Is Alcoholism a disease? This was an idea from another thread. Apparently many of us (even the dictionary) seem to think alcoholism is a disease. I disagree. There may be a gene that makes some people more prone to addiction, but addictive personality types can become addicted to anything. Alcohol is merely more convenient than many other drugs/habits. If gambling addiction is an addiction, not a disease, and cigarette smoking is an addiction (or even if you think itâ€™s just a bad habit), how come addiction to alcohol is not treated the same? I am not saying alcoholism isnâ€™t a serious problem. I just think it might make more sense to inject a bit of personal responsibility into the mix here. If any other kind of addict is blamed for their addiction, shouldnâ€™t the alcoholic be blamed for ingesting more alcohol than is healthy? Sure they may have a genetic predilection for addiction (though I doubt they have a genetic predilection for alcoholism specifically), but does that mean thereâ€™s no hope? I donâ€™t think thatâ€™s the case. I also feel as though alcoholism is very difficult to define. Most diseases are you have them or you donâ€™t. With alcoholism almost every rubric for deciding if you have a problem is different. http://www.teensupport.org/Topics/Addiction/take_a_quiz_alcoholism.htm For instance, though Iâ€™m not longer a teen, I answered yes to seven of the questions. Supposedly youâ€™re at risk with just two. So I took another one. http://alcoholism.about.com/od/tests/l/blquiz_alcohol.htm Hereâ€™s what is said: Intrigued, as I donâ€™t think of myself as an alcoholic, and although my friends think I drink a lot, they donâ€™t think Iâ€™m an alcoholic either. And they know me pretty well. Anyway, so I was intrigued, so I looked around the site and I found this little article. http://alcoholism.about.com/cs/info2/a/aa022697.htm Hmm, doesnâ€™t sound like me. Seems it must be compulsive. My drinking is not compulsive, as much as itâ€™s habitual, and cultural. When Iâ€™m in a different environment, I often â€œforgetâ€ to drink when I usually do and I donâ€™t feel the same urge as when I miss a smoke. Often I wonâ€™t realize I havenâ€™t drank for several days unless Andy or Tim say something about the last time they drank. So I kept looking around, and I found this: Okay, Iâ€™m absolved. None of that sounds like me. I feel better. But why would all the quizzes make it seem as though I am an alcoholic, when Iâ€™m clearly not? Why, after reading these and several other sites do I notice a lot of references to God as the main part of the solution? Check out what the twelve steps actually entail. http://www.12step.org/steps/index.php So we have a disease that only god can cure? Okay, thereâ€™s a few other options. http://www.soberrecovery.com/links/12stepalternatives.html Still though, basically these places just lock you up long enough to dry you out. Youâ€™re not cured if you canâ€™t leave these places without falling off the wagon. I also am not sure youâ€™re â€œcuredâ€ if you cannot drink normally, but have to abstain for the rest of your life. I have one last important link to read before you vote. http://www.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/booklet.htm this site explains the difference between alcoholism and alcohol abuse. They say any more than 2 drinks for a man in a night is abuse. Apparently, my alcohol problem may be real after all. Iâ€™m not an alcoholic, Iâ€™m an alcohol abuser. Hmmm. I still disagree. Somehow I find that number a bit low. When we go out even the DD has a few early in the night. Then we make them stop until theyâ€™ve sat there an hour per beer so we can get home safely. I donâ€™t think it comes down to the volume of alcohol actually consumed, but down to the purpose or the intent of the drinking. We donâ€™t drink to get drunk, though sometimes we do get a bit tipsy, we drink because we were brought up to drink in certain circumstances. Itâ€™s much more cultural than it is fueling an addiction. Couple beers/glasses of wine after work while the family discusses the day; Bloody Maryâ€™s on Sunday morning (if Iâ€™m not working); a few beers while we grill up dinnerâ€”if weâ€™re grilling; Couple beers while watching sports; a few beers here and there, Thatâ€™s normal; it doesnâ€™t affect my job or drive my family away, in fact, the moments when Iâ€™m hanging out with my dad, or my close friends on a nice night with a cold brew have been some of my fondest memories. So to wrap up, what are your thoughts on alcohol, itâ€™s role in society, and what constitutes abuse of it? What about alcoholism? Disease? Curable?