April is Alcohol Awareness Month which is a good time for parents and other adults to examine how they use alcohol and how they talk about it in front of children and teens.
Parents play an especially powerful role in helping their children make healthy choices, but may not even be aware of the messages kids are taking from what they hear and see in their parents’ everyday lives.
Developmental psychologist Dr. Marti Erickson, host of the weekly podcast Mom Enough, says “Kids are watching and learning from us before they even can speak, so it’s never too early to think about the behavioral messages we are sending about alcohol. Talking to our children about alcohol really matters, but so does talking casually in front of our kids.”
Dr. Erickson offers guidance on how to make sure you are giving your kids the lessons they need, in both words and actions.
Here are three tips:
- Talk consistently about rules and expectations about alcohol
- Examine your family's use of alcohol
- Consider your casual comments about alcohol