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SAMUEL PROCTOR ORAL HISTORY PROGRAM at
the University of Florida
INTERVIEWEE: Gayner Mae Oxendine
INTERVIEWER: Lew Barton
February 27, 1975 dib
B: This is February 27, 1975. I am Lew Barton interviewing for the
University of Florida's American Indian Oral History Program. This
afternoon I am in the office of the alcoholics division at the
American Indian Study Center here at 211 South Broadway in Baltimore,
Maryland, and with me is a young lady who works with that particular
department. I've interviewed the director earlier, Mr. Ertl Hunt
and with me is, I believe it's a Mrs. Oxendine, isn't it?
0: Not Mrs., Miss.
B: Miss, I'm sorry.
0:' That's all right.
B: Would you give us your full name, though?
0: Gaynor Mae Oxendine.
B: Where were you born?
0: Lumberton, North Carolina.
B: 10=6 ts which area?
0: Black Swamp, Robeson County.
B: -.ah. How long have you been in Baltimore City?
0: About twenty-two years.
B: About twenty-two years. This feels like home then, doesn't it?
0: N6t really, no.
B: You can't be much older than that?
Page 2. dib
0: Yes, I'm going on twenty-eight.
B: That's not bad.
B: How do they say, the most beautiful years of a lady's life is
when she's about twenty-eight to thirty-five j1 Aer So
you've got much beauty to look forward to perhaps. Let's k9 p-js
anyway. What are your duties here, Miss Oxendine?
0: I work as a counselor.
B: iTl, cpuld you tell us something about your family?
0: My father and my mother both now live in Essex, Maryland, and their
names are Jane and Charlie Oxendiird3af I have a younger brother
who stays with them. He's twenty-five and his name is Bill Oxendine.
B: How old is he?
0: Twenty-five. And I have another brother whiee twenty-nine, who lives
on Lombard Street here in Baltimore.
B: What's his name?
0: His name's Anthony
0: 48i.he's married to a girl named Grace and they have one child
B: Interesting, you got any more family members?
B: Do you enjoy your work here?
0: Yes, I enjoy my work.
Page 3. dib
B: Is Mr. Ertl Hunt your boss?
0: Yes, he is.
B: How many of your are in the alcoholic division?
0: There's Ertl Hunt, he's the head of it, and then James Jacob, myself,
and Reverend Dial. We're all counselors.
B: SJaah, and the four of you make up the alcoholic division.
0: Righ tS um.
B: It must be interesting work. SA I rather admire you peopleeare working
in the alcoholic division;because I'm sure it must not be easy
work. You all are so, you get along so well with people. This
is one characteristic that I've noticed about all the people in
this division, A how well you get along with peop l andi .o" awn.'
all of you have beautiful personalities; you can handle most any
situationgand this is something that I admire very much. Mr.
Hunt is a very unusual person, isn't he?
0: Yes, he is.
B: Marvelous, very intelligent and his personality flows outward to
so many other people roundabout ^m Z t-\ Jr.e-
0: It kind of rubs off.
B: It kind of rubs: off on you, doesn't it?
0: tr-itmh. C
B: He is sort of contagious I guess. I don't know anybody who dislikes
him. Not a single person that I know of.
B: Do -y 144cl-e O, you said you liked 4a work, didn't you?
Page 4. dib
0: Yes, it's rather interesting. tf bIte tieI usually, SSClgSB
imme most of our clients are Indians, and to work in this field
you have to have a great desire to help your peopCea especially
in this type of field lc5olism is, you know, the number.one killer
among American Indians, and...
B: /_Sr_ _If_0
0: T.. --e ma"m. h 7-m i we've got a lot of people around here who
have had problem) breaks up a lot of homes/and you ee a lot of
friendsland you lose jobs on account of ig5.pf that's what this
program here was set because around this area it's mostly Indian
populated and we all here in this department have a great desire
to help our peopLpgf I feel it's accomplishing something myself.
B: Oh yes, no doubt about that. But you, you don't just handle Indian
alcoholics, do you?
0: No, no, most of our...
B: Help anyone who comes along?
0: Right, most of our clients are Indians, but we also have black, Spanish,
white Puerto Rican
0: se3 f. that come in. And we also (ymatmIw take care of whoever
comes through the door.
