Forgiving Yourself for Embarrassing Drunken Behavior

July 2, 2015 Becky Doyle

Have you ever made a total idiot out of yourself while drunk? Do you want to forgive yourself for embarrassing drunken behavior? Check out these four tips.

Forgiving yourself for embarrassing drunken behavior can be tough. Being drunk is one of the most common reasons behind people embarrassing themselves or being stupid. It’s pretty safe to assume that if you have been drunk, you have embarrassed yourself in some small, minor way. And if you’re an alcoholic, you might have some pretty epic stories of nights that ended in a major embarrassment to you or someone else. In some instances, those stories are laughable and can be shaken off or simply shared in jest. In other situations, these are the ghost and horror stories of our drinking days: embarrassing drunken nights never to be admitted or acknowledged in any way because the shame and embarrassment was too great. Embarrassing drunken stories that fueled me to drink more. If I drank more, it would be easy to forget my shame. It took me a long time to forgive myself for my embarrassing drunken behavior.

Now, as a sober, recovering alcoholic, I don’t have that escape anymore. I still have embarrassing moments and I still remember the most awful nights of my drinking days, but I deal with them differently. This is what I do.

Feeling Embarrassed from Your Drunken Behavior? Let Yourself Swear

Have you ever made a total idiot out of yourself while drunk? Do you want to forgive yourself for embarrassing drunken behavior? Check out these four tips.

If my mind is wandering while walking to my car and I remember a particularly embarrassing drunken moment, I will spontaneously start swearing under my breath. To someone walking next to me, it might be a bit alarming, but for me, it’s an instinctive action that actually makes me feel a little better. Swearing is actually good for you, as proven by a study in the United Kingdom, and helps relieve stress. You can release negative emotions and release emotional pain through swearing, so don’t resist it.

Forgive Yourself for Embarrassing Drunk Behavior by Recognizing Your Shame

Much like with addiction recovery, acknowledging your shame is the first part of accepting and recovering from it. A totally normal human emotion, shame, must be dealt with in order to learn, grow, and move forward from a haunting past.

Don’t Try to Rationalize Embarrassing Drunken Behavior

Alcoholism is not rational. If it were, there would not be so many unanswered questions about the disease of addiction. Therefore, trying to justify or explain your drunken antics is a lost cause. Especially because when active in an addiction, people often behave in ways that do not align with their own moral code. So if you’re dealing with shame, chances are you already know what you did was bad or embarrassing and no level of rational thought will make that go away.

Remember People You Have Forgiven

When all else fails, remember that at some point in your life, someone else had to ask you for forgiveness. How or why did you forgive them?

The highest form of love is forgiveness. The greater the offense, the more love is required to forgive that person. Double the amount of love required when you are forgiving yourself. This may be difficult to do, especially in early sobriety when self-loathing is usually at its peak. If you aren’t able to quickly identify five things you love about yourself, you need to adopt some daily practices to boost our self-esteem.

Shame and embarrassment are good reminders of how our alcoholism shaped our behavior, and not in a good way. But like everything, they are only good in moderation: too much shame hinders us and prevents us from living life fully. Work through the embarrassment to forgive yourself. Only then will the shame of your drunken past begin to fade to a memory devoid of pain.

Creative Commons photo attribution to mloberg.

You can find Becky on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and her website.

APA Reference
Doyle, B. (2015, July 2). Forgiving Yourself for Embarrassing Drunken Behavior, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, December 8 from

Author: Becky Doyle

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

September, 10 2017 at 5:33 am

Me too

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

September, 10 2017 at 5:41 am

I went to a hotel over the weekend and got drunk with my husband in their bar. Then we went swimming and my husband left me and went to bed. I have a big blacked out spot but I remember fighting with five people in a hot tub who asked me to get out (I refused). Then the hotel staff asked me to get out and again, I refused. Then the cops came and I did get out. They took me to bed and left. Then I called 911 to talk to them and went outside and cussed the cop out for not kicking everyone else out of the hot tub. He told me to go to bed. I flicked him off and he arrested me. I've really never done anything wrong in my life but now I've been to jail. I had to hire a lawyer for a disorderly conduct charge. I chewed a bunch of people out drunk (add f words in every other word). Then screamed for two hours in jail that I was being illegally detained. My husband had to pick me up from jail. Then I missed the meeting I was out of town to go to. This happened the night before last and I don't know how I am going to mentally cope well enough to get through the day. I would never do any of this. I am mortified. I have a cruise coming up and I am now scared of going.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

