My Boyfriend Forgets About Me When He Drinks. Here Are Possible Hazards

DEC 05, 2022 AT 06:00 AM


Few people have not had a dysfunctional relationship in their time of dating. It may have been a once-off or an ongoing romance. It could have been someone who swears a lot, doesn't have adequate personal hygiene, or talks about himself all the time. None of these can be compared to a boyfriend who drinks excessively, however.

Alcohol affects people differently. Some people get loud and obnoxious, and others go quiet and fall asleep (pass out). The more damaging behavior is when the drunk partner is abusive or aggressive or the complete opposite, just seems to forget that you exist.


It is sometimes easy to forgive the partner who treats you as if you are not there if when he is sober, he is very attentive and in all other ways the perfect boyfriend. Before we look at what can be done about this behavior, let's investigate the hazards.

First of all, and most important, is your safety. If you have gone out in his car, he may just forget about you and leave without you! If at the end of the evening he does remember that he came with you he may be too drunk to drive. Both of these scenarios put your personal safety in jeopardy.

If he goes off with his friends or pays more attention to someone, he is interested in and leaves you to fend for yourself, that is a big red flag. He obviously does not care enough about you to ensure that you are comfortable, have a drink in your hand, and have some company. He should also ask for your blessing to go and chat with a friend for a short while.

If he knows you well enough, he should also know how sociable you are. If you can chat with others, be comfortable in the company or if you are shy and will feel uncomfortable if left on your own. In one of her wonderful articles, Allie Duncan suggests that it’s a problem if he drinks excessively often, is abusive, or prefers to be drinking than being with you.

You do not need to worry if he only goes out occasionally and lets his hair down, that you do not have to be his keeper, but are having a good time as well.

So, what do you do if his drinking is giving you a headache? If you are unhappy with the status quo and don't want to break up with him, it may be a good idea to chat with him about his drinking and tell him how it affects you.

If he cares about you, he will mend his ways. As a reward, give him time to spend with his friends and let him lose. If you feel more comfortable not being with him when he drinks, then stay at home or go out with your own friends.

Some men become very flirtatious when they have had a few drinks. This type of man may be a bit more difficult to manage. If you are the same, it stays within the club or pub you are at, then as long as you go home with each other, no harm is done. If, however, he ditches you to run after someone else, you have every right to leave him to his own devices permanently.

Specialists suggest that if your boyfriend's drinking behavior has changed suddenly, there may be an underlying reason. It may be that your relationship is not as it should be. If he is stressed, lost someone close to him, or had another upheaval in his life, he may be drinking to feel better, even though it's temporary, and it may not have anything to do with you at all.

If, however, he is drinking to the point of passing out and not remembering the night before, it may be a sign of an alcohol abuse disorder that will require professional help. The important thing here is to try and see beyond the drinking to the bigger problem. Whatever the reason you can give him some slack, and if you would prefer, let him sort out his problem in his own way. Resist the temptation to intervene unless it became so bad that his health and safety become affected.

Another expert on the subject is Julia Austin. She advocates a discussion with your partner when he is sober. Check that he is fine generally. As mentioned, before it may be a symptom of a repressed issue. Let him know that you are concerned for his safety.

Make sure that he is aware that his behavior when he is drunk is not acceptable and you are unhappy about it. If he is inclined to become a bit too generous, buying multiple drinks for everyone, you can express your concern about the financial impact of this.

If he does not believe what you are telling him, video him. This could be the wake-up call he needs. If he is abusive or dismissive of you when he drinks, tell him how to hurt you feel, and possibly how other people see him when he is drunk.

Lastly, if he still fails to accept that he is a jerk when he has been drinking, recruit some of his friends who like you to speak to him. He may see his behavior in a different light when coming from his friends.

Another tactic you may try is to negotiate with him. If he still behaves well after one or two drinks, or if he sticks to beer or wine and doesn't go onto the hard tack, this is an excellent bargaining chip. You can be very firm with him that the minute he becomes difficult or starts ignoring you, you will leave.

Insist that you have the car keys from the beginning of the evening, so you will get home safely. He can hitch a lift with one of his friends or take a taxi.

If you also have more than a few drinks when going out, you can suggest an agreement that you both drink less or stick to 'safe' drinks. That way he feels that you are in it with him. Maybe he feels that you get out of hand when you drink, and he doesn't want to be around you.

Once again tell him how it makes you feel, how you don't want to go out with him if he is going to ignore you, and that it takes the fun out of the event when you feel you need to keep an eye on him. If you both know someone who treats his partner badly, you can even compare your boyfriend to that person.

There is always the possibility that even when trying, the evening may get away from him, and in that case, you can suggest a 'safe word' that you both agree on if things start getting out of hand. 

If nothing seems to make a difference, you need to let your boyfriend crash and burn. It might be the only way he learns his lesson. There are consequences to actions and especially if those actions hurt oneself or other people.

If it means he has to lose you or ruin a friendship, or dirty his name among his peer group, so be it. No doubt, if you have been the supportive girlfriend for a while, his friends will give him a rev instead of commiserating with him, if his actions break up your relationship. This might not make you feel much better, but remember he is an adult, and you do not need someone like that on your watch.