Should women be allowed to drink while pregnant? Watch

Viva Emptiness
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#21
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#21
(Original post by xoxAngel_Kxox)
I don't understand (and obviously this is only from my perspective) how women can't just NOT drink for a few months of their life. Having a baby is such a responsibility, there are so many different things that can have an effect on the health of your baby when s/he is born, so why do something that might harm them when there's NO need to at all?

I'm not sure about making it a criminal offence though, that feels like a step too far, but still I wonder what would go through women's minds to make them drink at all.
Lots of things I imagine.

"My mum drank when she was having me and I was fine"
"Pretty sure this amount is still safe" (or once they've had a couple "Ah, it's just the once")
"I don't plan on keeping this thing anyway, what's the harm?"

I remember something in the papers about a barman who refused to serve a pregnant lady a small glass of wine with her meal on the basis that he thought it was wrong. That divided opinion and all.
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F1's Finest
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#22
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(Original post by Viva Emptiness)
The message surrounded drinking while pregnant is piss-poor and quite unclear. Clearly the safest amount of alcohol to drink while pregnant is none, but there are still guidelines (I think) that say no more than two units no more than once or twice a week is still safe.

They need to really sort out WHAT the message is they want to be giving, backed up by evidence, and really get it out there.
Yep and also I feel healthcare professionals should have the responsibility of signposting and putting up posters in their workplace/shop (pharmacy) for patients like, to-be mothers, to have a look at and inform them.

If I do end up in a community pharmacy after I graduate, even though I'm not instructed/advised to do so by the GpHC or RPS bodies, I would still make it my business to make patients aware of the risks etc.

Mind you, knowing the NHS, they would not want to spend money on it as they would rather campaign for other public health warnings like Ebola or flu strains.
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hellodave5
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#23
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#23
(Original post by xoxAngel_Kxox)
I don't understand (and obviously this is only from my perspective) how women can't just NOT drink for a few months of their life. Having a baby is such a responsibility, there are so many different things that can have an effect on the health of your baby when s/he is born, so why do something that might harm them when there's NO need to at all?

I'm not sure about making it a criminal offence though, that feels like a step too far, but still I wonder what would go through women's minds to make them drink at all.
People = idiots.
(thinks to self - damn, I will make a good clinician one day :rolleyes:.)
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Everglow
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#24
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#24
Should they be able to? Yes. Should they actually do it? Absolutely not.

The best thing we can do is educate people about the dangers of drinking and smoking during pregnancies. If mothers choose to do these harmful things anyway, then they are the ones who should be held accountable for the physical or mental damages that they likely caused for their child - if they even survive that is.
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miser
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#25
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#25
I'm split on this issue. On the one hand, it's the mother's body and the law may have little effect on stopping drinking, whilst harming the (likely underprivileged) people committing the crime, indirectly further affecting the baby.

On the other hand, we make it illegal to have an abortion after a certain point because we recognise the foetus to have personhood. At that point, you are unnecessarily harming another person, and that shouldn't be tolerated.

It comes down to what I think laws of this sort are for: I think they're for protecting people. The question that has to be answered is whether criminalising it will actually protect these babies.
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thunder_chunky
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#26
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This is about a woman who drank excessively. If a normal woman during a normal pregnancy wanted a single drink at the appropriate time during her pregnancy, the state has no business to say she cannot and to hold her accountable if she does.
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llys
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#27
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#27
(Original post by xoxAngel_Kxox)
I don't understand (and obviously this is only from my perspective) how women can't just NOT drink for a few months of their life. Having a baby is such a responsibility, there are so many different things that can have an effect on the health of your baby when s/he is born, so why do something that might harm them when there's NO need to at all?

I'm not sure about making it a criminal offence though, that feels like a step too far, but still I wonder what would go through women's minds to make them drink at all.
They may just not know. There are many women who don't know the risks, or think they are exaggerated, or are not able to see that drinking now can lead to problems later.* You need to be relatively clever to understand a consequence you cannot see immediately, and you need to have the mental strength to resist drinking. Either one or both can be absent.

