Categories: Life

6 Things Nondrinkers Wish Drinkers Understood

The rules of drinking are talked about quite a bit, but how to behave around nondrinkers is rarely mentioned. Well,…

2 years ago

The rules of drinking are talked about quite a bit, but how to behave around nondrinkers is rarely mentioned.

Well, nondrinkers have feelings, too, and they want to be heard. We asked our nondrinking readers on Facebook what they want drinkers to know about them. This is what they said.

1. Check-splitting is rarely fair to nondrinkers
Americans spent an estimated $799 billion in the nation’s restaurants last year. Most restaurants aim to make about 30 percent of their revenue from alcohol, so those beverages can make up a hefty portion of the tab. Who hasn’t been out in a large group and when the check came, someone suggested, “How about we just split it?”

Few people want to be the only one who meekly raises a hand in protest.

“I feel extremely awkward and I find it unfair [that] I have to pay the portion of someone else’s expensive alcohol drink,” Leila Mostafavi said. “I feel it creates a silent tension and I get judged for not wanting to pay more. Is it fair for me to pay more when I drink a $3 soda?”

This was a common refrain: If alcohol raises a tab by about 30 percent, why should someone who didn’t drink any alcohol have to cover it? In any group meal out, some people will order appetizers, desserts, coffee, or a higher-priced entree, and sometimes the check roughly balances out. But when one friend orders a salad and drinks tap water and another orders the 40-ounce rib-eye and a bottle of wine, that’s not a check that should be split evenly, nondrinkers said.

If the drinkers in the group don’t step up and insist the nondrinker should pay less when everyone else had three rounds of $15 cocktails, then it’s perfectly fine for a nondrinker to pipe up and ask, “Would anyone mind if I just put in for what I ordered?” There’s no need to explain why, according to the Manner Matters etiquette column.

Reader Sheri Rego noted that while it may “sound petty,” she sometimes orders a dessert or an appetizer just to even the score when she’s out with people drinking alcohol.

“But they all expect me to share that with them,” she wrote. “They didn’t share their fancy expensive cocktail with me!!”

Several nondrinking readers said they’ve hung back and waited for others to order first. If everyone else is ordering alcoholic drinks, they ask the waiter for a separate check when it’s their turn.

Raju Jeelaga

It was not immediately clear who was responsible, but Macron’s political movement said.It was not immediately clear who was responsible, but Macron’s political movement said.It was not immediately clear who was responsible

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