Ask Someone Else's Mom by Susan Writer

When Drinking Crosses the Line

DEAR SOMEONE ELSE’S MOM: My best friend is a good person and has a lot going for her. But she also likes to party hard on the weekends and more than once has ended up in trouble. Not long ago she was so over-the-top drunk that she got us bounced from a club we had been going to for a long time. She gets loud and sometimes mean and now some friends refuse to meet up with us when they know she is going to be there.

I don’t think she is an alcoholic or anything like that, but I think she is headed for bigger trouble if she doesn’t lay off the drinking. How do I say something to her? --- WORRIED ABOUT MY FRIEND

DEAR WORRIED: You’re right to be worried about your friend. She may not be an alcoholic, but she could very well be a “problem drinker.” The line between social and problem drinking is crossed when alcohol consumption begins to have adverse effects on the drinker’s life. Many outgrow the party drinking after getting good and scared by something they did or almost did.

It sounds like it’s time you and maybe a few more friends had an honest conversation with your BFF when she’s completely sober to let her know what you and others are seeing. Expect pushback, but don’t give up. It could take several attempts on your part, or an eye-opening realization on hers that she is not in control of herself when she’s drunk. In the meantime, you may need to continue playing guardian angel to make sure she doesn’t do anything really bad that can’t be undone.

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