Should I Go Home? A Helpful Late Night Guide.

Because sometimes, you just aren’t sure.


Also relevant: The 5 Stages of a Hangover.

Quite often, the hardest part about going out is not so much the logistical strategy, the sartorial undertaking, nor answering the all-too-frequent question, “Where should we go?”

The hardest part is making the right decision about when to put your drink down, call it a night, and go home.

The wrong choice can put you in one of two unfavorable situations. Leave too early and you could miss The Night. The Night occurs on rare, magical occasions, like shooting stars, leap years and Kanye West’s rants on Twitter. The Night happens like love and lactose intolerance — when you least expect it — which makes it hard to effectively prepare. You know The Night: your crew almost didn’t go out. Everyone wore sneakers and the kind of sauce-stained gym clothes that double as pajamas when laundered. You go home because you’re a little tired, a little sober, a little bored.

Then half an hour later Bill Murray walks into the bar, buys everyone shots and starts a disco on the dance floor.

Excruciating as the post fomatic stress disorder may be, it’s often more tolerable than dealing with a morning of regrets which are the result of an evening-turned-marathon — the semi-sketchy party ripe with opportunities to politely bow out and songs that would have made satisfying exit scores long after the crowd was dwindling and yet, you decided to stay.

But how do you know? How is a mere mortal expected to make the right decision to go. the fuck. home?

With this guide.

Note: the below tips are most effective between the hours of 12 – 3 a.m. Any earlier than that and you need to suck it up. Any later than that and you need to haul ass into bed, stat. The witching hour starts promptly at 3:01 — nothing good happens between the hours of blackout and 6 a.m.

1. Safety First

Before you begin, rule out security concerns. Will I be stranded? Is my phone dead? Am I comfortable in this situation? Will I still be comfortable in this situation in 5 hours when the sun is coming out and all of my friends are gone? Where are my friends?

Play your own mother and listen to your gut here. If an alarm goes off in your head — even if the ringtone is “Samba,” go home.

2. Where Are My Belongings?

If you don’t know, especially if you’re asking this question with the contents of your purse in a pile on the bar’s bathroom floor, go home. Resume search in the morning. Lost phone > lost dignity.

3. Only Boring People Get Bored

If you find yourself whining the b-word, ask yourself if it’s the location, your present company, or you.

Location: If the bar truly “sucks” — and this happens (crowds get weird fast and awkward ghosts-of-hookups-past appear out of thin air) — then allow yourself to try one more spot. However, unless you’re on a bar crawl, very rarely does third time equal a charm on nights where venue-hopping feels like the answer.

Present Company: Theoretically speaking, you and your friends should be able to have fun in a cardboard box, but squads can have off-nights. First, try to revive the team. Play Your Song. Play a game. If no one’s having it, hug ’em and ditch ’em. Don’t let their bad vibes become your problem; don’t be a social martyr for the sake of an Instagram. There will be other nights. I promise. I swear.

You: If you’re the one not having it despite your pals charging forward, go home. If you’re the only one still hyped, however, make friends with a safe stranger and hang! Part of going out is meeting new people — just be sure you review list item #1.

4. Appearance Is Key

A simple question to ask yourself is: Do I look crazy? If the answer is, “Yes! You’re a confirmed psychopath,” go home. If you need a second opinion, ask the bartender. Where your mascara is relative to your lashes is often a good clue as well.

5. Don’t Chase the Fun

Fun does not have legs. It is not running from you, so do not go running after it. Ever. The only time fun should make you work up a sweat is on the dance floor, at the beach, or while eating spicy foods with funny friends. Fun is like a butterfly in that it will come to you if you let it. If it’s not happening, say it with me: put the the drink down, stand up, call it a night, and go home.


Infographic made by MR summer intern Hannah Kellner. For more weird thoughts de Amelia, check out her October horoscope round-up.  Looking for more helpful tips AND have curly hair? Rita Ora’s hairstylist is here to help. On another note: dude, what’s up with The Gap? It’s also Summer Friday. Open your fridge, take out a bottle of rosé, shove a wedge of watermelon in your mouth and celebrate.

Get more Humor ?
  • Paha, genius.


  • Allie Fasanella
  • becky

    #best – I will screenshot this for my phone.

  • Stephanie

    I love a good infographic!

  • Great post!

    This is especially tough when you’re with people from work (an afterparty for a holiday party, for example). I decided it was time to go home when my coworker was drunk enough to start her sentences with “my therapist said…” It was, in fact, at midnight.

    • Stephanie

      That’s a great ghosting opportunity. I’ve done that before at work functions that get weird. Sometimes your spirit lives on and people will swear you were there when you really weren’t!

      • I don’t know if I necessarily left with the best tact because it might have been obvious that I was leaving because she started unloading on me and belittling both our jobs. She was kind of awkward around me for the next 6 months until she left the company.

        • Stephanie

          Oh geez! Smart to distance yourself!

    • yeah great post just like here

  • kduck

    I’m so glad you guys made a flow chart that I can print out and keep in my purse!

  • kduck

    So, am I behind the times when I thought of printing the chart and putting it in my purse, as opposed to screen-shotting?

    • Amelia Diamond

      i actually love you for thinking that. i love a print out!

      • kduck

        I can’t do ebooks either! Also, flashback to getting lost when all you had was your MapQuest print out. The worst.

        • Amelia Diamond

          hhahaha i had like, a 10 page print out for the first time i had to drive myself to college. tbt.

  • Steelers_Depot

    More fun with this site manrepeller… Keep Reading

  • CarlotaLMorais

    Very helpfull! Going home to cookies, crap tv and pj’s is the best when you just dont feel like drinking and killing it on the dance floor. But FOMO is real. It happend to me sometimes and hated it! Sooo my sugestion is: when in doubt have another beer to shake things up a bit!

  • God Hand

    Stay home. Its what I do

  • nice related article here

  • Sarah Fentem

    Listen, i love love love you at ManRepeller, but crowding your articles up with hyperlinks to (not even really related) content is so distracting. I get that you’re grasping at pageviews but I have a feeling if the articles keep on going down this path that a lot of readers (like me) will get fed up and stop reading.

    • Leandra Medine

      Noted, Sarah! We just have so much to say and want to make sure you don’t miss it!@!$&@!!!!

  • Wow how did Team MR find out I’m recently single and needed a guide for going out? You guys are mystical amazing beings. I’m still wondering how to venture out into The Social World, squad and sans-squad, one day at a time. At least I have a nifty infographic 😀

  • Lauren at adorn la femme

    The location of my mascara! That is so good…and the tell-tale sign it’s time to leave the party!



    adorn la femme

  • Clarice

    —– i like me manrepeller……… …………. Continue Reading

  • Haha, this definitely made me think of the HIMYM “Nothing good happens after 2am.” Your guide is highly sensible. I would also add something about becoming too drunk to get home – the ability to walk or find a cab and communicate clearly to the driver 😉

  • luciana

    I should carry this in my bag for EVERY weekend!


  • cogitate10

    i love tip #5, dont chase the fun. Noted.

  • The NIGHT does really come when you least expect it! That’s why it’s all about saying yes to opportunity. I went out this past Monday on a complete whim and it ended up being an amazing night where I met a charming British man that made the night all worth it! Try something new–you’ll enjoy it!

  • Kelsey O’Donnell

    This is so good. “Play you’re own mother” may be the best advice ever given.

  • Alice

    You can probably just cut out all the middle and make it one arrow leading to “yes”

  • Screenshotted for future 2:59am reference