“I thought you were a college student?”

This was the judgmental response I got from a close family member after I turned down a drink. A family member that didn’t even attend a university- who’s only idea of what higher education consists of is derived from movies that depict fraternity parties, not the persistence and endless studying it takes to be successful, graduate, and leave with a meaningful degree. I was 20 at the time he offered me the beer, not even of legal age to drink.

A few weeks ago, I turned 21 and was pressured by my sister and her best friend to drink to a dangerous level. I (unknowingly) ended up hitting my sister and throwing a shot at her friend from all of the tension. I said so many things I did not mean, and I do not remember my actions. Alcohol has a tendency of doing that.

I am struggling with my mom's relationship with drinking. The other night she drank so much that she said unspeakable things to me- about me- and I will forgive her, but I will never forget the way she made me feel. I am afraid of what will happen to her after I return to school and she has an empty nest for the first time.

I am a part of the Better Drinking Culture because I hate the person I become when I drink too much. I want to be known as the empathetic and caring person I am, who is going to save lives and heal patients in the near future after obtaining a nursing degree. I want my future children to grow up with a mom that means everything she says, and only says true and constructive things. I want to be able to go out for a drink or two and be able to study and be productive the next day. I am the best version of myself when I do not drink in excess. I am a part of the BDC because its ideals coincide with the lifestyle that makes me the best version of myself. (posted: anonymous)