How Drinking Saved Our Marriage

What would we do once I got pregnant?

How Drinking Saved Our Marriage getty

I don't get out much. You can tell from the way these legs of mine perfectly match the white background of your computer screen.

Even worse, I don't get out of the bedroom much. Instead, I sit cross-legged on my bed for hours on end — my laptop perched on a tray in front of me — editing content, typing up posts, reading other people's posts, drawing up marketing plans, and connecting with other young entrepreneurs on Twitter.


I don't do morning walks. I don't do evenings at the bar. Sometimes, I don't even do lunch.

At the end of the day, my knees are so stiff I can barely walk. The tradeoff for not wearing a bra (or pants) all day long?

My husband is even worse. Almost a year ago we went to a couples therapist. Every week, we covered the same ground.

We weren't seeing enough of each other. We weren't spending quality time together. We weren't communicating or sharing new experiences with each other.

Naturally, I decided to fix things by working even harder

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Early on in our relationship, we had taken a trip to San Francisco and spent one blissful day in Napa Valley. We hopped from winery to winery, sniffing for the scent of grapefruit, swirling glass after glass, and falling in love with Sauvignon Blancs.

Wine became a mutual passion of ours, partially because it was delicious, partially because it eased my social anxiety, and partially because it was possible to get completely wasted on the stuff and still look classy holding the delicate stemware during social gatherings. As long as you weren't double fisting.

So I pitched Inside Jersey with an idea for The Ultimate NJ Wine Tour, and they were all for it.

My husband and I then proceeded to visit all 33 New Jersey wineries registered through the NJ Wine Growers' Association, in addition to wine shops, restaurants, and bars. We even took part in a winemaking class.


We traveled across New Jersey together, covering every single wine spot in three, frantic months. We shared glasses of pinot noir on outdoor patios. We crushed grapes together.

On one marathon of a day, we even went to seven wineries. At the sixth one, they were hesitant to serve us. Possibly because I had used my husband's wine glass as a dump bucket at the previous five wineries, and he was obviously blitzed.

We spent every single weekend together over the course of those three months, immersed in this shared interest of ours, and it revitalized our marriage. 

RELATED: Couples Who Drink Together, Stay Together (Says Study)

Nowadays, we still enjoy the occasional tasting and, most weeks, we pour each other some wine and cook together. It's a way to keep connected, even though we're still hopeless workaholics.


This will all end once I get pregnant. In fact, this one book I'm reading — Eating for Pregnancy — cautions against alcohol consumption (even in the form of cough syrup) when you're still just trying to get pregnant. Because, well, you might be pregnant already and just not know it!

This book scares me, and I can feel it looking at me disapprovingly from its spot on the shelf because, not only do I still have the occasional drink, but I also don't have enough iron in my diet, or folic acid, or Omega-3s — and dear lord I don't even know what Omega-3s are!

And though there are plenty of stories out there on how the occasional drink won't hurt your unborn child, I'd prefer not to feel the judgmental glare of paranoid mothers everywhere burning a hole through my cheap maternity-wear.

So will we fall back into our disconnected, pre-wine snob ways once I get pregnant? I have my fingers crossed that we won't. After all, there will be a nursery to decorate. Supplies to purchase. An ever-expanding stomach for my husband to make fun of.


I will be able to experience the joy of lolling about on the couch, demanding Fla-Vor-Ice and shrimp fajitas because, well, I have cravings. There will be the shared anticipation of a child, for god's sakes.

Shouldn't that be enough?

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Steph Auteri is a freelance writer and editor. She's overshared about her life in Playgirl, Time Out New York, American Curves, New York Press, Nerve, and other publications. Follow her on Twitter.