B: But must they come in and ask for help?
0: Well, that's one of the first signs. I mean if they really want the
help, the person theirself has to want it, and it takes a lot of
Page 5. dib
courage for them to come in and say that they want the help to begin
wiyf yu y eu --=ad -man that's one step towards their cure. Yuu"
S--W not really a cure, but like a recovery, because there's not
really what you call a cure. gg> if you're an alcoholic you're
always an alcoholic and...
B: Either wet or dry you're...
B: ...still an alcoholic.
0: ...if you ---- 11:g' always commonly known as.a recovering
alcohol ou never actually recover because if you take one drink
then you could just be St -yauik-iav. right where you started fro 0
B: "gMrp, do you see this as a personality defect or as an emotional
problem)or are there physical things, too, that go along with it?9.-
--=2 It's a very complicated problem, isn't if. f. --
0: Well, I myself believe it's a combination of quite a few things.
But like a lot of people say, yasuqgW, I take a drink -bsnssCa
egj, for the silliest reason, like my dog died today or y u,
the Oriels, g9aMEW S won the ball game or whatever j*.ii amr And
they're tl-4l- .. ......@. the one whds(picking
up the glazq aj 4 t pw. No ones forcing them. It's they, y<4 mBmW-,
themselves that are doing it and in a way, PiE3E2, because of that/
they lose everything that they havCUwah.e after a while they can
drink so far that they hit a height to where it starts dropping off/
and even if they just take one drink they completelyyeut knim..at
Page 6. dib
3 tsay-yoTr`kMnrsdIal. They're already there.
B: And it only takes that one drink.
B: Do you have hospital facilities that are available to you or do you
need to use this information with your work?
0: We use it in connection with a workers1hospital throughout the area,
and we refer the clients to these hospitals for IegSp a period
of tii5SaM it's up to them for what period of time they want to
stay in. We also transport them to hospitals that are too far for
the^leu1--finm to get to themselves. But it's no good if they're
just going to dry out and just come right back out again. Because
it doesn't serve any purpose.
B: Do you have an statistics to show about what your percentage of successor
what do you consider to be a success? I know it's very difficult
to say that you actually arrested the alcoholic trend or whatever
it is, put them in the recovery stage. Do you have any idea about
how successful you are?
0: Well, I can't really say in numbers. I know we have a few that are
m drinkers at the time and seem to beynmmanmw, pretty
well, and some are, yauiw y back to workingand some are back with
their families and whatever. We also have these few that just aren't
motivated or just really didn't want he and-yNaBa some of
them have died aa which is8PO.idaMB what happens if they just keep
o i they just seem to lose all hop?Oe& if you take away the bottle
from the alcoholicyou always have to have something that he can hold
Page 7. dib
on to, something to replace it with, even if it's just his self-respect.
TIMamP-Ma meHn, ou can't do it all for hirlyaou're just there to
help him along the way, kind of like guide him. He has to want
-to do it hisself.
B: If they backslide d*mkte thislis one time they don't get in touch
with you or anything? o they feel ashamed when they backslide?
0: I believe they do. It happenseVym-ABm, quite ofteiait if you
take them to a hospital and they just go in and dry oa before
they get down here g s they've already got another bottle
with thsi it just seems like they're just going there for so
many days, but you also have those who abstain for so many months
that also drop bac-dt1 &t takes a lot of courageqounew. A d
they feel they could do it without the bottle, you know, to like
u-tit this courage, it really doesn't give them courage but
they believe it does, and that can be really a step towards their
B: Are you a Lumbee Indian?
0: Yes, I am.
B: Are proud of it?
0: Yes, I am.
B: You told us about your parents. Do you have many people living back
in North Carolina?
0: Yes, my father comes from a family of nine children and most of them
are still residing in North Carolin^XlE I have some in New York
Page 8. dib
and kind of scattered out 'ost of them are still in North
B: Do you enjoy visiting home?
0: Yes, I do, very much.
