There have been countless times in my dating and professional life where lines and boundaries have gotten....well let's say blurred. I walk into the waiting room of the STD clinic to find a guy that I , dated or have previously fucked. I'm out at the club and one or another of the dancers wants to ask me questions about the bicillin shots that I had given him earlier in the week to treat his syphilis. One of the disease intervention specialists is given my name by a patient who thinks I may have been a contact to their rectal gonorrhea. Luckily for me I have come up with two sure fire ways to deal with these types of situations: 1) I ALWAYS use a condom and 2)I ALWAYS offer to talk about things more at the office and can provide my phone number for you to leave a voicemail on.
Recently a new situation came up for me though where the lines between casual friendship/fuck buddy blurred into a more nurse patient relationship. A guy that I have previously hooked up with....LOC....asked me if I thought he had a drinking problem. I think this was the first time that someone I was hooking up with had a questions about their substance use disorder. I mean in the past I have had guys I dated interested in doing drugs, but they never involved me in their drug use. There was something about the way he framed the question though that really threw me for a loop.
"Like do you think I have a drinking problem? No seriously I have been thinking I might need help but I want your professional opinion?" At this point I was so flummoxed that the only thing I could say was, "Well how much do you drink a night? and what happens if you don't have a drink one night?" The answers to both questions indicated to me that LOC would require a little more TLC to get his life in check. Drinking 3-4 drinks per night and getting shaky by 6 if you haven't had a drink yet is almost certainly an indication that you have a drinking problem.
And I can't help myself....so with true grace and class I said, "Yes I think you need some help." and I gave the number to a detox or two with the expectation that he would never follow through. But now what do I do? Do I continue to hook up with him? Do I try to use myself as leverage to get him to seek treatment? Do I just ghost him?
Ultimately I decided on none of the above. Instead what I did was provide the patient/LOC with info on places where he could seek treatment and encouraged him to do so. I also continued to talk to him like a friend and someone who I had slept with a while back but still enjoyed flirting with. I think I am going to try and treat it in the same way that I treat chlamydia/gonorrhea in a guy who is really interested in me. I give it some time and if the interest is still there, but the original problem is taken care of then I give them a second chance. If any piece of that is screwed up then its back to the drawing board for me but at least I can't be accused of not giving people a chance.