to be livid with my friend for being too hungover, again!(33 Posts)
This one has a longish back story, sorry! By best friend of 15 years lives in another major UK city, about 2 hours from me (I live in the closest city to where we grew up). I have a few clients in his city and so about once every 6 weeks, he lets me spend a night or 2 at his.
He also works a lot in my city (his now old workplace has their head office here) and spends about 4 or 5 nights a month in my flat. He was here so often we actually turned our home office into a (very small) bedroom.
When we were both students at different unis, we both loved to drink and party a lot. I grew out of this about 5 years ago, whereas he is probably drinking more than ever. I don't have a problem with the fact that he drinks, but he has been so selfish with it over the past year or so, including:
* Missing my birthday as he was too hungover
* Cancelling other plans because he's too hungover
* When he's with me and my partner and we want to leave a bar at about 10, he'll go find someone else to party with and come back later (3/4am)
* At least 3 times, he's said he is going with work friends for 'a drink' and then we get a text around 11pm saying he's wasted and can we leave keys for him somewhere (then gets in at 3/4am)
* If we've planned something nice for the day, he'll cancel because he's too hungover and insist on staying on the sofa - I love a lazy day too but sometimes it can be every other weekend
* When I'm in his city, it's normally because I have a meeting early the next day and get there in the afternoon of the day before. The last 2 times, he's asked me to meet him at a bar and then thrown a tizzy when I haven't wanted to drink or go back to a friends house that I've never met before
Now to today. About 8 weeks ago we booked tickets to see an artist we're both pretty obsessed with and I cannot emphasize enough how excited I've been to see them.
I've also had a particularly stressful week, and am in the office right now trying to finish a project that has been a bit of a ball ache.
My friend asked on Thursday if he could arrive on Friday eve instead of Saturday as he's been invited to a party on Saturday night too (staying somewhere else Sat night). I said that's not ok this time as we had STB-FIL & STB-SMIL staying with us on Saturday night and I can't spend Saturday at the laundrette with all the bedding as I need to work.
In the end, he promised he'd do the bedding and help DFiance clean the flat ready for the ILs so I said ok.
I also said I was working late on Friday and could walk the 1 mile from the city centre to my flat with him around 7, or he could go straight back to mine to chill with my DF (they are both really good friends too). He said that since I was going to be working until 7, he may as well go for a couple of drinks with work colleagues in the pub near my office.
I leave at 7 with no sign of friend, he gets back to mine at 8, totally ratarsed - having enjoyed 5 pints in 2.5 hours.
On Saturday I made us brunch and then got ready to go to work. Friend was too hungover to help DF with chores so instead texted another friend of ours to see if he could instead sit on his sofa. Other friend said yes but it wasn't until I was leaving the flat that I knew best friend wasn't staying, and I didn't have time to have the 'you're taking the piss convo'.
Anyway, I'm back in the office now and friend has sent me a message asking what time the show starts tonight, I said it starts at 8 but I would like to get there for doors-open at 6:30. Show is in a pub so there's no standing or queuing, just sitting and chilling with a good friend!
He's said he's more hungover than he's ever been in his life, and there's no chance in hell of him making 6:30, he wants to go for 7:45. I'm livid.
This show is the reason he came to my city for the weekend, the reason he could stay at ours and it's an event I thought we were both looking forward to massively. If we arrive at 7:45 there's no chance we'd get a table so would end up stood at the back with no view.
I just know what was supposed to be a really great night is now going to me me stood with a really miserable git who's too much of a state to even stand up.
Oh, and the show was my birthday present.
AIBU to be so angry with him?
I think you are both at different stages of life.
You say you used to party hard and have now stopped, perhaps you have become more responsible and he hasn't.
I would just stop the arrangment and explain why, no hard feelings.
He is putting alcohol before your friendship.
I would go at 6.30, sell his ticket on the door and go and have a great time yourself.
