Drink or get drunk?

@patgalca (15904)
Orangeville, Ontario
August 4, 2009 2:51pm CST
I would really like to hear what people have to say on this subject. This may be rather long but I want you to know all the details before "passing judgement". This past weekend our family was invited to a family get-together at my sister's cottage. I was hesitant at first because I know how much a few of my family members like to indulge in alcohol. I have two daughters, 13 and 16. In order to deflect some of this I asked if they could each bring a friend and one of them did. I had been assured ahead of time about safety re drinking and driving the boats and the ATVs. That turned out to be crap! Also, every single adult there drank to intoxication, some worse than others. I was the only adult who didn't touch a drop of booze. We are talking about my 84yo mother, my sister (60) and her partner and daughter (27), my middle sister and her husband, my brother and his wife, my husband... I brought my book and writing with me in case I couldn't handle it and wanted to just disappear. The days were lovely but once the drinking started it never stopped. What in the world would they do if something serious happened and there wasn't a sober one in the bunch and three kids involved? My younger daughter is turning 13 this week so we had a little birthday celebration for her Saturday afternoon. My husband and I gave her a new digital camera which she was thrilled with. She now has her own. But... drunk people think some things are funny and later in the evening when all the adults were pretty much plastered, my sister's partner threw my daughter in the lake with her camera in her pocket. Everyone was aware that she had it in her pocket. She kept telling them so. My daughter was terribly, terribly upset and I was livid. My older daughter was also mad. My husband wasn't there when this happened so when I asked him to come and talk to my daughter to try and help the situation, both my daughters pushed him away because he had been drinking and smoking cigarettes which, we thought, he had quit several years ago (found out he started socially about a year ago). My older daughter said she really hated him and stormed off. I was taking the sides of my daughters. This Mama Bear doesn't like anyone messing with her cubs. The guy who threw my daughter in the water did not apologize, only laughed. I told him he would buy her a new one. This man is 65 years old and usually a very easy-going guy but this weekend was the first time I saw him intoxicated. My mother tried to calm my daughter, felt bad for her, and then went off in search of my older daughter. My sister (the middle one, not the one who has the cottage) drunk as all get-out told me to get over it. This is a person, 9 years older than me, who has talked down to me all my life. I told my mother (who was also in her cups) and she hollered at my sister to leave us alone. It was a terrible hour. They were trying to get some people together to play games. I finally told my younger daughter that she should join the games, get her mind off of it and maybe she'd have some fun. She did and we did. The camera did not dry out despite all our attempts. So my husband took it back to the store telling them my daughter wanted a different colour. I wanted no part of this because it is lying and I am a Christian and refuse to be a part of that kind of thing. This is another reason why I don't like going to see my husband's family for summer vacation every year because they are big partiers down there in the Maritimes. I do not drink. I am on medication, plus I don't like the side effects. I don't know why people get themselves so drunk they have to act stupid. They went out on the ATVs at 12:30 in the morning, drunks driving with my kids in the trailer in the back. They just went over to a nearby cottage but I still think it was stupid. I could hear from where I was that they were having difficulty getting out of the driveway with the trailer attached to the ATV. So, my dear friends, do you think I over-reacted? My daughter was crying her heart out because her brand new birthday gift was ruined. I would have reacted the same way and felt she had every right to feel bad. This kind of thing will cause my children to resent those people involved and not want to go to anymore family functions. I do not look forward to next year's invitation to the same event. I am not a perfect Christian; I do lose my temper with my family members a lot, mainly because I dont' feel any of them ever support me. Since my Dad died (3 years ago) I have felt all alone in that respect. My Dad never drank more than 2 drinks. I know I need to have more patience and tolerance and of course forgiveness, but sometimes enough is enough! Your thoughts?
2 people like this
7 responses
@ElicBxn (61149)
• United States
4 Aug 09
I don't blame you at all, Pat, and I don't blame your daughter. In fact, I strongly suggest you take a pass on the "fun" next year, and every year after until you have those girls to an age where they can decide for themselves. I wouldn't inflict these people on my CATS, much less my kids! (if I had any) oh, and my roomie's brother is a drunk and after one day of his insulting me, I told the roomie that I didn't have to put up with that and we left - her dad ripped him up one side and down the other and told him to NEVER mess with me again - after all - I'm the one that brings the ONLY decent child they have out to see them.
3 people like this
@patgalca (15904)
• Orangeville, Ontario
5 Aug 09
I wanted to take a pass on the fun this year but my husband is a partier and he promotes strong family bonds... mine and his. (Don't know why he doesn't support that same bond with his own children, or just doesn't try.) They weren't out of control, just obnoxious or dumb-headed depending on the degree of drunkenness, and thought I was over-reacting. I do tend to over-react and get upset about things. I am the baby of the family and have always felt separate from my family since we are so spread apart in age (brother 4.5 years older, sister 9.5 years older, sister 14 years older, deceased brother 15 years older). I basically grew up alone and never felt like I fit in. I feel that is part of my attitude towards my family members. My mother is aware of my feelings and is saddened by it. I just don't know how to get out of these things. The first date given was no good for us so I hoped it would be a no-go or a go-without-us, but they changed the date. Last year they tried but could never get a date that would work for everyone. This never would have happened if my father were alive.
