Managing Your Social Life During Pregnancy
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Once the excitement of seeing that little blue line on a pregnancy test subsides, there are a number of things to think about before your baby makes his or her appearance. As well as preparing your home for a new addition, there are a number of lifestyle changes that will inevitably occur. Some of these changes may affect your social life, and this article should act as a guide on how to manage your social life while pregnant.
Alcohol and smoking are the two biggest things that women choose to give up when pregnant and those that do deserve a pat on the back. However, not being able to indulge can make social occasions and the idea of going out a dreary prospect.
Nights out can still be fun - but cheaper
There's no denying that having a few drinks can be fun, and nothing much beats the occasional girly night out. But just because you can't get a bit merry doesn't mean you won't enjoy yourself. Once you get used to not drinking, there are lots of benefits to going out and staying sober. The first is financial. Sipping non-alcoholic drinks throughout the evening works out a lot cheaper than buying a few glasses of wine or vodka. Secondly, not only will you be able to remember everything that goes on during the evening with crystal clarity, you will also wake up the next morning feeling great. Also, if you are suffering from morning sickness, just remember your sickness is for a good reason. Your fellow revellers are likely to be feeling just as ropey with nothing to show for it!
Even if you aren't drinking alcohol, there's plenty you can do to make yourself feel less excluded. Drinking non-alcoholic wine or lager, or even asking for your soft drinks to be served in a wine glass, can fool the brain surprisingly well. For those of you who can drive, the major plus is not needing to find a taxi; being able to jump in your car when you feel like heading home rather than face the 'Queue of Shame' is one benefit you won't feel like giving up even when you can drink again.
There are so many great things about being pregnant, but it can also be a rotten time for some women. Morning sickness that lasts throughout the day, fatigue and worry can all bring you down. A night out with friends can be just the tonic you need to make you see the bright side of things again. With the cigarette ban fully in place, there is no need to face smoke-filled clubs and pubs, which you will be eternally grateful for especially if you have recently quit the habit.
Try something new during pregnancy
Going on a night out isn't the only way to socialise when you are pregnant. Feeling tired can make a big evening out seem overwhelming, but it is important to stay in touch with your friends. It's therefore important to find alternative places to meet for a chinwag and a catch-up. Maybe you and your best friend could take a new class together to learn a hobby. Sewing and knitting are making big comebacks and many mums and their friends make a 'Quilt of Love' ready for the baby when it arrives.
Ultimately...not much is out of bounds
If sewing isn't your thing, there really isn't much you can't do when you are pregnant. The general rule is to avoid anything overly strenuous, especially if you aren't used to it (so don't start any new sports right now). Most activities are fine in moderation and doctors encourage expectant mums to keep as active as possible throughout their pregnancy.
Weight bearing exercises and anything that could lead to a fall or an injury to your tummy, such as skiing, are probably not great ideas but everything else, more or less, is still on the agenda. If you are a gym bunny, there are plenty of classes that you can still enjoy. Walking and swimming are also highly recommended. Even gentle racquet sports like badminton are possible until reasonably late in your pregnancy, or until you feel uncomfortable.
A meal out and a film at the cinema are good ways to enjoy yourself when you are pregnant. If your bulge is big, sitting in an aisle seat or in the front row can give you more room. Some cinemas offer the option of paying for a double seat with a retractable arm, which means you can snuggle up to your beloved and spread right out. While you don't have to eat for two, when else can you enjoy ice cream, popcorn and a big bag of sweets without a guilty conscience? Being pregnant isn't all about giving things up, it can sometimes be about embracing new hobbies and treats too.