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Cocktails For Your Kiddo?

My parents used to give my siblings and me a sip of wine in a cordial glass on special occasions when we were kids. I never thought anything of the festive vino since much of the excitement came from drinking it from the fancy glass.

I recently read an interesting piece on Babble that got me thinking about it. Much like European parents, the writer, Gretchen Roberts considers wine part of a meal. She said:

When five o'clock rolls around, I pour a Vouvray to sip while chopping ingredients for supper. Since they were tiny, our children have watched their parents enjoy a mealtime glass, and even taken sips for themselves as we teach them the difference between Prosecco and Champagne, Pinot Grigio and Pinot Noir. (Sophia is partial to reds, I'm proud to note, and both girls love to clink glasses together in a "cheers" and to try to master the swirl of liquid around the glass.)

Do you agree with her sentiment?

lickety-split lickety-split 9 years
my 9 year old takes the wine at church (whatever it's called) and thinks it tastes "yucky". good. i don't need a child with a taste for the drink. why would anyont think that was a good idea. all the things to learn about and she thinks wine is where to go. maybe teach about healthy food, spices, fractions with how much is going into different recepies. let kids do kid things.
j2e1n9 j2e1n9 9 years
So much is coming out lately about alcohol being bad for you that I would want to protect my kids from this irritating addiction as much as possible. Maybe one day I will be able to give it up for good, too.
rgrl rgrl 9 years
Partysugar defending the right to party! LOL! I completely agree though.
partysugar partysugar 9 years
I always used to sip my dad's gin and tonics as a girl – in fact I still do to this day. However, what I think is the craziest thing about all of this is that in this country at age 18 you can fight for you country and purchase a weapon that could kill someone. Thus, I will never understand why, at 18 years, one has the right to kill but not the right to enjoy a beer or a glass of wine.
milosmommy milosmommy 9 years
I'm with you Blair. I grew up in an old school Italian household and was allowed to have a tiny glass of wine with dinner as a kid. They just saw wine as what you drink with dinner. It was tiny so it wouldn't have done any harm. My mom let me drink wine coolers with her as a teen. Her theory was that if I wanted to have one I could have one as long as I was with her. She said she'd rather have me drink with her than my high school friends where she could watch me and teach me moderation. And truthfully I was at lot less excited about it than my peers in college who would drink themselves sick because I was taught early that it was no big deal. I am not damaged or anywhere near an alcoholic. In fact I rarely drink. I'd say it's a bit much to say it's child abuse to let your child sip some beer or wine before 21. Give me a break.
karlorene karlorene 9 years
when i was in elementary school, and went to a friends house for a new years party, the mom gave us sparkling grape juice in wine glasses... looking back i think that's a really cute idea since it made me feel grown up even though i wasn't drinkin the real stuff!
uptown_girl uptown_girl 9 years
My parents didn't drink regularly, but I do remember them letting me try a sip of champagne on New Years when I was about 11. I thought it was nasty. And once when I was younger, like 6 or 7 I took a sip of my dad's drink (thinking it was Coke) when he wasn't looking. I almost gagged it was so gross. I think it must of been a rum & coke. And he would have an very sporadic beer while barbecuing on occasion. But they really didn't drink, but they raised me to know it wasn't a huge deal. I mean, I KNEW I wasn't supposed to do it, and they made that clear, but it wasn't a mystery. The biggest deterrent for drinking was my somewhat scary alcoholic uncle (by marriage ONLY thank God). I caught on early what that smell + behavior was, and that it wasn't good. My point is, a sip here and there in their lifetime = no big deal. Not something regularly done. Most Europeans are raised with a more open-minded view, and the legal drinking age is lower, which I think is fine. WAAAAAAAY back when it was hard to get clean water, people drank beer & wine. YES, EVEN CHILDREN. Water had parasites & stuff in it. But, from what I understand the alcohol content was lower (in the beer anyway). WHEW! I got long winded again.
MotoLinz MotoLinz 9 years
You're the voice of reason, Jen. :)
Kimpossible Kimpossible 9 years
I agree with Angel as well and foxie, and the others who are vehemently against this.
foxie foxie 9 years
To me this is no less dysfunctional or messed up than it is to smoke pot with your kid.
jennifer76 jennifer76 9 years
Parents do a lot of things to and for their kids that they wouldn't want someone other than them to do. It's our job to teach them to try to differentiate. I remember it being very clear to me that this was a family thing. I also knew it was ok to go get myself a glass of water or milk, but I never thought it was ok to go grab myself a glass of wine.
Kristinh1012 Kristinh1012 9 years
I would steal sips of beer when I was young, but I was never handed a drink. Also it was beer not liquor. And beer was just gross to me, it was more the thrill of knowing you were being a rebel. I have an 8 year old daughter and a 2 year old. My 8 year old would probably start crying if I handed her a glass of alcohol and told her she could drink it. It's not right and you shouldn't be teaching your children it's OK to give children alcohol. When someone other than you hands them alcohol (for so many BAD reason I can think of), they probably wouldn't stop to think about whether it's OK or not since they THINK IT IS because YOU made them think so.
MindayH MindayH 9 years
I think that teaching children that anything in excess is bad. Having the occasional sip of wine or beer when I was little (which I didn't even really like that much) showed me what the adults were doing, and I was never curious about the taste or tempted to sneak off and try some unsupervised. I think the same goes for teaching kids about over eating. I think that it is important to teach kids how to make the right decisions when they are adults.
