From the June 2011 magazine.

June 2011: Responsibility man

The burdens of obligation transform to gifts of sobriety

"Responsibility equaled an obligation I could never satisfy."

Before and during my drinking days, people were always talking to me about responsibility. I “had a responsibility” to be an excellent student, obedient son and religious child. I was also somehow responsible that children on the other side of the world didn’t go to bed hungry. Later, I was responsible to satisfy my employers’ demands, including late hours, much travel, and frequent separation from my family. For most of my life, I thought I was responsible to satisfy other’s expectations.

Responsibility equaled an obligation I could never satisfy. The burden was crushing. Well, drinking fixed that. Pleasantly drunk, I could forget my burdens for a while. You’d drink too if you were as responsible as I was.

-- Joe V.

Munsey Park, New York

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