You're not being unreasonable to be upset with him. I think though that you need to figure out whether you want out of this friendship before you respond over his behaviour. I think replying about tonight is fine, but wording is the key. Is it a ticket only event? Does he have the tickets or you? If it's not a ticket event, could you take your DF & text him with a 'I want to make the most of the evening & make sure i get a good seat so will be heading there with (or without) DF for 6.30pm, hope to still see you there'. If you've got the tickets, i would reply with a 'I was hoping to be there to get a good seat & make the most of my birthday treat, would really appreciate it if you could make it earlier, are you sure you're still up for it?' and see what he says. Failing that, if he's got the tickets & you want to be blunt, something along the lines of 'can't believe you're too hungover to make it any earlier, i was looking forward to a relaxing night out with you at a table near the front to get a good view of the band'. You can't change anyone, so i think that maybe you need to decide if it's time to cut ties. Can you afford to put yourself up in a hotel when you visit the other city to visit clients? I think his response to your text about tonight will tell you all you need to know. Assuming he doesn't have a key of his own for your flat (sounds as though you leave a key out for him rather than him having his own), then there's nothing to stop you having a 'sorry but this isn't working for us any more, feel you're taking advantage of having our place to stop'
He sounds like he may be an alcoholic or on the verge of alcoholism. If so, it's hard to be friends with someone who cannot prioritise people over booze, but he will need friends. Have you tried telling him that the effects of his drinking is making your friendship difficult?
Your friend is an alcoholic OP
Simples - and now it's over you to decide what you want to do - if anything - they are an addict and that will (a) ruin their health and (b) their relationships
It sounds like he's the sort of friend you would have a better relationship with if you saw each other much less frequently and in much more casual circumstances.
He has a drink problem ......when you let people down because you want to drink more than you want to spend time with them .
If you want a friendship like that then don't change a thing - continue to offer him free B&B and let him continue to let you down.
Or accept your lives are going in different directions and stay friends but stop offering free B&B - I'm sure one of you could have a special work project that will mean more working from home so the bedroom needs to be converted back into a fulltime office.
As a matter of interest does he ever offer you money towards food or rent ?
If he is travelling for work are his company paying for him to stay overnight and he's pocketing the payment from them ?
Then wait and see how often he bothers with you once you aren't offering a free bed - if you suddenly don't hear from him for months then you know his friendship with his mate Jack is far more important than the one he has with you. If he is genuine then you'll still have him visiting just as often.
I think you're just at different stages of your lives. Distance yourself & if questioned,explain why.
For today, let him know that you'll be going at the earlier time so you can get a table and a good view - he can either join you when you go, or pitch up at 7.45 and try his luck finding you/space.
Longer term (and deffo not today), I think you need to have a chat about how his drinking is getting in the way of your friendship.
It's a ticketed event, about £25 each (my ticket was bought by fiance) but my friend doesn't really consider £25 much money these days, for example on Friday he got a taxi to ours at a cost of £10 when the bus is £1.50, taking the same route and the same amount of time.
We've been friends long enough that we're generally pretty blunt with each other anyway. I've sent him a message saying I'm going at 6:30 and will re-email him his ticket.
I woudn't be totally surprised if he cancels, and I'm sure DF would be happy to take his ticket - he would have liked to go but we couldn't justify the costs before!
I'm not sure if he is an alcoholic as he doesn't drink every day, it is every night though when I see him. It's like he's forgotten there's stuff to do during the day, sober. Even when I drank more we used to do a lot of day trips too.
Paying to stay in his city is doable, I'm in the early stages of setting up my own business though so try to cut costs everywhere I can. I have a cousin who also lives in his city, I think next time I'm needed there I will stay with the cousin.
Change the room he sleeps in back to an office, tell him it's not convenient for him to stay over any more, go to a hotel when you're in his city....and give him the number for local AA meetings!
Oh God, I'd just give his ticket to your DF and tell your friend that he's blown his chance, sorry!
Fuck that shit.
He's taking the piss far too much, but you're letting him - stop letting him! Don't leave keys out for him, don't accommodate him when he's being like this, and don't allow your birthday treat to be ruined because he's a possibly-alcoholic wanker.
OP You don't have to drink every day to have an alcohol problem!!!!
