Having a baby is the most significant experience you and your partner may share during your relationship, helping bring the two of you closer together as you consider how you want to raise the little guy or gal that you’ve brought into the world.
However, if your partner drinks alcohol, wine or liquor on a regular basis, this can present challenges during your pregnancy that could, in turn, jeopardize the future of your relationship. Should your partner give up drinking altogether if you’re expecting, or is it OK to imbibe on a casual basis? Consider these tips below to make the right choice for you and your child.
Drinking during pregnancy
As a woman who is carrying a child, drinking alcohol is absolutely out of the question, as it can expose your baby to a variety of potential health risks, including fetal alcohol syndrome. Infants born to mothers who drink may be more likely than those who are not to have cognitive impairments and behavioral issues.
Mothers are responsible for ensuring that babies receive the proper nutrients while in the womb to develop, and while fathers don’t have the same connection to infants, their support and love can be essential for women as they go through each trimester. Since women should avoid drinking in every instance, men can also do so as an act of solidarity for their partner.
The impact on your relationship
Newborn preparation can involve lots of planning and hard work, especially for first-time mothers who may not be as well-versed in ways to save money on baby expenses as other experienced women.
However, all the careful consideration that goes into making a home ready for a little guy or girl is only one part of the equation – if women feel like they’re not being supported by their partners, they may face additional challenges.
An occasional drink may be perfectly fine for your partner to consume during your pregnancy. However, there may be a problem if your partner’s drinking during pregnancy makes you uncomfortable. It’s of course one thing if you prefer he sacrifices drinking during pregnancy because you can’t drink. It’s more serious if feels like a frightening sign that there are underlying problems not only in your relationship but also for that person’s emotional health.
As a woman about to give birth and feeling vulnerable, his drinking may raise difficult questions. Excessive drinking may be linked to his insecurity about being a new dad, but could also signal a larger problem. Take time to ask him difficult questions. Depending on his answers and self-awareness, you may need to seek out additional help. Discuss the situation with family, clergy, or your healthcare professional.
If alcohol use leads to any type of physical or mental abuse, get immediate help from health care professionals or law enforcement. There is no room for patience for abuse whether alcohol induced or not.