‘You didn’t bring me into this world. Alcohol did.‘ Rowan, age 14. December, 2017
Hands up if you’re a fall baby! If so, your parents were probably at least a little tipsy, if not drunk, when you were conceived. I’m kidding. (Or am I?)
If you want to have a baby or are trying to get pregnant, now is the time to try. According to some studies, December 11th is the most popular day of the year to conceive. In fact, December 11th, through to the New Year are the highest days to conceive, based on studies of how many fall babies there are. I’m holding my own hand up, because I gave birth to a fall baby. And I was drinking when she was conceived. And my daughter will be the first to tell you how she was conceived…so don’t ask!
Last week, in one of those moments where you use your role as a parent to get your kid to do something you’re too lazy to do—one of the many positives of having a kid—I said to my daughter, ‘Well, I’m the one who brought you into this world! So please just grab me a diet coke from the fridge like I asked you the first time.’ And how did my darling teenage daughter respond? She said, ‘No, you didn’t bring me into this world. Alcohol did.’
We burst out laughing, not just because it’s true, but because my daughter is perfectly okay knowing the details of her conception. According to this article, which asks, ‘So why do so many of us seem to conceive in the run up to Christmas? ‘Well, workloads ease off, the weather is cold and probably wet, and we don’t want to spend yet more money in the run up to Present Day. I mean Christmas. What’s free and warm? Sex.’
My daughter was conceived on a blistery cold winter night after a party (it was my engagement party.) She knows that a lot of drinks were had and, as a result, she was conceived. She’s also grown up knowing she was the ‘best mistake’ her father and I ever made.
I know I’m not alone in conceiving while drinking. ‘Two out of my four children were conceived after a drunken night,’ one of my friends told me. ‘I bet more people than you think conceive when they’re drunk.’ Another friend said, ‘I wouldn’t have a third if it weren’t for tequila!”
If you google the question, ‘How many people conceive while drunk?’ a number of articles come up, including the question that I’m really hoping is from curious and naive young ones, like, ‘Can you get pregnant while drunk?’
Nine months after a drunken winter romp, Rowan is born in the fall.
So why is December the sexiest of all months? Well, it’s kind of obvious. First, it’s cold outside. And, if you’re like me, there is a cap to watching Netflix in bed, without any movement except to eat another chip. So what the hell else are we consenting adults supposed to do when it’s cold and we don’t want to leave the house? Yup, get warm by having sex. Some people find the festivities surrounding Christmas brings them closer together. Since I don’t celebrate Christmas, I’m not sure how sexy I think Christmas is, but throughout the craziness of it all, I could see how drinking egg nog by a fire with a loved one while cuddled under a warm blanket could lead to putting down that egg nog and taking your clothes off.
Also, there is a lot of alcohol drinking around this time of year. December is probably the booziest month of the year. I drink at holiday parties, either because I really like the people I’m partying with, or, I may get a little tipsy because I really don’t like the people I’m with. Either way, I usually get a little tipsy at holiday parties, and there are a lot of them. Thanks to alcohol, which not only helps us get through holiday parties, our inhibitions get loosened, leading to a lot of baby-making in December. ‘You may see the best side of your partner in the festive season, seeking solace in them from annoying relatives, making shared plans and navigating social obligations as a team. Even putting up a tree becomes a metaphor for building a life together’
But there may be a more scientific reason for why so many people conceive at this time of year. On the website What To Expect When You’re Expecting, which covered this topic a couple years ago, they interviewed Helen Fisher, a biological anthropologist, who says that ‘the end of the year is a popular time for people to get intimate because of ‘survival instincts.’ Humans don’t have a specific mating season, but nine months after November and December comes late summer and early fall, a.k.a. the time of year with the most fresh produce and the best weather for taking baby outside. Also, the repeated celebrations during the last few months of the year boost dopamine and consequently sex drive,’ Fisher says. She adds that ‘men in North America have their highest testosterone activity in November and December, a factor that ‘makes expression of sexuality more likely.’
The article ends with, ‘So if you’re trying to conceive this time of year, why not let the Christmas festivities help get you in the mood? Throw up some mistletoe, go downtown to look at decorations on date night, or stay warm in bed as the temperatures drop. You’ll be welcoming baby before you know it.’
And wouldn’t that be the best gift? Because you know what’s coming up? January, ominously nicknamed “Divorce Month,” by lawyers, because of the high rate of divorce…also to be blamed on couples spending too much stressed-out time together.
Personally, I’d rather think about sex and procreating, than separation and divorce papers. So go forth and happy procreating! (Unless you’re NOT trying to conceive, in which case…use a condom with your cocktails, or else get ready for that baby shower come fall!)
Were you a little tipsy when you conceived? Enquiring minds want to know!
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