Do you drink in front of your kids? - Mothering Forums

Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
Old 04-22-2006, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
dswmom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Somewhere with my nose in a book
Posts: 226
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
For whatever reason, I have been drawn to the topic of alcohol use in families and wondering how others, who parent concientiously, deal with drinking.

My parents were not drinkers, but that did not keep my brothers or me away from alcohol before the legal age. My ds is 3.5 now and although his teen years are still a ways away, I believe attitudes about alcohol can begin very early and was wondering how other parents behave/deal with alcohol in their homes.

My husband and I drink...wine with dinner every once in a while or when we have get togethers. My husband likes "good" beer, so he drinks that several days a week, but we are not binge drinkers or drink in an unhealthy way. I've told my son before, when he went to pick up my glass, that he couldn't drink it because it contained alcohol and I feel weird about it. The subject of alcohol can be so taboo and with underage drinking and driving deaths seeming to rise again, I just wonder...how is a parent to handle this topic??
dswmom is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
Old 04-22-2006, 10:04 AM
 
polka hop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Posts: 826
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
*
polka hop is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 10:11 AM
 
MsMoMpls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Twin Cities
Posts: 1,993
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I agree that modeling appropriate drinking behavior is the best option and turning alcohol into something more serious that it is can be dangerous. I do think that kids need to be kept from getting drunk until they are fully developed. Addictions are horrible things and almost always develop before adulthood so alcohol should be treated as serious- with respect.

Maureen
MsMoMpls is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 10:19 AM
 
mirlee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: next to the snoring bear
Posts: 3,216
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We share riotkrrn's opinion in our house. It was never a big deal for me growing up. My dad was a staunch non-drinker, but my mom never saw a problem with having a drink. At my maternal grandparen'ts we had wine with dinner. When we were young, it was diluted, but when we were older, say 8 or so, it was a very small glass of the real stuff. I learned to appreciate a good wine.

Ds has little interest in tasting anything, though he does like the smell of some beers. We want him to have a healthy view of alchohol. We feel that by making a big issue out of it, it won't be a big deal for him. By treating it as a horrible nasty evil thing as we have seen some parents do, that, to me, is where you are going to run into problems. Just my opinion.
mirlee is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 10:24 AM
 
angela&avery's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: new england
Posts: 2,438
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
we dont drink as a rule, however "grandpa" and "papa" drink beer and "grammy" drinks a glass of wine before dinner on the weekends. My Dad always drank beer in front of me, to the point that he abused it, but it was never taboo. Im not cool with this, but he used to let me take sips of his beer when I was little.

Because my Dad had/has a tendancy to abuse alcohol I am very aware and dont generally keep in the house. Occasionally we will pick up a six pack of something, but very occasionally.... like a few weeks ago I bought some Mikes Hard Lemonades bc I hadnt had one in like a year. I had one with a friend for dinner that night and then like one a week... there are still two left.

BC of my Dad, one of the things that drew me to my dh the most was that he doesnt drink... so that was a big deal to me from the beginning. My Dad is an obnoxious drunk and I cant stand it.

so yes, we do drink very occasionally in front of our kids, but not on a daily , weekly or even most of the time not a monthly basis.
angela&avery is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 10:30 AM
 
GruppieGirl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 1,476
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We are not heavy drinkers, but yes we drink in front of our kids.

If they want a sip of wine, beer or whatever we let them. I was always allowed to as a child.

I agree that we are modeling appropriate drinking behaviors.

The friends I grew-up with who lived in homes where drinking was a big no-no went on to really abuse alcohol in college. The fall-down and pass-out in strange places nightly crowd.

I want my kids to be exposed to alcohol and think that it's not such a big and exciting thing. I don't want them to look at it as a big taboo so that when they are around peers who are drinking they are drawn to crazy experimentation.
GruppieGirl is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 10:52 AM
 
Alkenny's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2004
Location: ...life is beautiful all the time
Posts: 11,719
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
A healthy attitude and moderation in front of children is a good thing!
We don't drink in front of the kids, but we don't drink at all anymore. They have seen their dad drinking (DH is now a recovered alcoholic) so they have seen the abuse of it too. Grandpa is an active alcoholic too.
Alkenny is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 11:51 AM
 
NaomiLorelie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Greensboro, NC
Posts: 2,180
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by riotkrrn
DH and I drink in front of our daughter, age 2.5. It never occurred to us not to. She likes to ask for a sip of whatever we're drinking; she usually deems it "too burny!" and goes back to her own drink. When she's a bit older, I'll be fine with giving her diluted wine, and once she is in her teens she is welcome to drink it with dinner when we have a bottle.

