Women should not be pressured to drink more than they can handle

Gillian Feehan

Writer

It’s no secret that University students love to party, but are University women partying a little too hard? A 2011 study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 24.2 percent of women between ages 18 and 24 participate in binge drinking, which is defined as consuming four or more drinks in one sitting. From what I’ve witnessed here at the University, I would imagine that this percentage would be much higher for this campus and for most college campuses in the US. Why are so many women drinking excessively, and what can we do to stop this?

The pressure to drink surrounds college women who are constantly going to pregames, mixers and Super Saturdays. The drinking culture on campus is difficult to avoid. While Uptown often offers alternative events, for most University women, it seems as if parties are more appealing. Friends often look forward to going out together on the weekends and letting go of the stress from a long week. College women are constantly placed in situations where they feel the need to drink.

Women often feel pressure from their friends to drink more than they can tolerate. It’s always fun for women to drink with their friends, but women may feel pressured to drink more than they usually would to keep up with the guys. I’ve seen women try to go shot for shot with their male friends, and let me tell you, this is a horrible idea. Women also like to try and keep up with their female friends, but just because your friend may be able to do six shots doesn’t mean that you should! I’ve seen already drunk women convince each other that it is a good idea to just do one more shot or have one more beer, which tends to turn into another and another. No matter where the pressure or need to get drunk is coming from, women continue to participate in binge drinking.

Ladies, the key to getting a handle on excessive drinking is to know your limits and stick to them. I know everyone has heard this advice before, but try listening to it. If you know that five drinks will leave you a sloppy mess, then simply do not drink that much, no matter who tries to tell you that another shot isn’t a big deal. You are the only person that can prevent yourself from being a hot mess tonight and a hungover disaster tomorrow. Also, watch out for your friends and they will watch out for you. Every once in a while, a friend tends to drink too much and get a little out of hand. Please cut them off, bring them home and take care of them. If you stay in control of yourself and keep an eye on your friends, many dangerous and potentially deadly situations can be avoided.

College is filled with temptations and pressure for women to drink. It’s unrealistic to try and stop college students from drinking, but it’s important to know key ways to drink as safely as possible: don’t put yourself in situations where you know you will be pressured to drink a lot, keep track of what you are drinking, know your limits and take care of your friends. You’ll have a lot more fun if you keep yourself safe and in control, and everyone will thank you for it.

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