What are your views on drinking alcohol in front of your children? Do you make a conscious decision to abstain when with your children or just not to drink to excess? Have you ever been drunk in front of your children?
In a new report released by the Institute of Alcohol Studies (IAS) 29% of parents admitted to having been drunk in front of their children, whilst 51% said they had been tipsy. Out of the parents that admitted to having been tipsy, 29% of their children said they had been embarrassed by their parents’ behaviour as a result and 19% said they felt they had been given less attention.
Invited to take part in a discussion on the findings of the report I was asked whether I drank in front of my teens. My response quite simply was yes I do. Asked my opinion on drinking in front of children I expressed the view that it was all about moderation. Yet the English language is a fickle beast. Moderate drinking can of course mean different things to different people, one person’s glass of wine can be another’s bottle. So parents where should we draw the line?
The differentiating factor for me is responsibility. We are bombarded by “responsible” marketing messages every where we look but the pinnacle of responsibility is surely responsible parenting.
As adults we know what it is to overstep the mark. Thus, when it comes to alcohol, it is important as parents we exercise self-control when with our children. . This is at its height when they are younger. Whilst that early parenting phase for me is well and truly over I was always conscious of the need for a sound mind at all times in case of an emergency. In fact my husband and I have clocked up quite a few A&E trips with our children over the years and aside from being able to drive, a clear mind was very much a necessity on every occasion.
As they grow and move through the tween phase, our children become more perceptive and aware of boundaries of
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