30 Days

Season 1 Episode 6

Binge Drinking Mom

Aired Wednesday 10:00 PM Jul 20, 2005 on Planet Green

Episode Fan Reviews (12)

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out of 10
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  • Denial ain't just a river... I hope this LUSH watched herself on TV and comes here to read about it! What a waste of an education & a waste of a chance to truly parent your child. This mom needed to put her foot down long before she picked up the bottle!

    I've just recently caught up on this show, so I'm a couple of years behind the original air date for this episode.

    It wasn't the strongest episode in the season, mainly because the intentions of the parent far outweighed her actual parenting skills and that was painfully obvious as the episode unfolded. This episode DID paint a realistic picture of binge drinking kids (and it starts in highschool most of the time). What the episode failed to point out is that the girl was only 19 years old at the time it was filmed, and as far as I know, that means she was not just binge-drinking but also UNDERAGE drinking- and that's illegal. This would've been a good thing to point out to her- that she's breaking the law just to "have fun".

    I think it would've been a far more effective show if the mom had been required to follow the spoiled brat around and match her drink-for-drink. Maybe then the kid would've seen just how pathetic she is. I can't believe some of the things that came out of her mouth (and I did my own fair share of partying in college)...she sounded like an over-priveleged, under-parented, self-indulgent waste of educational resources.

    "I drink to get drunk." (hello...you are an Alcoholic!)
    "I drink heavily at least 4 days a week." (hello...Alcoholic!)
    "I don't get sick anymore when I drink a lot" (hello...Tolerance is an indication of an addiction to a substance)
    "I don't worry about that stuff" (in response to her mother's concerns about date rape drugs, unsafe sex, etc.)
    "Don't talk to me about this stuff, you are just going to make me mad." (rude and disrespectful and btw, anger is a form of denial)
    "I'm not an alcoholic" (almost the very first sentence out of her mouth...Denial is not just a river in Egypt.)

    All this girl did was show the viewers what we are all afraid of...that today's college kids are living life in the very bottom of a liquor bottle, taking uneccessary risks, putting other people in harm's way, and wasting the gifts they've been given. And they don't seem to give a damn.

    I liked the suggestion made by another reviewer. Create a contract with your college student. Are they going to party? Talk to them about being responsible, designating a driver, learning their own limits, etc. But if they start flunking out of school... they are on their own, paying their own way through school. No more free rides if you are just going to drink it away.

    No one values their education more than those of us who had to work for it.

    And no one values their life more than those of us who have watched friends DIE because they behaved EXACTLY like the girl in this episode! I lost 5 friends between highschool and college to alcohol and drug-related incidents. Believe me when I say I'll be talking to my own children about how to be respectful and responsible.

    And I hope this girl finally realized what was so painfully obvious to anyone who watched her on TV:
    Jessica, you ARE an alcoholic.
  • Not the greatest of episodes, read inside

    When I first started watching the series, this episode was the first. However, it wasn't a great episode. It was silly and unnecessary.

    The idea of a mother who was going to drink every day for 30 days sounds like a kind of revenge on the daughter than anything else.

    The actual episode was better than I described, but the whole idea is childish. You can see the mom at the end of the episode saying that if it can't affect her daughter, than she wishes it would get to her son. That was so annoying - the whole episode was to convince the daughter not to continue her wild drinking, and at the end she almost completely ignores it.

    So what was the point?!
  • I hope this episode changes college.

    After watching this episode, I was confusingly upset. After knowing how drunk and unresponsible American college students are, I'm full of doubts of even entering college.

    Just as what the daughter said, she said when she was younger, she was completely against drugs and alcohal. But now that she's in college, she's convinced that she doesn't have to care and she can just go "have fun" unresposibly, not even having a single one of her logics she had when she was younger. I'm afraid that I might be convinced with all the rest of the students too.

    The Date Rape issue is just unbelievable. These girls know what exactly they're heading into, but they'd rather take the risk of getting pregnent by an utterly unknown rapist then just stop drinking instead. How foolish and stupid of them!

    I can bet that the daughter is going to die of liver disease when she gets older. Is it really worth it? Does "FUN" have to be like that? Why can't students find a safer and more mature way to have fun and enjoy life?
  • Definitely a different world from mine.

