When you start to settle down, it’s generally expected that you start to grow up a little bit too.
We all sacrifice things when we’re in a partnership, whether it’s our side of the bed, our ratty, hole-ridden jogging pants we’ve had since high school, or some of our more immature behaviours like 24-hour video gaming and too many trips to the mall.
Perhaps the biggest thing we tend to let go of as we age is our partying stage, especially as career and family responsibilities start to take up more of our time and outweigh any benefits of binge drinking at the bar.
As we get older, it’s natural that we hang up our party hats and only take them out and wear them on special occasions like birthdays, poker nights and Christmas parties; after all, those wicked hangovers that knock us on our butts for 24 hours are no longer worth it.
But not everybody is ready to let go of those binge-drinking nights after they’ve settled down, and that can cause a lot of tension in a relationship.
The bar, especially a night club, is often seen as a place for single people to meet or, more blatantly, for people to hook up. Of course that’s not always the case, as lots of people go to clubs to dance or see their friends, but overall the bar doesn’t mix well with married people.
For lots of couples, going to bars isn’t a problem, but for others, there can be things like trust issues or insecurities in a relationship that make going to the bar a really bad idea, and if that’s the case in your marriage and you know your partner has a problem with it, why are you still going out? Maybe that’s a question you need to be asking yourself, along with, “Is it worth it?”
There’s also the more obvious reason that when you drink excessively, you’re more likely to make some questionable decisions, like getting in a fight, throwing up in the kitchen when you get home, or even making a trip to your local drunk tank. You can pretty much guarantee that your partner isn’t going to be very happy about any of these things, which can lead to an argument, a night on the couch and a week in the dog house.
Really, this kind of behaviour as an adult isn’t as acceptable as it was when you were 20. It’s not like you’re still single with no one to answer to; you’re now in a committed relationship and every action you take directly affects someone else at home.
If this also happens to mean children, how can you afford to spend one of your two days off on the weekend in a hungover stupor instead of playing with your kids? Or being too sick to help take care of your children, leaving it all up to your spouse which can make them resent you? Again, was that drunken night out the day before worth it?
The answer is almost always going to be no, it’s not worth it.
How can hurting the feelings of loved ones, or hurting your relationship, ever going to be worth it? Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with having drinks or tying one on from time-to-time, but if it’s a regular thing for you to be out getting annihilated every weekend at the bar while your partner sits at home (with the kids), then you probably need to do some serious soul-searching.
It’s time to let go of the bar scene, hang up your party hat and realize that quality time with your spouse or family is far more valuable than a night out on the town, or a whole day sick on the couch.
Leave the jagermeister shots for the college kids.
Katie Maximick is a newlywed freelance writer who firmly believes that wine is a girl's best friend, not diamonds. Her writing can be polarizing, but at least it won't lie to your face. Follow her on Twitter @KMaximick.