Dear Wendy: You Booze, You Lose?
Let’s start off with the fact that I love my boyfriend “Scott.” Scott and I have made it through a break up, months of monogamous dating, and we are an official couple again. However, I’m concerned that he may drink too much. Scott rarely has a night where he doesn’t smoke marijuana or drink. He occasionally does hard drugs (he only seems to do them when he goes on vacation with his exgirlfriend, but that is neither here nor there since that hasn’t been resolved). Whenever Scott drinks he either gets annoyed or overly affectionate- ie. he either is on edge or is trying to convince me to marry him. Wendy, what should I do to address this issue? I want to support him through thick and thin but at the same time I think part of support is urging him to stop destructive behavior. —Girlfriend of an Alcoholic Anonymous
Woah, hold on. Back up. Your boyfriend doing hard drugs while on vacation with his ex-girlfriend is “neither here nor there”? I think it’s exactly here and there, especially when we’re talking about his possible substance abuse problem as it relates to your relationship. The fact that he’s tripping balls with his ex-girlfriend while gallivanting around on vacation with her shows not only a disregard for his own mental and physical health, but an utter disregard for your feelings and his relationship with you as well. If Scott’s behavior is annoying every time he drinks and he drinks nearly every night, when exactly is it that you enjoy his company? Only ever before lunch? Look, as much as you might love him, you can’t “save” Scott. The best you can do at this point is dump your boyfriend and save yourself from a relationship that’s clearly as destructive as his presumed alcohol problem.
I was madly in love and lust with a guy and we had many dates, talks, yes, sex, and I was CRAZY about him. One night, we went out and I was so very nervous that I drank too much and the night became probably one of the worst nights of my life. For one, I barely remember it, which is awful. As I was leaving his place, he was worried about me driving home after drinking and said I should stay. Stupidly and stubbornly I refused and we got into a terrible screaming fight and he threatened to call the police if I left. I was shrieking and crying and calling him terrible names. THEN I threw up. EVERYWHERE. His apartment, his bed, his cat. And passed out, only to wake at 7am the next day with puke in my hair and the worst hangover ever. He politely talked with me in the morning, we left separately, and though he occasionally pops up with a funny comment to a Facebook status, he’s long gone. Suffice to say, I am so ashamed at how I acted that night. It was several months ago and I haven’t touched alcohol since. Doubt I will again. The thought of ruining any potential ANYTHING with this person because of that night tears me up. He was being kind and responsible not to let me drive and I was completely out of line. I apologized and apologized and he was pleasant but distant. Understandably. My question is: how do I ever “make it up” to this person? Do I take it as a lesson learned about myself and just move on? Do I go overboard to convince him I’m a *changed* woman, blah, blah, blah? I am sure he thinks I’m some crazy alcoholic freak now. But I miss him and my heart hurts. Thanks for any advice. TEETOTALER!
No, you do not go overboard to convince him that you’re a “changed” women or to “make it up” with him (you’ve apologized profusely, he’s accepted, move on — harping on it is only going to make you look desperate and pathetic). Nor do you beat yourself up about your bad one-night behavior any more than you already have. You made a mistake. It happens. We’ve all felt like jerks at some point in our lives. Take it as a lesson learned about yourself, avoid drinking to excess on any future dates, and trust that someone as kind and responsible as this guy whom you were madly in lust with will cross your path again soon. Believe me that you’ll laugh at this some day — maybe even with the guy it happened with. It’s just not likely to be tomorrow.
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