Mexican American Males and Alcoholism

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Ruth Gutierrez
Proff. Julia Curry
MAS 160 9 a.m.
12 May 2009
Mexican American Males and Alcoholism
Drinking alcohol is a behavior that diverse ethnicities and cultures have adapted as a form of leisure, celebration, socialization, or cultural practice. Mexican American males have engaged in drinking alcohol for all of these reasons. It is important to analyze the process of acculturation Mexican American experience and how it affects their ability to persuade and control their alcohol consumption. The stress of adjusting to a new place than the one they have been accustomed to and have already been accepted in, can lead males to drink alcohol to help them in coping with their issues. The gravity of extreme alcohol drinking is also highly influenced by demographic factors such as income, language, age, marital status and legal status in the United States. Unfortunately social, cultural, and demographic factors also play an important role in the likeliness of Mexican American males to accept that they have a problem with alcohol and furthermore commit themselves to a program that will rehabilitate their alcohol dependency.

There can be many unknown reasons why a Mexican American may fall into alcoholism and never actually accept that they need help, but perhaps the most common one is the Mexican cultural concept of machismo. Machismo among Mexican American males is series of behaviors that express their masculinity through patriarchy, violence, and physical capabilities. Males learn machismo at a surprisingly young age through their parents, family members, and other peers. Part of the Mexican culture is to celebrate by drinking tequila, which branches off the behavior young males follow, of proving their masculinity by withstanding large amounts of alcohol. In the context of alcoholism, the “macho” behavior in a male who is older and married would be characterized by heavy drinking until drunk, physical violence toward wife, and going out late at night...
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