I drink and breastfeed - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 85 Old 05-08-2012, 05:15 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have had two glasses of wine as I type this, and I am typing with one hand because I am breastfeeding my son.

 

I believe very strongly that telling women that they can't drink while nursing is yet another way of undermining breastfeeding. When you breastfeed, apparently, you're supposed to sit around your house all day and do nothing and see no-one. Screw that.

 

 

I don't drink every day and I rarely get drunk. But I do drink. Since giving birth, I drink to the point of drunkenness about once a month or so. And I have just nursed my baby as normal. I decided I am personally okay with my son occasionally getting 0.06% alcohol (or whatever it is) in his milk, and have no intention of compromising my supply or my nursing relationship by bottle feeding.

 

I know one mother who quit breastfeeding at 3 months because she said she wanted to have occasional nights out with her husband. She was quite sad to discover that you can drink and breastfeed, and I was very sad to learn that her son won't get the benefits of breastfeeding because of misinformation.

 

So I think I should not only spread the word, but do my part to normalize moderate drinking and nursing! After all, I'm going to be nursing for two years and beyond.

 

Lactivation: I'm an enthusiastic collector of single malts and maintained my membership in my local scotch tasting club even through my pregnancy. While pregnant, I sniffed the scotches. Now that I am nursing, I bring my baby, nurse him as needed, and drink those scotches! (The bachelor gentlemen in my club have softened to my baby and now all want to have children because "it's easier than they thought." LOL hahaha try waking up 4 times in the night.)

 

Lactivation: I have a picture of me breastfeeding one week postpartum on Facebook, holding a delicious dram of Lagavulin.

 

Lactivation: I go to restaurants, order drinks, and whip out my boobs to nurse my son. I have gotten a few double-takes from servers, but only one server said anything to me. She said, "I'm due in three months myself and I'm so happy to see you out and ordering a Manhattan! Makes me feel better about what I got myself into."

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#2 of 85 Old 05-08-2012, 05:23 PM
 
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Hear hear, ita.
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#3 of 85 Old 05-08-2012, 06:44 PM
 
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I don't think you'll find much disagreement here at MDC.

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#4 of 85 Old 05-17-2012, 10:40 PM
 
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Agreed


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#5 of 85 Old 05-19-2012, 09:07 AM
 
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I have to give credit to New Jersey Health and Senior Services for debunking many of the breastfeeding myths, and as OP stated can uneccesssarily deter a woman from breastfeeding. They discuss the alcohol myth, among others:

 

http://www.nj.gov/health/fhs/wic/breastfeedingmyth.shtml

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#6 of 85 Old 06-01-2012, 05:20 PM
 
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That is an awesome link!  Thanks so much!
 


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#7 of 85 Old 06-01-2012, 05:39 PM
 
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Right on!


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#8 of 85 Old 06-02-2012, 06:59 PM
 
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Originally Posted by MichelleZB View Post

I have had two glasses of wine as I type this, and I am typing with one hand because I am breastfeeding my son.

 

I believe very strongly that telling women that they can't drink while nursing is yet another way of undermining breastfeeding. When you breastfeed, apparently, you're supposed to sit around your house all day and do nothing and see no-one. Screw that.

 

 

I don't drink every day and I rarely get drunk. But I do drink. Since giving birth, I drink to the point of drunkenness about once a month or so. And I have just nursed my baby as normal. I decided I am personally okay with my son occasionally getting 0.06% alcohol (or whatever it is) in his milk, and have no intention of compromising my supply or my nursing relationship by bottle feeding.

 

I know one mother who quit breastfeeding at 3 months because she said she wanted to have occasional nights out with her husband. She was quite sad to discover that you can drink and breastfeed, and I was very sad to learn that her son won't get the benefits of breastfeeding because of misinformation.

 

So I think I should not only spread the word, but do my part to normalize moderate drinking and nursing! After all, I'm going to be nursing for two years and beyond.