B: Im ye2x -w.f ..."..mt. e, Miss Oxendine, sa, what kind of
training do you have to have JB ,A a a b- i*ftee to become an alcoholics
0: Well, i'p. it depends on the facilities that you're
going to be working for. Now for here I had to go to John Hopkins
University here in Maryland -.-Wabeas-s for seven months, plus
I had to take some training down here during that seven months,
ianflkem tfe which yec a y qualified me to work for this program.
B: I've noticed that all of you IgBS, I don't mean you're alike aAEa
gu who work on the alcoholic program have this marvelous outflowing
personalities is the best way I know to express i this is very
important, knowing how to reach people and being willing. Wi there
seems to be, if you'll pardon my saying so, a special benevolence
on the part of a person like yourself. You seem to be genuinely
concerned for people. Do you think this is what makes it...
0: I believe that has something to do with it. We have had to learn
to accept people for their attitudes and beliefs and respect them
for thar that has a lot to do with i .and above all you have to
have a very deep desire to help people am but you can't, wou-samm,
Page 9. dib
you have to remain kind of, _jjm 3, try to put yourself in their
shoe ge-, try to r*-mm don't get too emotional with it. You have
to have some kind of courage t5lelle you could be able to help
them and not. k ktd or 'ke fall apart yourself.
B: Is there a ag1a i danger of doing this (to get too involved?
0: I believe there is. You have to keep your head. Like I said you
can't get too emotional with your client. That way he could probably
see through you and feel, in a sense, some of them do that, well,
this persons not ySa- really going to be able to help me.
In a sense they may need help theirselves3% ijn-hww. You have to
be able to put yourself in their shoes, but kind of keep yourself
back so far as not to become too emotional.
B: This is not easy to do I'm sure.
0: No, it's not. No, because a lot of them have a great way of
manipulating. An alcohol is one of the biggest manipulators,
quite known and...
B: They are good con people.
0: Right, they sure are.
B: Do you have any standard procedure or any tricks about being immune
to this, to all the con?
0: Well, egjs each one of them that comes to the door is an individual.
They're each different in every way, which each person theirself is
different. But I know of one that will come in and say, 3a=m=wk ,
Page 10. dib
"give me a quarter, I need a cup of coffee sai you know anyway
that they're just going to go down and take that quarter and panhandle
enough money to where they can go get theirself a bottle. But
the biggest thing I can tell them, "Well, if you want a cup of
coffee I can fix you a cup of coffee." aLySsu that way
they kind of get the idea that thelM^ERI they're nqt you have
to be on guard with them sometimes, because if you're notlthey
can really con you int )I know they do it right in front of the
building here a lot of times, and yggStma, stop a lot of people
and ask them from money to where they can get a bottle.
B: And you think there's also then the danger that they might come
in not really because they want help but -because they want,-w-me
unhelp sort of.
0: Yes, a lot of them come in just to loiter, but you can't just turn
them away on account of that/because you want them to feel that
they have some place to come to when they do need hen -an4'd=i
.even if they're just coming here just to sit around and just talkZ
even if you talk to them for five minutes sometimes you get more
accomplished talking to them for five minutes than you can for talking
to them for an hour or more, because sometimes something you say will
stick in their memory and they'll remember it and it may have an effect
B: rEa.. -.n 1"yo rUinkt--a, I don't want to put you on the spot so
to speak or E au ask you something that will make you feel un-
comfortable. Anything you don't want to talk about we won't talk about,
Page 11. dib
but can you think of cases that are more memorable than others,
people that their memory stays with you even after they've been
0: Yes, I can.
B: Go ahead.
0: I have one in particular whosf sober at this time and has been
sober Igm since September, and he's doing pretty well. He's looking
for a job right now, but he's still sustaining himself0l he's
living in a decent apartment am not too far from the center.
/nd he stops in every now and then to let us know how he's getting
alone ai w've been referring him to different places that he
could get a job at and so far he's holding on pretty well.
B: pretty m .
0: ...Um&- nt, he's a memorable case/and being in this type of work Od-ct
being female sometimes you have your problem like if you have a
client that you can't work with because he seems akpiI t
to get other ideas. He tried to act like he has other ideas not,
_SgS mw, to use as an excuse not to talk about hisself. Then
it's best to refer that person to another counselorlwhereas that
counselor could probably CS /1 Y0/2 .1 Now I'm speaking right
now of one man who comes inf that comes to mind he comes in and is
uerig flirting all the time and everything. But I've kind of
caught him off guard and got him to talking about hisselfand he's
not really motivated at this time.
