The Drunk Dial

The reality is that if you’re 21+ most of us have probably received at least one drunken phone call or drunk dial ourselves at one point in our lives. If it’s not a prank or something random, it’s usually when an individual is the most vulnerable. The most common emotion upon drunk dialing seems to be affection or anger.

Luckily, I have never felt the need to drunk dial anyone. But I have received a few, some being pretty scary.

When I was in college, a former classmate and I ran into each other. We used to try to help each other in some classes in the Engineering department so we had a mutual respect for each other. He wanted to hang out and so we exchanged numbers. We hung out at least once. Then one night when I was up late studying with a friend, he called me with sounds of people and footsteps running in the background, and him breathing heavily as if he was jogging somewhere.

He asked “Hey you wanna hang out?” I apologized and said I was studying. Then a few seconds later, he asked “Hey you wanna go to the movies or something?” Again I mentioned I was studying. It went on like this for another few minutes except he was getting more frantic with asking the same questions, while I was so confused and a little scared to why he was confused– and why he kept forgetting my responses. So I excused myself as quickly as possible and got off the phone.

The next day, he sends me an IM apologizing that he was drunk. So that explains it and I accepted the apology. But then he proceeded to express how he felt about me about wanting some sort of relationshiop. I did not feel the same way and kindly let him down easily. Long story short he responded in a way that was very unexpected, I got pretty scared, and eventually removed him from Facebook.

Another time I received a drunken phone call was when they were angry and looking for someone I knew. Actually I had quite a few of those. I typically don’t give out my numbers so freely to friends of friends or acquaintances (only recently did I give business cards), but lucky for me, I seem to always have someone giving my number to the wrong people, which I’m never happy about. Usually the calls were not emergencies, were irrelevant, and sometimes in odd hours of the night. As much as I want to block them, I end up keeping them on my phone number list, in case it is an emergency, if something happens to someone I know or if I suspect that they did something.

Then there are stories from people I knew who have drunk dial their love interest, significant others or crushes. This is when they are most vulnerable, either confessing their feelings or angry and upset. I know that alcohol is a depressant so it makes sense that alcohol can inhibit judgement and “holding back” and that’s where they end up calling someone and yelling at someone how they feel (or to the extreme of it) or becoming an emotional wreck.

Not good at all. Not only do they end up hurting the person they call, they end up hurting themselves, including the possibility of losing the respect from the receiver of the call. Even though the person who was interested in me wasn’t angry during the drunk dial, I could tell that something was wrong, it really concerned me and frightened me a little. I didn’t know what to do.

I don’t recommend drinking to the point where you’re likely to drunk dial, but the next time you might drunk dial someone and say something you might regret, perhaps put a little pop up note or alarm on your phone to remind you to not drunk dial. It might not always prevent you from doing it, but at least it’s worth a try. It can save you from the burden of feeling embarrassed, apologizing the next day or even worse, not remembering it to even apologize if someone deserves an apology, which can potentially ruin a potentially good relationship. Remember to be safe! If you drink, drink responsibly.

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