The social stigma of alcoholism is part of our shame-based cultural belief system. My fathers condition was something that I discussed only with my family, my husband and a few close friends. My entire family felt a social stigma related to my fathers illness and his downward spiral. Alcoholism is a disease that you do not choose to get, and drinking is a regular part of our culture. There are genetic factors involved with alcoholism. Because my father spent time in jail as well as being a homeless person, society is views him accountable, not the disease. Jails and homeless shelters are ways in which our society chooses to deal with these problems, but they dont get to the root of the problem.