Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Wine List In A Maternity Ward


Granted I haven't spent much time if any in a maternity ward, but I sure didn't imagine they had things like wine lists. I was reading an article about Jenny Frost who is a singer from the UK and she was rambling about how she gave up vodka so she could breastfeed, and I was bored and about to turn the page, when I saw it.

"When I was pregnant, I couldn't wait to go out and have a vodka, but then when I had Caspar, I just wanted a cup of tea! They had a wine list next to the bed in the hospital I gave birth in, but I only wanted a tea!"

A wine list? I would think hospitals would encourage breastfeeding and letting a new mom get drunk on a bottle of wine right after giving birth seems to me the wrong message to send. I thought you weren't supposed to drink while breastfeeding. Am I wrong? I don't breastfeed, although. No, not right now. I'm on a roll.

When someone says a winelist, I assume they mean that bottles are offered as opposed to glasses. She didn't mention that she was going to share the wine with anyone and if you are going to get drunk and pass out, a hospital seems a pleasant place to do it. I just don't think a hospital should even have liquor. Hey, if a visitor needs a drink, fine. Do what any normal person does. Reach into your pocket and pull out a flask. Pass it around so everyone gets some and put it back in the pocket.

I'm sure this was some very fancy hospital and they thought they were providing a service, but to me, it seems that the hospital part should come way before the service part, and letting new moms drink just doesn't seem like a service to them or to the baby.

15 comments:

Sydney in Wonderland said...

Ok, I'll probably be beat over the head for this one, but . . . beer helps women that are having a hard time lactating. NO, you shouldn't be getting drunk while breastfeeding, but having a beer or a portion of a beer will help milk production. Wine, I can't speak to.

jax said...

it sounds like Portland Hospitla in London where are the stahs birth.
considering half of them have fake boobs im sure breastfeeding isn't a common thing. i mean really shouldn't a wet nurse take care of those pesky things?? lol.

i imagine its for famillies to celebrate.

Mel said...

I'm in the UK and have never heard of alchohol being offered in either public or private hospitals. She probably gave birth in some trendy London club and got confused;)

Anonymous said...

alpine - my great grandmother drank beer for the same reason after her second child was born. doctors orders! she hated it (she was mormon), but she needed to produce breast milk too.

Unknown said...

I read an interview about someone I can't remember who gave birth in a French hospital -- she said the wine list was better than those found in most New York City restaurants!

blurry vice said...

As a woman who has breastfed her children, I think you should stick with what you do and not worry about wine in hospitals, or question what breastfeeding mothers should do. It is unusual for this situation to happen, but I'm sure if this is true, then the hospital staff would make sure you are only allowed a certain amount. Many families bring wine or champaigne to the hospital to celebrate anyway, so they probably figure they could sell some and make money.

Working Mama said...

Breastfeeding mothers CAN drink alcohol, a small amount in moderation. It is not true that it stimulates milk production. But it does not harm the baby to have a glass of wine.

daquirigoddess said...

I think some families toast as a celebratory event and the hospital was just finding a way to make more money off rich people. I don't think they probably encourage patients to get sloshed drunk.

parisss said...

Breastfeeding moms can have small amounts of alcohol. If I had a couple glasses (with my two older sons), I would pump, dump the milk and then behave for quite awhile. Alcohol is transferred through breastmilk, and harm can be done to the infant if over-indulging is the usual. I think it would be sad for a hospital to offer a wine list. I think there are other things more important than offering that to patients.
I am 6 months pregnant, and after being good for nine months, I assure you I will celebrate bringing home my healthy baby boy- a glass of wine once I'm home and I want it. But I think I can hold off until I'm home. I think I'll be happy to hold my son, and not worry about the booze for a day or two.

Merlin D. Bear said...

Okay, I know I'm just a man but isn't everyone glossing over what she said at first? I.E. "When I was pregnant, I couldn't wait to go out and have a vodka"
I thought any alcohol while pregnant was a MAJOR MAJOR no no?
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome anyone?

(please forgive if this double posts)

Robin the Mad Photographer said...

Merlin--It sounds to me as if she wanted the vodka because she couldn't and didn't have it, but once she'd actually given birth, the craving dissipated, so don't worry--I don't think she was boozing it up while pregnant.

I remember reading a piece Jimmy Carter wrote about his mother a number of years back in which he mentioned that, when his brother Billy was born, Miss Lillian was 40 years old and rather tired...so the doctor recommended a couple of bottles of beer every day to build up her strength and enrich her milk. Needless to say, the jokes about beer being just like mother's milk to Billy just write themselves...

bionic bunny! said...

when my kids were born, mothers were encouraged to have a glass of wine while breast feeding to relax and help let the mild down. we were never told not to drink while nursing (i didn't nurse either of mine, though).
50 years ago, women were encouraged to smoke during pregnancy to keep their weight down.

things change with each generation, as doctors learn more and more.

oh, yeah, and back in the same time frame (early to mid 80's) you were offered wine or beer as a choice with your hospital meal if your doc said okay. and following birth, they usually brought a champagne split and two glasses for the mom and dad.

Bad Ass Momma said...

Actually they still do that. We were given a nice meal and a small bottle of champagne to celebrate when both my kids were born (9 & 11) and my neices both had babies in January and were given champagne. And they both breastfed, as did I. Oh my, how's that for a reader photo?

Maxie said...

Alice W - I live in the UK too and I can assure you that all private hospitals offer wine lists as a matter of course. My fiance went in for a back op privately and managed to get through quite a lot of the stuff while he was in there! Who needs oranges syringed full of vodka when there's BUPA?

i am a princess, yes i am said...

When my best friend had her son, my husband and I snuck a bottle of J├Ągermeister into her delivery room and she/we took two shots about 30min after birthing her son. yeah...we're looked at as heroes within our circle of friends now....there's nothing better than a shot of ice cold J├Ąger, taken just after birthing an 8lb baby, that takes the pain away, so I've been told. I have to add that the nurse who walked in the middle of the second shot was none too pleased, but I say it's better than the opiates they wanted to feed to her, even though she wanted to breastfeed.

Hell her pregnancy was a surprise. She wasn't ready to give up drinking for 9months so we had to reward her for doing so! That's what friends R 4!!

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