Sunday, August 11, 2013

Why I Hate Booze

I'm the first to admit I have hang-ups about booze. You can't grow up surrounded by alcoholics without being screwed up.

If I'm out at a fancy restaurant, I order a glass of wine. Or a Bloody Caesar. Mmmm, I love a good Bloody Caesar. Other than that, I don't drink. Dave is as much as a boozer as me. He'll have two or three Rum & Cokes at the Christmas party, but there's been a mickey of rum in the house since dinosaurs roamed the earth. (Every once in a while I dust it.)

My father was an alcoholic (who went to rehab later in life and never drank again, bless his soul). My grandfather was an alcoholic. Several of my other close relatives battle with the bottle. My ex mother-in-law and her ridiculous second husband are both alcoholics. I tell ya, I have put up with more than my fair share of shit-faced people over the years and I am sick and tired of it.

I hate how people get when they're drunk. Stupid. Irrational. Mouthy. Violent. Selfish. They fight. They drive. They cause accidents. They lose their licenses. They lose their jobs. They lose their families. Sometimes they live in filthy, disgusting hovels fit only for TV shows like Hoarders. Sometimes they even kill people. And still, they drink.

There's nothing they like better than getting wasted. It's big-time excitement, going to a bar, or a party, or sitting around in a living room with a few drinking buddies and a few bottles of whiskey. Dave and I used to get invited to these shin-digs all the time until people figured out we're boring old farts, dryer than popcorn farts in a desert. Drinkers generally hang out with drinkers. There's no judgement that way and nobody seems to mind if breakfast is hair of the dog and a pack of smokes.

There's the odd person, though, who doesn't "get" that we don't want to hang around with drunks and insist on showing up at our place half (or entirely) in the bag, toting booze and looking for a party. A few years ago this couple showed up uninvited. We offered them coffee or a Coke and the girl asked, "Ya got anything else? Any beer or liquor?" I was shocked by her forwardness and instead of saying, "No," I remembered the dusty bottle of rum in the cupboard and said, "Um, yeah, I think so." I made her and her boyfriend a drink and put the bottle back in the cupboard. Her and the boyfriend guzzled down their drinks in record time. A few minutes later she got off the couch and headed to the kitchen. Without asking, she fetched the rum from the cupboard and poured herself and the guy hefty drinks. She did this again, and again, until the booze was gone, while I secretly fumed at her obnoxiousness and my own inability to stand up for myself.

Generally speaking, I'm a polite person. So is Dave. We're proud of that, but sometimes we get taken advantage of. We should have asked the couple to leave but politeness and good manners stopped us. The couple, on the other hand, had no manners whatsoever.

And that's my problem. That's what I'm so mad about. Boozers will consistently walk all over us because we're too polite to kick them the hell out. We've had individuals show up at our house with booze in their hand (they were probably drinking it while they were driving here), and sit down and carry on without even asking if it's ok. KNOWING how I feel about it, but doing it anyway. Then flinging cigarette butts on our front lawn and leaving them for us to pick up.

Well I'm sorry. I am not putting up with this boorish behaviour any longer. I have drawn a line in the sand. This is my house. Not yours. And I refuse to let your drinking problem interfere with my life. You are not my child or my parent. I am not your caretaker. I am not here to clean up your messes. You want to ruin your life? Go ahead. Just don't involve me.

If you want to hang out here, quit drinking, quit smoking and grow the hell up.

18 comments:

  1. You just put up your little sign in the front hall....alcohol free/smoke free zone. Enter at your own risk. Good for you.

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  2. Sounds like you had a recent encounter with some boozers. I like the suggestion from Delores - put up a sign and there'll be no need for a confrontation.

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    1. Sometimes, though, the people who cheese me off the most ignore signs ... and verbal requests as well. Sigh...

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  3. Well said! And now you have a fresh start and can set ground rules early. Your home - you shouldn't have to put up with it in your own castle.

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    1. Thanks Alex! If they're paying the mortgage on this castle, they can behave however they want! Since they're not...

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  4. Good for you for standing up for yourself with these people! I have my own issues w/ alcohol and I told Russell at the beginning that I absolutely will not tolerate him hanging out at the Legion, Taverna or Whaleback when he comes home from his weekly trips. There will be no 'stopping in for a quick drink' b/c there's no such thing. I'd buy him beer if he wanted to have a couple at home but there was no way I was gonna be in another relationship w/ someone who put the bar first. He grumbled a little and he ended up quitting drinking completely. I'd buy the beer and it'd sit unopened for months.

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    1. And good for you, too! And Russell. It's fantastic that he valued your relationship over stopping at the Whaleback (although that is a really cool name for a bar).

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  5. Very well said. It does sound like you've had a recent run-in with drinkers.

    One of my uncles- my dad's brother-in-law- was an alcoholic, who got sober through the program, stayed sober the rest of his life, but he had to cut off his family, who tried time and again to get him to drink, even through spiking his drink. They refused to admit drinking was a problem.

    I've sampled enough from wine to whiskey to have decided that I don't like the taste of the stuff, so I don't drink. I have no idea what it would take to get drunk, I've never had enough to get there.

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    1. I remember my brother trying to get my father to drink after he quit. We had quite a row that night as I begged my dad not to give in to temptation.

      They spiked your uncle's drink??? Wow... now that's going to extremes!

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  6. Oh dear, Cathy - is it safe to say that hubby just retired after 28 years working for CAMRA (CAMpaign for Real Ale)?

    Despite the connotations that might have, this member-society is interested in rooting out bad practice, both in the brewing and marketing industries, as well as promoting sensible attitudes from the public.

    I think the earlier comments regarding laying down house rules are the way to go for you - some people can be ignorant to the point of abuse unless you make clear the terms on which you are prepared to entertain them. Quite frankly if it sours a relationship, then the relationship wan't worth having in the first place!

    (......I'm sure I could knock you up a little cross-stitch sampler with a suitable threat to hang up by your front door..... ;-p)

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    1. It's absolutely safe!!!! Like I said, I'm pretty screwed up when it comes to drinking. In my head I know moderation in everything is best but alcohol actually scares me. I get a fight or flight reflex when I have to deal with inebriated people. I know it's ridiculous, but I can't help it. That being said, intellectually, I like the idea of people having a glass of wine after work or in drinking socially. I do! But then my heart starts racing... screwed up? Yep.

      Never hold it against your husband or you or that fabulous little cross-stitch sampler I'm all excited about.... :)

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  7. My mother was an alcoholic. Sad, bad and frightening. I do like my glass of wine. But with the example I have been set stop. Early. And sometimes for weeks on end.
    And yes, your house, your rules. Though I couldn't ever convince my mother on that one...

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    1. See? I know... people who are determined to drink care not a whit about your house rules. I'm sorry your mom was an alcoholic. I feel your pain.

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  8. Came from a family with a big bad alcoholic. Drank like the cliche'd fish. Other members of the family borderline. I just don't drink. Neither does my husband. We had a tiny bit of whiskey in the house, Husband had it when he had a horrid bug of some sort, a friend recommended it for sleeping. The rest evaporated, I only found that out when we moved, and found the dried remains in the back of the cupboard. So, we don't even bother to have booze. But, heck yeah, tell the 'company' to go somewhere else and drink, it is YOUR house, not a bar!

    Cat

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    1. I think that's the reaction most children of alcoholics have... they either drink themselves, or they avoid it like the plague.

      It's hilarious that your whiskey evaporated!

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  9. I am openmouthed at that! Seriously!! I'm so glad you're taking a stance. It is YOUR house your rules sistah!!

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    1. Thanks Johanna! *raises fist in sistahood salute*

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