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How many glasses is "okay" for a celebratory occasion?

(69 Posts)
clearBlueSavannah Wed 12-May-10 13:07:40

First off, yes, I know that the new guidelines are AVOID BOOZE but I also know that Mumsnetters are a realistic and sensible bunch so would be interested in your opinions.

Am going to an evening wedding reception but don't want to let on that am pregnant.

Starts around 7.30pm and will go on until late.
Have heard from a bridesmaid that we'll be offered gin and tonic on arrival. Reckon I'll be able to get away with just tonic here.
I'll have a glass of wine with the meal and just hope that it's not topped up too much by the staff
Then champers for the toast

How much over one evening (with food) do we think is "okay"? as a one off.

I very rarely drink during the week.

DefNotYummyMummy Wed 12-May-10 14:14:44

Drink your tonic if you can. If not take the G&T, but take little sips out of it and if no one is looking put it down somewhere to lose or pour some in a mates glass (hopefully they wont mind your germs !), or your partner.

Then at dinner have a glass of wine - and again, drink very slowly, sipping. What I noticed at the wedding I went to is that everyone was drinking at such a rate that in the end they didn't even notice that I wasn't drinking and seemed to have a 3/4 glass full all night (I'd been topping up my DH's).

As for the champagne - well, you have to toast the lovely couple wink. I drank that one!

Have a lovely time.

PrivetDancer Wed 12-May-10 14:27:38

my eyes are boggling at 4 units per week when breastfeeding! that's not true!

everythingiseverything Wed 12-May-10 14:30:34

Surely with breastfeeding it depends when you are feeding the baby, i.e. how soon afterwards. If you have a drink just after the baby goes to sleep, and feed 5 hours later, that's very different to having a drink half an hour before.

Privet Do you mean more is OK, or that 4 is too much?

dairymoo Wed 12-May-10 14:34:58

Just accept the glass of wine with dinner, and the champagne with toasts and have a few sips. No one will really notice once they've had a few G&T's anyway!

I am 14 weeks and haven't had a drop yet, but that's mainly down to the fact that the thought of it makes me feel so sick. If I start feeling better I may have the odd glass but tbh I don't really miss it that much.

clearBlueSavannah Wed 12-May-10 14:35:50

Wow
Thanks for all the replies

I am actually 2nd trimester but don't want to let on just yet as haven't told close family as we're saving telling them till we visit them (they live abroad) when I'm 16 weeks.

It IS a special occasion and while I don't drink that much generally, it's a convivial bunch and I want to join in the occasion.

shipsladyg - thanks for reminder about baby's liver -it had sort of slipped my mind blush sometimes it's easy to lose track of WHY all of these recommendations are there blush

So I will be sure:
To sip and not gulp grin
To stick to the 2 units only - one glass of red and a glass of fizz
To drink lots of water through the evening to flush it all out

And of course this is alongside a three course meal with canapes beforehand so should be okay, do we think??

vmcd28 Wed 12-May-10 14:41:28

ClearBlueSavannah, I'd just order cranberry juice, and if anyone asks it's vodka and cranberry juice. I got away with this. If anyone buys you a drink, take a sip or two, then abandon it somewhere.
You can get away with, "Oh, I've had too much already" by about 8pm!

Also, you say you'll stick to 2 units, but one glass of red and a glass of fizz is probably about 4 units, so be very, very careful that you know how much a unit is. One large glass of red is a third of a bottle, and a small glass is about a sixth or fifth, depending on the volume. i.e. a 125ml glass of red is AT LEAST 2 units.

I understand you saying you want to join in the occasion, but is a glass of wine THAT important? You wont really be joining in if you arent tipsy, which you clearly wouldnt be.

Guadalupe Wed 12-May-10 14:42:51

I'd avoid in the first trimester too if possible, especially if you are worrying about how much to have. Antibiotics are always a good excuse. Or you could just have the toast and sip it? I doubt anyone will notice.

Shipslady - it's not just alcohol to avoid in the gin, it's the juniper berries so I wouldn't crush them in to recreate the flavour.
That's why gin has such a 'reputation' with pregnancy. Juniper is always contraindicated as it can cause contractions. I'm sure you have been fine and are just having a tiny amount but maybe it's better to stick to lemon!

Guadalupe Wed 12-May-10 14:44:43

Oh I see you are second trimester. Well I might have a small glass and drink it slowly. See how you feel.

PrivetDancer Wed 12-May-10 14:46:41

everythingiseverything - you can have more than that when breastfeeding, you don't end up with alcoholic milk, it's not comparable to drinking when pregnant at all.

Personally I didn't / won't be counting units when b/feeding (but not getting so legless I might drop the baby of course )

withorwithoutyou Wed 12-May-10 14:48:04

I doubt one glass of wine and one glass of fizz is 2 units, probably more like 4.

I didn't drink at all in my first pregnancy. In this one I have had the occasional 2 units (after the 1st trimester) but I do calculate and measure out exactly the right amount. About 160 mils of red wine is around 2 units. I'd be surprised if you could have wine and champagne and stay under 2 units.

cluckyduck Wed 12-May-10 14:48:38

I thought drinking while BFing was a similat situation to drinking while driving - you have to wait for all the alcohol to leave your system before you feed?

withorwithoutyou Wed 12-May-10 14:49:36

CLucky, AFAIK the amount of alcohol that passes into breastmilk is very small.

