With the countless problems and pressures women face in the current political and social climates of the Western world, alcohol has become the adult woman’s version of a cuddly toy or security blanket. The comforting reassurance of a glass of chardonnay under the guise of ‘you deserve it’ and ‘Mommy’s medicine’ sounds like a naff joke at best, but is becoming ever more ingrained in our parenting and relationship culture. Facebook posts about ‘mommy’s salad!’ (a bowl of sangria) and ‘Mum’s organic grape juice!’ (red wine disguised in a juice bottle) make me cringe as much as the next person, but it’s the sparkly, dressed up notion of a new normal that worries me. I’ve realised it’s also shoved into your face after any ailment or mishap that may occur – I’m not saying that a glass of wine after a particularly nasty breakup doesn’t help, but we must learn to deal with our emotions and misfortunes in a way that doesn’t always involve cracking open a bottle of rosé. It’s easy to use wine as a ‘fun’ or ‘cheeky’ vice when you are unaware that 70% of alcoholic women in the U.K used wine on their heaviest drinking days – a drink that is supposed to be ‘fun’ and even ‘healthy’. Would it be considered civil to drink straight vodka or smoke a joint on a Tuesday night while making dinner for your children? I’m sure the backlash would be immense, so what makes another form of drug acceptable over the other?
To make it completely clear, I enjoy the occasional glass of wine or beer as much as the next person. I am also not a mother yet, and I have no idea about the undoubtedly difficult journey that motherhood entails. But I do find it odd that women are so targeted by these cheap, tasteless campaigns as a substitute for actual communication about the problems and obstacles women face, and instead are told to drown these qualms in a Giant Moscow Mule! or Gin and Tonic Yoga! Facebook memes are beginning to justify the normalisation of a growing problem, a crutch for women who feel they have no alternative rather than to shut up, smile, and pour themselves another pinot grigio.