These could be yours or a family member’s or a <ahem> friend’s. Recent or in the dark, distant past. Dates & places must be changed to protect the guilty. Possible questions to answer: Was the blackout part of a serious drinking problem or a one-off? Did the person know that they blacked out or did someone have to tell them later, “Hey dude/ette, you were completely OUT.” Etc., etc.
I’ll go first.
In the early 80s I drank A LOT. Not in bars. Couldn’t afford it. But I could afford a $4.00 gallon of wine, and I put away one of those about every 2-3 days. Couldn’t keep liquor in the house, as I’d drink it all. (Just like I can’t keep ice cream in the house now.) I drank for only one reason: to get drunk. I might not have been able to come out and admit it at the time, but looking back, yeah, that was the reason. I was in a truly low place in my life, broke (hence the cheap wine), involved with a married man, in a job I hated. Can you see any reason there NOT to drink to insensibility? <Rhetorical question.>
One time I was at home on a weekend afternoon and had just gone through one of those 1.5 liter bottles of cheap white wine, and I remember lying down on my bed just for a minute. I opened my eyes a fraction of a second later (so it seemed) and it was dark outside. It was a couple of hours later. It was like when you have surgery and they give you a shot and one nanosecond later you’re in the recovery room. It wasn’t like “falling asleep”-- it was BAM! lights out.
P.S. I gave up drinking a couple of years later. Don’t know why exactly. Have no interest in it any more. But I wish I could have all of those empty calories back…
Story #2: Later in my life I fell in love with a guy who turned out to be an alcoholic. Don’t ask me why I didn’t see it immediately, because it was as plain as the empties in the trash-- possibly because my judgment was impaired in the years immediately following my husband’s death–but it didn’t register on me that he was drinking two six-packs of beer every night. He rarely had hard liquor in the house, but he put away the beer like nobody’s business. He’d buy what he called the “suitcase of beer”-- the 18-pack-- and drink it all in one evening. (Didn’t Paul Newman used to say that he drank a CASE of beer every day?)
This guy wasn’t all that into sex-- emotional issues, physical function issues, turns out there were sexual abuse issues in his childhood that came to light later, whatever. One evening, after he’d gone through his usual two six-packs, and possibly a bottle of wine, too, we went out to a concert that was really fabulous, When we got home to his place, he was drunk, but he started getting amorous, and it was a nice surprise, as this didn’t happen often, I got on board (so to speak) enthusiastically. We had one of the most romantic intimate encounters of my entire life–suffice it to say that he said all the right things-- all the things a woman longs to hear-- he did all the right things, it was like a movie. I was so happy-- I thought (sad to read now), “This is who he really is and he loves me!”
The next day I was still all aglow, and I told him how wonderful last night had been and how wonderful he had been.
He said, “Yeah, that concert was great!”
I said, “I’m not talking about the concert, I’m talking about later in the evening.”
He said with complete sincerity, “What happened later in the evening?”
I told him about our magical encounter and HE DIDN’T REMEMBER ONE MINUTE OF IT.
I said, “Who WAS that?? Did you mean all the things you said??”
He said, “That was me. I was there, but I JUST CAN’T GET **BACK **THERE.”
He asked me all about it, and I told him, but he didn’t remember one single thing.
I call that a blackout.
Lordy. And yet I stuck with him for another four years. :smack: