Home Opinion Mike’s Musings Michael Wilcox, Publisher/Edito
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Mike’s Musings Michael Wilcox, Publisher/Edito

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Alcohol Ruined My
Friend’s Life.
I’m pretty sure we have
all encountered someone
who has allowed sub-
stance abuse to take over
and eventually ruin their
life. Whether it be opi-
oids, heroin, meth or plain
old alcohol, the chilling
effect these drugs have on
our bodies and minds is
incredible.
Having been in the bar
business, I saw it all the
time. Drugs and alcohol
consumed the lives of
many patrons. I felt bad
for many of them, but
consoled my thoughts,
with the idea these people
probably behaved much
better at home than they
did in my establishment.
They really weren’t ad-
dicted- or so I thought.
My thoughts, however,
this morning lie with an
old friend who has al-
lowed alcohol to take
over. I got a call a few
days ago, from another
old friend who told me
about Glenn’s situation.
I had lost track of Glenn,
having seen him only
once in eight years and
that was at my father’s
funeral.
Glenn, who I employed
for a few years back in
the late 80’s was smart as
whip. I have no doubt if
he had tried out for Jeop-
ardy, he would have been
a star. Everyone liked
Glenn- you couldn’t help
it he was always the life
of the party, and always
willing to go the extra
mile to help you.
Glenn, however, had
demons and at the top of
the list was alcohol. He
was a happy drunk and used the drug as a crutch
to overcome his fear of
failure. As his employer
I knew something was
up when he was usually
unavailable by phone,
and when I did reach him
he always had an excuse
for not accomplishing his
task for the day.
Eventually we parted
ways, but still kept in
contact, socially. Unfor-
tunately I could see that
alcohol was consuming
his life and I didn’t know
as a friend, how to handle
it. Thus I quit hanging out
with him.
Then the call came
from my friend. Alcohol
had destroyed Glenn’s
marriage and ruined any
chance he had of keeping
a job. His ex-wife had let
him live several years in
the basement of her house
until it he became too
much of a burden.
He had nowhere to go
so he now sits in a home-
less shelter. As experts say
he has hit “rock bottom”
at age 60. He drinks fifths
like they were cartons of
milk and the once picture
of health has a liver and
pancreas that will quit
on him any day. He’s a
walking corpse thanks to
alcohol, and he is a con-
stant reminder to me how
alcohol and other drugs
can destroy good people.
Glenn and others I
know are why I write
about the destructive and
addictive nature of drugs.
I want the world to know
that there are millions of
people just like Glenn that
need help. We have been
ill-prepared for the opioid crisis, but quite frankly,
the addictive and abusive
nature of alcohol has been
with us since the pilgrims
landed at Plymouth Rock.
Yet very little has been
done to counterattack
drugs. We declare them
unlawful and throw peo-
ple who are caught in jail.
That is not the solution. I
pray that our leaders will
eventually understand that
we need more treatment
centers- centers that are
affordable for the com-
mon person.
As it stands we have
centers for the ultra-rich.
Betty Ford in California
is attended by all sorts of
celebrities. And we have
overnight or weekend
detox centers. However
what we really need is
treatment centers that will
take patients for a month
or three months, so that
they really have a chance
to gain sobriety. And they
need to be affordable.
If we had treatment
centers of this ilk, my
friend Glenn wouldn’t
be in a homeless shelter.
Heck he might even be
sober, and have a decent
job. There might even
be thousands like him
that would be productive
members of society. Just
think, wouldn’t that be
great?