“I’m currently questioning my life choices as I alternate between staring into an empty purse and into the toilet bowl, but yes, we had a fun night!”

Waking up after a night on the town can be tough. Hangovers, regrettable financial decisions, e’ve all been there. Maeve Connolly asks why do we do it to ourselves, and is it about time we stopped?

“It was good. I’m currently questioning my life choices as I alternate between staring into an empty purse and into the toilet bowl, but yes, we had a fun night!”

This, sadly, is a direct quote from yours truly, who, after a night of raucous shenanigans found herself dehydrated, disorientated and with severely diminished monetary funds…

Any of this sound familiar? I can’t help but wonder, as I lie on my bed makeup from the night before still smeared across my shameful face, why is it so hard for us to know and respect our limits? Why do we feel the need to go out again and again and pollute out bodies with the poison that is Tesco vodka, knowing all the while that another shot of tequila will affect us more in the morning than it will in the club.

The drinking culture here in Ireland has sky rocketed out of control. Back In the days of our parent’s youth (so we’re talking prehistoric times) being drunk was the height of “uncool”. The mark of a real man or woman was their ability to hold their drink and do so with dignity. Oh, how times have changed. Nowadays, if you are seen to be sober on a night out you are met with a chorus of “lad stop being dry” or “come on let’s do shots” or “I have a litre in my bag come on, we’ll go to the bathroom and you can down some.” A sober night is a difficult task to complete. Going out to a club without a splash of liquid courage, particularly when surrounded by inebriated friends, means you will be forced to spend the night being pushed around by obnoxious drunks (there’s no escaping this fact I’m afraid: Drunk people are not the politest of species) and trying to avoid being impaled by those dangerous stiletto heels.

The dangers of alcohol have no limits. It damages your health; it seriously dents your personal finances; it completely ruins your ability to do any work the next day (not too high a concern of mine. I’m so gifted I don’t even have to work *starts sobbing uncontrollably at the thought of all the work she has to do*); and it doesn’t exactly do much for your reputation. Every embarrassing thing that has happened to me during my teenage years has been the result of alcohol. And between you and me, my friends have enough dirt on me to get them through the next millennium, so they really don’t need any more material. The obvious solution to all this is quite a simple one: STOP DRINKING. That however is easier said than done.

I’m not saying there is anything wrong with having a drink. Au contraire, I am a firm advocate of the social “few pints”. What worries me is the automatic transition from “just having one or two”, to waking up the next morning with very little memory as to the escapades of the night before. Unless, of course this is just me, in which case I apologise for wasting your precious time and I would gladly appreciate someone directing me to the nearest branch of AA.

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