Alcohol is killing women at an alarming rate – so why aren’t we talking about it?

Women are the target of a force-fed story that wine is their best friend, “mommy-juice” makes children more tolerable, low-calorie booze is good for them, a glass of red wine a night is healthy – and that all of this is perfectly okay, just don’t get addicted

Africa Brooke
The Independent Voices

There is still a lot of taboo when it comes to having productive discussions about the soaring rates of alcohol addiction amongst women – and for the past two years, I’ve been on a journey to uncover why. Through my own experiences of alcoholism and subsequent sobriety, I have also uncovered some unsavoury truths that add to this collective attitude towards women’s relationship with booze.

As a society, we tend to ignore the very genuine issues that are affecting women in the 21st century, and this is especially evident when it comes to alcohol addiction. A US study by the University of Washington published in The Lancet showed that during a 10-year period, alcohol related deaths among women rose by 67 percent. The same study also reported that the leading cause of premature death globally for those aged between 15 and 49 is alcohol.

Despite these staggering statistics, many women and girls are still having to go through addiction alone because of the stigma blocking the conversation from taking place. There are many variables as to why it’s still seen as something that should be “dealt with” behind closed doors – but it’s no secret that it’s still not socially acceptable to openly speak about our addictions and pains in the same way we would address any other health problem.




Wine Forbidden, Women Honoured

It was soon after the battle that the Prophet received a revelation in favour of women. God commanded Muslims to give share to their women-folk in the property of their parents, their husbands, their brothers and sons. Women had no share in property anywhere at the time.

The same year Muslims were forbidden to drink wine. When this order was received, a man went round the city proclaiming the prohibition. Abu Talha Ansari sat drinking with a few friends. When they heard the cry of the man, they first wanted to make sure. One of the party said,

“Break the jars first and then make sure.”

They did so at once; that wine flowed like water in the lanes of Medina.



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