I think the stigma & campaign against "underage drinking" in this country (US) is nuts and generally leads to the opposite effect of what it's proponents are aiming for. I hope that by modeling and allowing responsible drinking in our home, my kids won't think of alcohol as either poison or forbidden fruit.
This is exactly how we handle alcohol. My parents made a big deal of how alcohol was only for adults and we were NEVER, NEVER to touch it. The entire family have very repressed views on alcohol. My fathers two brothers both ended up in rehab and AA. I definately think there is a correlation there.
NaomiLorelie is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 11:53 AM
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 3,157
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yes, we drink in front of our ds. I don't want it to be taboo for him. For a long time my niece was under the impression that if a person had a beer, they had a drinking problem.
We don't give sips b/c he's only 18 months. Probably won't ever do that until he's much much older. Then I think if he would like it, wine on special occasion dinners.
I do not ever get intoxicated.
Hoopin' Mama is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 11:56 AM
 
Joannarachel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Ware, MA
Posts: 1,452
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We drink in front of our children. I think making alcohol taboo makes it worse. Children should be able to see adults drinking responsibly and not using alcohol as a medication, or drinking to drunkeness.
Joannarachel is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 12:03 PM
 
sadean's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: SW MI
Posts: 2,355
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We have a food circle with friends, and have dinner together every Sunday night. There is always wine with dinner, so my children see me have a glass frequently. My DH doesn't really like alcohol, so he rarely has anything to drink. We try to normalize the responsible partaking of wine with dinner (good food, good drink, etc.), no one ever gets falling down drunk or obnoxious. Thus far, my kids have decided they don't like it and understand that might be something they enjoy when they are older/adults.

Mama to three small people; wife to one big person; pet-person to cats and dogs..."Be the change you want to see in the world"-- Gandhi
sadean is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 12:10 PM
 
whoamama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Toronto Ontario
Posts: 2,051
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We are very moderate drinkers. I agree that children should see adults drinking in appropriate ways. If you were to hide your drinking, it would become a shameful thing, which it is not. You are modelling good behaviour when your kids see you having one or two drinks occasionally. We also allow tasting by curious kids, making something taboo makes it more desireable.

"With the thoughts I'd be thinkin', I could be another Lincoln,

If I only had a brain."duh.gif

whoamama is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 12:15 PM
Banned
 
2Sweeties1Angel's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Missouri
Posts: 3,042
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I *very* rarely drink (maybe 1 drink every few months) but when I do, I drink in front of my kids. I don't want them to grow up thinking alcohol is a forbidden fruit and become closet alcoholics later on. My parents were weirdos who NEVER drank. Period. They told my brother and me that it was evil and a sin--this is coming from people who haven't even set foot in a church in 22 years. They gave me an unhealthy way of looking at alcohol, meaning I grew up thinking that only "bad" people drink and that people only drink to get drunk. Mom even stopped talking to her best friend of forever because her boyfriend brought beer into the house one time. Needless to say, when I got to high school I rebelled and started drinking.
2Sweeties1Angel is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 12:41 PM
 
mshollyk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2002
Location: on the dancefloor,under a discoball
Posts: 2,881
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
to answer the question, yes, we drink in front of the kids, in fact, wine is part of our religious traditions. it really bothers me that DS's school has an anti-drinking thing when they have red ribbon week, because DS comes home telling us how bad wine is :

my own childhood experience with alcohol was a little crazy: i got drunk at five, with my grandmother's boyfriend (who owned the disco my parents managed). he gave me all the kahlua and creams i wanted for my fifth birthday. i don't remember that birthday my dad and stepmom let me have champagne on New Years, and my mother and stepfather let me drink beer (i liked it then, and it was PBR, go figure). they drank around me, it was never a big deal, and i wasn't interested in it at all. the *ONLY* time i drank from ages 10-25 was one night at my (other) grandma's house when i was 15, i had a bit of kahlua. i went through 5 years of college, had no drinks except one drink with my parents when i turned 21. so i didn't get drunk after the first time for 20 years
mshollyk is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 01:48 PM
 
RubyWild's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 4,531
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Absolutely! My drink of choice is port, and I'll have a glass or two from time to time. I don't drink to get drunk, I sip it here and there, and I'll refuse another drink when I've had enough. I'm a positive role model for my Dd. That doesn't mean she won't do stupid things around drinking someday, but I want her to have some positive models about how to drink in moderation, maybe relax a bit, but not be out of control and stupid about it.
RubyWild is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 02:20 PM
 
wryknowlicious's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: San Antonio
Posts: 1,217
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I drink in front of the girls and will continue to.
My DH has candida so alcohol isn;t the healthiest thign for him & truthfully there isn't mush out there that he likes.

