The Debate Over Drinking Alcohol While Pregnant

The Debate Over Drinking Alcohol While Pregnant

A report by the American Academy of Pediatricians has reinforced the often times cited suggestion that women not drink during their pregnancies.  In the abstract, the report states, “there is no safe trimester to drink alcohol.”

The issue that some women are having with this report is how while it states that, “There is no known ‘safe’ level of alcohol consumption,” there’s also no set evidence on the effects of light drinking to warrant such an umbrella prescription for all pregnant women.

In a piece for Quartz, Maureen Shaw, who has been pregnant before, retells an anecdote of a time she was visibly pregnant, went out to dinner and the waiter immediately removed her wine glass from the table without even asking. 

“The subtle judgment enshrined in such a simple act reinforced the fact that while pregnant, people I barely knew suddenly felt like they had ownership over my body and my choices regarding it,” explained Shaw.

Women who do decide to indulge in a glass of wine, or any other form of alcohol, during their pregnancy are in many ways pre-judged for doing so and have their sense of agency over their bodies and their child’s well-being removed. What Shaw and many other women seem to look for within this debate is simply the right to choose.

Cover image courtesy of Shutterstock.