0 Days Since Last Hangover
This image ran on The GlamourGermany Instagram feed. It was a repost from The Every Girl, along with this caption: "Happy Sunday-Funday! #sundaysbelike#sundaydreaming #sundayfunday#stayinbed #regram "
This is what it made me think:
Right now a woman is weeping because she has zero days without a hangover. She is posting to a secret Facebook group that she is back to day one. She is under the covers, beating herself up; replaying her greatest failures. She is dehydrated, filled with shame, and unsure of how she will make it through the day. You might see her in the carpool line or at the office, wiping her eyes from the fatigue. You might see her behind the register, or waiting tables. She does not have a cute letter board that proclaims “Zero Days Since My Last Hangover!”
If she is lucky, she will connect with someone who will tell her that she never has to feel this way again. She will learn about tools that help her live this life without going back to that day one. She will confront her pain, she will celebrate her triumphs. She will pass this wisdom on to another woman, telling her “You never have to have another day one again.”
I know because she is me, and I know 1000 more like her.
Maybe this doesn’t describe an experience you have had. Maybe you simply had too much to drink, and it’s an occasional thing and and hangover is just a hangover you’re not going to embark on a life-changing process.
Sincerely, I’m happy for you.
But if you are a content creator, if you are a social media manager, if you are a maker, please think about her before you create and share images like these. And think about all he women in between, the ones who are not quite at the point I described above but are struggling.
1165 days since my last hangover. 100 % with everyone who is struggling today.
100% will creators who want to do better. There is a way to create media that acknowledges not everyone drinks, and that we can have lives without hangovers, and that millions of people worldwide struggle with substances and addiction. It's particularly important to keep this in mind as problematic drinking is on the rise among women.
Oprah likes to quote Maya Angelou saying, "When you know better, you do better." It's time that content creators open their eyes to what is happening all around them. We don't create in vacuums. Perhaps, even understanding more about this issue, we'll still put out images like this. But I don't think so.