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How do I approach someone's drinking habits?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
Mama riot had a bad experience when she was my age - she got married to a lovely guy who's best mate drank a lot and encouraged him to do the same. Fast forward 30 years and I find myself in a similar situation. She overhead a conversation MrRiot and I were having and she came to the pub with us and his best mate on Monday - his mate will drink 7/8 pints and think nothing of it and he'll buy MrRiot pints when he's not even a third of the way through the previous one. She was really concerned with how he tries to convince himself that drinking this much 2/3 nights (during the week I should add because we have his little one on the weekend and he wouldn't dream of getting drunk around him). I am concerned too, maybe not as much as she is but I don't know how to approach the subject without him either saying it's all fine or getting huffy about it.

Part of me wants him to go to the doctors and get a liver function test but even if it's normal he needs to slow down with the drinking and be a bit more healthy - he was quitting smoking but he doesn't seem too interested in it now! :/

Comments

  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I'm confused, who's drinking that much? Mr Riot, or Mr Riot's friend?

    If it's Mr Riot's friend then- harsh and callous it sounds- it's not really anything to do with you. You need to encourage Mr Riot to slow down and not think he has to keep up, but that's about it. It's for Mr Riot to raise it as an issue.

    If it's Mr Riot then it is more to do with you, and it'll be a case of explaining why you're worried.
  • Danny!Danny! mod Posts: 560 Incredible Poster
    Hi Miss_Riot

    I think when people are getting stuck into a behaviour that they know's not very good for them, it's necessary to put together some kind of thought pattern (probably unconsciously) that justifies the behaviour as fine (otherwise we experience cognitive dissonance). Like all protective mechanisms, this can feel quite fragile and need it's own protection, so sometimes there's no way of addressing something without the other person getting huffy or dismissive.

    You might have the best chance of getting somewhere by taking the "I understand why you enjoy this, but I'm just worried about you damaging yourself" route. It's understandable, given your Mum's past, that she's especially worried. But it might help to go in fairly lightly, even if you are really worried.

    If it affects you directly (for example if drinking takes up too much time for you guys to have good time together, or if it changes his behaviour towards you), then that's the bit where you could maybe be firmer. It might be a good idea to think in advance before emotions get too high just where your limits might be.

    Let us know how it's going
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Both of them are - his friend more so (10 pints is common for him), but he will pretty much bully MrRiot into drinking more and he doesn't stand up to him, maybe because he's one of his best mates I'm not sure but it does worry me. I know MrRiot's friend's girlfriend and she's worried about his drinking too but hasn't said anything. Is it worth both of us talking about this and working together on it or is that likely to cause more upset?

    His behaviour is fine when he drinks, its his health I'm worried about and the fact he talks about all the others things he could be doing with that time.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi Miss_Riot,

    It's hard to stand by when it's someone close to you that you care about. Perhaps talking to MrRiot's friend's girlfriend might help you to get your worries off your chest, and she might be able to offer you some advice in return.

    It's hard to say whether it will cause any upset as we don't know them personally, but whatever you decide to do make sure that you feel comfortable and happy with your decision. Think about what it is you want to say and how you want to say it - this article might help with this when it comes to tips for communication.

    Keep us updated with how you're feeling! :)
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I fainted sort of in the kitchen and I told MrRiot and he was asking if he could stay at the pub for another pint. I put the phone down before he called me back. He blames it on his mate every time and I've told his mate it's upsetting me and I think he doesn't get it or he doesn't care.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Have you told MrRiot it's upsetting you?

    It's up to MrRiot whether he decides to stay in the pub or come home, not up to his mate.
  • Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,324 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I have but maybe I haven't made it clear enough. We had one evening this week just to ourselves. I went out with him on Wednesday but tonight we will have his little one so he doesn't go out during the weekend (apart from Saturday this week as it's a good friends birthday do, and little one is being baby sat), but that's why he does it almost every week.

    His mate buys him pints before he's even half finished with the last, an I think it's getting worse considering they now work together.
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