And alcoholics don't need to drink every day to still be alcoholics. I had a lodger who was a functional alcoholic - didn't drink through the week but once he got started at the weekend he just didn't stop until he couldn't stand up any more, pretty much. Moderation was not a word in his vocabulary.
He had to see the GP about it and they did some liver function tests etc. and told him he was on the way to destroying his liver, so he had to stop. Not sure if he ever did, we lost touch.
It sounds like you could do with seeing him less and having him stay at your house less.
He's being incredibly rude and thoughtless, and him being around so much will make things feel worse.
In future I'd cool things down and only make plans that involve him if those plans would go ahead perfectly well and you'd have a nice time without him.
For tonight - your fiance should take the ticket NOW and go with you at 6:30.
trafargargal he doesn't contribute any money or food, when he's hungover he buys an insane amount of snack junk food (packets of cookies, share bags of crisps, fizzy drinks, scotch eggs & pork pies) it pretty much always comes to £30-£40 and he leaves most of it behind. Maybe he thinks that's a contribution but it's not stuff we'd have bought anyway.
He's more than happy to share a home-cooked meal though!
I am at the end of my tether a bit, I told him he was taking the piss a few months ago and thought he'd stopped being so extreme but I guess not.
He is an alcoholic. I'm not sure what you can do about it apart from knowing he is and to to expect him to not drink and not be hungover when he is around.
I would go to the pub at 6.30pm and just let him know 'well sorry but this important for me. If you can, you are welcomed to join us later on but we will make separate journeys'.
He might come but it's also possible he isn't coming at all if he is still so bad from the day before.
And YY about not keeping up his promises and to let him know about it.
Whether you can cope with his ways is up to you to decide. maybe taking a little bit of distance or engineering things so that the fact he is hungover isn't impacting o what you really want to do.
Sorry a few Xpost with you!
He is an alcoholic if he can't stop himself from drinking even though he knows it will fuck the day's after plans (eg with tonigh). It doesn't have to be drinking everyday (even though yoou actually have no way to know whether he is drinking everyday)
Can you text him closer at the time and ask him if he is actually coming? If he isn't, then your DF can use the ticket. At least some good will have come out of it.
You don't have to be drinking every day to be an alcoholic (although many do are are VERY good at hiding it)
I think the circle of friends he's got in the new city are all very similar so he thinks it's normal, he also works in an industry which is notorious for this kind of behaviour.
I feel like I'm making a lot of excuses, it is hard to realise that this friendship has been very one-sided for a while now.
He's playing an important part in my wedding in September so I feel stuck right now. I have no qualms calling him a dick when he's being a dick, I'll see if he replies to my message.
I'm 95% sure it'll be me and DF tonight though!
No, seriously, take control of it now and say "sorry, can't take a chance on you not turning up, retracting your ticket and DF is coming with me instead".
If he experiences some negative consequences to his actions (apart from the hangover, which is a bit of a given) then he might start to realise he's being a selfish arse and it might kick him that bit closer to getting some help.
Cut him from the wedding and from your life. NOBODY plays an important part at the wedding except for the bride, groom and officiant. If he is not the officiant of your ceremony, then his presence is not required.
Bring your DF to the show tonight instead. Convert the room in your house back to an office and dont offer him to stay ever again, or stay at his when you are in his city.
I think I would say to him you are really upset he's letting you down.
I definitely would have the conversation that you're worried about the effect alcohol is having on him.
He may well ignore you or get offended but you need to say it cos it's true and he needs to know there is a big problem with your friendship. Denial is a big feature of an alcohol problem.
He sounds like he is on the verge of alcoholism, like the others say, the characteristic of which does not always include needing to drink every day, but does include binging, not being able to stop once started, and sacrificing other things in order to drink.
I would also consider unasking him to be best man, if this is the important thing. You need him to be reliable. I am saying all this with the voice of experience - my ex was a binge drinker, became v unreliable indeed because drink was more important than anything else. I could not depend on him for important occasions. He would always let me down. The more important the occasion the more he would drink.
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