Food & Drink

Panic & Regret: The 7 Stages Of 'The Fear'

We've all been there, no matter how hard we try not to be. "I have a nine o'clock lecture tomorrow morning, definitely not going out," usually turns into "I might just go for pre-drinks, just for a look like!" This often times leads to "Ah sure I may as well go to the club now, halfway there already." Suddenly, you wake up on the floor of a randomers kitchen, on the other side of the city. No idea how you got there, who's with you, or what you did last night. Then comes The Fear.

Stage 1: The Shock


Usually, you are not in your own home. You wake up, breath like a curry chip, and the first thing you have to do is figure out where you are and who you're with. (Sometimes the results may shock you, did he look like this last night?) If you did manage to make it home, you're usually wondering why you're on the kitchen floor and not in your own bed. You look beside you and your press is wide open and you're covered in popcorn (and your own shame.) The popcorn craving must have been too much for you when you stumbled in the door.

Stage 2: The Panic



Where is my phone? Where are my keys? Where's my purse? WHERE'S MY OTHER SHOE? This is the stage that most people dread. That horrible feeling in the pit of your stomach when you think that your phone may be in the gutter on Grafton Street instead of safely in your bag. This stage usually consists of you running around the gaff waking everyone in sight asking them to call your phone. You retrace your steps and call people you were with, the guards, every taxi company in the city, the FBI, and The Secret Service. (Do they realise the secrets that your group chats hold??)

Stage 3: The Regret


Why did I go out? I was completely happy staying in last night... until they MADE me go out. If only I had stayed in. I wouldn't have text that lad/lost my wallet/embarrassed myself/puked in the taxi/fallen down the stairs/spent all of my money/shouted at that girl for skipping me in the Maccy D's queue/ended up at a random house/fought with my boyfriend/thrown my Supermacs meal at my boyfriend/fallen and broken my front tooth/split my head open/basically ruined my life. Why me Lord, why me?


Stage 4: The Acceptance


Ok d'you know what? It's fine. It has happened to people before and they've gotten over it. In the fourth stage we learn to accept what is already done. You're still not well enough to read over the messages you sent last night, but you're well on your way. You still feel like death, but you're able to have a laugh about what happened last night with your mates and not feel the horrible "why did I do that" feeling in your tummy. I can deal with life today. Maybe after I eat I can go to that lecture/do that essay/go to work. (This acceptance stage usually lasts about half an hour.)

Stage 5: The Food



Once you've accepted that you're the most ridiculous person to ever roam Planet Earth, it's time for the most important part of any hangover. The food. This stage is usually better if you have somebody to BRING you food. (When you have The Fear, moving is destructive - avoid it.) So always try to have somebody with you the day after a night out that you can beg to get you food. Or someone who will open the door for the delivery man, so you can remain a toasty cinnamon bun in your bed/couch/pile of blankets on the floor.

Stage 6: The Flashbacks

After the food, you will either feel a whooole lot better, or the exact opposite. Either way, BOOM, here come the flashbacks.





"Here this can't be my receipt can it? I didn't buy 12 jagerb---- Oh no."


"Please tell me I didn't pee in the alley..."



"Why do I just have a memory of my exes face.... Was I talking to hi--- Oh no. I told him I want to have his babies."


"I was dancing on top of the bar and slipped. That's why I have a bump on my head. Smack down on the bar. What is my life."


"I think I kissed a fifty year old drug dealer because he told me my arms looked skinny."



"Was I smoking loads? I feel like I was. I don't even smoke."

Stage 7: The Retreat


Ok forget what I said earlier. I can NOT deal with life today. My head is spinning, I feel sick, the flashbacks I'm getting are making me nauseous. There's only one thing to do that will solve everything... Hello bed my old friend. Stage 7 is retreating back to the only place where life makes sense.. Bed. You can sleep your cares away, or you can binge watch Netflix (to attempt to forget about your idiotic behaviour the night before) You tried, but The Fear has beaten you once again. Ah well, I can always go to that lecture next week...

Áine O'Donnell

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