change language
you are in: home - friendsh...the poor - friends<...e street - homeless people - the storm of life newslettercontact uslink

Support the Community

  

The Storm of Life


 
printable version

The Storm of Life

Among the homeless alcoholism is much widespread. Surely the number of people who drink wine and get drunk is very high.

It is not always easy to define the human paths of these alcoholics but certainly the condition of being homeless represents a multiplier of this habit, born on the street or before.

What does let these people drinking so much wine to such a point that they are almost always drunk?

The reason why they begun to drink is sometimes accidental or far-off. Other times it is a stage in a complex and long way of social outcasting. However the knowledge of the beginning grounds, useful in order to define the human paths of these alcoholics, is not sufficient to allow a recovery. So the self-consciousness of the beginning grounds is not sufficient alone to help them to stop drinking. On the contrary, the so-called secondary grounds connected to life on the street are much stronger, and they are not few.

Cold inside and outside

First of all the cold: sometimes on the street the rigours of winter are intolerable and the homeless often are not sufficiently covered to defend themselves. To drink become half a necessity even if the initially sensation of hot is an illusion: so we can explain the deaths from frostbite that unfortunately verify each year during winter. Not rarely we encounter homeless alcoholics seriously undernourished, hardly able to stand, not only because they are drunk, but also because they are weak: in fact, the more they drink the less they eat and the less they have desire to eat.

The night is endless

For the homeless sleeping is not easy: the places where they protect during the night, besides being lacking of any comforts, are very noisy. After a drunk, sleep becomes so deep that they do not hear either cold or uncomfortable position or confusion around.

Loneliness is an enemy

The biggest enemy for people living on the street is loneliness: whole days spent around the city, among hundreds people but alone. In loneliness the weight of memories, the troubles for the present and for the future become heavier: the only way to escape is to drink to take the mind off things, hoping to forget. The shame for one's conditions often adds to cold, hunger and loneliness.

Alcohol transforms the life of these people, not only objectively, but also it transforms their character, their mood and it conditions their actions to such a point to let them appearing owner of themselves anymore. This makes them suffering, because it is a vicious circle which feeds itself.

They often are people young anymore, who went through a crisis moment in their life, maybe surmountable with the necessary sustain, which became the beginning of a gradual yet irreversible route of social exclusion. No-one can become alcoholic in a day and the more the habit to drink continues during the time, the more it is difficult to stop it.

Living for who?

The burning desire for a "normal life" always remains, but their conditions make this just an unobtainable dream. Their existences often swing between the desire to change life and the fear of a failure of a new life.

Why to stop in drinking if, after this, life goes on like before, homeless, unemployed? Why to begin again? Maybe we can ask: why and for who to stop? Not for the family, sometimes absent or in which an incurable break-up verified. Not for the friends, that they do not have. Not for one's professional knowledge, often lost together with the health, or never owned. The most the motivations to stop are lacking, but the desire to do it remains.

This problem is deeply connected to the quality of alcoholics life: they often need all in. Home, possibility to regain regular rhythm and habit, to find a stability and a material safety in everyday life are necessary presupposition for a possible rehabilitation. But quality of life is made up of human and social relationships, interests, expectations too. This "human fabric" represents the reinstatement in social life. For the homeless this often has been completely destroyed during years of isolation and social outcasting. It is not possible to speak of recovery without rebuilding this interlacement.

Life hanging by a thread

Moreover the life of these people is hanging by a thread: in fact alcoholism, together with the consequential illnesses and with the accidents provoked when drunk, is one of the most frequent cause of death among the homeless.

MEDIAGALLERY

Friends on the street


 ALSO READ
• NEWS
October 28 2017
BLANTYRE, MALAWI

From the abyss to the light after 10 years: the true story of an injustice redeemed through love in Malawi

IT | EN | ES
October 10 2017

On 15th World Day Against the Death Penalty let us visit the poorest convicts in Africa

IT | EN | DE | ID
July 18 2017
BERLIN, GERMANY

Berlin's youth message to Europe: No More Walls

IT | EN | ES | DE | PT | CA | ID
June 20 2017

World Refugee Day: a story that shows the road of hope #WithRefugees #FaithOverFear

IT | EN | ES | FR | ID
June 19 2017

World Refugee Day 2017. Ecumenical statement: to go beyond the fear of foreigners

IT | EN | ES | DE
May 3 2017
ABUJA, NIGERIA

Nigeria: humanitarian aid to the women detained in Suleja Prison

IT | EN | ES | DE | PT | NL
all news
• PRINT
March 13 2018
RP ONLINE

Flucht, Abi, Studium

February 15 2018
La Nazione

Un pasto per chi non ha nulla. Ecco come si può dare una mano

February 8 2018
SIR

Migrazioni: Pompei (Comunità Sant’Egidio), “nuove modalità di ingresso in Italia più flessibili ed efficienti”

February 5 2018
SIR

Immigrazione: Comunità Sant’Egidio, oggi anche la ministra Fedeli alla consegna dei diplomi per mediatori interculturali

January 15 2018
Corriere della Sera

Andrea Riccardi. Francesco traccia la differenza tra immigrazione e invasione

January 2 2018
Il Messaggero - ed. Civitavecchia

La comunità di Sant'Egidio offre il pranzo ai detenuti

all press releases
• DOCUMENTS
Comunità di Sant'Egidio

Cinque proposte sull’immigrazione

Appello al Parlamento ungherese sui profughi e i minori richiedenti asilo

La Comunità di Sant'Egidio e i poveri in Liguria - report 2015

Corso di Alta Formazione professionale per Mediatori europei per l’intercultura e la coesione sociale

Sintesi, Rapporti, Numeri e dati sulle persone senza dimora a Roma nel 2015

Le persone senza dimora a Roma

all documents

PHOTOS

1341 visits

1424 visits

1440 visits

1384 visits
all the related media