CaterpillarGirl CaterpillarGirl 9 years
I used to be aloud to sip drinks as well, and my mom would make a Hot Toddy when I was about 14 and sick with a head cold (According to the Wikipedia) Hot toddy is a name given to a mixed drink that is served hot, believed to have originated in Scotland.[citation needed] Although there are many variations, essential ingredients are: a hot beverage which may be tea, coffee, cocoa, water, etc. an alcoholic spirit such as brandy, rum, or whiskey. usually a sweetener, such as honey, sugar or syrup. Other ingredients that are often added: spices, usually "brown" spices such as cinnamon or cloves. citrus, such as lemon or orange. Lemonade can be used instead of hot water and citrus; this is a modern variant. a little butter. Hot toddies (such as mulled cider) are traditionally drunk before going to bed, or in wet and cold weather. They were believed to help cure the cold and flu,
kikidawn kikidawn 9 years
My sister and I got sips before, but nothing major. We never really liked it anyways. I think the first real time I drank was at my graduation party and it was one drink (rum and cherry limeade - still my fav! I'm 21 now) and my parents gave it to me. Oh and I was 19 ... I was older than all my class! lol I never drank in high school or have any inclination to party now in college... just not my thing. Even now if my s/o and I go out we decide who gets to drink and who doesn't. If he drinks, I don't and I drive home. I might take a sip to try what he has, but that is usually a couple hours before I am even driving! And I agree it's a lot about drinking out of an 'adult' glass. My sister and her best friend drink grape juice out of wine glasses when in the hot tub at night w/ my parents .... b/c my parents have a glass of wine in wine glasses every night when they all get in the hot tub (My sister's 16). Sorry this is so long... and I guess I really don't know what my point is! lol... I guess I just don't see the harm in letting them try it ... but I'd say don't start the sips until they are like 10 or so.
katedavis katedavis 9 years
My dad was ADAMANT about no alcohol before 21. I remember sometimes getting a sip of his beer when I was little, but after that no more. I think it would have made alcohol less of a big deal if he didn't have such a zero tolerance policy.
AujahAcorn AujahAcorn 9 years
LOL Duck Duck Goose!! MR. Goose! love it! I have a MR. Acorn I guess. I do not have children and am not sure on this topic. I don't want alcohol to be a mystery but don't really want to be educating my children on the difference between a red and a white. i guess i need to figure this out before children.
bluesarahlou bluesarahlou 9 years
I was allowed to taste what my parents were drinking as well. And it really demystified everything. At parties when I was a teen I wasn't the type to binge, since it wasn't a big deal to be drinking. Children are curious, forbidding them to try something (in many cases) only makes them want it more.
jennifer76 jennifer76 9 years
I totally agree with her. My parents used to occasionally give my brother and I wildly watered down wine with pasta at dinner time. I understand that is pretty commonplace in Europe. :? Like Lil said, the most exciting thing is using the fancy adult glass.
alethia037 alethia037 9 years
I agree with Blair - my parents used to give me sips of their drinks, and I think that is the reason that I never really got into "partying" when I was a teenager. If I wanted to know what something tasted like, I asked if I could try it. I almost never liked it! My father owns restaurants that are big in wine sales, and I have followed in his footsteps. He began teaching me the differences in wines when I was younger, and I now have a more experienced palette than most others my age. It has helped in my job immensely.
vmruby vmruby 9 years
Not a good idea letting children sip any type of alcohol.I just don't see the point.
duck-duck-goose duck-duck-goose 9 years
Mr. Goose and I do not drink alcohol, so we haven't any occasion to offer it to our children.
rgrl rgrl 9 years
21 is not the legal drinking age in the entire world Masqueraded_Angel. Do you ever drive over the speed limit? I think most rules can be broken a little bit as long as you use your best judgement.
rgrl rgrl 9 years
Small sips are ok, but it sounds a bit much when the kids are being educated about different types of alcohol. I'm not sure I agree that's appropriate. :ponder:
mini_pixie mini_pixie 9 years
I agree with you, Angel- although I do not think alcohol should be a big "mystery," it is definitely something that should be reserved for grownups. It is not about puritanical denial of the senses, it is about what a child's system is able to handle. Just as I will not let my daughter drive or smoke pot before she becomes a grownup, I will not let her drink either. My dad did not even pretend to offer me a glass of wine until I turned 21, even at my wedding (I got married at 20). They also policed where I was and who I was with carefully while I was a teen. This is not to say that I did not drink at all when underage, but I definitely didn't overdo it to the extreme that my friends all did because I knew what the consequences would be. My dad actually came from a household that allowed him wine as a child, he even went with his parents on a wine tasting tour of Spain as a pre-teen, and was the toast of the wineries with his critiques. But he felt that this led him down a bad path, and has worried that he is a borderline alcoholic. My cousins were all allowed wine as kids, but I was not, and I sometimes wondered about it but it never bugged me, it just was how it was. Sorry this got so long & personal, but I just want people to understand that I can see the different sides to this argument, but for me the most important part is the welfare of the child & the care you take of their growing and developing brain.
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