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judgemental meanies

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
I am really peeved right now.
I was at a relative's baby shower (my "aunt" who is actually only a year older than me) and there were 3 other preggos and 2 women who had children and I sitting around talking. I happened to mention that every once and a while I had an occasional glass of wine (actually, I've only had a single glass of wine on four occasions throughout my whole pregnancy), and they all stared at me in horror, and then one of them preceeded to tell me that if something happened to the baby wouldn't I just feel awful? The others all agreed and said they weren't having a single drop during their whole pregnancy, and then all looked very smuggly at me and made me feel like I was already a bad mother. Now I feel awful and I am afraid to ever have another glass. Has anyone else had the occasional glass? Should I feel this bad about it?? Now I feel like I need to go research fetal alcohol syndrome just to convince myself I haven't givin it to my son. :
post #2 of 17
Ask if any of them has ever taken a cold pill or aspirin while pregnant. Or drunk a diet soda. Or eaten a can of tuna. Or had a cigarette.

Everything I've read about FAS is that researchers can't tell exactly what level of alcohol exposure harms a fetus to what degree, so they tell us to play is "safe" and make the level zero. Nothing like a bit of overkill to protect their heineys, eh?

While you're researching, look into European attitudes towards alcohol in pregnancy. I think you'll find you're just on the wrong continent.

(yes, I've indulged in a half-glass a couple of times. you're not the only one.)
post #3 of 17
I've only been sipping some of my DH's drinks here and there, but I'm with you -- I think they're pretty judgemental. We all have to make our own decisions about what risks we're comfortable taking, and which risks are trumped up unnecessarily. I posted this elsewhere, but my dentist even warned me about alcohol in my mouthwash absorbing into my gums and going to the baby. I mean, talk about a miniscule amount to get worried about!
post #4 of 17
I just had 2 half glasses last week when I was travelling for business. I second the PPs suggestion to look into the European attitudes about alcohol in pregnancy, their views are much more reasonable.

I also just checked a book that I like called "The Whole Pregnancy Handbook" by Joel M. Evans. The book says that during the second and third trimesters an occasional glass is fine (see p. 99 says kristin the librarian)

I just told my sis that I'd had some wine and she seemed surprised, but hey, let's be reasonable here!

Sorry they weren't understanding, it's hard when people have different philosophies on things like this.
post #5 of 17
How awful for you! Each woman and each pregnancy is different, and I'm shocked that they were so judgemental of you!

Unfortunately, I have known a handful of women who had very little regard for the 'guidelines' when they were expecting. Some people I've known have indulged in DAILY glasses of wine, several glasses of wine on the same occasion, and in a couple of cases, recreational drugs. Of course I was personally horrified and scared for them, but never told them what I felt. Lucky for them, all babies came out just fine-as far as we know. Needless to say, there are lots and lots of things that you can do that would be so much worse than a half glass of wine here or there.

I agree with the PP about the European mentality on this issue. Our medical providers choose to err on the side of caution in the States because people are so ready for a law suit these days. Everything in moderation they say-caffeine, sun, food, alcohol, you name it.

Have your glass of wine! You'll be fine! I had a small glass of wine last night watching Taylor Hicks on American Idol. It's not a daily (or even weekly) habit for me, but I love wine and I felt like a little, so I had some. Next time someone is so viciously critical of you, maybe a response like, 'I've done extensive reading and have talked with my doctor/midwife about having a small glass of wine once in a while in the second or third trimester, and WE agree that there is no harm in an occasional indulgence' will keep them quiet.

I'm with you! Hang in there!
post #6 of 17
Yeah, there's some sort of high people get from being self-righteous.

I bought my husband a 6-pack of some nasty ale he likes, and the little old man checking me out at Target screwed up his face and shoved his nose up in the air and said, "Is that your 6-pack of BEER? Are you SURE you want to purchase that???"

And yesterday, when I bought the 24-pack of iced bakery cookies for my art students, the lady who rung it up kept sneaking these "knowing" looks from my belly to the cookies to my belly, puckering up her little dimples as if to say, "Oh, and are we building our baby by cookie?"

Bleh. You know what they say about opinions and *'s....
post #7 of 17
I have an occasional sip here and there, and I'd have more if I felt like it. However, people are just obnoxious about this issue--I just don't discuss my alcohol consumption and let everyone assume I'm not touching the stuff. And I don't drink anywhere except at home. I'm just not up to the drama. Honestly, I do the same thing about everything people don't agree with--I'm not discussing circ, exclusive breastfeeding, co sleeping or anything else non-mainstream with anyone other than those I think will be supportive.

hugs to you...you are not alone and you certainly aren't hurting your baby!
post #8 of 17
As far as I know, an occasional glass of wine won't cause harm to a baby. I took a developmental psych class in college and one of the issues discussed at length was alcohol consumption during pregnancy. The professor made it clear that the biggest danger of FAS occuring is during the first few weeks (1st trimester) of the pregnancy (when the brain is developing). After that it's no biggie, and an occasional glass is nothing to worry about. I'm sure your son is fine and they can take their judgement elsewhere

