The holidays bring up a lot of emotions: You’re around your family, you’re back home and seeing people you haven’t seen in a long time, you’re confronted with viewpoints you probably don’t hear regularly expressed during the normal course of your life. It also tends to lead to drinking, if that’s a thing you do, and sometimes that means you wake up hungover with a few recent calls on your phone that you only vaguely remember. Maybe you dialled your crush and you’re really hoping you didn’t confess all your feelings to them (but you have a feeling you did). Perhaps it was a relative you never planned to be that drunk around. Or — the horror! — it’s your ex, the one saved in your contacts as “DO NOT CALL.” Whoops.
Well, first of all, don’t panic. “If you don’t feel bad about anything you said, chances are the other person doesn’t either,” says mental health therapist Mallory Grimste. And if you have said something you regret, you can still make it up to the other person. Here’s how to recover after drunk-dialing, depending on who you called.
If you’ve drunk-dialed an ex
In Match’s Singles in America survey 16 percent of participants reported having drunk-dialed an ex. It’s understandable: When your inhibitions are down, you want to get things off your chest—and a lot of that stuff we keep inside concerns our exes. “The next morning, if they’re not contacting you and you don’t want to continue communication with them, your work is done,” says Grimste. No need to beat a dead horse. If you want to maintain a friendship or rekindle the romance, on the other hand, a simple “sorry about last night” text should reopen the doors of communication. “Unless you said something truly mean, they shouldn’t have a problem,” says Grimste. If they do, that might be a good indicator of why they’re an ex.
If you’ve drunk-dialed a coworker
Getting drunk in front of a coworker may not be the norm, aside from occasional happy hour tipsiness, but chances are they’re not judging you. Grimste recommends going the humour route with this one and cracking a joke. You could try something like “hope you got some entertainment out of that” or “you won’t report that to HR, will you?” “Embarrassment is universal, so we can all relate and empathise with each other on this one,” Grimste says. “If you apologise and make a joke about it, the moment will pass.”
If you’ve drunk-dialed your crush
Hey, this one could actually make your life better. Sometimes you need some liquid courage to say something you should’ve said anyway. Either they reciprocate it, in which case you’ll be glad you spilt the beans, or they don’t, in which case at least you’re not wondering about it anymore. “You’re better off acknowledging this conversation and judging based on their reaction,” says Grimiste. If you got the vibe they weren’t into it, you can choose to let it go or tell them you’re sorry and want to stay friends. If they like you back, congrats! Why are you reading this? Go sober-dial them and ask them out already.
If you’ve drunk-dialed your family
“If you’ve told a family member something they didn’t want to know, it’s time to ‘over-repair,'” says Grimste. This basically means going above and beyond to make it up to them by, say, sending a gift to your parents or offering to take care of your sister’s kids. If what you’ve said was merely embarrassing and not hurtful, though, don’t worry about it — they’ve probably done the same thing themselves at some point in their lives.
If you’ve drunk-dialed your SO
This could also be a good thing. If something’s been eating away at you enough that it came out in a call to your partner while you were drunk, then you probably wanted to tell them for a while. “Sometimes, we keep things from our SO because we have built an anxiety about their reaction that is not always accurate, and we don’t give [him or her] an opportunity to have the response they’re entitled to have,” explains Grimste. So, if the cat’s out of the bag that you’re not satisfied with your sex life, or you have doubts about your future, continue the conversation when you’re sober. Your drunk self could’ve been onto something when she decided that was a conversation worth having.
Related: Is arguing good for a relationship?
And remember that while an occasional drunk-dial is pretty common, if it becomes a recurring pattern it could signal an alcohol problem. But if it’s not super frequent, it’s important to remember that your drunk-dial is probably not as embarrassing as it feels, says Grimste. “If you feel good and happy about the message and the outcome, it is possible the recipient experienced it in the same way.”
Taken from GLAMOUR US. Click here to read the original.
Looking for more great advice? Here’s the scientifically proven way to apologise to your S.O. and more tips for looking great the morning after a big night out.