 

Lactivation: I'm an enthusiastic collector of single malts and maintained my membership in my local scotch tasting club even through my pregnancy. While pregnant, I sniffed the scotches. Now that I am nursing, I bring my baby, nurse him as needed, and drink those scotches! (The bachelor gentlemen in my club have softened to my baby and now all want to have children because "it's easier than they thought." LOL hahaha try waking up 4 times in the night.)

 

Lactivation: I have a picture of me breastfeeding one week postpartum on Facebook, holding a delicious dram of Lagavulin.

 

Lactivation: I go to restaurants, order drinks, and whip out my boobs to nurse my son. I have gotten a few double-takes from servers, but only one server said anything to me. She said, "I'm due in three months myself and I'm so happy to see you out and ordering a Manhattan! Makes me feel better about what I got myself into."

 

 

I stopped BF my first DC at 5 months for this reason. I had a glass of wine and broke down in tears realizing I would no longer be able to breastfeed him. I called my OBGYN the next day who confirmed my fear that I should not continue to breastfeed after resuming drinking alcohol. 

 

That was 3.5 years ago. I now have a 16 month old DD whom I am still nursing and of course, I drink wine like I normally would. I drink to the point of drunk once every month or two when we're visiting friends/family out of town, and I drink a glass at night 2 or 3 times per week. When I think about my nursing relationship with my DD, and how easier my life is in general with her than it was with DS as a baby, and how much healthier she is than DS was (and frankly, is).. it just breaks my heart. It makes me both mad at myself for being so clueless, and mad at my doctors for bad information. 

 

When friends and family observe me drinking, they say things like, "Oh, have you weaned (DD)?" and I say, "No, of course not. I won't consider weaning her til she's 2. Breastfeeding women can drink, you know."


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#9 of 85 Old 06-02-2012, 07:19 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by anjsmama View Post

 

 

I stopped BF my first DC at 5 months for this reason. I had a glass of wine and broke down in tears realizing I would no longer be able to breastfeed him. I called my OBGYN the next day who confirmed my fear that I should not continue to breastfeed after resuming drinking alcohol. 

 

That sucks, anjmama! I'm sorry that happened to you.

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#10 of 85 Old 06-02-2012, 07:31 PM
 
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Love this post! Drink and breastfeed!

We co sleep and for my own peace of mind, I got DD used to sleeping in the arms reach co sleeper for the first sleep until she wakes to nurse so I can feel comfortable having that 2nd glass of wine.

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#11 of 85 Old 06-03-2012, 05:26 PM
 
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I thought I was all alone! I feel so much better having read this! Thanks for posting thumb.gif


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#12 of 85 Old 06-04-2012, 02:57 AM
 
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OMG!!!! I sooooo thought I was alone!!! I would have gotten flamed anywhere else. I drink occasionally and breastfeed as I normally would. My son won't take a bottle and I've read several studies, suggesting that it's best to continue breastfeeding as normal because it's more beneficial to continue than to bottle feed. Thank you for posting!


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#13 of 85 Old 06-04-2012, 06:39 AM
 
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#14 of 85 Old 06-04-2012, 06:52 PM
 
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I didn't drink whil enursing ds1 but that was only bc I was 17 when he was born  heehee  I was 25 when I had ds2 and had drinks only very irregularly due to extreme poverty.  I don't think it's a big deal at all to drink moderately while nursing a baby of any age.

 

But...I should hope that it goes without saying that if a mama intends to drink to the point of drunkeness, she will have a sober adult there to take care of the baby, and that she will also refrain from sharing a bed with her baby that night.

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#15 of 85 Old 06-04-2012, 07:42 PM
 
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I'm so glad I found this thread.  I have a martini or a daquari two or three times a month... and have been feeling very guilty because I wasn't sure whether it affects my son's breastfeeding.  I'm glad it doesn't.


