Sunday, 5 September 2010

Comrade In Arms

I admit, of all the pre-IVF lifestyle changes, I find giving up alcohol the toughest. (Yes, still using the present tense there. One day at a time. One day at a time).

It is that post-work, early evening drink I miss most. The cold, tingling feel of lager on my tongue washing down some salty snacks. Or a sharp, lemony gin and tonic. Or sherry, so chilled that the glass drips with condensation.

Actually maybe it is the rounded, warm glass of red with a bowl of spicy tomato pasta. Or sitting in a pub drinking the often derided but quintessentially British warm, flat, hoppy beer.

Also I do like port.

And I genuinely can't think of a social situation that I find myself in that isn't lubricated, and dare I say enhanced, by liquor.

But if abstinence is hard for me it is worse for the husband.

He has four great loves: Wine, Music, Football and, don't tell me, don't tell me, I know this one, ahh yes: Me.

I'm not saying that his loves are necessarily in that order, but he certainly spends more money on wine than on me.

This week the husband has given up booze.

I have found it such a support to know that I am not alone in this. It is far easier to deny myself without the husband having a thousand tiny orgasms over each mouthful of his special grape juice whilst I dutifully sip my water.

Last night we went out for a meal and he didn't even have the smallest snifter of an intoxicant. Not only did it mean that I didn't spend the evening coveting his drinks but it was significantly cheaper without adding on the aperitif and the post-meal grappa.

I know what you are thinking; "What a wonderful, supportive, self-sacrificing man he is".


The guy is on antibiotics and isn't allowed to drink. Tonight - after nine days of medically-induced prohibition - he will be right back on the sauce. As I type he is debating what he will wet his whistle with first.

But maybe, just maybe, he'll read this and think that giving up wine is a small price to pay for helping his wife stick to her resolutions.

Yeah. Right. And maybe whilst he's at it I'll get nightly massages and be spoon-fed the finest Belgian chocolate ice-cream.


  1. Well, maybe you could expose him to things that would cause the need for antibiotics on a regular basis!

    Also, people actually follow the no drinking + medications rule? No one I know ever does that.

  2. The worst is when they start to ENJOY the woman's teetotalling lifestyle, abusing her as a guaranteed designated driver. Women really get the short end of the stick in the world in IF.

  3. First off, you're a great writer. The way you evoke those drinks makes my mouth water. If this is the sort of delectable prose running through your mind when you think on what you're giving up, no wonder it's been hard for you! But indeed, wouldn't it be great if the menfolk gave up what we have to? Even during my very brief pregnancy, I felt like a second-class citizen at the watering trough. And I'm pretty sure there's no way my husband would ever give up the sauce just because I was, as he works in the wine industry. Sigh.

  4. My husband is a recovering alcoholic (sober 3 years!) and after he went to rehab I gave up alcohol as well. I was never a huge drinker, but I do feel like I'm missing out from time to time.

  5. i have found becks blue a god send. fools me into thinking i am having a proper beer. even my husband drinks it and he is a proper ale and stella man! i am tried non alco wine and it's crap. as are the other fake beer and cider varieties.

  6. My husband is a typical French who absolutely needs his wine. He claims that he is allergic to water- yeah right!

  7. My husband and I aren't currently trying to conceive (although we aren't doing anything to prevent it either, but it is unlikely it will happen due to PCOS), but when I do give up drinking, I'm absolutely certain he will not give up his beer either. He didn't even give it up when he had to be put on antibiotics.

  8. "thousand tiny orgasms over each mouthful"
    HA HA HA!
    Love it. (Also slightly envious - why doesn't wine do THAT to me? WHY?)

  9. Oh, port:( And wine:( And all those lovely lubricating libations:(

    I had to laugh about your husband heading back to the juice after his round of antibiotics. I've also wondered if my husband would jump onto the cart next to me...for solidarity's sake. Nope. Hasn't happened yet (though, he does have the good grace to wrinkle his nose every time he drinks something, and to tell me, "Doesn't taste that nice." Clearly, he's lying.)

  10. I have to recommend de-alcoholised Erdinger. Tastes almost like the real thing; missing a portion of the aftertaste, but close enough for when I'm designated driver.

  11. Hahaha... "Bullshit."

    I completely relate.

  12. Areyoukiddingme, he has drunk on antibiotics before, but these were really hard-core ones (7 pills a day) and the doctor was very stern with him.

    Luckily we don't have a car, Finch, and if we did it wouldn't make any difference to the designated driver as i am the only one who can drive.

    Why thank you, Lady Pumpkin, I guess your husband has a pretty convincing reason for not giving up the booze. (Although does he drink at his desk? Does he?)

    Kathleen, that is true love and dedication. I'm impressed - and I am sure he is too.

    Anonymous, I find non alcoholic beer just makes me want the real thing more, so I steer clear altogether.

    The Cat Lady, so many jokes about the French being allergic to water here ....

    But will he take his vitamins Aimee?

    But Twangy, remember he can't have 'real' multiple orgasms. We win!

    Adele, Of course it doesn't tast that nice, I am sure he is only drinking it for medicinal reasons. Like ... well, I'll get back to you on that one.

    Thanks QoB, but I think I have to go cold turkey. Nothing to remind me of how good alcohol can be.

    And you know Kelly, that bullshit was said whilst coughing a la Iceman in Top Gun.


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