If you can time it so you feed hours after a drink, fine. If you can't (because like me your baby can't tell the time), don't stress.

obviously it's my baby that can't tell the time blush

everythingiseverything Wed 12-May-10 15:40:06

grin SPB. I probably have between zero and 10 units a week at the moment, but I'm breastfeeding a toddler, so slightly more able to schedule feeds!

LadyCressida Wed 12-May-10 15:53:34

You're not really supposed to 'store up' units but 2 is fine so I think that a glass of champers and half a glass of wine would be okay. Enjoy the occaision!

However if you are worried (and there is no point drinking it unless you are enjoying it!) I doubt by the time it gets to toasts that many people would notice whether you drank it or not as they'll probably all be plastered by then, so you could just have a couple of sips and then sneakily pass it to DH to drink.

The trick is just to accept the first one, and then no one will notice. I doubt the antibiotics line would fool anyone!

yes me too but he only feeds morning & night so my wine is straight after that feed (if i haven't had a glass with dinner)

AndieWalsh Wed 12-May-10 15:57:53

I had two weak-ish white wine spritzers at a wedding when 6 months pregnant 9it was one small glass of white wine, shared between two glasses and topped up with soda water). Could be a sensible option? To be honest, it wasn't worth it for me. I like getting hammered, not arsing around with spritzers grin. I didn't drink at all in my subsequent pregnancy for that reason...

PixieCake Wed 12-May-10 15:58:20

Hi ClearBlueSavannah,

If you don't want to use the driving or antibiotics excuse, a little trick is to accept a glass, take a sip, hold it for a bit, and then put it down near some other glasses while talking/getting something from your bag, and then pick up a nearly empty one and carry on wondering around. Hey presto, empty glass.

You could also take it into the loo with you (if anyone looks at you strangely make a little joke like 'no one separates me from my wine!', and then pour it in the loo.

Good advice above about getting your other half to drink yours. Or have a little plan that he will 'hold your drink' while you go to the loo / get your camera out, and discreetly give you back his (nearly empty) glass.

Or if there is a bar, ask for just tonic water with ice, or something light coloured (like apple juice) and water in a wine glass. No one has to know its not booze.

Good luck. Chances are everyone would be having too much fun to spy on what you are drinking anyway.

thumbwitch Wed 12-May-10 16:01:55

I went to a wedding when I was about 6w pg with DS - and had 2 half-glasses of champagne (one pre-dinner, one for the toasts), with the excuse of being the driver back to the hotel afterwards.

I got married when I was 18w pg and had 2 glasses of champagne then - 1 with strawberries in and one with the meal.

Soft drinks that I find ok are:
ginger ale (not beer)
apple juice and soda water
J2Os and soda water
Waitrose blueberry juice and sparkling water (looks just like red wine, fools the brain a bit)

nunnie Wed 12-May-10 16:08:08

Not had any this time round but only 16 weeks and haven't gone anywhere and nothing planned in the near future.

Last pregnancy I was 15 weeks over christmas and had one glass of champers when I arrived at my in laws on news years eve. Didn't have anymore, but watched 8 other people get bladdered and that was interesting in itself.

Sometimes better to watch that partake.

nunnie Wed 12-May-10 16:16:38

I will say though, from my experience at top table for weddings (when not pregnant), they tend to top up your glass before it is empty, my advice would be drink very slowly, they may think you aren't a fan of wine and avoid topping you up if that makes sense.

beanlet Wed 12-May-10 16:19:10

I agree it's very difficult to refuse to drink anything at all at a wedding. But no more than half of a 125 mL (small) glass of wine with your meal, and half a glass of fizz -- that's 2 units. (Tall champagne glasses are 125 mL when filled to the brim.)

There will almost certainly be non-alcoholic options served alongside the G&Ts, so have an orange juice or a water.

Frankly, I thing we Anglo-Saxon-whatevers are far too paranoid about alcohol -- French doctors actually recommend a glass of wine a night while pregnant! and French babies aren't all deformed -- but you should definitely restrict your intake to 2 units maximum per week.

All the books I've been reading say you CAN drink when breastfeeding, but you should try to time it so that you drink immediately after a feed.

GreenwichB Wed 12-May-10 16:21:14

Depending on your audience I've found that the following approaches work:
A) Accept a glass but don't drink it. Nobody actually notices, you are just self conscious about it. Standing about chatting with a glass, canapes and a handbag usually means that you have to put down something too so it is easy to ditch /swap a glass
B) Tell people you are on a diet and don't have the self control to stop at one. Handy if like me you are never known to pass up a drink.
C) Drive or claim you are - not always an option though. An early start helps if it is an overnighter.
D) This one is tricky - you can't exactly trot it out at work but it works really well with friends and family esp in first trimester. Tell people you are cutting back to get in shape/be healthy for TTC. No-one will criticise you for that - I don't think it will work the second time around though! Subtly implying that you are now "taking it seriously" usually implies some difficulty so people back off in a hurry. Mean but very effective.

shipsladyg Wed 12-May-10 16:22:54

Oh yeah - being the only sober person at Christmas is quite a bore!

Just thinking about the champagne thing at weddings... I used to be a event manager doing weddings and I would say that the majority of couples chose a nice bottle of pop for their table and cheap cava for all the guests on the grounds that "they probably wouldn't notice so why bother with the expense"... so again, being abstemious and saving up your units for the champagne might actually be a disappointment to those with more discerning tastes.

Am loving the idea of a virgin apple mojito. mmmm.... might experiment tonight. I was also well into Virgin Marys (DH makes a goooooood Bloody Mary) until the heartburn took over my appetite.

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