We plan on setting an example of normalty & moderation for our girls as they get older. Isabella is 2 and she has already had teeny tiny sips of beer and wine. She hated it . But when she is older is she would like a little bit then I will giver her watered wine to have at dinner with me.

My father is an alcoholic. No recovered about it - he's full blown dependant and gets sloppy drunk almost every day. He has scirosis of the liver. His sister is also an alchie and is dying right now. Thier father died from the results of alcholism also.

My mother on the other hand was staunchly anti-alcohol. Her fater was also an alcoholic and I felt that she was very angry with her self for getting locked up in an alcoholic marriage.

the constant alcohol is evil propganda vs. the constant sight of my father being a sloshed idiot shaped my view that alcohol has it;s proper place is used wisely in moderation.

I myself have been drunk less than 5 times in my whole life. I hated it and I don;t plan to ever get drunk again.
wryknowlicious is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 02:50 PM
 
crazyeight's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 2,766
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I have drank in front of my ds. He has even gone to parties with us (in a friendly home with people we knew) and although they sometimes did get drunk I only did once or twice. He was just fine b/c either dh and/or i were still fine and made sure nothing was happening. Of course he doesn't know whats going on and when he gets older he would go to a babysitter if we even went to parties anymore.

I also agree that the "laws" of the US just makes drugs/alcohol forbidden (and tho drugs shouldn't be taken, that she be made clear by parents because it hurts you not just cause the almighty law....). My mother was never really a drinker...would have a glass of wine every so often and a father figure that lived with us would have beer when he was shoeing horses, fixing stuff etc but not sitting on the couch guzzleing it. My sister (10ish at the time) tried it and didn't like it, I didn't want to try it. My mother a little wihile later let me try wine which I didn't like. Fast foward to the last few years: My mother has really gotten into wine making with the natural fruits and berries found on her property. A year or so ago she offered some to me, asked if i wanted to take any home, whether i liked it etc. Keep in mind here i am STILL underage (give me a month...not that it helps...i'm pg!!).

B/C alcohol wasn't FORBIDDEN in our home but not used very much, I don't see a huge fetish with alcohol.

So all in all I would say that when ds and dd get older they can try sips, they can taste certain wines with info about why its good etc, daddy can tell them that a certain beer is such and such and has X flavor and whatnot. They will learn that alcohol is a normal part of dinners/relaxation/occasional life but that its nothing "special".
crazyeight is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 02:58 PM
 
blessed's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 3,006
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We drink in front of our 2 yo. In fact, she likes it when we put 'wine' (grape juice) in her cup at dinner time and she can drink along with us. She knows how to toast ("cheers!" and clink glasses) and knows the difference between beer, wine and 'gurita' (margarita).

What can I say? We're irish .
blessed is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 03:06 PM
 
sincitymama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: on the road again
Posts: 1,755
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We drink in front of ds. In moderation of course, that's how we handle alcohol anyway. I'll enjoy a beer at a BBQ or with certain foods, I might have a mudslide when I unwind in the evening, etc...We sometimes, but not always, have wine at family get-togethers. Ds(2yrs) has probably tasted a drop here or there, but I generally tell him that alcohol isn't very good for kids because it won't help your body grow, adults are finished growing so we drink it sometimes. I tell him the same exact thing about my morning coffee or other caffienated beverages too. I was allowed to *taste* wine and stuff when I was a kid, always thought it was gross then. We never make it a big issue, but it's part of our life and I never considered hiding it because, well, there's just nothing to hide.
sincitymama is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 03:12 PM
 
kate~mom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 3,755
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joannarachel
We drink in front of our children. I think making alcohol taboo makes it worse. Children should be able to see adults drinking responsibly and not using alcohol as a medication, or drinking to drunkeness.


we certainly have the occasional wine with dinner, or evening beer in front of the kids.
kate~mom is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 03:41 PM
 
UnschoolnMa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Trying to release my cows..Join Me!
Posts: 14,840
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1 Post(s)
Yes we have no problem drinking in front of our kids. We want them to see people drinking responsibly. Beer, wine, something a little harder occasionally. It's not a problem.

"The true measure of a man is how he treats a man who can do him absolutely no good."
peace.gif  Embrace the learning that is happening within the things that are actually happening!    
UnschoolnMa is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 03:42 PM
 
~Quse~'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: In the house
Posts: 612
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
We probably have 1 to 2 glasses of wine per week in front of the kids.
~Quse~ is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 04:13 PM
 
annethcz's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: on the beautiful prairie of MN
Posts: 9,825
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Sure. I have no problems with drinking in front our kids. We don't get drunk in front of them (uh, we don't get drunk period.)