*NB Their child will likely never understand exactly these types of causal relationships, because of low IQ, so they are unlikely to blame their mother later-on.

I don't have an answer to the original question. I would not make it illegal, but I would ostracise it. I would want to protect the baby, but then again, people can have mentally retarded children if they want to.

Out of curiosity, how big is the problem in England?
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ChaoticButterfly
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#28
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#28
(Original post by Viva Emptiness)

I don't really see how they can say poisoning a foetus might be made illegal without also criminalising abortion.[/FONT][/COLOR]
This is my initial reaction.

What if it was only illegal past the cut off point for abortion (ignoring cases where carrying on with pregnancy could harm/kill the mother).

But thinking more about it abortion is ok for me because the thing isn't self aware and sentient like a fully developed born human is. Drinking too much can harm the actual person the fetus comes out as. It's different.

It's a complicated issue and I don't really support making women who drink too much whilst pregnant criminals. I don't see how that helps. Being an overweight blob and eating loads of chunk food is probably bad as well. Are we going to criminalize unhealthy fat pregnant women?





Personally though if you are pregnant and consume a lot of any drug you are a irresponsible idiot in my book. I don't know why you would risk damaging your future child :dontknow: I would never willing get someone who smokes pregnant and wouldn't be happy if she was regularly drinking large amounts.

(Original post by Viva Emptiness)
But killing a person is worse than assaulting them and leaving them with a permanent head injury, right? If you agree that the foetus has no right to life then why does it have a right to not be harmed in any way?
But most pro choice lot don't acknowledge the fetus as being a human person with rights to life over the mother. Once it is born it is a person and drinking too much can effect this person negatively. Destroying something with potential to become life is different from actually harming a life. Drinking harms what the fetus becomes, which is an actual person.

(Original post by Viva Emptiness)
Let's add some new factors. What if the woman doesn't plan on keeping the baby so drinks heavily, but then changes her mind?
Once she changes her mind she should stop drinking. Can't turn back time but she can effect the future.
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limetang
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#29
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It's wrong but how on earth can you criminalise it. The law tells us that a foetus has none of the rights of a person up to 24 weeks... So what's the problem with poisoning it?

Or to put it another way, why should there be a problem where your actions cause a potentially healthy person to be born disabled when we have established there is no problem in causing a potentially healthy person to not be born at all.
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limetang
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#30
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(Original post by ChaoticButterfly)
This is my initial reaction.

What if it was only illegal past the cut off point for abortion (ignoring cases where carrying on with pregnancy could harm/kill the mother).

But thinking more about it abortion is ok for me because the thing isn't self aware and sentient like a fully developed born human is. Drinking too much can harm the actual person the fetus comes out as. It's different.

It's a complicated issue and I don't really support making women who drink too much whilst pregnant criminals. I don't see how that helps. Being an overweight blob and eating loads of chunk food is probably bad as well. Are we going to criminalize unhealthy fat pregnant women?





Personally though if you are pregnant and consume a lot of any drug you are a irresponsible idiot in my book. I don't know why you would risk damaging your future child :dontknow: I would never willing get someone who smokes pregnant and wouldn't be happy if she was regularly drinking large amounts.



But most pro choice lot don't acknowledge the fetus as being a human person with rights to life over the mother. Once it is born it is a person and drinking too much can effect this person negatively. Destroying something with potential to become life is different from actually harming a life. Drinking harms what the fetus becomes, which is an actual person.



Once she changes her mind she should stop drinking. Can't turn back time but she can effect the future.
Let's say there's a hypothetical recreational drug that has been proven to increase the risk of harmful mutations occurring in either your sperm or your eggs, and one day you decide to have children and your child is born with a severe disability. Would you view that as equally as wrong as drinking while pregnant?
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ChaoticButterfly
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#31
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(Original post by limetang)
Let's say there's a hypothetical recreational drug that has been proven to increase the risk of harmful mutations occurring in either your sperm or your eggs, and one day you decide to have children and your child is born with a severe disability. Would you view that as equally as wrong as drinking while pregnant?
Hmm. Good question.

