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To find British nights out scary?

(177 Posts)
Gimmeareason Sun 15-Oct-17 16:37:35

I've moved back to the UK after a few years working in different countries in Europe, my longest stint was in Barcelona.

There are loads of things im glad to have been reunited with, but now that I've experienced the social scene elsewhere I can't help but find the mainstream British night out slightly terrifying?

Things close here relatively early (compared to places on the continent where casual bars can stay open well into 6am).

This means you reach a point in the night where people are either baying in the street or are being funneled into a nightclub (aka tje only place open).

I feel like aggressive use of drugs and alcohol are more rife here - seems like people have their eye set on getting as fucked as possible rather than that just happening naturally.

Rather than seeing mixed groups of friends, ive noticed its much more gender segregated here, with "the girls" and "the lads" going out separately and aiming to hook up rather than just have a good time.

Weirdly, although the UK seems really progressive on gender equality, there seems this weird pressure that women have to go all out when going out (mainstream scene). So rather than just hanging out in late night bars in jeans and a cute top or whatever, you get these gangs of women who have really gone all out, hair, lashes, tan, heels, bodycon etc. Nothing wrong with it we're free to do what we want, but i guess the question is are we really? I dont see many who feel free to just go for a relaxed look.

Aggressive gangs of men who cant handle their drink - i see more british men kicking off in bars or the street whereas in spain for example it all.felt a bit more happy go lucky.

Its weird but it feels like in the UK past a certain hour people just go into this weird animalistic state where they kind of give up on being "civilised", heels come off, people just vomiting or screaming in the street. I saw lots of girls nearly passing out on the street, or girls completely out of it and crying as some man tried to "comfort" her (actually trying to take her home) - yes i did intervene and yes it happened several times.

I used to kind of think it was all a bit of a laugh but now having spent time abroad and having seen people going on long, casual, happy nights out i just wonder why that doesnt really happen in the UK.

It feels like UK nights out have something very hard and edgy about them if anyone sees what i mean

RosiePosieRosie Sun 15-Oct-17 16:44:49

YANBU - I’ve lived in towns and this seems to be the way of things, but in London (real London not the central nightclubs) it’s a lot more as you’ve described.

Acopyofacopy Sun 15-Oct-17 16:48:19

Having lived on the continent for a long time I know what you mean.
It baffles me, and I rarely go out now. Even work nights out are a bit much for me.

I have a few friends who feel the same, but we are definitely the odd ones out!

Nettletheelf Sun 15-Oct-17 17:12:31

Lighten up grandma!

(I am 46).

Let young people be a bit wild. Most people grow out this sort of thing by the age of 25. You are going out in the wrong places!

Walkingdead11 Sun 15-Oct-17 17:24:53

Completely agree!! It's hideous, violent and sad.....but that's British drinking culture for you!! Always been the same and other cultures laugh at us!

kaytee87 Sun 15-Oct-17 17:26:14

I think it depends on where you go and on your circle of friends. My (rare) nights out aren't like that at all.

BeerBaby Sun 15-Oct-17 17:47:42

I think it depends on where you go as well. Yes main stream towns with night clubs are for the people whose basically Want to get as trashed on drugs and alcohol as fast as they can. It's also a market for one night stands and dating.

The culture bi think is beginning to change actually. I think the 18 year olds under aren't so accepting of alcohol behaviour as the generation before them.

I really feel this is not the case for everyone. Personally I love going out for drinks, chats, tapas nibbles etc. I've done the nightclubs and drinking till I can't stand. It's not a time I remember with fondness and I made some very poor choices.

scaryclown Sun 15-Oct-17 17:51:48

You are talking about working class ideas of a night out. This has become spread to be more general as twats like sky make being thug working class more normalised.

I hate the sorts bar/twat drinking paradigm. It seems so fucking old fashioned and immature but some people are doing it into their 50s

bianglala Sun 15-Oct-17 17:55:41

YANBU. And I dont think people here grow out of it at 25. My colleaugues, young guys in their early 30s were laughing at some women in their 40s trying to pull them when they were plastered. They call it grab a granny pub. I dont think I would do that in my 40s or 50s, it is a choice yes but I find getting completely off your head and trying to pull some clearly uninterested young guys is so undignified. They dont laugh with you, they laugh at you with their mates.

AccrualIntentions Sun 15-Oct-17 17:56:11

Nights out with my friends (Northern city) are absolutely nothing like this, although of course I see others having nights out of the type you describe. It's easy enough in most cities to avoid the clusters of bars like this and go somewhere a bit more low key to have the kind of night out you want.

Ttbb Sun 15-Oct-17 17:59:17

so basically you have noticed that we have chavs in Britain?

soothers Sun 15-Oct-17 18:01:17


LoniceraJaponica Sun 15-Oct-17 18:04:03

"Most people grow out this sort of thing by the age of 25. You are going out in the wrong places!"

Haha. You clearly haven't spent a Friday or Saturday night out in Sheffield or Barnsley.

I agree with you OP. In my experience most towns and cities on a Friday or Saturday night are like this. We avoid city centres on these occasions. We tend not to go out much anyway, but if we do it is to a party or dinner at a friend's.

oldlaundbooth Sun 15-Oct-17 18:05:06


I've been all over the world but never been as scared as on nights out in the UK.

Jasminedes Sun 15-Oct-17 18:08:43

Yeah, I don't like the feel in Bristol on a Friday or Saturday night. An Italian or Spanish town or city on the other hand. French rural towns seem the opposite, with virtually nowhere to go out and no one to be seen.

