When people act differently under the influence, it could be a sign of an alcohol problem.
Europe may have inspired Ernest Hemingway’s writing, but it also fueled his early love of exotic boozes. While recovering from injuries he sustained on the Italian front, he bribed hospital nurses and porters for cognac, Cinzano, Marsala, and Chianti.
Eventually, he claimed to be able to ‘‘drink hells any amount of whiskey without getting drunk.”
We can’t all hold our liquor like Papa. In fact, one of the main delights—and pitfalls—of drinking is that it allows people to cast off the shackles of normal human behavior. But some people, as anyone who has been to an overlong wedding reception can attest, change more than others when they’re tanked.
For a study recently published in Addiction Research & Theory, researchers questioned 187 pairs of “drinking buddies”—undergrads who frequently drank together and knew what their friend was like when intoxicated. Participants were asked how much they drank and how often, as well as whether they ever experienced any negative consequences from drinking, such as lower grades, regrettable sex, or craving a drink first thing in the morning. They were also asked to describe what they’re like when they are drunk by using the “big five” personality traits, which are openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. Their buddies then corroborated (or contradicted) these personality assessments.