From a young age children learn about acceptable behaviour by observing and copying their parents. So, it stands to reason that when it comes to drinking, it really is a case of leading by example.
Research shows that parents have the greatest impact on shaping their kid’s attitude to alcohol and future drinking behaviour. The role alcohol plays in your life will have an effect on them too. Therefore, it is important you set the right example as they form their attitudes towards alcohol.
Most experts agree that drinking alcohol around your children is acceptable, so long as you do so responsibly. Here are some things to keep in mind when drinking around your kids:
Be a positive role model
Show your children that you can enjoy an alcoholic drink without drinking too much or too often. If you don’t want your kid to think drinking to excess is acceptable, display self-restraint and demonstrate responsible drinking.
Talk to your kids
Most kids are curious when it comes to alcohol and will probably have quite a few questions. It is important to always answer honestly (without glorifying intoxication). If you avoid questions, they are likely to seek answers elsewhere and what they learn may not be helpful, and even dangerous. Explain the importance of drinking moderately and why only adults should consume it.
Encourage friends and family to be good role models for your kids
We all have that friend or family member who has a tendency to overindulge with alcohol. Communicate your rules and boundaries to family and friends and encourage them to be positive role models when your child is observing their drinking behaviours.
Try not to make alcohol the focus of celebrations or gatherings
Show your kids that you can enjoy yourself without alcohol
Try a few alcohol free days a week
Avoid people and places that will negatively influence your kids’ attitudes to alcohol
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