Post # 1
I can’t be the only one can I? My Dad’s family is from two islands in the caribbean. It’s common there to give kids dessert with rum in it, and in my family in there were several drinks and liquor(basically a very sweet mixture has alcohol in it made in red and green for the holidays) , in addition to a coconut/milk/rum mixture that we also were able to have some of as children.
It’s really no big deal to give kids some, and of course they aren’t giving us bottles of beer, and vodka to take shots with. It’s just normal that you get child size portions of certain alcoholic beverages. I respect parents rights to make choice if they children are going to participate in certain cultural traditons. However I just don’t get the hysteria and alarmist attitude about it from people I spoken to this about. If I have a kid when we go to family events and holidays I have no issue with them partaking in it.
Wondering if anyone else comes from a culture where you get alcohol as a child? What did you get, what the portion, and would you give it to your kids?
Post # 3
I don’t directly come from a culture where they do, but my great-grandfather was right-off-the-boat German and it’s common there. I honestly don’t see the big deal either. I am of the opinion that it breeds a certain amount of responsible behavior surrounding alcohol because it’s not “forbidden” and “dangerous” and there’s no reaching the legal age and losing your damn mind being wasted all the time.
Post # 4
My family is French and while we weren’t given alcohol as children, we were allowed to have a glass of wine at family dinners as of the age of about 13-14. It was just a part of the family meal process.
Post # 5
Wine on holidays. It wasn’t for the little kids…I’m thinking like around 12? I don’t think you should give kids shots or let them have the access to pour themselves a glass as they wish, but I don’t think culturally-controlled access to small amounts of alcohol is going to destroy the world. But also, don’t give it to any kids but your own, even at a group event as you don’t know what another parent’s rules are
Post # 6
We definitely we’re allowed to have shots or mixed drinks, but we were allowed some wine with dinner sometimes and we were allowed to try our parents drinks.
The only exception was if we had really sore throats my mom would make us hot toddy’s with whiskey in them.
Post # 7
My German gradparents rasied me and it was very normal to give me a very very small glass of beer with lunch (only a little bigger than a shot glass) and a very small glass of red wine on the holidays. In addition, they gave me something when I had a sore throat to help me sleep. Totally taboo now but I turned out fine.
Post # 8
@zippylef: Agreed. When alcohol is present as a regular thing that is consumed responsibly, it isn’t as appealing to go wild and binge drink as a way to rebel.
Post # 9
A good friend of mine in high school was from England, where you can drink in private at any age over five. His parents watched him and they didn’t see it as a big deal.
Honestly, I think he turned out better than a lot of the kids I knew whose parents said “No alcohol until you’re 21!” Drinking wasn’t a big deal. When I went on vacation with him and his family (for our graduation), we’d have wine or cider with lunch or a Smirnoff Ice with dinner. We were both 17, so we were just under legal age there.
My parents were the ones who were against drinking until I was “legal”. I’m still not, but they know I’ve had some on multiple occasions. I’m not going to go crazy with it.
If you make it a big deal, then kids are going to get in trouble with it. I’ll probably give my kids a small glass of wine at Thanksgiving/Christmas or a little bit of champagne at New Year’s when they’re 10 or so. It’ll be a controlled, special occasion thing.
Post # 10
We were allowed to try small amounts of alcohol as children, and were allowed to occasionally drink a small glass of shandy, beer, cider or wine from around 10 (I think). I used to suffer a lot with toothache as a kid too, and my dad would sometimes rub a little whiskey on my gums to numb it. My parents were always very open about alcohol and encouraged us to try it at home so that we wouldn’t get stupidly drunk out of the house because it was taboo. I think it’s more responsible this way, rather than banning children any access to alcohol. It’s much safer for parents to be able to introduce and monitor children’s alcohol intake, rather than their friends (who have no idea when enough is enough) pressurising them to drink at the park or something.
Post # 11
It depends on what you call “children”. Starting when I was about 14-15, my parents would pour me a glass of wine on holidays and special occasions. I’ll probably do the same with my kids.
Post # 12
My grandpa used to give me tastes of his wine coolers, does that count? lol
Post # 13
We were given very watered down wine for pesach and sometimes at Christmas (love an interfaith family for all the big occasions). Alcohol was something to be enjoyed socially in moderation. From my early teens, I was allowed to partake of wine when my parents did. It wasn’t taboo.
I did go a bit crazy in my late teens, somewhat assisted by the fact that I’d realised that I’d inherited the iron liver of the women in my dad’s family (my cousins, aunt and granny could all hold their liquor, whereas the boys are lightweights). I could drink all night, not feel wasted and wake up without a hangover.
Post # 14
I had my first Guiness when I was 7 years old my father gave it to . My father is from Alabama and I am glad it showed me that it is okay. I am not a heavy drinker and only drink socially. I have given my girls wine from the time they asked what is that. They are both grown and I must say they are not heavy drinkers and I think it is because I didnt make them feel that it was bad. So when they do go out for a drink they dont over drink and can enjoy themselves.
Post # 15
From the time I was 13 or so, I was allowed to drink alcohol, pretty much whenever (within reason, obviously not before school in the morning or something stupid like that). I am 22 now and could care less about alcohol. I will have a few drinks every now and then (well, before I got pregnant) but it wasn’t exciting to me. I will probably do something similar with my kids, depending on their maturity level. I feel as though it taught me my limitations in a very safe, controlled environment and I never felt the need to sneak around.
Post # 16
We were allowed to taste whatever my parents were drinking but it always seemed gross to us!