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Increase Alcohol Sales has Drawbacks

Photo by Damir Spanic.

Western North Carolina – Remember all those increases in alcohol sales the Tribune has reported on in the past months? Well, every rose has its thorns and it looks like there are some negative effects from all that drinking.

According to a study by American Addiction Centers (https://americanaddictioncenters.org/blog/pandemic-relationships), a leading substance addiction resource provider, one in every 10 North Carolina relationship breakups this year were due to alcohol abuse. The poll of 3,400 “…found that over one in ten (15%) North Carolina relationships that broke down since the start of the pandemic cited alcohol as the significant factor.”

The report stated, “Especially during these already stressful, unprecedented times, the added complication of a partner who drinks heavily can have negative consequences on a relationship. This may include neglecting important work or home responsibilities, increased risk of encountering legal issues and/or financial difficulties due to the cost of maintaining the habit. However, considering the challenging circumstances brought on by the coronavirus, it is important to note that elevated stress and anxiety levels can also increase a person’s drinking habits and exacerbate symptoms of an existing alcohol use disorder.”

Relationship Strains

The report said, “Honesty is the best policy… The survey also found that over one in five (22%) people in relationships admit they have lied to their partner about the amount of alcohol they have consumed. Although it may not seem like a big deal at first, if the behavior continues, secrecy about one’s drinking habits in order to downplay them could be an indicator of alcohol abuse.” 

It also said, “Drinking alone? Additionally, over one in 10 (15%) respondents admit they have gotten drunk while their partner remained sober during lockdown.”

The study concluded that “two people living and working in the same space day in and day out for a prolonged period of time can become mentally draining, especially if neither party feels like they have their own space. The survey found that one in ten (10%) said if they had a drink first thing in the morning, they wouldn’t tell their partner. Considering there can be many dangers associated with having an alcoholic drink in the morning – such as an increased risk of psychological dependence, reduced productivity and distraction from important responsibilities – hiding this from one’s partner could be detrimental to a person’s health.”