And then, the headaches

For solidarity with Susan, I’ve decided to stop drinking alcohol. It is an easy choice to make. I enjoy drinking by myself, and that becomes a slight problem, since I have an incredible tolerance, and will often finish a bottle of wine or sake, or a all the beers, by myself. I don’t get drunk, but it isn’t helping my health, obviously. I am not swearing it off, but I won’t buy it, either. So anyone who wants to buy me a drink, don’t worry, I will comply.

The other thing is caffeine. Susan doesn’t drink a lot of caffeine, despite her wanton desire to bath in coffee. However, to be safe we are trying to cut-back on her daily mug of morning tea. There are actually a lot of interesting things going on with different teas, such as green tea canceling out folic acid, which is used to prevent birth defects early on.

I plan on talking about this in another post, but the asymmetry of responsibility between the pregnant person and their partners is fascinating and confusing. So I try to rise to the challenge and not tempt Susan with silly things like taking my morning breakfast tea baths in front of her.

Seriously, though, I wanted to try to match her and cut back my caffeinated tea intake as well. I’ve more or less stopped completely, since we got this very decent non-caffeinated tea. I still put in sugar for the first mug of the day, but the rest of the time I am just drinking it because I love tea, and also to trick my brain into thinking it is getting what it wants.

That is the tricky part, of course. My brain, if nothing else, is good at adapting, so I am not sure how long I can keep it going. I’ve been sleeping more and more, each cycle, but I haven’t gotten to that point where I feel really rested when I wake up. I end up napping throughout the day, and at any given moment I could just go to sleep. I am not sure if everyone does this, if everyone is holding back a flood of weariness through liquid stimulants.

For the last 26 hours or so I’ve been getting the headaches, and my plan is to drink lots of water and sleep as much as possible.

Hopefully, after I acclimate to not drinking alcohol and caffeine. I can enjoy them as treats instead of as part of a daily ritual. I don’t want to burn out like so many hyper-thinkers, so maybe I can adopt a life-style like so many wise people who seemingly live forever. :slight_smile:

i do still owe you an intoxicating beverage, so i’m glad you’ll let me pay off my debt if we have a chance.

be aware that the list of things pregnant women shouldn’t consume is 10% evidence-based and 90% cultural/superstitious/paranoia.

for example: eating soft cheeses. do you think that the risk of fetal harm from eating soft cheeses is greater than the risk of fetal harm from ever driving in a car when you’re pregnant? show me the data!

likewise with drinking – my understanding of the research is that fetal alcohol syndrome happens when the mother to drinks a LOT, and women who drink moderately during pregnancy do not show a higher risk of fetal alcohol syndrome. many of the organizations that demand women give up alcohol entirely use phrases like “because there is no known safe level of alcohol consumption…” and other scare tactics.

i haven’t seen any evidence that suggests a women having a drink or two per week (if not a drink a day) is putting her fetus at risk. here are some articles (sadly, with no citations) that take a more evidence-based approach:

don’t forget that fear is bad for you!

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I have to give you kudos for standing up on such a sensitive issue, I am sure there are a lot of emotionally charged folks out there who would fume to read your comment. :slight_smile:

As for us, we’ve done research and have formed our opinions about it. I should have posted about it, but there were a series of articles on both sides that I read, which discussed both pre- and post-natal consumption (for breast feeding).

My opinion is that alcohol should avoided during the first trimester, and should be done in moderation during the rest of the pregnancy. I also think it should be avoided while breast feeding.

Besides fetal alcohol syndrome, there are other reasons to avoid it as well, but it is in line with the same reasons everyone should avoid drinking, such as it can cause dehydration, impairment of judgment, those kinds of things. When taken all together, there isn’t much reason for Susan, personally, to drink. I would expand on that, but I would rather her discuss her decisions (I will ask her about writing a post on it).

I am not a teetotaler, and I don’t think that my experience is informed enough to suggest a course of action for society in general, but what it does tell me is that the people I know, and how they drink, they probably shouldn’t risk it. I know people who don’t drink who I wish wouldn’t have children, so obviously I am very opinionated on that subject, but the point I want to make is that we are looking at lots of documented information and the opinions of doctors, mid-wives and parents, and we make our decisions based on that. :slight_smile:

good! i apologize for passively accusing you (both) of not making a research-informed decision :slightly_smiling_face: maybe i can recast my comment as a rant against the dominant paradigm.

and yeah, i’m willing to risk abuse in order to promote alternative strategies of child raising. it’s a really toxic taboo topic – people feel very empowered to dump on you if you do things the “wrong way”. perhaps especially in the bay area :slightly_smiling_face: