ELI5 : Why are human interactions under the influence of alcohol easier?

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Just wondering why it’s so much more easier to talk to someone in a bar, than a park.

In: Biology

Alcohol in your body causes the release of feel good chemicals from your brain and also dulls the senses which are normally used as tools to determine whether we are projecting the way we prefer to, or other people are projecting the way we prefer them to. The decrease in our ability to judged ourselves or others as acutely as normal paired with the increase in feel-good brain juices flowing leads us to believe that all of our interactions are positive and we desire more of that so we keep going.

Imagine getting up, grabbing your chair, and flipping it. Merely by imagining it, you are able to map out the muscles you’d use to do it. You’re able to plot how you’d go about it. You start to prepare yourself to actually do it. You prepare for the action, but are inhibited by a wide variety of factors, including knowledge that flipping your chair for no reason would be a very silly thing to do.

In very simple terms, alcohol doesn’t interfere without ability to think about doing things nearly as much as it interferes with the ability of thoughts to inhibit the actions you are considering. One of the more pleasant effects of this is that it makes all of the worries you have when you are talking to others less likely to stop you from following through with talking to others.

Alcohol affects a friend in our brain called GABA. GABA is a chill guy, people like being around him. Too much of GABA, and he ends up making you do stupid stuff and feeling really awesome and with GABA, you feel more confident. GABA is that cool kid you wanna be. When you see GABA less, you don’t feel the confidence you get with him because it’s not the same. It’s harder to be confident when you’re not with the coolest kid. After relying on your friend GABA to give you confidence, he suddenly goes on vacation. It’s harder to sleep when GABA isn’t there. Things are now more difficult and stressful because GABA can’t be there to help you deal with life like he usually does. GABA comes back from his vacation, and you end up hanging out with him more.

Many people choose to stop having GABA as a friend, as with him, GABA makes them a person they do not wish to be. The youth love GABA! But some people don’t know when to draw the line with GABA and end up following him on his stupid adventures. But hey, we all love the confidence we get when we hangout with GABA!