Page 12. dib
B: This motivation then is very important, isn't it?
0: Yes, it iSDyou have to have a real feeling to want helpa jit
takes a lot of courage in a person to take that first step and lbf--
first to admit it that they need help, admit it to themselves and
then admit it to someone else that could y ..lapiiw. be firm
or talk to them or whateverr`p .aEWi to put them on the road to
B: Well, how about AA, Alcoholics Anonymous, there a good chapter nearby?
0: Yes, we have one located at 7 South Wolf Street/which is within'-Ci y
a few blocks of henf gp they also have an AA meeting up at one of
the hospitals, Churchlin Hospital. I believe it's oniWednesday-
nights at seven-thirty. The one at St. Michaels is on Monday
nights at seven-thirty. 35i they have a =aIq group there/and
also at St. Michaels they have an .Al-Anon right across the hall
which is for wives, friends/ and relatives of alcoholicsqa5 d they
have a pretty good group there.
B: Well, their method of helping is mostly spiritual, isn't it?
0: Spiritual in a sense, yes. I have one of the books about.ZSEsOas K,
iket7#-ey-go,_their motto is 439e they go from day to day and within
the book it has 1e a little prayer that can be said each day which
helps ou and then as one of them feels kind of down or something,
they can always call another AA member or whatever. They kind of
like yajsftt, help each other to stay with them at recovery.
Page 13. dib
B: Like a brotherhood, isn't it?
0: Yes, it is. It's a very good organization.
B: Are they very cooperative?
0: Yes, they are.
B:: Well, nobody has a magic cure though, do they?
0: No, they don't. If they did/there sure wouldn't be them around.
B: What do you envision for the future of a program like thismraue
dp you think our people are more susceptible to alcoholism?
0: I believe they're very susceptible, but they also say, and I have
never really seen one, maybe one or twoA4t there's no such thing
as a skidrow Indian alcoholic who hangs on the corner all the time
or sleeps in the gutter or whatever, because Indian people always
have a way of helping one another. Even if you're drunk and you
go to someone's house or whatever, half the timeor at least most
of the timeyou can always sleep it off there, because they don't
just throw you out the door or whatever. They always kind of help
one another which is a good thing.
B: Right. That is interesting. That's something that hasn't been
brought out beforeand I'm glad to hear that. But do you think
our people have a tendencybecause of their many problems that they
are more susceptible?
Oi I believe so. Indian people have a way of, they feel that they have
been put down so much that they, after a whilelthey get the bluer5
Page 14. dib
ffi I've known a lot of Indians who drink. I had interviewed one
;ga gii i about a year ago, that believed that he had to
drink to prove that he was as good as the white mqfto show
thembecause the white man's impression of him was that he was
strong and anold saying,, 'y-gMkM a good warrioq wb e .as%=.
But he had this feeling that he had to prove himself to show that
he coulde.gdlNpw, chuck along with the rest of them as you say,
,5 which is a shaq yo-u knr 1-ll .I feel that Indian people,
mgfu.ney shouldn't be put down and I feel that they wouldn'tf/(a
gwS, the discrimination and everythingDI feel that they would,
they have a right to succeed and they can succeed, but a lot of them
don't have that confidence to succeed and they won't go ahead with
it. And a lot of them don't want to take charity. They'd rather
sit there and suffer. Well, I believe that they're entitled to
charity, whatever 4Sheyesw k ,- w, if they don't have no food
in the house or whatever. I feel that they above anyone is really
entitled to it.
B: Yes, I agree.
0: But a lot of them's not going to accept it because they have too much
pride to go ahead and ask for it.
B: And you find, bf course, this theme of pride among the Indians, which
is common to all Indians, you find this even among alcoholics.
0: Right, you sure do.
B: And something you mentioned a while ago about proving (ar0 w., that
Page 15. dib
they can drink just like the white man. But this-&" certainly
seems to be the one area where we should not try this, right?
