Right now I seem to have a laser-like focus on all of the marketing and commercialism in the alcohol industry. I can’t watch a single television show without seeing at least one commercial promoting alcohol, nor can I jump on my Facebook page without seeing women sharing or tagging others in something to do with over-indulging in wine, or using wine as self-care.
It feels like there’s no escaping the “mommy juice” banter and it’s making me depressed and resentful. Trying to maintain sobriety in a world where everything from my book club to dating to get-together's with my friends revolve around alcohol is hard and I’m not even 30 days sober yet.
I know that this is by-and-large my mindset right now, and is subject to change as time goes on. I’ve learned a lot about alcohol that I think I always knew. (if that makes sense.) The information was locked away in box, in a dark corner of my brain and only subtly knocked every so often. That is, until my body started to present the negative affects it’s had all those years.
It’s crazy to me that just 23 days ago the “wine mom” memes were funny and I felt confident using them, myself. Those memes and 'mommy wine culture' allowed me to justify what I knew was a problem for me for many years. They just allowed me to hide it in plain sight. It normalized moms drinking to deal with the stresses of parenthood and it allowed me to blend right in.
Throughout the day, as the stress began to build, I would just tell myself, 'You can get through the day because come three o'clock, you can pour that drink. And once the he’s in bed you can have another drink, or two or three. And it was a vicious cycle. The alcohol would numb everything and would allow me this reprieve from my anxiety.
The day I decided to quit drinking, I hit google, hard. I started searching for everything I could about alcoholism and its effects on the body so I could mentally prepare myself for what I was going to experience. I also followed several people on Instagram who were going through a similar experience.
It's scary to realize that there are probably a lot more women out there who are questioning their relationship with alcohol but are having it reinforced with these messages that say 'Don't worry about it! Everybody's drinking copious amounts of alcohol; it's how we're all surviving." It's telling us that parenting is this exhausting, all-consuming, terrible thing that is done to us and we need wine to cope.