Many people believe that if you get a DUI, you must be an alcoholic.
Driving under the influence is a serious matter. It puts innocent people at risk and can lead to fatalities, so it should be avoided at all costs. But does a DUI equal a drinking problem? Not necessarily. Not everyone who drives drunk has a drinking problem. Some people charged with a DUI need to learn moderation, and they need to know when to call a taxi.
But while a DUI is not necessarily an indicator of a substance use disorder, it IS a wake-up call.
The AA Big Book states that there are three types of drinkers:
- The moderate drinker, who can take or leave alcohol. These people can have one glass of bubbly champagne and not drink again for three months.
- The hard drinker, who might drink heavily but are able to stop even if they “find it difficult and troublesome.” This person might even need to detox.
- The person addicted to alcohol. This person loses all control of their consumption once they start to drink.
If you have told yourself that you are going to stop drinking once and for all, only to start drinking again, this may indicate that you are addicted. If you cannot control the amount you drink once you start drinking, this, too, may be a sign that you need help for addiction.
So does a DUI equal a drinking problem? It does not. But if you are charged with a DUI, it’s probably a good time to look at your behavior and the criteria above to determine if you might be suffering from addiction. If the answer is yes, help is available.
Do you or a loved one need help with a drinking problem? Let Summit BHC help. Contact us today.