You, me and the bottle make three

Dear Danni,

This girl that I started seeing a few weeks ago only wants to kick it when she’s wasted. It just seems like she always has a drink in her hand and wants to party. Sometimes it’s fun-sometimes it’s not. I mean, I want to be able to date her-and remember it too! Danni, do I wait to see if it dies down, or do I confront her about it now?

Dear “Drunken Dating,”

If she only wants to see you, talk to you, have sex with you, etc., when she’s inebriated, it ain’t love-it’s sport.

Having a drink in her hand at all times shows that she’s using alcohol as a crutch, which means you’re actually dating a small-scale version of Rachel from “The Real World.” Furthermore, social etiquette indicates that you should always put your best foot forward at the beginning of a relationship. But it sounds as though she is actually falling flat on her face.

Sadly, she’s not alone in this social faux pas.

It is alarming how many people feel the need to “enhance” their social experiences with the use of drugs and/or alcohol. Ultimately, though, when the lights come on, it is just you and the other person.

The only way to ensure true cohesiveness in a relationship is to leave “Boozy the Clown” out of it.

To fully address this issue, you need to isolate the types of situations in which you two find yourselves when she’s drunk. If the only interactions you share are surrounding a bar, party or the back seat of a Camaro, then you need to change your settings.

The two of you need to put the term “dating” into practice and actually go out on a bona fide date. Have a plan-don’t just sit on the couch and share a beer. You are encouraging her behavior first by partying when it suits you, and second, by sitting in silence when it doesn’t.

Perhaps-and though rare, this does happen-when her drinking gets out of control, you feel more in control.

Be honest with yourself and ask if you in any way enjoy having the sobriety card in your hand when she’s playing with a Ted Kennedy special. If there is any sexual activity involved in that state, know that you are acting irresponsibly and taking advantage of her impaired judgment.

That said, the deeper issue here might be a substance-abuse problem, in which case, she needs counseling.

Sharing a relationship with this girl doesn’t mean you also have to share a bottle. She may be thinking she impresses you with her tolerance level, but in reality, your tolerance for the relationship might be reaching its limit.

A representative from the U Student Counseling Center strongly encourages anyone in your situation to “ask what may be going on in a partner’s life that perpetuates such a drinking cycle.”

If you find that she is defensive or hesitant to discuss this with you, it may indicate denial. On campus, the Women’s Resource Center, the Wellness Center and the Counseling Center all offer a wide variety of individual and group therapy sessions. The group sessions are $5 each, and you may go as often as needed. Perhaps that would be a more appropriate setting for her to discuss her needs. Without having a conversation with her about this, it’s difficult to know what the root of this problem might be.

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