B: Where we should not try to measure up around a drinking table. You
think maybe when Indians do get drunk aiaSai Oy, are they more violent
0: Some of them are. Some of them kind of get quite-aS violent, but
there's a lot of them who just talk more or just -agE tr, get
more quieter and go inward. But there's a lot of them that get
into fights and all on account of drinking, and it's not a good thing.
B: Well, I certainly wish you godspeed with your program. As I said
I'm very, very thrilled that you people are working on i zas
zad I don't know how.the center was so fortunate to be able to
get people like yourself and the Hunts, Jacobs, and Reverend Dial.
All of you are so well-qualified and you're all humanitarians at
heart and do have this deep feeling of desire to help somebody.
But I certainly wish you godspeed. What advice would you give to
the family of a person who was an alcoholic?
0: Well, if the woman r:- ; 4W-- lT M F--nn of the family, if she really
feels that she loves him I think that she should stick by hiea)d
I know he's going to deny, and she in herself is going to deny it.
The family helps the alcoholic to deny that he has the disease to
aogin-ta ..u....l-4o begin with. They have a way of covering it up
Page 16. dib
and it's like they can let it go on for say/seven years and it's
five years before they even admit it.
B: -teter this is bad, isn't it?
0: It is, and I feel that MZVrnfif. you could like just e have
someone come into your home or whatever, to try to get the person
to talk, which is very hard because they're not going to admit
it. i &erwt ,I know of drinkers who spread literature around
that is about alcoholics. Maybe the person JS& might just pick
it up and read it. But just to show the person that you care and
to try to talk to the person. I know the person's going to deny
it, but they will know that you tried to talk to them and they
will remember. 1Ei they may become violent about it or say,
"Well, y7gF1313 I don't have a drinking problem," or whatever.
But they, theirselves, like I said before, have to feel that they
want the help. But if you show that you have a desire, gparl a,
4MS you want to help them) armwHrw r then you're maybe accomplishing
B: *BAl&, Some people get the idea, some woman get the idea when
they are dating a fellow who happens to be an alcoholic, that if
I'm marrying him and I'm with him all the time I can really reform
him. What would you say to a girl like this who has this particular
0: Well, there's an old saying, if you fall in love with someone, you
fall in love with them the way they are and usually a woman who
Page 17. dib
who marries an alcoholic) akmwa knows to begin with that he's
an alcohol? he's most likely been brought up in an alcoholic
family or has been around somebody that has drank quite a bit,
and she's used to the situation. And when you're quite used to
a situation like that a lot of times you'll marry right back into
the situation. But you shouldn't go into a marriage saying you're
going to reform somebody, because that's the wrong way to go
about it. J,9iWfs you're not going to make that person over. 3
iOm if you try to get the problem in another way,don't go in there
withj2gggigp your guns all a charge as they say. IJ.L like
I said, talk to the person and try to convince the person, which is
a very hard thing to do. The alcoholic above hurting hisself hurts
his loved ones an awfuli.lot. He hurts the people around him and 1".
Sh o) r oo- tjaJbused by it, and there's a lot of people that gets
hurt on account of it.
B: Do you think marriage like this and a woman like this just may
actually aggravate the situation and make it worse instead of
make it better?
0: Yes, yes, a lot of people a=r e it worse because) i-yfr IIB.
if the person's drinking and you just go to hollering and screaming
all the time, the person feels they have another reason to go out
and drink. That's an excuse for them, you know. But don't go in
saying you're going to reform him. SaM:ahn you have to really have
Page 18. dib
a great love for that person and convince that person yourself
that you want to help them. You're not going to come on out right
off and say, "You know, you're an alcoholic," because a lot of
times they're not going to accept it.
B: Does a lady counselor work better with other women or other men, or
with men would you think? Or does it depend?
6: It depends. Like I said each person is their own individual. You
have problems when you're a female counselor in this program with
men. I 've already 2i come up across this with one person and
that's all, and I've kind of like resolved that.
SIDE II?TAPE A
B: ye were discussion just a minute ago before the tape ran outS...
gt n f ffli 'the subject of alcoholism,
we had started talking about cases where a woman counselor or a
female counselor&qlgfdSSLL is more effective than a male counselor
and vice versa. But this is Iwee-s .i-s not always the case.
