SRS How do you change your reaction to a situation?

Discussion in 'On Topic' started by AutoEuphoria, Apr 23, 2008.

  1. AutoEuphoria

    AutoEuphoria New Member

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    Kind of a strange question, but let me try to explain.

    I honestly don't know where this comes from, but everytime I see or hear about my girlfriend drinking I have this serious negative reaction where I get really angry/upset, my heartrate goes way up, and my stomach turns in knots. It's f'ing weird, and it causes strain in our relationship and in my life in general, and I'd love to be able to change it.

    Last night was the night her mother wanted to take her out to celebrate graduating from college. I wasn't invited along because my gf knew how I react when I see her drink, and she didn't want me to ruin the night I guess. That, in itself, made me feel like crap. Anyway, she went and had a bunch of drinks, and came home a few hours later than she said she would. She never called or anything to let me know she was going to be later, but again, I know it's because she thought I would get upset that she was drinking more than she said she would (she said she would have 1-2 at max). When she came home I started a big fight, and although it's resolved now I still feel like crap over the whole thing.

    I mean, she was in a safe environment...her mother loves me, and would never let a guy come take her away or something. I'm just not sure why I respond to that particular situation like I do. I can watch friends drink themselves unconscious, and while I find it annoying at a certain point, I never have this type of mental/emotional/physical response. As I'm sure you can guess, I don't drink at all...not because I'm necessarily against drinking, just because I never feel like doing it.

    The strange thing is that it'll happen if she's sitting right next to me drinking something or if she's with someone else and I'm not there. It's the same response, either way. It also doesn't matter how many...it happens with the first drink all the way through the last. And she doesn't drink often - she admitted last night that this was the most she had to drink, ever. The last time she drank was New Year's Eve, so it's not like it's happening all the time.

    I just want to change how I react to the situation. I know in my head that I shouldn't react this way...that it's not a big deal, everyone does it, she was in a safe place, she'd never cheat on me, etc. It's just this automatic physical/emotional response that I can't seem to break.

    Any suggestions on how to deal with this situation?

    :sadwavey:
     
  2. Gonrad

    Gonrad OT Supporter

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    There's nothing wrong with drinking.

    There is something wrong with being an addict however.

    If she's doing it in a safe/controlled environment and doesn' do it reguarliy, whats the harm?

    Perhaps try drinking with her?
     
  3. AutoEuphoria

    AutoEuphoria New Member

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    That's the point...I understand all of that, which is why this is so frustrating. It's not a conscious reaction, it's totally automatic. I suppose if I'm out with her I could have a drink...that might help a bit. I'm always the one driving, so I always feel like it's my duty to stay sober. In some ways, I guess, it does make it worse when it's something she's doing that I'm not...maybe being that "outsider" makes me react as if it's worse than it is.
     
  4. Drifter87

    Drifter87 Yippi-kay-ay, Motherfucker

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    I don't see anything wrong with drinking, just as long as she does not become an alcoholic.
     
  5. Joybang

    Joybang New Member

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    Did either of your parents drink too much or was someone close to you an alcoholic?
     
  6. Miss Machine

    Miss Machine New Member

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    I can sort of empathize with your situation. If my significant other drinks, I get kind of weirded out. Not as dramatic of a reaction, but it still sets off a small flutter of aprehension.

    For me, I think it's mostly because of the fact that I'm jealous that my significant other is having fun without me, and I kind of wonder why she's drinking in the first place because she doesn't drink at all.

    Another reason, something I don't personally experience but you might, is that even though you tell yourself "she won't cheat on me", "she won't do anything stupid" etc., your subconscious might still be a little paranoid about it as a simple defense mechanism. It may or may not be a trust issue, but doesn't necessarily have to be. It's also probable that you're just subconsciously concerned about her. Alcohol does cloud judgment. Even though she's in a safe environment, that doesn't mean you can't feel healthy concern.

    So, I guess it's up to you to really figure out why you have this reaction to your significant other drinking. Then, and only then, can you tackle the root cause.
     
  7. Socrates

    Socrates New Member

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    I would say it has to do with you being worried about her doing something with another man that she wouldn't normally do because of the alcohol.

    I really believe this when you say "I mean, she was in a safe environment...her mother loves me, and would never let a guy come take her away or something." You didn't say "Her mother wouldn't let her drink enough to get alcohol poisoning," or "Her mother wouldn't let her get behind the wheel." To me, that post shows what is going on in your subconscious mind.

    If that's the case, then you should check out some books on building trust in a relationship. Remember, just because you know in your head that she won't cheat doesn't mean your heart knows it too.
     
  8. Xin

    Xin OT Supporter

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    I have gone through the same problem. I STILL get a little tightness in my chest whenever I hear a girl I'm dating is wasted or something. I think it has to do with the fact you're afraid something bad is going to happen since you aren't around. It's a justified cause, as let's face it, alcohol severely lessens your ability for good judgment, but you can't start assuming and accusing unless the signs are obvious.

    That's the battle you'll find yourself in with a g/f who drinks sometimes when you aren't there. The line between feeling that quick tightness automatic response, and assuming something bad happened and accusing is very thin.
     
  9. djshotglass

    djshotglass New Member

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    This is what I first thought. This kind of reaction doesn't come out of nowhere. Something must have given you such a negative view of alcohol that you don't drink and have panic attacks when you girlfriend does.

    This was my second thought. Paranoia won't get you anywhere. Unless she's given you a reason not to trust her (then why are you with her anyway) just let her do her own thing. Life is much better when you're not paranoid all the time.
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2008

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