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September 1988

PO Box 1980

Family affair?

In the article "No Link in the Lineage," the writer seems to be saying "since my alcoholism is not inherited, therefore, no alcoholism can be hereditary." His reason for this is that others have done the same thing from the other side of the proposition, "since my alcoholism seems to be inherited, therefore, all alcoholism must be hereditary."

No reputable person in the field of alcoholism studies would say that "all alcoholism is inherited." But, when more and more studies tend to show that inheritance (or genetics) raises the concordance rate for alcoholism by four, five, and six times higher than the general average, then it's time to take notice.

So I will be glad to allow J. M. to say that his alcoholism was not inherited, if he will allow me to say that mine was. And, when you get right down to it, it really has absolutely nothing to do with either of us getting sober or staying sober, does it?

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