Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Why we fear our kids drinking alcohol

Why do we not want our kids drinking? Simple, we don’t want them doing what we did as kids, or what our friends did, or even just kids we knew did. Drinking makes you stupid. When drunk you don’t think strait and do stupid things, like having unprotected sex with someone you don’t know, jump off a bridge to go swimming, play chicken with a train, try drugs, and that is just what adults do. I don’t want to think of what underage kids do when drunk, probably the same type of things.

Some parents fear that their kids will be the ones that don’t survive what some consider a right of passage. Others see no problems giving their kids alcohol. My understanding is that most teen accidental deaths involve alcohol or drugs, and some that are not accidental do as well. I don’t want it to be my kids found dead from alcohol poisoning, or because they did something so fundamentally stupid it killed them.

Alcohol is legal but it is also addictive. It does kill brain cells so it is actually making us less smart. It changes how we think. It also changes our bodies so we need alcohol. All you have to do is see someone detoxing to understand how strong of a physical hold alcohol can have. Then you add the psychological hold, that it makes things better, its fun, cool, and you have to drink to fit in, it is easy to see why there are so many people drinking.

I don’t want my children drinking, underage or after. So why do I not want my kids to do something that is legal and considered for the most part harmless? My personal fear is that once my kids start drinking they will not be able to stop and that it will take over. That these two wonderful kids with the potential to do anything and be anything become nothing, or harm themselves or others or even die. I have seen it happen.

I already know that they are biologically predisposed to addictions such as drugs and alcohol. On one side their Grandparents were both heavy drug and alcohol users, and on the other side their Uncles are heavy drug and alcohol users. On top of that their father was an alcoholic, luckily clean and sober for two years before our first child.

It would not be a good idea to expose them to alcohol at any age. I hope to avoid the drinking by teaching them early on that drinking is not good for them. I don’t actually hold much hope that they will not drink. It is too much a part of our society. They are going to end up trying a drink once just to fit in. What happens after that is going to depend on them. I cannot stop them from drinking if they really want to. I can only do my best to restrict their access to it until they are of legal age to drink.

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