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#16 of 85 Old 06-05-2012, 08:36 AM
 
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But...I should hope that it goes without saying that if a mama intends to drink to the point of drunkeness, she will have a sober adult there to take care of the baby, and that she will also refrain from sharing a bed with her baby that night.

Exactly! I got drunk and had to put my son in his bassinet that night. The only stories I've heard of babies dying while co-sleeping was when mom or dad was intoxicated.


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#17 of 85 Old 06-05-2012, 11:47 AM
 
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I generally didn't drink alcohol while nursing because alcohol is just not a big part of my life (I did drink at BIL's rehearsal dinner because that was a train wreck of a marriage!).  That said, I really encourage people to try and put the "risks" of alcohol to a baby in perspective.

 

An average beer has about 5% alcohol.

 

When you nurse, your milk has approximately the same alcohol concentration as your blood.  If you were drunk, that would mean about .08% alcohol.  If you're drinking lightly, then, let's call that .05%.

 

You know what has .5% alcohol content?  NON-alcoholic beer.  So, your milk after drinking has about 1/10th the alcohol has a non-alcoholic beer.

 

If you were legally drunk, a single beer would still have 63 TIMES the alcohol content as 12 ounces of your drunken milk.  Since most children don't drink 12 ounces at once, a single beer would have approximately 200 TIMES the alcohol as a 3-4 ounce serving of breastmilk.

 

There are 6 teaspoons in an ounce.  There are 12 ounces in a standard beer.  So, 72 teaspoons in a standard beer bottle.  So, nursing your child *while drunk* is equivalent to giving them around 1/3 teaspoon of standard beer. 


And that is while drunk.

 

Alchol is metabolized from breastmilk at approximately the same rate as from the blood.  For many people, you can have a drink and your blood will be virtually alcohol free an hour later.  If you have a drink, it is virtually guaranteed that your breastmilk will be alcohol free two hours later.

 

It always amazes me how people will accept the known risks of formula without a second thought but would look down on someone for having a couple of drinks and nursing four hours later. 

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#18 of 85 Old 06-05-2012, 02:03 PM
 
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Cheers indeed! I came across this thread just as I am sitting here enjoying one very well-deserved post-partum beer. Great reading.


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#19 of 85 Old 06-05-2012, 02:11 PM
 
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Congrats on the new addition, by the way, Mami Feliz. :)


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#20 of 85 Old 06-06-2012, 03:43 PM
 
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Congrats on the new addition, by the way, Mami Feliz. :)

 



Thank you :)


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#21 of 85 Old 06-06-2012, 05:07 PM
 
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Yay! I'm not alone!joy.gif


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#22 of 85 Old 08-27-2012, 11:55 PM
 
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TiredX2, I'm going to be quoting you often.


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#23 of 85 Old 08-28-2012, 01:23 AM
 
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Awesome thread! I thought I was the only one!
I'm pg now and in the throes of morning sickness, so even the thought of alcohol turns my stomach, but after this passes I'll still enjoy the occasional beer or glass of wine... And I totally agree that moderate drinking is fine while bf smile.gif

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#24 of 85 Old 10-01-2012, 11:20 AM
 
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Awesome thread! I thought I was the only one!
I'm pg now and in the throes of morning sickness, so even the thought of alcohol turns my stomach, but after this passes I'll still enjoy the occasional beer or glass of wine... And I totally agree that moderate drinking is fine while bf smile.gif

 

While I was having major nausea in my first tri (I'm nearly 16 weeks now, nausea gone thank goodness!) sometimes the ONLY thing I wanted was beer.  Something about the light dose of carbs and the bitterness really helped settle my tummy, especially while I was cooking dinner - a task that otherwise made me want to hurl.  So I would have a half bottle of beer and leave the rest for my DH.  It wasn't enough to even feel it, alcohol-wise, but it sure felt good going down.  I really doubt that half a bottle of beer once or twice a week would do my baby any harm, and if it let me eat a more nutritious dinner, then it probably even did some good.

