Here’s the picture:
A bathtub filled to the brim with bubbles and two little faces topped with sopping wet hair. And off to the side? Nails—painted in an of-the-moment Essie color—wrapped around a glass that’s also filled to the brim (with, well, wine).
Caption it “How mommy makes it to bedtime!” and you’ve got yourself a meme in the making.
After all, wine mom culture is having a moment. A year. A decade! But what happens when a glass of wine before bedtime turns into rosé all day? And how can we tell the difference between an acceptable way to relax and a coping mechanism that hints at future trouble?
Maybe I Drink Too Much? Honestly, I’m Not Sure.
As women, we often get mixed messages by looking out into society for the truth. We know this, right? Things like body image, kid’s parties and people’s homes all come across as pictures of perfection. If we’re not careful, these images skew our view of reality.
The same is true for wine mom culture. When we see mom after mom taking a nice, long sip as she breathes through a tantrum, we can easily begin to move the bar on what a healthy behavior with alcohol looks like.
You might think, “When I scroll through Instagram or talk to my mom friends, I see lots of moms drinking. We’re all just doing our best.” And no doubt you are. Parenting is a tough job—all the harder for moms and made nearly impossible during the past year.
Still, we can’t judge what’s good based on the slim evidence presented to us by social media. We need to consider the facts—for ourselves and for our children. So let’s do just that.
We’ll start by assessing the checklist below.:
- You hold yourself to one drink per day (or less).
- You drink without consequence to yourself or others.
- You can skip a day or two or five of drinking and feel just fine.
Can you confirm each statement with a confident, resounding yes? Ask your spouse, partner, best friend or closest relative, “Do you think these things are true of me?” If so, you likely have an okay relationship with alcohol.
Still unsure? Let’s look at a few signs and symptoms of alcohol abuse.
3 Clues that Your Mom Wine Time is Problematic
The line between okay drinking and problematic drinking is a bit fuzzy. Thankfully, the signs of alcohol abuse help to clear things up. Consider the statements below and ask yourself, “Does this reflect my relationship to alcohol?”:
- Drinking helps to reduce my stress level.
- I sometimes drive while under the influence of alcohol.
- I don’t really want anyone else to know how much I drink.
If you feel even the slightest nudge that one or more of these statements are true for you, can we encourage you to reach out for help? After all, alcohol abuse runs the very real risk of slowly morphing into alcoholism—a dangerous route that you can avoid if you act now.
But If I Have a Drinking Problem, Doesn’t That Make Me A Terrible Mom?
Admitting that wine mom culture got the best of you is a scary, scary idea. But here’s the hopeful truth: parents aren’t perfect. And our kids don’t need us to be.
What they do need are parents who are willing to confront their own mistakes and work to better themselves with time. And you can be that parent. You can be that mom.
I Want to Drink Less, But I’m Not Sure How
Another scary thought. After all, how else will you cope with the genuine struggles of being a mom in our present world? Thankfully you’re not alone. And we’re here to help.
Our inpatient, outpatient and virtual rehabilitation programs are designed for moms just like you—moms who hope to balance the stress of parenting with the joy of life—without wine.
If you think you or a loved one may have an issue with alcohol and you’d like to
talk to someone about it, we can help. Call us at 844.675.0964
By Stephanie Thomas
Contributing Writer with Promises Behavioral Health