    I like Morgan and his show, but the point of view was skewed pretty badly in this one. None of the drinking in the show shocked or surprised me at all. In my heavy drinking days, any social gathering I went to included drinking. But even the most sober in the crowd had like 10 drinks that night. And that's not the heavy drinkers and party monsters who'd drink upwards of 24 beer easily [Canadian beer, not that light american stuff]. And that's just on a Saturday night when people have no work the next day. Nobody was in college and that's an average get together.

    It's like the beer commercials where four guys go to the Liquor Store and pick up a six pack. I laugh every time.

    I'm not saying alcohol doesn't cause problems for people or anything. But if you're going to show drinking, this was pretty light weight. I don't know if I'm living in a place so different from Morgan, but any average person off the street here could outdrink that mom on a Tuesday afternoon with no notice. So it just wasn't the shocker it intended to be.
  • Fadism gives way to making light of alcoholism.

    It's only within the past few years that the term 'binge drinking' has been established.

    This show tried to spring board on this concept.

    The mother decides to show her ignorant daughter how 'binge drinking' affected her. Well, the daughter, completely and clearly in the clutches of alcoholism and denial (as all addicts will tell you that their position of defense proves their disease).

    The mother goes out and gets loopy and ignores her young son, husband and stepson (who it's pretty clear she doesn't acknowlege his existance much to begin with). This proves nothing to the junior.

    They should've tried some real reality. Show the college binger pictures of what alcoholism can really do to people. Death, murder, rape, homelessness, disease....but no, let's send mom out for a few cocktails for a few days and show more kids how cool it is to be a drunk.

    Pathetic....with a capital IC!
  • The kid outdrank the mom by 2:1. It would have been more interesting if somehow tabs were kept on how much the youngster drank, making the mom follow drink for drink, shot for shot in her footsteps, over the same time period the next day!

    The kid outdrank the mom by 2:1. It would have been more interesting if somehow tabs were kept on how much the youngster drank, making the mom follow drink for drink, shot for shot in her footsteps, over the same time period the next day!

    Kind of like FAS in reverse.

    The episode was average. The kid drinks like a fish, the mom emulated and was hung over. Big deal. The thing that struck me about the episode was that even though the result (or is it always reveal in reality shows) was not astounding, the journalistic integrity to show a nothing result was cool - because I'm sure that there was lots of pressure to jazz it up.

    The series was great. Unfortunately, my Tivo decided not to record some, so I'll catch it in reruns.
  • Life as seen from the bottom of a bottle. This episode scrapes the bottom of the barrel.

    Yes, we all know that 'kids' drink. If they didn't, they'd have all their brain cells intact and might actually make a significant difference on this planet. The originator of this series, given the opportunity after Supersize Me, admits that he too spent a good part of his higher education at the lower end of the bar. If he didn't, well, maybe his attention span to making a difference would have continued beyond Supersize Me and the first few shows of this series. This episode tanked.
    I understand what his thoughts might have been in showing 'kids' (like those half-quotes? They mean these 21 year olds aren't really KIDS, they just act like 2 year olds left alone with a can of frosting, ok?) what they're doing to themselves. He, of course knows it won't make a difference. They'll be watching this show and turning it into a drinking game (whenever ya see someone drink, pound one!). Has anyone noticed how really, really stupid lawyers are these days? Hey! They all went to school! Ahhhhh, now I get it! In any event, I would hope PARENTS watching this would re-evaluate their decisions to not enforce rules or restrictions with their kids because the kids just 'push harder'. Ummm, parents, you're bigger, you're paying their way, you have ultimate PUSH power. Use it! Kids want to drink their way through school? Let them pay their way as well. No parent on this planet owes their kid a college education. Parents owe their kids a life up to age 18. Anything beyond that - is up to the tax paying voter. Parents may as well as support the neighbors. Some of them would appreciate it more and use it better.
    Sure, there are exceptions and I get behind them all the way - but this spoiled alcoholic (or at least a lush) doesn't appear to be one of them. Pull the money plug and as she needs to work her way through school, watch her take each course VERY seriously and make more intelligent choices about the boozing.
    What was the point of having her mother get sloshed when it wasn't right in her presence? Even if it was in front of her, chances are the daughter would have been so drunk she wouldn't have noticed. So, the point of the whole episode was ?????? Lost at the bottom of the whiskey barrel.
    The disturbing part wasn't that the mom's permissiveness led to this, oh, for sure! No, what's frightening is that there's still real KIDS in the house and mom's ASKING them if they want to 'get up' and go to school. We'll see this one at the bottom of the same beer glass in a few years, while mom pays his way and asks, "Can I get you anything else?"
    Yeah, I went to college too and I attended my share of smoke-filled, shot-lined parties that I struggled to really recall. BUT - my folks only promised me ONE year of paid vacation. After that, the rules were 1. If I was doing well and taking it seriously, they'd buy me another year and the contract was re-negotiable after that. 2. If I was NOT doing well (not taking it seriously), dad would pull some strings to get me a job that basically taught me to ask, "Wanna Supersize that?".
    If a few more parents acted like parents, rather than like 'co-eds' (this episode COULD have followed the student as she tried to earn her own way through school for a month), maybe we'd be producing smarter lawyers...