I probably wouldn't view it as equally wrong no.
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DarkMagic
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#32
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#32
...
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RhymeAsylumForever
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#33
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#33
(Original post by Viva Emptiness)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-29614413



I'm all for encouraging women not to drink during pregnancy, but criminalising women who do?

I don't really see how they can say poisoning a foetus might be made illegal without also criminalising abortion.[/FONT][/COLOR]
I thought drinking water is something all humans need to do? Can't be discriminating pregnant women like that.
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Celise Waan
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#34
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#34
(Original post by xoxAngel_Kxox)
I don't understand (and obviously this is only from my perspective) how women can't just NOT drink for a few months of their life. Having a baby is such a responsibility, there are so many different things that can have an effect on the health of your baby when s/he is born, so why do something that might harm them when there's NO need to at all?

I'm not sure about making it a criminal offence though, that feels like a step too far, but still I wonder what would go through women's minds to make them drink at all.
This.


Viva is a drunk clearly.
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Viva Emptiness
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#35
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#35
(Original post by Celise Waan)
This.


Viva is a drunk clearly.
Solid reasoning skills.
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MindTheGaps
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#36
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#36
I was initially against this on the obvious grounds of a mother's autonomy, but I was swayed by an argument on the radio.

If you shake a newborn baby and give it life-long brain damage, you can be prosecuted. If your alcohol consumption causes comparable disability in the child, is that really any different?

This isn't the same as abortion, foetuses are not conscious and, whatever your take on the ethics, abortion causes no pain. Notions of the rights of unborn children are fairly abstract. Foetal alcohol syndrome causes a lifetime of suffering, to real, conscious humans we might speak to in the street.
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kbw
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(Original post by Rinsed)
This isn't the same as abortion, foetuses are not conscious and, whatever your take on the ethics, abortion causes no pain. Notions of the rights of unborn children are fairly abstract. Foetal alcohol syndrome causes a lifetime of suffering, to real, conscious humans we might speak to in the street.
I don't think you can separate this from abortion though. You can't justify criminalisation on the basis of the harm it causes the born child; it just wouldn't fit with the offence of attempting the crime . So you would have it as an offence to make the attempt against the unborn child, based upon the harm (foetal alchohol syndrome) that might have befallen the born child - whether they actually develop it or not.

You could drink heavily in the first 19 weeks of pregnancy and be charged and convicted of the attempt, and then in the 20th week, happily abort the baby. Which would be bizarre, as you've just been convicted for attempting to harm something you're legally allowed to destroy.
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joey11223
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#38
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Difficult but what I'd probably suggest is it could be if they continue to drink recklessly despite being informed about the potential harm AND their past the legal date for abortion, after all you can hardly prosecute someone for drinking excessively when 12 weeks pregnant, they could claim they're going to abort. However as someone else said, you are prosecuted for shaking a newborn and giving it a disability, so if you drink to excess when 30-40 weeks pregnant and that causes it to be born disabled (can it? or do you need to be drinking earlier in development?), you should surely be able to be prosecuted for something?
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Quiet _One86
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#39
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#39
I don't understand why we are being penalised or criminalised for a drink, granted if its excess but a small glass or a sip of a small drink wouldn't harm a baby. We are too protective it would seem.
Research states some benefits to it too: http://news.discovery.com/human/heal...nant-women.htm
- Having one or two drinks a week while pregnant could actually give your kids a slight developmental advantage.
granted overdoing it can be harmful, but it can be to anyone if they weren't pregnant.
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meenu89
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#40
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I didn't drink at all during my pregnancy, although I know some mothers who had small glass of wine a few times during theirs. I wouldn't want it made a criminal offence though.
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