I appreciated your article about how to handle an abusive/misbehaving wedding guest. I am getting married next year and I have a son with a drug and alcohol problem. I cannot uninvite him but need tips on how to handle him. He is fine until he starts drinking and there is no way that we can keep him from drinking since we are having an open bar.
I was considering hiring someone to attend to watch him and, as soon as gets boorish, place him in a cab and send him home. Where do I find a babysitter?
This is a sadly familiar situation for a lot of couples. I'm glad you already hit up our conflict resolution and family drama archives, since they're full of helpful tips to keep everyone cool at weddings.
If you knew your alcoholic son wouldn't make a scene if he was cut off from the open bar, that would be a great way to keep the whole situation at bay. But if that it's just not realistic, our recommendation would be to hire some event security to keep an eye on him.
Event security can be pricey (upwards of $50 per guard per hour), but you should only need one guard if there's only one problem guest in question. Googling your area + event security will get you started or see if your venue has any options for security that they could bake into the package. This is a nice way to outsource the enforcement — on your wedding day, you do NOT want to be the one responsible.
Alternately, if the price is too high, you could see if there are any physically capable guests you trust who would be willing to keep an eye on your son and discreetly escort him into a cab when the time comes. It's not ideal, but will save you some money. Perhaps they could take a specific shift so that they're not “on call” the whole night. Just make sure they understand that it's a de-escalation type of situation so that something like this doesn't happen.
Best of luck, and let us know how it goes!
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