Dating someone with fetal alchol effects
A 2000 study examining the long term effects of prenatal cocaine exposure on babies found that neurological changes take place in-utero due to the drug’s effect on dopamine and serotonin pathways.
However, studies on laboratory animals indicate these neural pathways return to normal into adulthood. Researchers believe prenatal exposure to cocaine might lead to an increased risk of seizures, depression, schizophrenia, and Parkinson’s disease in adults.
A child born with Fetal Alcohol Effects may exhibit these same characteristics, but with lesser severity.
Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopmental Disorder, similar to FAS and FAE, manifests in the emotional or behavioral issues but without the physical deformities or reduced cognitive function.
Despite the fact that alcohol is legal to drink during pregnancy, the severity of potential side effects from prenatal exposure to alcohol makes it one of the more dangerous drugs to ingest while pregnant.
This factor alone may skew slightly data surrounding cognitive and social well-being.
It is this same environmental factor that makes it difficult to gauge with any certainty whether drug-exposure is the culprit of deficiencies in cognitive function or behavioral issues.
"This experience we did not choose, which we would have given anything to avoid, has made us different, has made us better. In utero it results in a pattern of depressed and sporadic growth in all systems.
Through it we have learned the lessons that no one studies willingly, the hard, slow lessons of Sophocles and Shakespeare - that one grows by suffering. I write now what fifteen years past I would still not have thought possible to write: that if today I were given the choice, to accept the experience, with everything that it entails, or to refuse the bitter largesse, I would have to stretch out my hands - because out of it has come, for all of us, an unimagined life. The fetus lacks the ability to metabolize the alcohol so it is built up in the system, particularly in the brain, and broken down and secreted very slowly, increasing the length of exposure.