June, 26 2018 at 2:05 pm

yeah, me and my girlfriend went binge drinking, left our home to bar hop, of course we blacked out. next thing you know i'm yelling at my best friend and brother on why they were being mean. on top of that. she left me alone downtown to go home. i was too drunk to comprehend on what happened. my friends left, so did her. the worst part is that i didn't chase her. i watched her go, and then i went to drink more. i ended drinking another day without her. then ended up spending most of my money. she had to come pick me up while i was still drunk at a hotel because i had refused to come home. i even have glimpses of her wanting me to come home, but i took so long in doing that. i lost 2 days. because of the bottle.
now that im sober now. i have total regret, shame. im upset with myself. how i chose my actions.i let someone down. someone who loves me. someone who would do anything for me. i cant fully describe the disappointment i have towards myself.
i guess i'm taking it day by day.
i know i'll live.
im only 23, and its a shame this happened. just might take some time to get over

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

November, 9 2018 at 7:51 am

Well, sweetie, you are not the only one who has done this, I remember the feeling very well when I was in your shoes. I am aspiring alcoholic these days and my drinking is off the hook. I really hate waking up to new horrors of what happened the night before. It's undescribable humiliation. I do understand how you feel but I want to tell you you'll get through it. And hopefully someday you can laugh about it with your husband. I know none of is funny, but the good thing about life is the sun comes up and you get a whole new day to start over keep trying best of luck.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

July, 3 2018 at 1:47 am

I pretty much did this last night but didn’t get arrested. So me and my brother and his gf went to a football game. I thought it would be cool to take a hip flask to the football because I thought they only sold mid strength. Anyway they sold full strength an I got steaming. I disn’t eat all day and I don’t remember leaving the game. We went to the casino and I don’t remember anything. I tried getting money out at the atm for ages and then when we were getting drinks I made some crack at the Barman for taking too long. Then I remember getting circurled by security. I was just arguing with them cuz I didn’t want to accept I’d been kicked out. My brother was trying to talk sensibly to me but I would listen. I just kept saying I haven’t done anything wrong. Then I guess I shoved past the security that were slowly closing in on me and the wrestled me to the ground. Then my brother who is trying to defend me also gets into a scruff on the floor and we are both carried out with everyone looking at us horrified. My brothers girlfriend was so embarassed and I don’t ecen remember getting home. But when I did I’ve just been apologising on loop. I’m just racked with guilt. I am a 32 year old lady. Most people wouldn’t experience that in a life time. I just feel so so embarassed.

March, 26 2017 at 6:20 am

I'm currently in college and got embarrassingly drunk at a bar about a week ago with friends and other people from college, and I followed a guy around that is not interested in me, and I think I really pissed him off. I was so drunk that I didn't think I was behaving that badly, but according to someone else, I had been way too clingy on him and had followed him all night and shown up while he was talking to other girls. The person also told me that he was uncomfortable and needed me to back off. I'm extremely embarrassed. This is a way I would NEVER behave while sober and usually not even drunk, but I suppose I had a thing for him and made it way too obvious. The worst part is that I have to see him everyday.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

