Getting Help for Drinking and Moving Past a Toxic Crutch
Table of Contents
- Getting Help for Drinking and Moving Past a Toxic Crutch
- How Wine Mom Culture Influences Parenthood
- Alcohol Use Disorder Among Parents
- A Coping Mechanism We All Joke About
- When Wine Moms Ask For Help
- Breaking Free of Mommy Wine Culture
- Reach Out for Support to Stop Drinking Today
- Medically Reviewed By
Let’s face it. Parenting is stressful and can lead to a lot of self-medication. I used to laugh at all of the mommy wine culture memes and other images I would see on social media. I would proudly tout myself as a wine mom and share all of the memes and funny pictures that I’d see come out of the wine mom culture.
What I didn’t realize was that mommy wine culture leads to binge drinking and alcoholism becoming socially acceptable and even encouraged. When I finally sought treatment via Find Addiction Rehabs, I met a lot of other women who had the same experience with alcoholism as me.
Keep reading if this sounds a little too familiar for comfort, and learn what you can from my mistakes, as well as get proven support options to stop drinking!
Being A Wine Mom
The wine mom trend is hard to ignore if you are an alcoholic or a mother and are active at all on the internet or social media. Once I began liking and commenting on all the wine mom memes, I started seeing them more and more. I even began seeing t-shirts and other products in my Facebook feed promoting the wine mommy culture.
T-shirts and other apparel with phrases such as ‘wine mom’s unite’ were popping up more and more on my phone. I would even see wine glasses that said ‘mommy juice’ on them. I’d laugh at this stuff, but deep down I knew there was something strange about this… All this stuff made me feel like my alcohol abuse and dependence was justified. I mean, after all, people drink, right?
How Wine Mom Culture Influences Parenthood
The mommy wine culture made me feel like I was a part of something, a community, even though it was a culture that promoted alcohol dependency. Being a parent of young children can feel very lonely at times. All you have sometimes are the other moms around you who can easily influence your decision-making and lifestyle choices.
Before I became a mother, I would drink here and there, but it never became a regular thing for me. I could take or leave alcohol. But once I settled into motherhood, the grind of it began to get to me.
There’s very little time to rest and gather yourself. You’re juggling all kinds of things. There are endless appointments, childcare scheduling conflicts, shopping for school, shopping for Summer Camp, rides to friend’s houses, the list goes on and on. It’s not surprising there have been so many versions of ‘mother’s little helper’ over the years, or that wine has come back into fashion in just such a role.
How The Stress Of Motherhood Leads To Alcohol Dependence
Mom’s wine culture and the ever-present wine bottle have become so prevalent in our society and a big part of it is peer pressure. Beyond the stressors of parenthood, you are easily influenced by the other parents you associate with. Drinking wine became a necessity for me and my friends when we would get our children together for playdates.
Parenting is a tough job. Anyone who has had children will tell you that. People who don’t have children even know this if they’ve spent any amount of time around people with kids. Drinking wine with my friends was the only reprieve I got, at bath time or any time for that matter. At least that was how I felt for a long time.
Wine was the only opportunity to unwind and not worry about that next doctor’s appointment or sporting event. This slowly led to a toxic relationship not just with alcohol, but with the people I surrounded myself with as well.
Alcohol Use Disorder Among Parents
As I engaged in the mommy wine culture and my alcohol consumption became excessive, there were signs that something was wrong. I would forget prior commitments. I would show up to appointments or events having forgotten things. Like all the other wine moms I associated with, I tried to laugh it off.
When you are carting kids around, there are a lot of items you need to have on hand. Snacks, diapers, formula, first aid stuff, it’s a long list and if you are impaired at all it can be easy to forget things. You can laugh it off all you want, but it still adds stress to an already stressful job.
As my drinking habits continued to get worse, I would try and escape certain responsibilities. I would pass off commitments to my husband or the grandparents. It got to the point where my drinking got in the way of my parental responsibilities. Early on, I was able to put down the wine glass and fulfill commitments. Eventually, however, the wine became more of a priority.
This is the experience that many mothers have. It starts out slow. Many moms have a hard time managing stress, and this stress can get worse and worse the older your children get. When you have a baby, abusing alcohol can be a little easier. When your little ones begin to run around and get into stuff, you need to keep more of an eye on them.
A Coping Mechanism We All Joke About
When you find yourself joking around and finding humor in your substance abuse, it’s easier to shrug it off. Joking about it and not taking it seriously is masking the difficult truth that is right there beneath the surface. I saw being a wine mom as part of my identity. I felt like I was part of a club. I felt like I belonged.
There are a lot of negative consequences that many women suffer from as a result of falling into the wine-mom culture. Beyond the health risks, there are other mental health issues that arise as well. If you have any kind of issue, drinking can make it momentarily go away. As your tolerance builds, you need more of mommy’s juice to get by, and then, when you don’t have it, the wine withdrawal symptoms begin to rear their ugly heads.