DancesWithOtters Sun 15-Oct-17 18:10:27

YANBU. I live in what is considered to be a posh middle class town, and on my route to work often there's piles of vom and smashed glass along the street.

I don't go to general piss up places - clubs and bars - on the weekend, I much prefer a quiet pub or my own house, but if I am out it's not unusual to see passed out puking teens, though they're in formal uni gowns or designer gear. It's not just a working class problem.

SunsetBeetch Sun 15-Oct-17 18:10:32

Thug working class? hmm

I've seen plenty of bad behaviour from all classes of people myself.

QuackDuckQuack Sun 15-Oct-17 18:10:53

I don’t think I’ve ever really understood the extreme drinking here. I drink and sometimes get a bit drunk (mostly because it only takes about 3 drinks), but never that much.

I’ve never understood:
Drinking so much you are sick
Drinking so much that you can’t remember what happened
Drinking so much that you do something stupid
Being proud of any of the above.

Gingernaut Sun 15-Oct-17 18:12:41


MrsGrindah Sun 15-Oct-17 18:14:19

I see both sides of it. I live in a city centre and recognise the behaviour you describe. It can feel initimidating to walk through it.

However, I don't think it's just restricted to the younger generation! In my city I notice couples in their 40s coming out dressed up for a night out as early as 2 o'clock in the afternoon! They come tottering into the city station and make a beeline for the nearby bats. I don't know how they do it.

LoniceraJaponica Sun 15-Oct-17 18:20:30

"I’ve never understood:
Drinking so much you are sick
Drinking so much that you can’t remember what happened
Drinking so much that you do something stupid
Being proud of any of the above."

Same here. I find that I am prone to migraines and hangovers so I do curb my drinking. BIL never got a hangover and is now in a care home because his alcoholism has caused so much brain damage that even SIL can't look after him any more.

sayyouwill Sun 15-Oct-17 19:15:44

I live in newcastle so basically it sounds like you are describing the Geordie shore style night out.
These are rife here. People come to Newcastle purposely to have this style of night out so we have all of the locals and tourists doing this.
I've worked in bars in the city centre for years when I was younger and I've seen everything.
People get beyond silly drunk because they cram a whole night out into a few hours. Pre-drinking and drinking games are huge here (personally I prefer the pre-drink to the night out) so people tend to actually go out at 10/11pm. The bars close around 2am. So 3/4 hours cramming as many Jäger's, cocktails and whatever happens to be on offer down your throats before you're dragged to a godawful club or into the takeaway.
It's almost similar to the gypsy practices of glamming up for any event, people can spend days prepping for a night out with layers of tan etc. People are basically peacocking. They want to be noticed. How you look is a huge thing up here. I have been known to tan up, false lashes and curled hair for a nightout, however I'm often found in jeans or long sleeved dresses. By comparison I dress very modestly!
After spending years away from the UK I found coming home quite terrifying too, but I've adapted back into it now (I'm too old to actually go all out and haven't got the patience with all that faff now, but it doesn't shock me to see others iykwim).

I think statistically it's older people who go out now (early 20s upward I mean) with it almost being cool for teens to abstain from booze which is bizarre. I think it'll get worse before it gets better

onceandneveragain Sun 15-Oct-17 19:40:47

Yeah I do know what you mean OP. In some ways we're hampered by the climate and alcohol sales/opening hours legislation here - for most of the year it's too bloody cold to hang around in the streets between bars like you can do in central Europe, so you have to go into a club.

The lack of food also might have something to do with the atmosphere - it's only chips at the end of the night rather than picking on tapas when you buy a drink so you don't get so drunk so quickly.

Also, unless you live somewhere like London, the lack of public transport means that nights are a rush - in my city people come from all over the surrounding areas for a night out, yet the last public transport can be at 11.30. So people either go mad over the space of a few hours before getting the last train, so you don't have the same leisurely, fun night out, or only go out a few times a year because taxis are so expensive, so there's a lot of pressure to make it a mad one! Also because everything does close so early, there's nowhere to go if you can't get a taxi which is why you have so many people in such states in the street/being taken by ambulances. In my experiences, taxis are cheaper in lots of other countries, plus people often dress more casually/appropriately for the weather, or the climate is more temperate, so walking a mile or two home isn't an issue.

Agree women dress up a lot more now, even compared to ten years ago. Think it's the instagram/Kardashian/MIC effect.

StickThatInYourPipe Sun 15-Oct-17 19:50:58

I think YABU but only because my nights out are nothing like that so I imagine it is where you go / who you're with.

I often go straight from work to the bar and we have a large group of men and women of variable ages (we all work together and most of us have known each other for years) I don't normally dress up unless it's a Christmas do, but even then I will still be in flats.

Some women do obviously go all out but in my experience it is not the majority. We have a fab crew of volunteers in the evenings who go out on a Friday and Saturday night (any weather) and help the people who have drunk too much and also assist vulnerable people in getting home.

Sunny779 Sun 15-Oct-17 20:00:58

Your post is completely over the top. People do what they do, and younger people than you get upto all sorts - it's not new. Perhaps you are going to the wrong places - there are places where people do behave more wildly - it's age, it's environment, it's the social tone. But it's not exclusive to nationality. You're playing to stereotypes. People all over the world wear fake tan, lashes etc. Get a grip. Stay in and watch Strictly. Or move to the Hebrides.

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