2 people like this
@ElicBxn (61149)
• United States
5 Aug 09
next year just tell him to go and get butt-faced drunk without you - and you'll have a girls weekend without the family
1 person likes this
@BarBaraPrz (25961)
• St. Catharines, Ontario
5 Aug 09
Sounds like a plan...
1 person likes this
@BarBaraPrz (25961)
• St. Catharines, Ontario
4 Aug 09
Nice family you have there... Sounds like the only way they can stand to be around each other is if they're stinking drunk. My condolences.
2 people like this
@BarBaraPrz (25961)
• St. Catharines, Ontario
5 Aug 09
Sad, but true.
• Canada
5 Aug 09
OH MY GOD (and I mean that as a prayer when I say "God"). !!!!!!! I'd be livid too. These people are idiots, and I woudln't want my daughter or her friends anywhere near them. As for my own drinking, I get D R U N K probably once a year, at my friend's house on Hallowe'en AFTER we've handed our candy, and it's just us. LOL I know how much I can drink before I fall, and I stop one drink before that. I take a cab home. It's just us, and now that my husband is in Canada with me, it'll be the three of us. Another time I got drunk was at the "good-bye neighbours" party Mom threw just before they moved out of our childhood home. We were all a little buzzed that night, but everyone remembered where their homes were and NOBODY drove. I've never gotten drunk to the point of the people who threw your daughter in the water. Actually, I'd consider what they did as a form of abuse, and an excuse not to be around them again. If someone tossed me like that, I'd probably drown. I can swim, but I'm not very good when I'm "surprised" like that. I'm also almost blind. I'd seriously not be around them anymore. I know, I'm a Christian too, but I think God would understand if you put up an emotional safety-wall for the sake of your kids. Mama bear has to do that at times, and that's exactly what my Christian Mama would do too, were we ever in THAT situation.
2 people like this
@windymyre (210)
• United States
5 Aug 09
I feel really bad for your daughter that her camera was ruined. I hope that she was able to (or will) have a better day on her actual birthday. Have you ever thought of not taking your children? You mentioned 3 kids, so that lead me to believe that you are the only one that brings kids. This seems to be an adult party & obviously adult activities going on. Maybe next year you can make plans for your girls to stay at their friend's houses instead of inviting friends to go along, thus not putting more children in danger when riding in trailers hooked on ATVs driven by drunk adults.
1 person likes this
@patgalca (15904)
• Orangeville, Ontario
6 Aug 09
It is considered a family gathering so my children are expected to attend. I asked if they could bring friends to avoid boredom. They did have fun outside of that one incident. My daughter had a big party at the end of the school year. Her actual birthday is today but nothing big planned. She can only have so many birthday parties.
@sunshine4 (8707)
• United States
6 Aug 09
I think your first mistake was going to this family gathering. You knew in advance that they would be drinking, so why get all upset over it~ you knew it would happen. As for the camera, that is horrible! I would have made the man who ruined it buy a new one. ONce he was sober again, I would approach him and tell him that he will be buying a new camera or he will be going to court over this. Your husband did the wrong thing...now someone who is totally innocent will be buying that camera and it won't work!
@patgalca (15904)
• Orangeville, Ontario
6 Aug 09
I prayed about whether to go and came to peace with it, but the day we left so many things happened I felt God was trying to tell us it was not a good idea to go (my 16yo had a job interview, DH ended out getting called into work for half a day which turned out to be a bit longer because an incident happened at work that had to be reported which got him home half an hour late, we got half an hour out of town when my van broke down and we had to return home and change vehicles trying to stuff all our belongings - tent, blankets, coolers of food - from the van into the sedan, and then getting stuck in Friday-before-a-long-weekend rush-hour traffic). And I said that at the time. But my husband would have no part in backing out of something "so fun". I told the guy he would buy a new one, but my husband not wanting to impose on anyone (don't get me started on what a softie he is) decided this would be the way to handle it. I told him it was lying and stealing and it's stuff like this that cause the prices of items to go up. We can only hope that the camera will be fully dried out and functioning when someone else purchases it. My sister did inquire about the camera because I'm sure they expected to replace it.
@sunshine4 (8707)
• United States
6 Aug 09
You certainly had all the signs given to you! At least your sister did ask about the camera. You have to give her credit for that. Next time tell hubby to go and have fun, you and the girls can take a girls weekend:)
• United States
6 Aug 09
wow pat, I'm sorry to hear bout what hapened. Unfortunately, we can't make choices for other people and some of the time they don't make good ones. My dad was a drunk much of my life and I decided that I didn't want to drink because of it. besides the fact that I can get drunk after one drink! and I don't like the loss of control either. It sounds like you should skip it next year. for me personally, it is not worth the stress. I actually watch shows like cops and dumbest criminals so the kids can see what stupid drunk people look like. and hope it makes an impression on them. and I know that your girls will remember this as not a good idea. unfortunately, my husband doesn't make choces I agree with either so we are in the same boat on that one. thankfully, God only holds us responsible for those choices we make. and we can only do our best to make the right ones. blessings, Steph
@patgalca (15904)
• Orangeville, Ontario
6 Aug 09
Thanks for your support. It means a lot to me.
@bird123 (10473)
• United States
13 Aug 09
You can never reason with someone who is drunk. Wait until the guy that threw her in the lake is sober then confront him with the problem. Lots of people who drink feel bad about what they did the night before. Give him the opportunity to make things right!!