You just don't necessarily relate to another woman. Sometimes you
can relate better to another man depending on the case, is that
0: Yes, that's true, because we have some woman that call in that would
rather talk to a man than what they would talk to another woman.
B: -4r= P I read this book s ,erTa, t ls"e i ese'....u^ltr ,
Page 19. dib
called The Alcoholic Woman, and this doctor said that when a woman
becomes an alcoholic she really hits the bottom. It's worse for her
than it is for anybody else. Do you think this has any validity?
Do you think it's pretty...
0: I think so. A woman a lot of times when she drinks, she usually
mixes it with drugs q akbi arbituates or ilis l
uppers, downers. I feel that a woman does have more of a problem
l's(i ritK because e like I said^to begin with she
will hide it an awful lot more than what a man will and she feels o
yr-"J&% put down and everything. I feel a woman myself has more
of problem than what a man does. There's more facilities for men
alcoholics than what there is for woman.
B: Hey, that's bad news. About as many of one as there is of the other
would you say?
0: What do you mean? You mean...
B: Do you have any kind of statistics at all to show what the number
is among alcoholics who are men and alcoholics who are women? How
do the two sexes compare with each other?
0: No, I don't have any statistics at the time, the most current ones
B: T*lla ok, but how does it run, do you have a general idea, any idea at
all about whether there are more men alcoholics or more wom'h or is
0: We had a paper here a while back. I can't remember the number. It
Page 20. dib
was pointed out there wer-%ore men than what there were women. But
like I said *XftE, the women are more of a hidden alcoholic, and
there may be a lot of women out there whosf hidden that we don't
even know about yet.
B: I read a book sometime ago called Eighty-eight Men and Two Women.
This book was written by the warden of a prison and these numbers
referred to people who had been execute as this warden was against
capital crime and the implication of the title was t f the
inequality here. Here are eighty-eight men who have been put to
death and during the same period only two women. What I want to
ask you is this, do you think a woman is capable o more serious
crime)? is she worse morally)or are they about equal ow-wihm
an whjat would you think makes for this difference? GP is it
because a woman is generally kinder and more gentle by nature?
0: It's known tha-t-w n aSYi is more sensitive to things and she's
more emotional f whereas a man doesn't show as much emotion
like crying or whatever. 4Hes-bi then again that could be
society putting a standard. Whereas a man shouldn't cryi l BUJai
like in front of other people. If he cries he's usually crying
alone. But a womanlike I said is more sensitive and she has more
outbreaks of emotion I've seenthan what a man does.
A een,~than what a man does.
B: Do you think this is a healthier condition, that a woman, her very
deep feelings she can let off steam, so to speak, by crying, whereas
Page 21. dib
a man can't and isaEW, it may manifest itself in some JatTd or other?
0: Yes, I believe this. Holding in too much emotion has an awful effect
on people. Like a lot of times r ulceeca.w.i
Igs that's one of the things. Tte if you feel something and you
feel hurt a/snlrra r I think it's very healthy to cry or even
SiMMaUfk to holler it out or whatever. It doesn't hold goodo=ar
1*n= to keep it inside all the time constantly like that.
B: wMIa li, well, perhaps this explains a lot of things, even the crime
rate, the difference in crime rates. I'm sure the problems, those
type problems, emotional problems. But I'm thinking now about another
question. A woman who is a skSaf h*A m W skiow alcoholic,
you don't find as many as thoseagg as you do among men?
0: No, you don't. You see, like I said you mostly see a lot of men
alcoholics' skirow, within this area and around down by the harbor
you see a lo6.f-ekw-du But I very seldom seen a woman, you know,
just walking on the streets and laying in the alley or whatever.
Even if she's an alcoholic she usually has some place that she can
B: One more question, we know that if people are going to drink it's going
to be expensive or at least it's going to cost money and they have to
have money to support their habits even as in the case of drugs. Do
you think that women o.-ewa nF- .xp, -.m might have an easier way
of supporting her problem than a man or do you think that women some-
Page 22. dib
times revert to this in order to support their own particular habit
whereas a man couldn't do this?