August, 17 2017 at 4:10 am

Omg this is literally me right now, you can't even imagine how happy your comment made me (not that I feel happy for you obviously, but because I know I'm not the only one). I'm in college too and lately I've been getting a little bit out of control. I had some issues with my ex, who won't leave me alone, and one of my friends. This past week we went to a festival and I got a little too drunk, which led to me confessing my friend that I like this guy, who then turned out to be there too. He came and we talked for a while and it was all good and all until I reached the point where I was literally falling every two seconds and (although I don't remember anything from this time on) apparently I kept hitting on him, which not only freaked my friend out but I'm guessing him too, since we aren't that close and he also has a girlfriend. Now I keep thinking his friends and him must be laughing so badly at me, and thank god I haven't seen them since. For the most part I hope they realise I was way too drunk and obviously wasn't thinking, and I believe if it was the other way around I wouldn't take it seriously, I would laugh it off and if I saw the other person I would say that I know it was alcohol's fault. However, here I am, worrying like hell over it and googling up "how to cope with the stupid things you do when you're drunk". At least I realised two things, I actually like the guy (which kind of sucks) and I need to chill a little bit, for my dignity's sake lol

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

No more
September, 23 2017 at 4:46 am

Got so drunk blacked out and fell busted my lip and hit my head. I drove home but can't even remember how I got home. I really need to quit. Alcohol turns me into a different person. I put myself and others at risk. I dont drink everyday but when I do I am always the last person drinking. I don't know my limit. I got drunk at work just hope that this does not impact my job

September, 18 2016 at 2:58 am

Eh. I got so many moments where I felt such embarrassment! Either I was too loud, obnoxious, hyper, sad, or just having fun!
Read through all the comments- because I guess I was searching for... something I can relate too.. anyway true friends don't care about your sillly sides when your UI ♡ trust me, everyone has their moment's. What you did UI doesn't make you a bad person or should look down upon. :) it's like tiny vacation we take to get away from reality♡°•¤

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

August, 4 2018 at 1:42 am

Thank you for saying that.

September, 11 2016 at 8:31 pm

I embarrassed my BF last night. I feel so bad too. We had just returned from vacation and started drinking the second we got home. It was around noon on a Saturday. Had a few beers then shots..I don't know how many of either, but before you know it I am in a dark room that I thought was a dungeon, I yelled for him several times. When he didn't arrive I called 911...I honestly had no idea where I was. I had to of blacked out because I woke up with two knots on my head and my body felt like I train hit it. Cops showed up, and I was asleep but I have bruises all over my arms. Well he said that I was very wasted and was calling him names and trying to hit him, that explains the bruises on my arms, from him restraining me. I fell on a car jack and I guess two neighbor lady's came over and I was calling them whores. Omg...I don't even know them. I feel terrible..just terrible. How can I apologize to these woman I dont even know? How will he ever forgive me?

Terry l
September, 6 2016 at 5:23 am

Been dating a guy for five months, got drunk while at a festival. Before that I was very shocked that he screamed at me for asking him to lower the windows in the car and for having him pay for my drink. Ive Never been screamed at. Then he said I embarrassed him and he was ashamed of me. And this is from a guy who had a dui. I'm going to heal and forgive myself. There has to be other men who can forgive.

September, 4 2016 at 6:00 pm

I get embarrassed every time I drink. I make friends with the world and it isn't very safe. :( i made friends with my cab driver apparently and swapped numbers
.. now he won't stop calling me. He knows where I live and work now. Ugh.

September, 4 2016 at 3:59 am

I got terribly drunk last night and told my mom for the first time how i remember when i was young all the terrible things she did to us kids. And then i went to her neighbor's house and told them and all their friends that she beat us and everything. Then i called my brother and told him off. Now i have a heavy heart loaded with embarrassment and shamefulness. The really sad part is that I am 48 years old. I just want to crawl under a rock and hide for the rest of my life. This is terrible. My heart hurts so bad now with guilt. I wish I could take it all back now. I humiliated myself and my mom. I wish I had a drink to forget this but I know others won't forget it. Please keep me in yours prayers. Thank you.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Never Again
September, 14 2017 at 11:32 am

Hi Kate, you posted long ago but how are you doing? I had a similar situation. looking for comfort, Thx

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

March, 25 2019 at 11:47 am

Your post touched me...hope you are doing well...

