The Hidden Dangers of the Wine Mom Culture

The Hidden Dangers of the Wine Mom Culture

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

Dr. Norris Von Curl, II, MD

Many of us have heard the term “wine mom.” In general, it is a funny hashtag for women who are stressed out by the work of taking care of children or trying to make their way. Anyone who has been on social media in the past few years has probably become accustomed to trends. Popular cliches dominate social media, from dressing in country chic with friends to following TikTok recipes.

However, not all trends are good, and some are harmful. Wine mom culture falls into the category of hazardous internet ideas. While it may seem benign and even humorous, the idea of the wine mom is centered around a bad coping mechanism. It suggests that the over-consumption of alcohol is a coping mechanism for over-stressed mothers. This can lead to wives and mothers falling into alcoholism and addiction.

We are all too often concerned with the social media browsing habits of children and adolescents. Yet we are decidedly less concerned when it comes to the safety of adults. This is an unfortunate fact that must change. Wine mom culture normalizes excessive alcohol consumption and perpetuates stereotypes about motherhood and child-rearing. Read on as we critically examine the pervasive influence of wine mom culture and its deleterious effects on women.

The Social Media “Wine Mom”: A Lurking Hazard

Wine mom culture is not the only reason for the misuse of alcohol, but it is likely a contributing factor. Alcoholism is an unfortunate fact of life in many corners of the world. The danger in wine mom culture is that it portrays alcohol over-consumption as a fun and vivacious way to deal with the mundane humdrum of life and the stresses of motherhood. In short, it promotes bad coping strategies that create problems rather than fix them.

The perpetuation of wine mom culture is an unfortunate result of the proliferation of social media in our lives. As social media continues to be the primary way we interact with each other, its influence continues to grow. The idea of the wine mom has increased the widespread social acceptance of alcohol excess by mothers as a form of escapism. This social media influence increases over-consumption and maladaptive behaviors.

Women need to know that the dangers of wine mom culture do not just end with the over-consumption of alcohol. As a group, women face unique health risks from the consumption of alcohol that men do not necessarily face. In addition, women may face barriers to treatment, including societal stigmas, which may make it hard for them to seek help. Most importantly, we must consider what children see when their parents engage in risky behaviors based on social media trends.

The Pervasive Influence of Wine Mom Culture

Another potential issue with the wine mom culture is that it has developed into a persona adopted by many women who are overworked and over-stressed. Some women may just use the hashtags as humorous anecdotes without engaging in alcoholism. Others may be more suggestible, consuming wine and alcohol even at inappropriate times such as when caring for children or over-consuming during each day.

Through the use of hashtags and social media pages, wine mom culture has been widely perpetuated and disseminated online. The impact of this cultural phenomenon on women’s perception of alcohol consumption cannot be overlooked. Alcohol consumption is not and will never be a method of self-care. Alcoholism will never be a normalized approach to dealing with life.

Alcoholism and Social Media: A Dangerous Combination

Alcohol has traditionally been a vice that is consumed as a part of socialization or in social settings. This is the very reason why bars and “watering holes” exist. It makes sense then that, in our 21st-century context, alcohol consumption crosses over into the context of social media, as it’s a primary way in which we socialize and communicate.

However, the regular over-consumption of alcohol has never been viewed as acceptable. Wine mom culture attempts to glamorize excessive drinking behaviors, even though they are dangerous to mothers and their families. The influence of social media in this process cannot be overlooked.

The Special Risks Alcohol Consumption Poses to Women’s Health

As we mentioned before, the danger to women’s health from alcohol consumption cannot be overlooked. Here are some fast facts about women and alcohol.

  • The percentage of U.S. adult women who have reported alcohol consumption each month is about 50%.
  • Of those, 13% report engaging in binge drinking. One-quarter of these consume at least six drinks weekly.
  • Nearly one-fifth (18%) of women of childbearing age in the United States report binge drinking.

Women also face unique medical problems from drinking that men may not as readily face. Some of these include:

  • Increased risk of liver disease.
  • Greater chance of alcohol-related cognitive decline.
  • Increased risk of damage to the heart and cardiovascular system.
  • Greater risk of developing breast cancer and other cancers.
  • Increased risk of experiencing sexual violence in and out of relationships.

From Wine Mom to Fine Mom With First Steps Recovery

Alcohol companies have a vested interest in pushing wine mom culture on social media. These companies’ profits increase as this cultural idea becomes more pervasive. Alcohol companies can then capitalize on these false characterizations of motherhood and the exploitation of stresses that modern women face. In short, more scrutiny must be paid to the harmful effects of targeted alcohol advertising on women’s health and well-being.

At First Steps Recovery, we know how important gender-focused care is in the treatment of addiction. Women must find support that helps them know they will be just fine as mothers without the consumption of alcohol. One of the biggest reasons First Steps Recovery is trusted by so many women is due to our commitment to providing comprehensive and individualized support. We tailor our services to the specific challenges faced by mothers in our world today.

Anyone who has been on social media in the last few years has probably seen the rise of the “wine mom” in popular culture. Wine mom culture espouses the idea that women who overconsume alcohol are fun moms whom other women will like to be around and who have fun with their children. However, alcoholism is a serious disease of addiction. If you suffer from alcoholism or are in recovery, you know how dangerous the idea of the wine mom culture can be. If you need help with alcohol and have fallen into wine mom culture, First Steps Recovery is here to help you. Call us today at (844) 489-0836 and discover your power to change.

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