The Emotional Rollercoaster Of Parenthood
Being a parent, especially a new parent, is extremely emotional and can be very difficult to navigate. It’s not unusual for new mothers to experience anxiety and depression as a result of having children. I went through this myself and often found myself feeling incredibly guilty for having such emotions. I didn’t want to make it all about me, because I wanted my complete focus to be on my child’s well-being.
This is how mothers like myself can easily fall into the mommy wine culture. Everything is about the children. You are expected to be fully present at all times and your only concern is your child. This almost always leads to some form of neglect of your mental and physical health too.
When my alcohol consumption led to a full-on alcohol addiction, I knew I couldn’t be the best parent for my child, and I needed to seek professional help. I couldn’t stop cold turkey, and I did;t want to develop liver disease, heart disease, or the other consequences I’d seen women develop who had been drinking for large chunks of their lives.
I didn’t really know where to turn, but fortunately, I got in touch with Find Addiction Rehabs.
When Wine Moms Ask For Help
Admitting you have a problem and you need help can be overwhelming. All of your emotions are heightened as a parent of young children, and it can be hard to work on yourself when you have children who require so much attention. It’s difficult to remove yourself from the mom wine culture, especially when these are some of the only other people you associate with.
I ultimately was confronted by my husband about my drinking. I could no longer hide my binge drinking and alcohol dependency as it was clearly affecting my parenting ability. I realized that for my own mental health, a healthier relationship with my family, and my children’s future, I needed to do something. That something was a search for support through Find Addiction Rehabs.
Finding Support As A Parent
When everything in your life revolves around your children, taking the time to work on yourself is a big step to take. Once I began to work on my drinking however, I found myself being a much more present and positive influence on my children’s lives. When I was drinking, I couldn’t wait to get some time for myself to drink wine with my fellow wine moms.
Because of this, I would often be impatient around my kids. Two hours at a soccer scrimmage seemed like ten, and by the end, I would be screaming at everyone to pack up and go!
Now that I am sober, I am much more physically and mentally present for every second of my kids’ lives. I have found new mommy friends through my recovery network, and these relationships have been much more fulfilling for me than the ones I had with my fellow wine moms. I’ve found that making connections with others in recovery is crucial to staying sober and keeping a clear head.
Breaking Free of Mommy Wine Culture
A big part of sobriety is not being judgmental of others’ decisions. This was difficult for me to grapple with when I was newly sober. I saw the mothers I used to associate with choosing wine over being present with their children. It was easy for me to stand up on my high horse and judge them. After being in recovery for a bit more time, I learned that that mindset was not serving me. In fact, it made me bitter.
Nobody is perfect. There are no parents out there who have it all figured out. Parenting is a learning process that never ends. Knowing how stressful and all-consuming the life of a mother is, it’s easier for me to understand the traps that others fall into. When I talk to others about my experience, I am very careful to not come off judgmental.
It’s OK To Not Have All The Answers
Even though I am sober, I can’t convince someone else to do it the way that I did. Everyone’s addiction is unique, as is every person’s mind. We all have a different story to tell, and sometimes what works for one person may not work for another. I try my best to be patient with people and when I have to associate with wine moms, I don’t preach to them or talk down to them.
I also don’t talk about my sobriety unless somebody asks. I’m not going to force someone into recovery by berating them or making them feel less than because they have a problem. If one of my fellow wine moms asks for my advice or asks me how I got sober, I am an open book. If someone is sober curious, it’s always a great opportunity to give my personal experience.
Reach Out for Support to Stop Drinking Today
The only wine addiction that I can treat is my own. I can give others advice, but I don’t have all the answers myself. Recovery is a personal experience and one that I don’t take for granted. I am living the best life I can, and it’s all because I broke free of the mommy wine culture.
If you can relate, or have someone you care about you think might have similar issues, please don’t let the fear of the unknown stop you from reaching out for support.
Make the confidential call to Find Addiction Rehabs today, and get options no matter where you live for effective, trusted treatment facilities. It’s a call I sometimes wish I made sooner, but I am still so grateful for them each day I wake up sober and not angry and hungover.
Why not see what programs they can offer to help you or the wine mommy in your life?
Deborah Tayloe is a freelance writer specializing in health and sciences. Deborah earned a B.S.Ed. in Secondary Education/English, accompanied by a Spanish minor. Her writing expertise allows her to craft engaging, impactful articles to help people be well.
In addition, she holds a fully accredited Certificate of Natural Medicine and is a certified Herbalist. Through her understanding of complementary medicine, Deborah helps medical professionals give people the information they need to embrace natural approaches to wellness.
When she’s not working, Deborah trains for 5K races and advocates for animal rights.