How to Tell Someone They've Had Too Much to Drink

Who doesn’t like to kick back and have a nice drink every now and then? But sometimes, one drink turns into ten and the situation gets way out of control. Now, the drinker has to be stopped. But how? Check out Modern Manners Guy’s 3 tips.

Richie Frieman
6-minute read
Episode #254

A while back I wrote an episode about Hangover Etiquette, which discussed how to handle situations in which you drank a bit too much. Today’s episode deals with the “darker side” of drinking too much – and that’s having to tell someone it’s closing time for them..

Although I’m a total lightweight, I do enjoy a nice drink from time to time. However, that joy can easily be ruined by a fellow imbiber who has had one too many and now you’re stuck having to babysit them.

Convincing someone they’ve had too much is a rather daunting task but something you must take seriously. To do so you need to be creative as well as convincing.  So before you find yourself caught between a drunk and a hard place, check out my top 3 Quick and Dirty Tips for properly handling telling someone they’ve had too much to drink:

Tip #1: Be Tricky

I totally understand that dealing with an intoxicated person can be uncomfortable. They’re likely irrational and loud and unpleasant in many ways. But the good news is that drunk people are also easy to manipulate. It’s very easy to trick a drunk person into believing anything, if you’re clever about it.

So one way to convince someone who’s had more than their share to leave the party is to tell them that the bar has no more alcohol left, or that you just got a text about another cool meet up with some friends. Tell them anything to get them out in one piece, and without causing a scene.  To you, the sober person, hearing this sort of trickery may result in more questions like, “Who texted you?” Or “There is no way the bar is out of liquor!” But to the guy who just did ten shots of Yager, all of this makes perfect sense.

Tricking a drunk person into believing something is like tricking a toddler into believing fat Santa Claus can fit down a chimney that’s only 6 inches wide. When someone is so gone that you have to step in to make them stop drinking, your goal should be to get them out of the bar as fast as possible – regardless of the lie.

Here are a few clever approaches:

  1. “Hey Walter, this place is all out of beer! Can you believe that, man? Let’s get out of here.” Then leave the bar and head anywhere elsebut a bar. Try some food so to soak up the alcohol.

  2. “Jen, I just got a text from Michelle and everyone is over at [insert name here] down the street. We’re moving the party over there!” Then when you leave, either take them home, or to a non-alcohol establishment.

  3. “Ken, I feel sick as a dog. I need your help! Dude, I’m going to puke all over the place, come on, we have to get out of here, now!” Here is a situation where you are doing a little acting to get the person to leave with you. It does not need to be an Oscar-worthy performance, it just has to get the job done.

Even with these clever suggestions, some drunk people may not budge so fast. You may have to amp up the lie, but if you’re trying to help them, it’s only proper to do whatever it takes.      


About the Author

Richie Frieman
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