August, 21 2016 at 11:23 pm

well last night it was my friend's bday party. got horribly drunk. Came back to college in night (I live in college hostel) and after that (according to friends) I had chased girls, shouted their names at the top of my lungs, roamed through the entire campus. GOD i cant even imagine now what i have done last night. Misbehaving with the girls (Not physically) is the part which is eating up my brain now. I am feeling like crying now.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Kira Lesley
September, 2 2016 at 6:52 am

Hi Vivek,
Thank you for sharing your experience. I can understand why you were feeling upset about your behavior while drunk. If this is a pattern for you, engaging in behavior while drinking that makes you feel bad and may negatively affect others, you may want to consider trying moderation or abstinence from alcohol.
As far as the behavior goes though, I just want you to know that while of course this is not good behavior, it seems you are aware of that, which is a much better place to start than thinking you've done nothing wrong! Anyone with an alcohol problem has certainly been in your position, I know I have. It does not sound like you've done any irreparable harm. I hope you can use this as a learning opportunity. Like I said, all of us with drinking problems have engaged in embarrassing behavior while drinking. How you react to them is key.

August, 5 2016 at 9:07 am

It was my ex boyfriend farewell party. He was leaving town. It was my second time I drink.I got so drunk,danced so hard,sang silly songs,pulling my ex boyfriend to dance with me ,I was an embarrassment to my ex boyfriend. .he got so pissed and embarrassed, then dumped me the next 2days because of how I behaved. .I love him :/ but he I really embarrassed him in front of his friends and now he wants nothing to do with me. Its been 4 weeks ago since this happened, I really can't forgive myself about how I embarrassed and humiliated him. I'm so depressed

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

June, 12 2018 at 6:12 pm

If it was only your second time drinking he should understand your a light weight and just forgive you if he really loves you. People make mistakes. I guess he doesn't. Js

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

November, 9 2018 at 7:26 am

There is nothing worse than intolerace. That guy doesn't deserve you anyway.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

J Smith
November, 22 2018 at 2:02 pm

This might hurt a little, but if your ex bf dumped you over that he was probably planning on leaving anyway. He most likely just siezed the opportunity to leave. He doesn't deserve you, people like that are cowards.

July, 22 2016 at 8:52 am

I lost my job a little over a month ago due to alcoholism. I never drank at work, but didn't go to work due to my drinking for a week and tried to lie my way out of it. They fired me when I admitted to my supervisor that I was drinking. Anyway, I'm so embarrassed. I work in the community and don't even think anyone know (maybe some or assuming) because I had a DUI about 3 years ago, which in this community, at the time, was published in a local newspaper (any arrests made and why).
I'm beating myself up today. I could've had a job and everything still the same and fine, but instead I had to go and drink and mess up everything. Feeling ashamed and embarrassed.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Becky Doyle
July, 27 2016 at 7:25 pm

Itbey, I'm so sorry to hear you're going through a rough spot right now. Give yourself credit for acknowledging the true problem though. Nobody is perfect, we all make mistakes or bad choices... but that doesn't make us bad people.

Major Depression
July, 7 2015 at 6:36 am

Forgiving yourself is the key to the ultimate happiness :D

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Becky Doyle
July, 30 2015 at 9:50 am

True true!

July, 7 2015 at 12:33 am

Yesterday being drunk I got hysteric and broke my wife's computer. It was like daemon inside me, I could not control myself at all. I understand that it's much worse that just embarrassing behavior. I can't except this fact. I feel so sorry, however I cannot find words to describe how sorry I am. She left at night. I called her hundreds of times, she did not pick up the phone. I feel so measurable. All this is just unbearable. Probably we should split up as I got hysteric not for the first time and I'm afraid not the last one.
How can I find my peace?

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Becky Doyle
July, 30 2015 at 9:50 am

It sounds like you need one on one work with a therapist or in a recovery program like AA, LifeRing, or SMART Recovery. Check out this post which explains the differences between the programs:…
p.s. they're FREE
She probably just needs space right now. While I cannot say one way or the other whether or not you'll stay together, the best thing you can do for your marriage right now is work on getting sober.

Leave a reply