You are in your apartment and have had a couple of beers with your friends when your girlfriend arrives and asks you not to have another drink before you all go out. Then she threatens that there will be no kissing if you drink another beer.
You think quickly. If you leave and don’t drink the ice-cold beer in your hand, your girlfriend will be happy. You will not. If you crack the beer and take a gulp your friends, will be happy, and so will you. You choose the beer!
The above scenario happened to me on a number of occasions. It may surprise you that there was one instance when I chose not to drink and went off with my girlfriend to a movie. It was a disaster. I was bitter. She could tell I was bitter. We broke up the next day as I snuggled into the arms of my good friend Jack Daniels.
Did I have a problem? Absolutely. Does every guy who chooses to drink with his friends over being with his girlfriend have a problem? No way!
Following are some signs that the behavior is normal and signs that there may be a problem.
Signs of Normalcy
- Your boyfriend drinks infrequently (less than once a week)
- Your boyfriend is a responsible drinker and does not usually drink to the point of intoxication
- You are a raving bitch and he just can’t stand you anymore
- Your boyfriend is open and communicative about his behavior
- Your boyfriend has many close friends who also do not drink often
Signs of Trouble
- Your boyfriend gets intoxicated often (more than one per week)
- Your boyfriend drives after consuming too much alcohol
- Your boyfriend is a heavy drinker (5 or more drinks at a time)
- Your boyfriend drinks by himself
- Your boyfriend’s personality and demeanor change after drinking (change in a good way or bad)
Not too sound like Dear Abbey, but if your boyfriend does not show any of the signs of trouble, the problem may not be his drinking, but your relationship. If he does exhibit one or more of the signs of trouble, there may very well be a problem.
If you think you or your boyfriend have a problem, I urge you to seek help. In addition to programs like Alcoholics Anonymous there are online alcohol classes and alcohol awareness classes that can be taken from home that can be of help.