With all of the horrible drunk driving consequences that can occur, it’s amazing to me why people still drive while they are under the influence of alcohol or other substances. I understand that when someone is drunk or using other substances, their judgment is very impaired. I understand why drunk driving happens. I just wish people would take more precautions to make sure they don’t end up driving drunk.
Drunk driving consequences can follow you throughout your entire life. If you are convicted of a DUI, it is expensive and it makes it fairly difficult to find a job in the future. There are worse outcomes than a DUI - there are many fatalities and serious injuries that occur from drunk driving.
Over the years, I have heard many drunk driving stories. I remember sitting in class just a few weeks ago listening to a guest speaker. She was speaking about her son, and she was telling us his life story and how wonderful he was.
At the end of the story, she told us that one night he was out driving and he got hit by a drunk driver and died immediately. This isn’t an uncommon story; this happens all the time.
I felt such pain for the woman sharing this story, but I selfishly felt a lot of gratitude that nothing really terrible ever happened when I was drinking. I have met many people who have been affected by drunk driving. Sometimes they are the person who was driving drunk, and other times they were victims of drunk driving car accidents. Drunk driving deaths happen far too often. I am so lucky that I never had to deal with a situation like this.
When I was drinking and using drugs, I did so many irresponsible things, and at the time, I thought nothing bad could ever happen to me. No matter how much I messed up my life, I still thought I was invincible. When I started losing things that I cared about, it’s not as though I realized I wasn’t invincible and I stopped drinking and using drugs. I just convinced myself that I didn’t care about the things that I was losing.
People are going to drink and I certainly understand that. I’m not proposing that everyone just stops drinking. However, if you know you will be drinking, don’t bring your car! Making the right decision before you start drinking is always going to be easier than making the right decision after you’re intoxicated and your judgment is impaired. Sure, calling a cab might cost more money than driving yourself home, but it’s certainly worth the extra money. The effects of drunk driving can be far more expensive and in more ways than financial.
Drunk driving consequences can be so severe and they can change your life forever. It makes me most upset and frustrated because it’s such an avoidable problem. There are always other options than driving drunk. This wasn’t something that I could wrap my head around when I was still drinking, but I think it’s something that we need to keep talking about in the hopes that people might start to listen and truly understand what can happen.
For more information, see our Drunk Driving Fact Sheet.