  • Another unsatisfactory episode. Stupid music to try and create the mood just ruined everything.

    Not a lot was accomplished with this episode, unlike the first 4. So, Michiel, the mother, found out that drinking a lot seems to make her hung over and pulls her out of the routine. She also found out that her daughter does like drinking and is going to live her life the way she wants. Well, you know what, her daughter is an adult and should choose her lifestyle. I know that I, personally, drank a lot in college and it was something that I grew out of. I assume that most people do. I think the reason that college students drink so much is because they have the time and their bodies can handle it easier. I'm sure some would say that the younger son might have learned some lessons from this experiment. But, he's young and he's naturally going to feel the way he does. I know that when I was his age, I was strongly opposed to drinking in excess. Lets see how he feels when he's a teenager and he's out with his friends having fun. When we are young, we do stupid things and most of us come out of it fine and grow up. I sure hope that next season, if there is another, is more informative. I would like to take the scenes of Michiel drunk, have different music playing in the background and see if people would find it as tragic. I have a feeling I could make those scenes comical.
  • Yes. We know that many college students drink.

    This episode never really got into the depth of the drinking culture at the college. So the mom drank. It was at home, with her husband, in a controlled setting. That would have made sense for the first week or so, to increase tolerance for the alcohol, but then, she should have gone out WITH her daughter and followed her, drink by drink.

    Watching this I was reminded of an episode of "my bad trip" (or some similar title) on MTV where the parents of a party-going girl watch her as she gets trashed. the main difference was that in 30 days, the mom never really sees what goes on.

    Another aspect of the show that bothered me was that the girl was 19. Now unless federal law has changed recently, it is still illegal for a 19 year old to consume alcohol. I'm not saying that it doesn't happen. I know it does. I'm just thinking that they should have used a 21 y/o.
  • Terrible end to an otherwise entertaining series.

    This episode had to have been the most boring thing on all of cable TV last night. Nothing happened. The show consisted of watching a 40 something mother who doesn't drink get moderately drunk a few nights a week.

    They kept showing shots of her daughter and other college students partying it up, but it was just the mother going to dinner with her husband drinking Gin & Tonics at a restaurant.

    In the end she had no lasting problems, and it had seemingly no effect on her daughter.

    The only redeeming moment of this episode was watching Morgan get drunk and try to drive a car in a simulator.
  • This show really revealed how youth is ignorant, how parenting is hard and how life is very fragile.

    I was in tears watching this show. It really showed a few things, especially how alcohal ruins your life. I can\'t understand why the mother didn\'t kick her daughter out. I felt bad for the younger son, Braiden and I think it even impacted the stepson. I think the daughter is very ignorant and is ruining her life. If that is what college is all about I don\'t want my kids to go. I am sure people are actually getting thier degrees. I think the daughter is pathetic and should realize some consequences happen later in life.
  • A very depressing look at just how foolish and ignorant the average teenager really is...

    A mother taking on the valiant effort of trying to make her college age daughter realize the dangers of binge drinking is quite admirable. The amazing thing about this episode though is though is that it doesn't take the typical path of all of the others that precede it. There is no truly "happy" ending. The daughter stubbornly refuses to acknowledge that binge drinking in college poses any real danger. She thinks that she is really responsible about her drinking, but the brief glimpses we get into her actions suggest otherwise. The eye opening experiences of the mother also suggest quite the contrary, exposing the realities of what harm can come from binge drinking. The real shining light of this episode though comes in observing the relationship of the mother with her young son. The drinking takes them farther apart then they've ever been. She completely ignores him at one point in the show. Then at the end though it brings them closer together then ever. Perhaps there is no hope for the daughter, but at least her son benifitted.