Booze Blues

Dear Dategirl,

My stomach is tied up in a million fucking knots right now....I've been with my boyfriend for a few months, but everything seemed to fall into place really quickly. We got really close really fast, and he began bringing up us buying a house together at the end of the summer.

Cut to a couple of months later, and we're having some issues. For instance, he tends to glorify the idea of going out and getting completely shitfaced. We all went through that period where we drank to excess, but he's 32 and has a 4-year old son. I guess I hoped it was something he would have grown out of.

He does not actually go out and get drunk very often, as he has his son every weekend; however, he definitely takes any opportunity he can get to do so, and implies that any summer activities we'll have sans children will involve copious amounts of drinking.

Yesterday he mentioned he was going out with some co-workers that evening, and I made some snotty remark about him getting soused (he was supposed to come to my house afterward). His response was to hang up and not call me at all last night. I called and left him a voice mail saying, "Hey, I know you're probably mad, but can you at least shoot me a text message or something to let me know you're OK?" (We've never gone a night without speaking.) Nothing. I was genuinely worried. He finally called me this morning and informed me he was just too pissed off to talk and, yes, he drove home drunk last night and, yes, I should zip my lip about it. He seemed to think I was being judgmental, but I just find drunk driving to be unacceptable, especially at our age.

I'm at my wit's end! I love him and truly think there could be a future, but the combination of his drunk driving and letting me sit/stew/worry makes me blindingly angry, and close to the point of just walking away. Am I overreacting? God, this feels like shit.

Of course you're not overreacting; your boyfriend is being a passive-aggressive imbecile, and that's the least of his problems.

It's not for me to say whether or not your boyfriend is a full-on alcoholic, but his booze abuse is not doing him any favors, and it's obviously causing him (and, by extension, you) some problems. Problems he seems unwilling to admit, let alone address.

Being in a relationship is rarely a cakewalk 24/7, but your man is headed for a perp walk. He drives drunk, which could wind up killing him, or—worse—killing someone else. His main leisure activity is getting wasted, and when you get understandably annoyed, he manipulates you by getting pouty and pulling the disappearing act.

I feel for you. I had an ex who would pull the same brand of crap. He'd go missing for days, and then be cranky when he'd finally turn up and—instead of greeting him with a warm kiss and a cold beer—I'd be that cross between relieved that he was still among the living and furious nearly to the point of murder. I stuck it out for nearly a year, and my only regret is that I got involved in the first place.

Your boyfriend has made it clear that he likes his life of drunken high jinks just fine. He has informed you that you're not to question his extremely questionable choices, and doesn't seem to have any problem with behaving like a buffoon at any and every opportunity. I feel sorry for his kid. Imagine having a rampaging frat boy for a dad.

Or, for that matter, a husband. Do you really want your vacations to consist solely of adventures in Margaritaville? Is making a major investment—such as buying a house—with someone who is irresponsible to the point of criminal activity a good idea? Who's going to pay the mortgage when Señor Drunkypants gets shipped off to rehab? You say you can envision a future with this man. I just hope that future doesn't entail you sitting in the passenger seat after he's downed a case of tall boys.

Dating dilemmas? Write Dategirl at or c/o Seattle Weekly, 1008 Western Ave., Ste. 300, Seattle, WA 98104.

comments powered by Disqus

Friends to Follow