My Child has Asked me About Alcohol: What They Need To Know

There will come a time in every parent’s life when certain questions are starting to be asked by their children. From the birds and the bees to the likes of drugs and alcohol. When it comes to the latter, it can be difficult to know where to start, particularly if they are used to seeing parents drinking alcohol of an evening.

That said, it’s important to have a conversation with them if they are beginning to ask about it, and here are five tips on doing so…

Set clear expectations

It’s important to set clear expectations for your child when it comes to alcohol. Make it clear that underage drinking is illegal and that you don’t condone it. Talk about your family’s values and beliefs when it comes to alcohol, and set clear rules and consequences for breaking those rules.

Lead by example

One of the most powerful ways to educate your child about alcohol is to lead by example. If you drink alcohol, do so responsibly and in moderation. Avoid drinking excessively or in front of your child. This will help reinforce the message that alcohol should be consumed responsibly.

Encourage responsible decision-making

Teach your child to make responsible decisions when it comes to alcohol. Help them understand the importance of moderation and encourage them to know their limits. Discuss strategies for staying safe while drinking, such as drinking water between alcoholic beverages and avoiding drinking on an empty stomach.

Talk about peer pressure

Peer pressure can be a major factor in underage drinking. Talk to your child about how to handle peer pressure and make safe choices. Encourage them to be assertive and say no if they don’t want to drink, and discuss strategies for avoiding situations where underage drinking might occur.

Discuss the dangers of it

Finally, have an open and honest discussion about the dangers of alcohol. There’s the risk of lowering inhibitions or putting yourself in a more vulnerable state, while there’s also the growing number of people suffering with addiction, requiring alcoholism rehab support to get their lives back on track. Discuss if there’s a history of alcoholism in the family and any experiences you have had, and it could emphasise the dangers of the substance a little further too.