And our kids have also been told that alcoholic drinks are not for children. They know that alcohol is not for kids, and will remind each other of that. It's similar to the way my kids know better than to drink coke- coke has caffeine, and caffeine is not for kids

New signature, same old me: Ann- mama of 2 boys and 2 girls, partnered to a fabulous man.
I'm an unintentional weasel feeder and I suck at proofreading.
annethcz is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 04:47 PM
 
LovemyBoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: The Beautiful Rocky Mountains
Posts: 1,671
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yes, in the form of a beer or glass of wine with dinner. Our son has also tried sips. Doesn't like beer nor wine so far.
LovemyBoo is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 04:59 PM
 
Sharlla's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Springfield Mo
Posts: 11,638
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 4 Post(s)
SUre, I'll have some wine, I don't get drunk though.

Unassisted birthing, atheist, poly, bi WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids Wes (14) Seth (7) Pandora Moonlilly (2) and Nevermore Stargazer (11/2012)  Married to awesome SAH DH.

Sharlla is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:04 PM
 
zinemama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: from the fire roads to the interstate
Posts: 6,298
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Absolutely. I drink a glass of wine every night while I'm cooking dinner, and when dh and I have wine on Friday nights (Shabbat), the kids each get a sip.

We've talked about how alcohol and caffeine aren't good for growing brains because it can stop them from growing right, but that it's ok to use them in moderation as a grown-up. ITA with those who say modeling healthy attitudes toward alcohol is the best course.
zinemama is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:30 PM
 
KaraBoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Alb-uh-kirk-ee
Posts: 4,481
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Yep. Definitely. And I've also had hangovers and told her how I felt...not that I needed to because she could tell I felt horrible!
KaraBoo is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 05:57 PM
 
Britishmum's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: USA
Posts: 4,195
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
It would not occur to me not to drink in front of my kids.

I really cant understand the hang up so many Americans have over alcohol, nor the ridiculous age for legal drinking. My theory is that these things increase the likelihood of alcohol abuse.

I love wine and my kids know it. I don't tell them it's only for adults and they've never asked to taste it. It's just a total non-issue in our house.

I do know people whose kids have been frightened by the whole DARE thing at school & come home thinking that their parents are about to die because they drink wine with dinner.
Britishmum is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 10:16 PM
 
Storm Bride's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Vancouver, BC
Posts: 25,597
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
I drink in front of the kids. But, I'm a novice driver (graduated licensing program) and have to have ZERO blood alcohol in order to drive. So, if there's any chance I'll be driving that day, I won't have anything to drink. I'm also breastfeeding, which means I don't drink much there, either. DS1 almost never saw me drink because I was living with my ex, who was an addict, and it turned me right off anything like that.

So...about once or twice a month, I have a cider or cooler, or a decaf coffee with a shot of kahlua or Bailey's in it. Sometimes, dd will ask me if I want a cider from the fridge (she's always offering people stuff) and I say no, so she wants to know why. I tell her that I don't feel like it or that it's not good to have a drink before driving, or that I've already had one today, and too much alcohol isn't good for babies or whatever the truth is. I want dd to learn about alcohol and how it fits into life, not just be terrified by anti-alcohol propaganda.

I'm not sure what ds1's attitudes will be like, but so far they're pretty good. He's seen a few really serious drinkers and I think he has a pretty good idea what alcohol abuse does to a person's body. He also has three biological grandparents with drug and/or alcohol addiction problems, so I do worry about any genetic component.

My mom grew up in a teetotal environment, with an unspoken "alcohol is bad" attitude...and she married an alcoholic, without having any idea of how totally bizarre his drinking was. How can dd identify problem drinkers in her circle of friends, if she thinks that anybody who has a drink of alcohol is a problem drinker?

Lisa, lucky mama of Kelly (3/93) ribboncesarean.gif, Emma (5/03) ribboncesarean.gif, Evan (7/05) ribboncesarean.gif, & Jenna (6/09) ribboncesarean.gif
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing ribbonpb.gif Aaron Ambrose ribboncesarean.gif (11/07) ribbonpb.gif

Storm Bride is offline  
Old 04-22-2006, 10:57 PM
 
LadyMarmalade's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: anywhere but Stepford
Posts: 2,870
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Quote:
Originally Posted by MsMoMpls
I agree that modeling appropriate drinking behavior is the best option and turning alcohol into something more serious that it is can be dangerous. I do think that kids need to be kept from getting drunk until they are fully developed. Addictions are horrible things and almost always develop before adulthood so alcohol should be treated as serious- with respect.
I totally agree.

Being European, I grew up seeing responsible drinking. It's the 'done thing' to give the children a small amount of wine in their glass with meals.

I'm with Britishmum - I can't understand the American attitude to alcohol. I think it's very unhealthy and causes many problems.
LadyMarmalade is offline  
 
User Tag List

Thread Tools


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off