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Drinking When Pregnant: Woman refused a glass of wine by barman.

Wine AlcoholDefying my ability to understand human nature, I am in the court of the poor barman who has probably been hauled over the coals for taking a stand and refusing to serve an obviously pregnant woman with a glass of wine.

It also defies my belief that a heavily pregnant woman would want to go drinking when pregnant and have a glass of wine in the first place.  Yes it’s her choice, but for goodness sake, what about the baby in her belly.  Do women really not realise that alcohol passes through to the foetus unfiltered?

I know that one glass of wine gets me tipsy nowadays so I really do have to wonder just how tipsy it would make a bubba growing slowly in a belly.

I live with a child suffering the effects of someone else’s drinking as a pregnant woman and I feel nothing but disgust for anyone who isn’t an alcoholic choosing to drink while they are pregnant.  I can understand alcoholics as they’re driven by cravings and need, with an illness that is as hard to break as any drug or food obsession, but I can’t understand why someone would want to drink alcohol when they can choose not to.

So, the short version is that someone past their due date popped into a bar for a glass of wine and got refused.  And the barman was slated for it.

If someone really had done extensive research on the effects of drinking alcohol while pregnant, I’d find it hard to believe that they’d then choose to have one, but each to their own.   They do have to realise though, that other people have their own code of moral conduct and there are other people who just cannot stomach seeing that happen.

The Telegraph quoted

“The barman came up to me and said he wouldn’t serve me because he couldn’t have serving a pregnant woman alcohol on his conscience.”

The woman states:

“I felt like asking whether he refuses to serve fat people pies, or whether the bar checks how much caffeine a woman has consumed that day before they serve her a cup of coffee.”

Well, the fat person eating pies, or the woman drinking caffeine who isn’t pregnant – aren’t taking risks with anyone else’s life but their own.

The Telegraph also stated:

“The NHS advises that pregnant women should drink no more than 1 to 2 units of alcohol, the equivalent of a small glass of wine, once or twice a week to minimise the risk to their unborn child.”

Ding, ding, ding.   Disappointing for the Telegraph.

The NHS actually states.

The UK Chief Medical Officers’ advice to women is:

‘Women who are pregnant or trying to conceive should avoid alcohol altogether.  However, if they do choose to drink, to minimise the risk to the baby, we recommend they should not drink more than 1-2 units once or twice a week and should not get drunk.’

It also states:

“If women want to avoid all possible alcohol-related risks, they should not drink alcohol during pregnancy because the evidence on this is limited.”

The NHS goes even further to say:

How does alcohol affect my unborn baby?

If you drink alcohol when you’re pregnant, the alcohol crosses the placenta into the bloodstream of the unborn baby and could interfere with how it grows and develops. In the absence of its own blood filtering system, the foetus is unprotected from any alcohol molecules that cross from the mother’s blood.

Alcohol can cause damage to an unborn baby at all stages of pregnancy. Drinking during pregnancy has been associated with:

miscarriage (over 9,000 women are admitted to hospital every year for miscarriages caused by alcohol [NHS Information Centre Hospital Admission data])
low birth weight
heart defects
learning and behavioural disorders

Yes, it’s a womans right to make her own choices, after all, it’s not illegal.

It’s a pity the baby doesn’t have any rights whatsoever until it’s born.

Would the same women who want to glug a glass of wine in pregnancy fill a feeding bottle with wine and have their babies chug down a glass of wine?

You won’t find any foster or adoptive parent who cares for a child affected by the mothers drinking in the womb approving ANY alcohol whatsoever.

Three cheers for that barman.  He is my hero of the year.

9 thoughts on “Drinking When Pregnant: Woman refused a glass of wine by barman.

  1. I didn’t drink when I was pregnant, but I did buy wine for my husband. Used to feel guilty about it even though I had no intention of drinking it.

  2. Ultimately, unless the message is DON’T drink or smoke during pregnancy, rather than the current “you shouldn’t but if you must…” then there is always going to be a grey area. I ordered one small glass of wine in a restaurant when I was around 8 months pregnant, on a special weekend away with my husband. I couldn’t drink it after a couple of sips, because the reality was I’d gone off alcohol the second my pregnancy hormones kicked in. But I wouldn’t have drunk through my pregnancy even if I had still been able to stomach it, pregnancy is all about doing what’s best for the baby and I was hugely conscientious during my pregnancy. However, I’d have felt very affronted if the waitress at the restaurant had refused to serve me. I don’t know what the wider story was with this woman and I totally understand your passion, but I can understand why this woman wasn’t happy.

    1. The problem is that the advice isn’t strong enough and people manipulate it to fit with their own wishes sadly. I can see why she was embarrassed but I really don’t think that’s important. The baby in the belly is the important one. Sadly the baby still got a drink of wine at another bar, but that’s a whole different argument.

  3. Have already been speaking with someone else about this article. I totally agree with you on that. What barman said and did is respectable. However, it’s important to note that barman gotta serve anyone over 18y in his bar. Furthermore, I have read this article previously and it says that this pregnant woman was overdue with her first baby! Lady, don’t tell me you cannot wait a few days longer for a glass of wine ! … Hopefully, this glass was the only one wanted since she got pregnant…

    1. I think the poor barman got a raw deal on this one. I hear you on the requirement to serve anyone over 18yr, though all bars seem to have notices up that gives them the right to refuse to serve anyone. I think this is also a moral issue that is difficult to predict though so many stories on the outrage of the woman isn’t good for babies in the womb 🙁

      1. What this pregnant woman was about to do is not really acceptable to me. Is it so hard to not drink or smoke for 9 little and precious months ?! We as parents must ensure the protection of our children from anything and in this regard, the role of a pregnant mum is to avoid any risk for baby ! Well, at least this is how I consider parenthood. I’m sure you will agree with me. 😉

  4. Hear,Hear!! I agree with you entirely.When I commented on facebook, I was hit with the response that she wasn’t served because she was a woman and equal rights blah blah!! I had to point out that it was nothing to do with the fact she is a woman but that she was pregnant.

    1. Amazing that anyone could turn alcohol drinking in pregnancy into an issue about equal rights.

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