on May 01, 2011 @ 11:20 pm

I don't really know what section to put this under, but here goes.
I moved to a new city a few months ago and through a friend met a guy who lives in the same city. 
There was sort of a mutual attraction thing going on almost right away, but neither of us want to be in a relationship so we're doing the friends with benefits thing.
Problem is, he's a big drinker. Like REALLY big. I was over at his place once and there were five or six empty wine bottles. Whenever we're at a bar, he gets so trashed and doesn't seem to care about or know his limit.
I haven't known him very long, but I'm concerned. I want to say something, but I'm not sure if I should get involved, since I haven't known him very long. I'm also worried about overstepping.
Thanks ladies!

7 Replies

Ali de Bold
Say something and then move on on May 02, 2011 @ 12:13 pm

This is really serious. Regardless of if you end up in a committed relationship or not, alcoholism is a disease that needs treatment. It can't be ignored.

I can see the awkwardness considering you aren't technically in a relationship and he might think it's none of your business or not recognize that he even has a problem.

Personally, I wouldn't get involved on any level with someone in this situation because you'll probably end up getting hurt. But, since you are, can you say something in a non-confrontational way. Tell him you have noticed he drinks a fair bit. Bring up the examples from the bar. Say you worry because he doesn't seem to have a limit and of course there are health and safety concerns. Tell him you are worried about his well being and others. Ask if he'd consider drinking less or more importantly, getting help.

I'd be very surprised if he is open to this discussion. Likely he will deny he has a problem or get really defensive or tell you it's not your business or that you are a nag and the one with the problem. Be prepared for that.

If this is something he is not willing to change you should run for the hills. Even if he is a happy drunk who always takes a cab home, don't be fooled that it will end there. The further he gets into it, the worse and more dangerous it will get.

This is just my personal opinion as I dated someone who was like that. He would get furious with me for talking to him about it, but got so wasted one night he completely passed out after throwing up all over the place and I had to call an ambulance because I thought he had alcohol poisoning (he was upset at me for doing that, ironically). Then it got worse where he actually flew into a rage and smashed my head into the wall and threw me across the room. This was a guy who thought he didn't have a problem. He thought he was a happy drunk and that I was the one with the problem and not him. He even went so far as to tell me about all of his other girlfriends who didn't think he had a problem and it was me, not him.

It's very dangerous ground to be involved with someone like that but I also think it's negligent for people in his life to watch it happen and say nothing. Really though, his friends and family should be the main ones trying to get him to see the light.

Say your piece and then in my honest opinion, move on. If you continue to spend time with him you will almost assuredly end up hurt and he clearly isn't boyfriend material.

Agreed on May 02, 2011 @ 12:22 pm

Wow Ali, that is a crazy story. I'm so sorry you had to deal with that.

As far as the advice goes, Ali took alot of the words right out of my mouth. I would definitely say something because I don't think I could ever live with myself by not saying something and then find out months later that he got hurt (or even hurt someone else). I would sit him down and explain to him all that although you haven't spent alot of time together yet, you do care about him. Tell him all that you have noticed over the time you've been spending together. Let him know you can't see him anymore (whether he agrees with all you are saying or not, and chances are he will not agree anyway) but you'd still like to be a support and a friend.

Bottom line, talk to him and let him know this is a problem that he needs to address or at the very least needs to be brought to his attention. Whether he takes this well or not is up to him but I would recommend stepping away from the relationship (serious or not).

Lotus Flower
Get out now!! on May 03, 2011 @ 02:25 am

i tend to agree wit what the 2 ladies have said above. alcoholism is a very dangerous disease. more often than not the person doesn't believe he or she has a problem o whichever way u try and talk to him, be prepared because most likely it will end in a confrontational way. i also dated a guy who drank a lot. he would blame his drinking on me. everything that went wrong in our relationship was my fault and drinking was his "outlet". i also have a friend from high school who is battling with severe alcoholism. the sad part is, she is such a beautiful, intelligent girl but the alcohol has taken over her life. she has been to rehab thrice but it hasn't helped. all i could do is pull away because i got tired of literally bailing her out of bad situations.

in this case,....i would air my concerns in a public place like a coffee shop where no alcohol is served. talk calmly....and then pick your bag and go.....this is not a world u would want to get involved in especially if he becomes your your instincts..he usually ignore them.

feel for you! on May 03, 2011 @ 09:24 am

I think you are a wonderful person that you want to reach out to this man and help him out of his destructive cycle! Even though he doesn't realize it yet, he's very lucky to have people care about him in this way. One day, when he's ready to take that step toward a healthy lifestyle and mindset, he will need people just like you around him.

However, that time might not be now. And I'd also say that you are not in the right position to help him. If you were in a serious, committed relationship and was sure of your personal safety with him while drunk (and really - can you ever be 100% sure?), then sticking by your man to help him through would be a tough but loving choice. But you're not in a serious, committed relationship. You are just a friend (the benefits probably don't give you much leverage there - sorry), and are you a super close one? Or just his bed buddy?