 

And after my DD was born, many years ago, I had bad PPD - but one thing that saved my sanity was post-baby-group "luncheons" at a friends house.  We would sit in her living room, dump all our babies in the middle of the floor, and drink wine and giggle at their antics.  It was SUCH a great release.  We were all breastfeeding, too.  Thank goodness for a great municipal transit system!


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#25 of 85 Old 10-24-2012, 11:55 AM
 
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I generally didn't drink alcohol while nursing because alcohol is just not a big part of my life (I did drink at BIL's rehearsal dinner because that was a train wreck of a marriage!).  That said, I really encourage people to try and put the "risks" of alcohol to a baby in perspective.

 

An average beer has about 5% alcohol.

 

When you nurse, your milk has approximately the same alcohol concentration as your blood.  If you were drunk, that would mean about .08% alcohol.  If you're drinking lightly, then, let's call that .05%.

 

You know what has .5% alcohol content?  NON-alcoholic beer.  So, your milk after drinking has about 1/10th the alcohol has a non-alcoholic beer.

 

If you were legally drunk, a single beer would still have 63 TIMES the alcohol content as 12 ounces of your drunken milk.  Since most children don't drink 12 ounces at once, a single beer would have approximately 200 TIMES the alcohol as a 3-4 ounce serving of breastmilk.

 

There are 6 teaspoons in an ounce.  There are 12 ounces in a standard beer.  So, 72 teaspoons in a standard beer bottle.  So, nursing your child *while drunk* is equivalent to giving them around 1/3 teaspoon of standard beer. 


And that is while drunk.

 

Alchol is metabolized from breastmilk at approximately the same rate as from the blood.  For many people, you can have a drink and your blood will be virtually alcohol free an hour later.  If you have a drink, it is virtually guaranteed that your breastmilk will be alcohol free two hours later.

 

It always amazes me how people will accept the known risks of formula without a second thought but would look down on someone for having a couple of drinks and nursing four hours later. 

 

thank you so much for this

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#26 of 85 Old 10-24-2012, 12:47 PM
 
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I never posted when I originally saw this thread, but I just want to say that because of this thread, I am now enjoying large, large glasses of wine at night.  This may have saved my marriage.  (That last bit is a slight exaggeration.)

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#27 of 85 Old 11-15-2012, 03:02 PM
 
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I just want to say I think this thread is great. Thank you for starting it. I'm doing things so much differently this second time around. Cheers


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#28 of 85 Old 11-15-2012, 06:15 PM
 
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I was at a wedding and nursing just before dinner came and the champagne dude passed right over me. I was sitting next to a kid, so initially I wondered if he got our glasses confused, but then I realized he skipped me because I was nursing. The next server who came around went to do the same an I piped up that I would, in fact, like some wine.

 

I didn't realize this was actually something people would consider wrong. Competent parenting would be more of a concern than tainted breastmilk.

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#29 of 85 Old 11-16-2012, 05:41 AM
 
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I was at a wedding and nursing just before dinner came and the champagne dude passed right over me. I was sitting next to a kid, so initially I wondered if he got our glasses confused, but then I realized he skipped me because I was nursing. The next server who came around went to do the same an I piped up that I would, in fact, like some wine.

 

I didn't realize this was actually something people would consider wrong. Competent parenting would be more of a concern than tainted breastmilk.


I would give that a pass though; most people aren't going to be familiar with the logistics of things unless they themselves are nursing, or have been nursing recently thumb.gif


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#30 of 85 Old 11-17-2012, 03:55 PM
 
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I used to drink a lot before I got pregnant. For many months during my pregnancy and first months of breastfeeding, I didn't drink at all. Now I occasionaly have one-two beers or one-two glasses of wine. It feels great to share it with my man. It reminds us of how we met. It feels good to know other women do this too!
 

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