Alcohol tasting for kids not a smart idea to prevent adult drinking problems

Alcohol tasting for kids not a smart idea to prevent adult drinking problems

I have had this conversation so many times.  My friends say they give their kids alcohol to stop it being so appealing to them and to break the mystique and appeal.  Sadly, it actually often does the opposite and gives them a taste for it.

The latest study, published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, 2012, has yet again found a strong association between parents who were in favor of allowing their children to taste alcohol, and the children’s ongoing increased use and abuse of alcohol.

The research showed that 33% of kids confirmed their parents had given them their first taste of alcohol.  From the parents, over 25% said that “young children tasting alcohol may discourage teen drinking”, while 40% said “banning alcohol may make it appealing”.  Over 20% of the 1,050 mothers interviewed said children who taste alcohol at home with their parents would be “better at resisting alcohol-related peer pressure” and 26% said it would make them “less likely to experiment with risky drinking in middle school”.

Sadly, this myth persists as the reality is somewhat different.  Study lead author Christine Jackson, a social ecologist at RTI International, said “These findings indicate that many parents mistakenly expect that the way children drink at home, under parental supervision, will be replicated when children are with peers…”

As reported by United Press International, Inc. on October 8, 2012.

Posted: Tuesday 6 November 2012

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