Originally created 03/05/02

Relationship can be destroyed by teen drinking



THIS WEEK'S PROBLEM

I've been going with someone since my freshman year. In our sophomore year, he started drinking. When he gets drunk, he's woman-crazy and acts like I'm not even there and starts flirting with other girls. I love him - really love him - when he's not drunk, but when he is, I don't know what to do. - 17-year-old Augusta girl

Here's what you had to say:

You should tell him how you feel when he drinks, and if he truly loves you and respects you, he'll stop.

I think you should sit down and talk to him about his problem. He's not even old enough to be drinking right now. You should help him, but if he can't stop drinking, you should dump him. You can always find somebody better.

I think you should do the same as he does - except don't get drunk. Just flirt with other guys and see how he feels.

I think you should sit down with him and talk to him. Tell him how you feel about his drinking, and if he says that he's going to stop, give him another chance. But if he keeps on doing it, you've got to let go.

Xtreme reporter Alisa DeMao says: Sit him down - while he's sober - and explain that his behavior bothers you. If he cares about you, he should treat you with respect. Don't let him blame the alcohol. There's a response to that: "Stop drinking."

It sounds as if there could be a bigger problem than his flirting. He's sabotaging a relationship and hurting the people around him. And that's one sign of a problem drinker. Give him whatever support you can to help him stop drinking. But if he won't stop, walk away. If you care about him, don't help him hurt himself by acting like it's OK.

If you want more advice and support, Alateen meets at 8 p.m. Tuesdays at the Martinez United Methodist Church. The group is for teen-agers affected by someone else's drinking. Learn more about the group by calling 738-7984 or visiting www.al-anon.org/alateen.html.

NEXT WEEK'S PROBLEM

I've been going out with my boyfriend for three months, and he's not pressuring me to have sex, but he says he can't wait forever. What should I do?

Do you have any advice for this 19-year-old Aiken girl? Call the Advice Line at 442-4444 and press 8614. You'll have one minute to answer.

Got a problem? Call 442-4444 and press 8613. You'll have one minute to give us your situation. Please speak clearly and state your age and the town you live in.

You also can e-mail your problems to ademao@augustachronicle.com. Put "Advice Line" in the subject line. All e-mail addresses will be kept confidential. Questions may be condensed for space.