post #9 of 17
Remember that case in the 1990s of a pregnant woman who ordered a margarita at TGIFridays, and the server refused to bring it? I can't remember is she sued, or he got fired, or what the big deal ended up being.
post #10 of 17
How do they feel about having alcohol when breastfeeding? Amazing how people view it as so different when as others have already said the brain is already developed.
Meanwhile FAS isn't the issue in other countries as it is here and plenty of women have wine in moderation with dinner there.
And look at all the people who don't have a problem with their 2-3 cups of coffee a day but scoff at your occasional 1/2 glass wine.:
Please. Spare me, people are idiots.
post #11 of 17
I agree with the PP that said you are just on the wrong continent. Here in America we are a bunch of liability fearing extremists. All the research I have seen on FAS says that the effects seem to show from 4-8+ drinks daily. IMO (and I am not a doctor) after a stressful day, ONE relaxing glass of wine could even be beneficial. Personally, I avoid wine for the most part while pregnant. For some reason even half a glass makes me feel fuzzy in the head and I don't feel comfortable with that. However, I am a beer lover and I do partake in a bottle of beer once, occasionally twice a week because it doesn't make me feel woozy at all. I think the baby likes it too. Every time I have a little she kicks like crazy.
post #12 of 17
I'm on the wrong continent too! I don't think having the occasional glass (which happens to be about 1/2 glass for me) is a big deal. I have once during this pregnancy and I did a handful of times with my last pregnancy. And, when I was breastfeeding, I had the occasional glass too. GASP!

I approach it the same as rebeccalizzie, I just choose not to divulge that information with anyone. I even avoid the whole breastfeeding debates with dh's family. Sure, there have been a few unavoidable conversations "how long are you bf'ing?" "you know they have pumps you can buy now?" (This being when I nursed ds at my MIL's home in front of dh's great-aunt. She was shocked and offered up the pump idea.) :
post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by NaomiLorelie
I think the baby likes it too. Every time I have a little she kicks like crazy.
Me too! Every time I have the occasional glass little boy bumps all over the place in there!

Thanks everyone for your support. It's important to me to be and feel like a good expectant mama, because I'm only 22 and I want to prove to everyone and myself that I can handle it even though I'm a young mom. I was just overly sensitive to let those judgemental women use thier opinions to put me in a funk. It's good to hear reasonable advice from other natural-minded mamas. Plus, I was thinking, and all of the women who were passing judgement on me had all elected to have epidurals during labor. Isn't that a drug? Couldn't that pass through to the fetus to some extent?
post #14 of 17
I don't think there's anything wrong w/ an occasional glass of wine once you're past your 1st trimester. In fact, I worked w/someone who's OB told her that if it was a stress reliever for her then one glass of wine a week was actually less dangerous to her fetus than the stress was. So, he basically told her to go ahead & have it.

It makes me crazy how the moment we become pregnant, seemingly our bodies become public domain. Everyone & his uncle feel perfectly entitled to impose their sensibilities & values upon us.:

Consider those "friends" blissful. (As in, ignorance is... bliss. )
post #15 of 17
Originally Posted by 3_angels
Plus, I was thinking, and all of the women who were passing judgement on me had all elected to have epidurals during labor. Isn't that a drug? Couldn't that pass through to the fetus to some extent?
I've said this before but I don't understand why it is that having a single glass of wine during pregnancy is child abuse, but then people treat you like you are crazy for not having a bag of narcotics dripped into your arm and then some more injected into your back. I didn't know better with my first pregnancy and asked for some IV narcotics (never got the epidural though). I felt like I was loaded. My DD1 was lethargic at birth and had latch issues for a week. I really feel the stadol that I asked for had something to do with that.
post #16 of 17
This is a hard one for me. Having alcohol during pregnancy is not something I would choose to do. It seems like just one factor I have control over that would make it less likely the baby could be harmed in any way. First, alcohol just doesn't sound that appealing to me right now. Second, there are other factors to be considered besides alcohol heading straight for the baby and causing brain damage. I'm already clumsy as it is and what if I had a glass of wine and lost my balance and fell? That could hurt that baby, but not in the expected way.

I have also been a waitress and had pregnant women ordered alcoholic beverages from me. This always bothered me, as well as the bartendars who poured the drinks. The drinks were served and I never commented, but I will tell you, frequently the strength of the drinks was altered (we were known for serving super strong margaritas). This may cause an uproar, but it was well-meaning. We really struggled with this. Do we reduce the amount of cheese in the fat man's enchiladas? The justification for this was that it affected another person (the baby).

Someone else commented other parts of the world don't have the FAS issues we have here in the states. I beg to differ. The former Soviet Union has very high rates of FAS, as do other impoverished European nations. There are part of British Columbia with rates 500 times higher than the rest of the Western world.

After I graduated from college (and quit waitressing), I worked with children with special needs, some of whom had FAS. It broke my heart to see such a preventable ailment afflicting these kids.

Do I think a glass of wine here and there causes FAS? But I think the safest thing for you and your baby is to avoid alcohol.
post #17 of 17
Ary, I know quite a few people said other countries don't have the FAS problems we do...I don't think anyone meant that no other countries have this problem. I am aware it isn't specific to the US. But there are plenty of European (and probably African, etc) countries where women use alcohol in moderation. In France and Italy for example, it is perfectly acceptable to have an occasional glass of wine because it is a part of that culture. I don't think ANY country should feel comfortable with drinking whenever, however much you want when you are pregnant. There can be a risk. But as a teacher of children with severe special needs the children I work with with FAS were from parents who ABUSED alcohol.
I can understand though that NO ONE should do something they don't feel comfortable doing so if you feel you could possibly be harming your baby you are definately right to refrain.
And everyone must do what is right for their babies. My midwife actually told me to drink a 1/2 glass of wine when I had early contractions at 15 weeks. But I know 1/2 glass is too much for me so I just had a few sips. For me I felt comfortable with that.
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