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This Sliding Bar can be switched on or off in theme options, and can take any widget you throw at it or even fill it with your custom HTML Code. Its perfect for grabbing the attention of your viewers. Choose between 1, 2, 3 or 4 columns, set the background color, widget divider color, activate transparency, a top border or fully disable it on desktop and mobile.

Are you dating an alcoholic?

an alcoholic dateI chose this topic for discussion today because recently I had a client who was in a similar situation. As I have had my own personal experience dating an alcoholic (albeit short), I thought it would be useful to look at the most common traits of an alcoholic date.

I became aware early on in childhood of how bad it is to be married to an alcoholic partner. It affected me in a big way and I never liked drinking as a consequence. However, getting romantically involved with someone normally meant there  was an alcohol involved socially, especially in early stages. Alcohol helped the conversation flow and, well, helped other things move along too. But again, I quickly discovered the most amazing quality time you can have with your partner is when no alcohol is involved.

I was quite lucky to be with partners that only liked to drink socially. Then, after a particularly long break from dating (3 years), I met Peter. Obviously working in my line of work (life coaching & CBT Therapy) and having had plenty of experience with clients suffering from addictions, I knew on date 1 I was dealing not only with a heavy drinker, but with an alcoholic.

So for all of you out there in the similar situation, here are the warning signs that you might be dating an alcoholic:

1.Heavy drinkers do NOT and will NOT prioritise you, ever. The day of our first date came and by late afternoon, I still didn’t know where we were going. Normally quick to answer my texts (prior to us meeting), he ignored my messages and only called at 5 pm that evening when in fact we were due to meet at 6. By then I had arranged to see my friend and did not hide my hurt and anger when he called, slurring his words and asking to see me. I eventually agreed and let him join me and a friend for a drink.

alcoholic date2. Alcoholics have ANY excuse to drink. On our first date, he came completely drunk and even as I write these words, I feel like they’re an understatement of the century. He could hardly stand up, swayed from side to side and admitted drinking all day ‘because his friend had some bad news’. I quickly learned that any excuse was used to have a drink. It was always ‘It’s Monday! It’s Tuesday! It’s the weekend! A friend had good news/ bad news/ no news!’

3. Alcoholics will be very generous when buying you drinks. They will even take you for nice meals out and pay, because they can have their alcohol. Peter kept buying drinks for me and my friend that evening, and that continued on our subsequent 3 dates (yes, I’m admitting I DID give him a second and a third chance before I ran for the hills).

4. Drinkers do not look after their appearance despite having money to spend. Peter came terribly scruffy to that first date. Torn, ill-fitting jeans, shoes with untied laces. This continued on our subsequent dates- the clothes and shoes were always fifthly and dirty despite him earning well over 50 K a year.

5. If you tell your date you have a problem with his/her drinking and ask them to drink less on a date, they will drink before they meet you. Yes, this was another ‘wonderful trait’ of Peter’s I had to look forward to. I never forget the day I met him in a shopping centre. I made an effort and looked stunning for him, whilst he had on dirty clothes, red, blotched face and a cigarette swinging from his mouth. At first, he lied about how many pints he had; then he admitted to having had 3 ‘after work’. He had further 4 beers that day.

dating an alcoholic6. You simply can not have a quality time with an alcoholic. Their lives literally revolve around drinking. I have only seen Peter ‘sober’ (well, I say sober but he was still tipsy from the night before) on our final date when I asked him to come sober (how pathetic is that when you have to ASK someone to come sober??). He came moody, grumpy and couldn’t wait to get to the nearest bar. When he ordered and sank his lips into his first pint, it was as if sunshine came onto his face- he smiled, he was charming and happy. Of course, within an hour he had 4 pints and was dying for more. I knew that was the last time I saw him.

7. They will not give up the drink for you. So after that last date, I have ended this ‘relationship’ on the grounds of him drinking too much. I have given him the opportunity to cut down on the drink and see what happened with us, but he categorically claimed he ‘would not give up his few beers a day’ for anyone. He texted again in a few days’ time, probably when he was drunk, claiming he didn’t want to lose me. When I responded I made my point clear and I still stand by that, he didn’t respond, which was exactly what I expected of him.

So, after reading my story, do you feel you’d want to date an alcoholic? Well, if you like a life of frustration, resentment and anger, then go for it. But if you value yourself higher, run whilst you’re still in the dating stage and you can cope with hurt feelings better. Once you’re in love, it’s extremely hard to leave. Bottom line is, if your partner does NOT want to change then you’ll always be a second best.

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