I was interviewed recently for a feature in the fabulous Smallish Magazine titled 'Mother's Ruin.'
(To read the full article click here).
The journalist asked whether all the jokes about wine o'clock, and the way the lives of modern mothers revolve around boozy playdates, 'family friendly' festivals and so on is becoming a problem.
The statistics would suggest that it is. One in five university educated women are believed to be drinking more than the recommended levels, especially the over 45's.
It's not the young, wild, crazy things being irresponsible - it's us, the ones who should be setting a good example.
I don't like to get all sniffy about the wine memes on Facebook - I used to think they were hilarious. It's just that they are one of the reasons it took me so long to quit.
Professor Nutt's study on the relative harms of twenty drugs, illegal and legal, concluded that when you combine the damage to the individual and to society as a whole, alcohol was by far the most dangerous.
If you only consider the danger to the individual, to yourself, alcohol is still the fourth most dangerous drug (after heroin, crack and crystal meth), and the fifth most addictive. It's more harmful than cocaine, ketamine, cannabis, ecstasy and nicotine.
And yet we refuse to treat alcohol as a dangerously addictive drug. Everyone takes it, everyone jokes about it, if you don't join in you're seen as weird.
In my early days of being sober, I'd be struggling really hard to see my former best friend as my greatest enemy, and then I'd look at Facebook and there would be all these little wine jokes: Keep your friends close, and your wine closer. Stay calm, drink wine.
I even saw an advertisement on Facebook last night for a designer handbag that doubles as a wine dispenser! I would have loved that in the olden days...
So, I would see all these jokes, and all the photos on my friends' timelines of dining tables scattered with wine bottles, boozy picnics and drunken parties and I'd think how can booze be so bad if everyone is drinking it? It's medicinal! It's sophisticated! It's CONTINENTAL!
And yet, can you imagine the outcry if a Mum posted on Facebook: Hurrah! Kids in bed, time to rack up a line of cocaine!
I'm not suggesting that everyone stop drinking. Those who can happily drink safely and moderately (damn their eyes) should carry on. I'm just suggesting that we stop treating massive consumption of booze as a joke, as innocuous and harmless.
Because it's not.
Love to you all,