Dealing with others drinking while sober

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Ida
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Dealing with others drinking while sober

Post by Ida »

I have to say that as an ex-drunk I am very tolerant of people I encounter that are drunk. Of course I can't judge them because they are only doing the exact same things I used to do, but tonight I encountered a situation that made me see red, feel sick, sad, and simply want to sever some ties with people. I am in a volunteer community theater company, and this year I was asked to co-direct at the last minute in order to put on a show in very little time. One of the actors showed up drunk tonight and was drinking back stage I was told later. Confrontation is one of my weakest points, and I have no idea what to say to this woman; I elected to not speak to her until she is sober. She was upset by a personal issue, and so she basically made the decision to put our entire company at risk by violating the policies of the building we are using for the performance, and I am worried that when the other director and I speak with her, she will blow up, and I don't know how bad it is going to be. Any advice? I haven't felt this much self doubt in like two years (I've been progressing well the last few years), and this situation is causing me to feel that oh-too-familiar dread/anxiety (FEAR) that I felt 24/7 when I first quit drinking. Feeling lost and alone and afraid.

JohnZ
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Re: Dealing with others drinking while sober

Post by JohnZ »

You are right in waiting to speak to her until she is sober. You can barely reason with some people when they aren't drinking, never mind when they're drunk.

Keep your words to her brief. Give her no opportunity to debate. I would simply say, "You cannot show up to rehearsal drunk, and you especially cannot be drinking back stage. If this happens again, you'll be summarily ejected from the company. This isn't open for discussion."

If she blows up, so what? What's going to happen? Angry loud words? Big deal. Just don't get sucked into a shouting match. You don't need to justify your position.

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Ida
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Re: Dealing with others drinking while sober

Post by Ida »

Thank you for you support, JohnZ. I haven't slept all night over this issue. I know that I should look at these situations as learning opportunities, but it is hard sometimes, ya know? Thanks again. You really helped me feel like I can do this.

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Texan
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Re: Dealing with others drinking while sober

Post by Texan »

I couldn't agree more with the advice JohnZ gave. There is no room to argue the point as the rules appear to be quite clear.
Keep on Keeping on, One Day at a Time.

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Ida
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Re: Dealing with others drinking while sober

Post by Ida »

I bit the bullet and took care of it today. Luckily no major confrontations took place. I imagine this will hurt our semi-friendship, but that is not under my control. Honestly, from the bottom of my heart, thanks so much for the advice. I feel so much better!

JohnZ
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Re: Dealing with others drinking while sober

Post by JohnZ »

Glad to hear it. If she's an alcoholic, it will eventually catch up with her as it did with the rest of us. Some people are just in the stage of compiling their drunkalogues, and the most you can do for them is add one more experience that will eventually bring them to the realization that their lives have become unmanageable. If you want to help her, invite her to an AA meeting. The worst that can happen is that she'll say no, but you will have planted a suggestion in her mind, and she may take you up on it at a later date.

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