0: Well, a woman can use her body for her habit. A man now he can
more likely panhandle and manipulate people or con people into
giving him money or whatever to support his habit, or steal something
and then sell it for more than what it cost on the shelf. -frd-
SI -feel, you kno .--ar-6una- s T a t im Blaiiiifte 47c s
B: Mdamh. well, maybe this is, this is why we don't' have as many sta-
tistics on women as on men. Perhaps the woman's way of supporting
her habit is more hidd iti if a man steals something he generally
gets caught and it comes out in court. But the woman, the woman's
activities could be hidden because these things, they often
doOt 10Cour(t These are the secret things. So then the
conclusion seems to be that the statistics are incomplete and
necessarily so, where the woman is concerned or more incomplete
than where a man is concerned. And I guess there isn't any good
way of bringing those statistics to the light in as much as women
don't ask for help as often as men?
0: No, they don't, and then when you talk about statistics, you know, it's
usually when they're set up and so on like so many set of people and
you can't always go by that for many set of people.
B: dfCI h, in other words if you're studying a group of people who go
to John Hopkins and check in or ask to be checked into the hospital
for treatment. It's very easy to take those numbers and count them.
Page 23. dib
but you don't count those that don't come in.
B: And that makes it very difficult to make a valid study in this area.
Well, this has certainly been a very encouraging ad enlightening
and inspiring interview. I notice that you don't have a pessimistic
attitude toward alcoholism whereas many people might have. You
don't seem to be overly pessimistic about it and you're optimistic.
I'm wondering what is the source of your optimism? What gives you
this optimism, this hope that you haven't given up on the alcoholics,
too; 4-MM nigrwzM
0: No, I haven't, no.
B: Do you know what it is, why you're this way?
0: Well, I feel that, you know, that we're all et i 4r together,
and I believe that people should love and respect one another no
matter whatf1yaBa:*Im, their attitudes, their beliefs or whatever
you kno;"polu-.come-ean s Like a person being an alcoholic, if
this person doesn't feel that they can come to someone, eaimlSl,
then something worse can result of it, 1wasMCm, because they don't
have anything, just theirsel -iyIga w, they just drown in that:,
sorrow. We've had some people who have tried to commit suicide, who
have actually committed suicide. You have to have a genuine feeling
to love peopleand for no matter if they don't E f thing
about you or whatever you just have to have the feeling to care and
to want to help.
B: It's wonderful and I tknk God that we have people like that in the
Page 24. dib
world. It's what makes life worth living I guess, is when you find
somebody with your attitude and so on. asaBag generally speaking
would you say the alcoholic problem is greater than the drug problem
0: I believe it is. There's a lot of young people that gama ,
drinking also heavy,and I believe alcoholism is a very big problem.
B: Well, in dealing with alcoholics, will an alcoholic- -.i *"ia -.a a
also take drugs and other things?
0: Yes, they will and alcohol is considered a drug to begin with. 'ThM
a lot of times if you mix alcohol with another drug/then it's worse
than just with alcohol alone. Alcohol alone is worse enough.
B: 'S^,ShJaoiBSx, there's a lot of pot floating around everywhere
they say, yet you don't hear much about it within recent months.
Do you think this is because people have accepted the idea that pot
is here to stay/ or they've decided that it:isn't as serious as it
was once believed to be?
0: Well, it hasn't really been proven to a point how much effect it
could have on you. I mean it causes illusions and whatever, but it
hasn't been provenggg to have a real, real bad effect as
what I've known.
B: Of course you can hear all kinds of stories p1 m amm, about anything with
which we're not familiar and certainly there have been stories about
marijuanaa and its effects. For examplelback home in Lumberton, North
Carolina, or rather near Fayetteville, which is just a little bit far-
ther-on, there was a newspaper report recently that a young man who
Page 25. dib
had been smoking pot raped his own mother. This is pretty sensational
-.advssa=W.' But do you think it has tremendous effect when it does
have bad effect?
0: Yes, really it depends on how much you smoked, if you're mixing it
with somethia some people have a tendency to be mor usceptible
to something than what other people is.
B: 1Wexah, well, I want to thank you so very much for this very enlightening
and informative interview, and I want to wish you godspeed in your
work. You're a great asset to the community and to alJ of us. Thank
you so very much.
0: It's been my pleasure.