How young is too young? We’ve heard this question many times in regards to kids drinking alcohol (especially when you consider how the drink is treated around the world). In this case, though, how soon do you teach your children about alcohol? In honesty, we would like to think that kids should be introduced to this dangerous drug as soon as possible (in conversation, that is). Many parents are concerned about piquing their kids’ curiosity or inciting too much fear into their kids. In reality, though, children, teens, and young adults are eager explorers who are willing to listen to anything you have to say (even with a little eye-rolling the process). Let’s take a closer look at how you can teach different groups of kids about alcohol.
Preschool: 3-4 Years
Here is the age when processes like decision-making and problem-solving start to take flight, as children’s minds explode with energy. (For example, many toddlers are fully capable of choosing their own clothing for “going out.) Obviously, this age is a little too young for the “big talk” about booze, but you can still kickstart it to a degree. How is this the case? Simply put, be a good role model. Toddlers are like sponges.
Here is where you can kick off the official conversation about alcohol, but be sure to keep all topics in the present tense (as kids might not fully understand concepts about the future and past). Children in this age range are extremely curious about the function of their bodies, so take this opportunity to talk about alcohol’s effect. In a mild way, explain how this drink impedes the ability to walk, talk, and think. Let your children know the beer commercials they see on TV are false advertising.
Here is the group of brainiacs who are willing and eager to learn anything you or their teachers throw at them. At this point, you can fully discuss the nature of alcohol and its harmful consequences and provide them with child-friendly resources to help them learn more. This is also a time when peer pressure begins to dominate, so you should beat the friends to the punch about the booze talk now more than ever.
At this point, your children should be fully knowledgeable about alcohol and all its problems. So, now is the time when you need to reinforce everything they have learned, so they can protect themselves against peer pressure. A desire for independence and a thirst for risk-taking can drive a teen to experiment with drugs and alcohol and disobey their parents. However, even if they won’t admit it, teens fully understand their parents’ wishes and respect them.
Seeking Treatment for Alcohol Abuse or Alcoholism
Alcohol is a very tricky substances to reveal to your children. As much as you want to protect them from dangerous toxins like this, different types of alcohol are in stores (where your kids will accompany you at times), and, once they reach the teenage years, booze might become a big problem in circles of “friends.” The best option you have is to beat these people to the punch and let your kids know about this deadly drug as soon as possible. As we have seen, though, there is a different way to treat it during each stage of growth and development. Don’t lay on the information too thick, too soon.
If you are suffering from a severe case of alcoholism or alcohol abuse or have a friend or loved one who is coping with this illness, get in touch with Asana Recovery today. Our professional team of counselors and healthcare experts will help you endure the painful process of alcohol withdrawal and detox and guide you along the rocky road of rehabilitation. Soon enough, you will experience a faster and much more efficient recovery.
If you want to find out more about our residential treatment or supervised detoxification/withdrawal programs or enroll in one of these programs today, we are ready and waiting to speak with you at your leisure and your disclosure. Call Asana now at (949) 438-4504 to learn how you can overcome your mental illness and take an extra step toward becoming a healthier person.