Don’t kid you­self, kid — stop drink­ing now

Post-Tribune - - Post-Tribunei Iq - DR. ROBERT WAL­LACE Write to Dr. Wal­lace at rwal­lace@gales­burg.net.

DR. WAL­LACE: I al­ways en­joy read­ing your ad­vice to teens, and it is al­ways sound and help­ful and I have even used your ex­pert ad­vice sev­eral times my­self.

But I do dis­agree with your opin­ion that al­co­hol is evil. It isn’t the al­co­hol that is evil, but those peo­ple who abuse the al­co­hol that are evil. I also feel that law­mak­ers must think that some­thing magic hap­pens at mid­night on the eve of a per­son’s 21st birth­day. It doesn’t seem fair that those un­der the age of 21 watch those 21 and older en­joy an al­co­holic drink but can’t have one them­selves.

I’m 19 and have been con­sum­ing al­co­hol re­spon­si­bly for two years. I don’t have a boyfriend at the mo­ment, I drive my­self to par­ties and I usu­ally have a drink, but no more than two, and then drive my­self home. I’ve never had a prob­lem driv­ing af­ter drink­ing re­spon­si­bly, but I hate to hear peo­ple talk­ing about, “Don’t drink and drive!”

The rule should tell it like it is: “Don’t drive af­ter you have con­sumed more al­co­hol than you can safely han­dle.” — Name­less, Cum­ber­land,

Mary­land

NAME­LESS: I am telling it like it is! Even one al­co­holic drink can af­fect a per­son’s abil­ity to drive an au­to­mo­bile safely. Med­i­cally, al­co­hol is clas­si­fied as a de­pres­sant drug, which acts on the cen­tral ner­vous sys­tem, slow­ing ac­tiv­i­ties of the brain.

Even af­ter only one drink, a driver’s foot may be slowed a frac­tion of a sec­ond in the trans­fer from the ac­cel­er­a­tor to the brake pedal. The re­sult could be a tragic ac­ci­dent. Al­co­hol also has an ef­fect on the driver’s vi­sion, and even one drink can al­ter depth per­cep­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to the Amer­i­can Au­to­mo­bile As­so­ci­a­tion, one or two drinks can cause a driver to be im­paired. Even when al­co­hol is not an is­sue, driv­ing is a chal­lenge. Al­co­hol al­ways in­creases this chal­lenge.

Whether or not you agree or don’t agree, the legal age to con­sume al­co­hol is 21 and over.

Ev­ery time you con­sume al­co­hol you are in vi­o­la­tion of the law. You owe it to all of the other au­to­mo­bile driv­ers and pas­sen­gers in the Cum­ber­land area to be al­co­hol-free when you are be­hind the wheel. I hope you find a boyfriend soon who says no to al­co­hol and will in­flu­ence you to do the same so you can party legally and leave the driv­ing to him so that you both ar­rive home safely.

DR. WAL­LACE: Josh and I have been dat­ing for over a year. He is 22 and I’m 20 and we are in love. We got en­gaged on my birth­day a cou­ple of months ago, and although we haven’t set the date, we look for­ward to get­ting mar­ried.

My con­cern is that, at times, he gets vi­o­lently an­gry with me and threat­ens me. Although he has never yet hit me with his fist, he has slapped me, shoved me and last week he even kicked me. He is usu­ally sweet and nice to me un­til some­thing sets him off. But then af­ter­ward he prom­ises he’ll never get mad at me again, but some­how, he al­ways does.

I keep telling my­self that af­ter we’re mar­ried he will be­have him­self all the time, but my best friend thinks oth­er­wise. She has seen his tem­per a cou­ple of times and she thinks that mar­ry­ing him would be a huge mis­take. Please give me your opin­ion about this. Name­less, Monc­ton, New

Brunswick, Canada

NAME­LESS: No one should be sub­jected to any type of phys­i­cal abuse, es­pe­cially from some­one who says he loves you and wants you to be his life’s part­ner. It’s a good thing he’s not your en­emy!

For­get about mar­ry­ing Josh, now or any time in the fu­ture. Re­turn his ring and sug­gest that he get im­me­di­ate psy­cho­log­i­cal help in con­trol­ling his tem­per. Un­der no cir­cum­stance should you al­low him to talk, beg or plead his way back into your life. When you tell him good­bye, it should be for­ever.

Thank your best friend for giv­ing you very sound ad­vice.

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