Dear 21-Year Old Self,
Congrats! You’ve made it to twenty-one and get to legally consume alcohol. It is definitely a new and improved experience to be able to go to bars and purchase alcohol. I know it will be fun and will continue to be fun to go out with your friends or simply have a drink at dinner. However, please be careful. Be sure to not drink too much and all the time. Please don’t ever start to need alcohol to be able to interact with friends, or need it to function in everyday life. Remind yourself that you do not need alcohol to have fun and be yourself.
Now that you can legally purchase alcohol whenever you want, know the risks of drinking whenever you want. Know your limits and know when drinking is appropriate and when it is not. Do not take advantage of this responsibility that comes with age. It is great to get this new rite of passage, but it can easily be abused. I would never want that to happen to you. You do not deserve to have a substance dictate your life.
Don’t drink and ruin relationships. Don’t drink and drive. Don’t drink alone. Don’t drink when you’re mad. Don’t drink when you’re stressed. Don’t drink and hurt others. Don’t drink in any way that you are going to regret later on. Being able to legally drink is a huge responsibility, so know the consequences of your actions when you drink alcohol.
I know you are usually pretty good with alcohol, but as time goes by it can be easy to fall into a trap. As long as you are aware now of the harms that alcohol can bring on a person, it will hopefully help you to make smart decisions. There are too many good people out there that fall to the harms of alcoholism. Don’t become one of them.
It is great to be able to socially drink with friends every once in a while and whenever the situation deems appropriate but know that you do not need it. Know your worth and know that drinking is not everything. There is much more to life than that, as I am sure you already know.
So go have fun and enjoy these years of life as a 21-year old, but be conscious about your actions with alcohol along the way.