A drinking log can provide valuable information over time, giving insight into one’s particular drinking patterns.

Keeping a drinking log helps a person see any progress they’ve made more clearly.

Up Next

3 Common Mistakes That Drinkers Make That Keep Them Trapped

Common Mistakes That Drinkers Make That Keep Them Trapped

If you struggle with drinking and alcohol consumption, then maybe it’s time you change your relationship with alcohol. There are three mistakes that drinkers make that keep them stuck in the same loop forever, and understanding those mistakes can help you break out of that vicious cycle.


The question “Am I an alcoholic” can be alienating and gives the illusion of safety. It often keeps drinkers stuck in shame and blame.

A solely behavior-focused approach fails to address the roots of a behavior and often keeps drinkers trapped in an internal tug-of-war.

The limiting beliefs about life in sobriety keeps drinkers from creating a life that

Up Next

The Emotional Secret to Resisting Alcohol: How To Quit Drinking And Be Sober

The Emotional Secret To Resisting Alcohol: How Can You Quit?

Resisting alcohol is probably one of the toughest journeys to be on, but it is doable. As long as you know the right way to deal with your unhealthy relationship with alcohol, you are in a good position. Let’s explore the secret to resisting alcohol, and how to improve your relationship with alcohol.


Sobriety often fails when driven by logical “shoulds” instead of emotional “wants.”

Unlocking your emotional “why” can lead to lasting sobriety.

Intrinsic motivation trumps external pressures for sustaining change.

When I ask new clients why they want to cut dow

Up Next

8 Different Types Of Drunks: From Buzzed To Being Absolutely Blotto

Different Types Of Drunks: Buzzed To Absolutely Blotto

Ah, the magical elixir that transforms us into curious creatures of the night—the mighty drink! It’s fascinating how a single sip can turn even the most reserved souls into animated versions of themselves, each with their own unique flair. So, let’s raise our glasses and delve into the interesting world of the different types of drunks.

From the life of the party to the sad soul, alcohol can bring out everyone’s hidden side; the side which they keep concealed most of the time.

We all know that person—the one who suddenly becomes an unstoppable DJ, playing the most happening songs of the night. Or perhaps you’ve encountered the philosopher, whose profound thoughts flow like rivers of wisdom, fueled by every drop of liquid courage.

Let’s explore the different types of drunks, and how they behave when i

Up Next

When To Leave An Alcoholic Partner? 6 Signs It’s Time For You To Escape

When To Leave An Alcoholic Partner? Warning Signs

Love can be a powerful force that binds two souls together, but there are moments when you must summon the courage to let go. If you’ve found yourself in a relationship with an alcoholic partner, you understand the rollercoaster of emotions and uncertainties that come with it. So, when to leave an alcoholic partner?

It’s not an easy decision to make, but sometimes leaving becomes a necessary step towards healing and finding your own happiness. In this article, we’ll explore seven tell-tale signs that indicate it may be time for you to break free from living with an alcoholic.

So, grab a seat, take a deep brea

Up Next

How Children Of Narcissists And Addicts Display Distressing Symptoms

Toxic Children Of Narcissists Symptoms To Look Out For

Children of narcissists often find themselves negotiating a confusing emotional landscape. In this exploration, we delve into the unique challenges they face, and offer insights and support to those forging their paths in its bizarre labyrinth.

Children of narcissists and addicts (all substance abusers) grow up in a stressful, dysfunctional family environment, which in most cases leads to codependency.

Children Of Narcissists Symptoms

Due to the symptoms and defenses related to substance abuse and narcissism, particularly impaired boundar

Up Next

What Is Gambling Addiction? Understanding The Compulsive Urge To Gamble

What Is Gambling Addiction? Five Causes of Compulsive Gambling

Have you ever wondered why some people find it difficult to resist the allure of gambling? What is it that makes this activity captivating, yet potentially destructive? Let us explore what is gambling addiction, symptoms of gambling addiction, what causes gambling addiction, gambling addiction triggers and treatment for gambling addiction.

Whether you’re curious about the topic or seeking help for yourself or a loved one, this comprehensive guide aims to shed light on the complexities of gambling addiction and provide valuable insights into its nature.

What is Gambling Addiction? 

Gambling addiction, also kn