Gay and Lesbian Alcohol Addiction: An Epidemic


Gay Alcohol Addiction: An Epidemic

Being a gay man or lesbian in this country is not easy. It’s meant facing alienation, isolation, and oppression. Today, it also means coming to grips with our own feelings of being so out of the closet that people know everything about your gay life. Then, mix in the stress over what it is like to be gay with some homophobia linked to fears of AIDS, and you remember that life’s not so easy.

For many gay and lesbian, staying in the closet can seem the safest way to avoid both rejection and conflict. Unfortunately those that stay in the closet become depressed, angry and shameful. This is how gay drug addiction or gay alcoholism begins. For those of you that do not think gay drug addiction or gay alcohol addiction is a serious issue, just take a closer look at the statistics. Research has demonstrated, that at least two million gay men and lesbians abuse alcohol and as many as 30 percent will need drug addiction treatment at some point in their lives. That is three times the odds facing the general population. It is clear to anyone that alcohol abuse and drug addiction is a critical problem within the gay population. The good news is that there is now help for the problem. Gay drug rehab programs, gay alcohol rehab programs and gay relapse prevention programs have opened up throughout the country.

Gay Social Life and Alcoholism

Much of the lifestyle associated with gay life contributes to the high rate of gay/lesbian alcoholism and gay/lesbian drug addiction. But the most significant factor remains the fear and hatred focused on gay people. Needless to say, society has never approved of same-sex romance. It’s a simple fact that gay bars or the gay club scene are the focus of most social activities. The bar has always been the gay equivalent of the country club, church picnic, and community center. And while addiction treatment and drug rehab professionals differ in their opinions on the degree to which bars actually contribute to the high rate of alcoholism among gays, no one denies the importance of bars in gay social lie. The hard truth is that regardless of what contributes to gay alcoholism or gay drug addiction recovery has to be the solution.



Gay Alcohol Rehab Options and the Family


There are a variety of gay chemical dependency, drug rehab, alcohol rehab treatment options for gay persons, but what’s available in your particular area depends very much on where you live. For this reason addiction treatment and alcohol rehab help lines have been established to assist those looking for gay friendly treatment. Some addiction treatment programs are run by gays, while others have gay or lesbian counselors on staff, and still others train straight counselors in helping gay clients.In the past gay men and lesbians occasionally encountered problems when seeking alcohol treatment at some alcohol rehab programs. In many cases, counselors were not fully sympathetic to, or even knowledgeable about, being gay. Some would even go so far as attempting to “cure” a client’s homosexuality, falsely believing that their gayness was the root of their excessive use of alcohol.Today the situation has improved in tremendously. Most gay addiction treatment programs or gay alcohol rehab programs have specific components for the gay/lesbian population, with staff trained to meet their needs. Most of the gay drug rehab programs and gay alcohol rehabs even offer family recovery weeks to include a client’s lover. As a matter of fact, if a drug rehab or alcohol rehab doesn’t have this type of family recovery program, find one that will.

In recent years we’ve all seen an increased awareness of alcoholism and drug addiction among gay men and lesbians. This same awareness has motivated addiction treatment professionals to improve drug rehab and alcohol rehab programs for gays. There have even been gay dual diagnosis components established in addiction treatment. Things are better, but there’s still room for a whole lot of improvement. If you are looking for a gay friendly addiction treatment program, gay friendly drug rehab or gay friendly alcohol rehab, you can find one by going to by going to a website called www.gay-rehab.com

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Jonathan Huttner


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