Post # 1
we are not big drinkers, but SO is the type of guy who won’t say no to free booze when friends or coworkers keep offering it to him. He ended up in the hospital after a party like this and promised me to stick to a limit in the future. Well, for one reason or another, he’s avoided these situations for over two years (our friends don’t drink a lot, coworkers at his job are relatively tame etc), so while he drinks occasionally, his limit has never been tested since the hospital incident.
yesterday we went to a party where people kept buying rounds of shots and he kept drinking a lot. I was so worried about him and after coming home, i told him i was upset. he said that the limit he had given me before was way too low and he coudl handle twice that much easily (and probably more). he says that he will double his limit and actually stick to that in the future.
my problem is that i don’t want to be controlling and tell him what to do. also i realize as a guy, it’s very hard to say no to peer pressure at a party when people are forcing you to drink. you don’t want to look weak, etc, and when you’re hanging around with people who have much higher tolerance than you, they expect you to keep up. it’s not like they’re bad people, but they are used to drinking more so they don’t see what the big deal is. But i’m not comfortable with him drinking so much even occasionally. i don’t know what to tell him or what to do. I am so confused, please help.
Post # 3
Given the fact that he has been hospitalized because of alcohol comsumption I think you have a right to worry and voice your opinion to your FI. I think that having an open and frank discussion with him when he has not been drinking is a starting point. Perhaps you could read up on blood alcohol content charts (like this one) and talk about what you would be comfortable with, given his past history. If he is still resistant to setting a limit for himself then I would suggest perhaps an intervening third person, therapist, pastor/priest, anyone you both would feel comfortable with because that is a very serious issue.
Post # 4
I agree that you need to have a serious discussion with him when he is not drinking. By confronting him when he comes home drunk, you aren’t resolving anything. I doubt that anyone can make rational decisions after drinking a lot. I do think that there needs to be limits since he can’t seem to control himself, being hospitalized is a huge red flag to me. He might need to consider going to a therapist.
Post # 5
@FutureMrsTal and @MissAsB: thanks for the advice – just to clarify, we had a big discussion about it just now, not when he was drunk last night. he agrees that he should stick to a limit, but i’m just not comfortable with what that limit should be (he says 8 drinks in a night). while i know 8 drinks won’t send him to the hospital again, and it’s much less than a lot of other guys drink, it is a lot IMHO (i showed him that above 5 drinks a night is considered binge drinking and it’s not healthy). he says that it’s fine to do it once in a while and that he doesn’t like being controlled. i know it’s not an every weekend thing, more like a once every few months thing. but still it seems like a lot to me.
i just don’t know if i should live with this new limit even though i’m uncomfortable with it.
Post # 6
I don’t know if you should live with something that you aren’t comfortable with. It really isn’t healthy for him to be binge drinking. There are a lot of studies that say that binge drinking can cause as many health problems as regular drinking.
Post # 7
What sticks out to me is the issue of you “controlling” him. You’re fighting an impossible battle by trying to control his drinking for him. This has to be something he decides to do, because if his resolve to control his drinking is weak now, it’ll be even weaker when he’s intoxicated, and you won’t be able to convince him to stop. He needs to take responsibility for his own limits, and I think that arguing about what number of drinks he “is allowed” to consume is sort of missing the point. If he has a problem limiting himself, having an arbitrary set number of drinks probably won’t work. Does he ever stop drinking on his own accord, or is it only when the booze runs out, the bar closes, or he passes out? This can be a scary issue, and I think he has to be the one to acknowledge whether or not this is an issue of concern for him.
It’s also very easy to find excuses for why someone keeps drinking. While some social scenes do tolerate more drinking than others, it’s hard to think of anyone who would encourage an alcoholic (or someone who struggles with alcohol) to drink to the point of hospitalization. Some people quite easily get through life without ever drinking, so it’s not impossible. Good luck.
Post # 8
My FI and I had issues with his pot smoking when we first got together. I totally had to choose between a stoned boyfriend who sits with his friends everynight and doesn’t DO anything and being a nag. I hated it. Took like a year of strife and just plain maturing on his part but I was a nag the whole time and I repeat, HATED it. It’s tough, any issue like this, but we got through it so I truly believe any bee can.
Post # 9
There’s a trick to this: you just accept the free drinks from others, but don’t drink them all or drink them very slowly.
Or sometimes I will find a friendly waitress off to the side and order an orange juice – so it looks like I’m drinking a screwdriver, but of course I am just drinking oj and chewing on ice. Then when people ask me if I want a drink, I just tell them I’m still working on my last one. 🙂
That way, people never order me free drinks… which is what they would do every time if they saw that I had no drink in my hand!
Post # 10
I’m a relatively small woman and I can drink 5 drinks in a night, depending on what they are and how they’re spaced, whether I’m drinking water, etc. That number is totally arbitrary and unnecessary. I really don’t think that anyone but each individual can quanitfy how much they can drink. Your FI should be able to gauge his limit for himself without you trying to control him. If he can’t control his drinking, then that is something that, like MissAB suggested, he may need outside help for.
Since you have let him know that you are not comfortable, I think you should now wait until the next social event that involves drinking and see if he modifies his behavior any. Don’t count how many drinks he has, but just give him the freedom to be responsible for his own behavior. If he can’t keep his drinking in check, then bring it up again and suggest that he talk to a professional. Binge drinking can be the sign of a potential problem.
Post # 11
I agree that this is something you should be (and certainly have a right to be) concerned about since it landed him in the hospital. I like Mr. Bee’s idea, and just encourage him to get drinks that he can drink slowly. Also, make sure you eat a lot before going out, and have water on hand so he (and you) stay hydrated.
Post # 12
Okay this seems kind of complicated. On one hand because of the hospitalization issue I see why you would be concerned… but on the other hand that was 2 years ago and has he gotten so drunk he’s passed out or anything since then? If not then I think maybe you just need to loosen up a bit and let him take care of this himself. Its another issue of course if he is actually like a mean drunk or something like that??
In my situation, my FI doesn’t drink at all and doesn’t really love when I do it… but I have drank since before him and he has accepted that I do and he doesn’t. Our solution is to plan ahead and when I plan to drink a lot he doesn’t come with me (he says he doesn’t like drunk-me… and that is just fine). If I am going to be drinking a lot I’ll just stay over wherever I am. But– out of respect for him I RARELY drink a lot. Like, the last time I was drunk was early December. I do have a glass of wine here or there but not generally more than 2-3 max.
So I guess I feel like you PROBABLY should just deal with this. Give him a chance to show you he can be responsible. Also keep in mind that 8 drinks over 4 hours is probably not enough to even get him that drunk.
Post # 13
I’m with CinnamonRoll. The approach you guys are taking right now will not work. He has to control himself. Does he ever just have one beer? Or does he exclusively have several? If he can not have just one drink, he probably shouldn’t be drinking.