You are in the wrong place at the wrong time. I think you should leave this relationship now before deeper feelings develop or something bad happens. If you are able, go ahead and continue a platonic, sexless friendship with him. Hang out in mixed groups (ie. with his male buddies too) so that if anything bad does happen, his guy friends can handle him physically much more easily than you can. This is, of course, hoping that his friends are not in the same boat.

We women want to think that we can do anything a man can. But the truth is that a woman's size and (usually) smaller strength has nothing on an intoxicated guy. I won't go into detail, but I have experienced a similar situation. Your safety needs to come first here.

Support him as a friend if that is your wish, but leave this relationship now before things turn ugly. *hugs*

opinions of another anonym... on May 03, 2011 @ 11:53 am

I'm with everyone above on this: help him if you can, but for your own sake leave the 'relationship'.

I think the ladies above said it perfectly: you're not involved enough to 'stick by your man'. At the most, be his friend, minus the benefits (which will only cloud and complicate this already complicated situation). In a safe environment (like a coffee shop as lotus-flower suggested), sit down and talk to him about your concerns. Tell him clearly but as non-confrontational as possible that you see he has a drinking problem and you feel he needs to get help. Make it clear that because of this issue he has, you won't keep the 'benefits' part of the relationship with him, but if he wants your help in getting over this addiction, then as a friend you're willing to help get him help. I agree with the above ladies that he probably will completely deny having a problem and get defensive and somehow try to land the blame on you. Try to stay as calm as possible and tell him that that's fine if he feels that way, but in that case you can't continue with the friendship. You can't stay friends with someone who might hurt himself and potentially hurt you. And walk away.

There is already so much heartache that we can't avoid, why walk into an avoidable situation and invite not only hurting your heart, but yourself physically too? You owe it to yourself to give yourself the best emotional and physical life possible.

@Ali, I'm so, so very sorry you had to go through that. Reading your post I could almost see it happening in front of my eyes...and it brings tears to my eyes. Abuse is such a powerful thing...I have no words to describe its power. It's hard to recognize when you're in it, once you do recognize it, it's hard to imagine a way to get out of it, as well it manipulates your mind to such a point you don't see yourself getting out, you don't even see a different world outside of the abusive one you live in. The abusive relationship becomes your world and your only reality. For you to have gotten out and have made such a wonderful, healthy life for yourself is such an inspiration to other women who are in it and living it, and don't see any other way of life. I'm really running out of words, I just can't explain how complicated and manipulative an abusive relationship is. But I just wanted to THANK YOU for talking about your experience so it serves as an inspiration and encouragement to other women. They are NOT alone. Others HAVE gone through it, gone past it and onto better healthier lives. They can too. I know how hard it is to talk about... it's scary. I don't know if it's just me but I feel that my past will somehow read what I'm writing here and know it's me, and that will piss him off into restarting trying to poison my life again. I worked extremely hard to get back my life. It took me many many years to recognize the real me and get back into my own skin again. I am so extremely lucky to have found a life partner who knowing my entire history, has somehow managed to undo most of my distrust (I say most, I hope one day I can say it's all gone), and teach me what it is to actually be loved and be in a normal healthy relationship. It took me years, literally years.... I can't afford to allow him to come and poison it again. Hence I'm posting as 'anonymous' ... I'm not as brave as you. I absolutely hate being a coward, but I can't afford the risk ... I know how paranoid I sound, but it doesn't really sound that paranoid or far fetched to me. Anyways, thank you so much for being so brave and caring!!

Ali de Bold
I used to be embarrassed on May 03, 2011 @ 04:33 pm

I know I shared a really personal story here (and I've written about it before) but I've long ago decided not to be ashamed of what happened to me. That guy should be ashamed. I'm really happy that some good could come out of that if it helps even one person realize how great things can be once you get out of that kind of relationship.

I feel truly blessed by God for what has become of my life. At the time those things happened I never imagined I'd have such an amazing husband one day or that I'd have this company and be surrounded by so many great friends.

Anon, you are right it is extremely hard to get out of those situations. I always saw myself as a strong person but as you said, once you are treated that way you view yourself like a loser who somehow deserves it.

To be clear, I'm not suggesting that the guy the original poster is talking about would be abusive, but his behaviour is destructive and can only lead to heartache.

* on May 04, 2011 @ 11:26 pm

Ladies, thank you SO much for all the feedback and advice.
I will talk to him, and I really don't understand why none of his friends or family have brought it up to this point. Apparently when my friend suggested that a mutual friend of theirs (who this guy is pretty close to) discuss it, they just brushed it off saying 'oh he's fine.'
And Ali, thank you for sharing your story. You're absolutely right - the guy should be beyond ashamed, you did nothing wrong.
I'm definitely not saying this to defend him, but he's for sure not the abusive type. I'm just really concerned about his health and well being and don't want anything bad to happen to him.

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