Sunday, February 22, 2009

Parenting: Can One Drink Determine Your Child's Future?

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As a child I got to know my mother’s habits. My mother drank several times a week. She loved her beer and brandy. She partied; I can say she had her fun. Once she got older in her late thirties she slowed down a lot. After awhile she eventually stopped. During her time of drinking, she allowed me to taste alcohol at some point. I thought it was nasty and didn’t care much about it. I was between 14 and 15 years old. Never once did my mother tell me it was ok to drink, she just let me experience the taste of it. I got older and I started drinking on occasions. I don’t consider myself an alcoholic; I just like to have a drink from time to time to relax. I have no need to have it or no desire to keep it in my house at all times.

My friend’s son is 13 going on 14 years old. For New Years she let him taste some champagne for the celebration. It was about a half of an 8oz cup. The next day he told his dad and his dad called her. He asks her if it was ok for him to let their son do drugs a few times a year. Of course, she said no. Then he proceeded to ask her; why would you let our son drink alcohol? She explained to him that it was just a little taste, to bring in the New Year. He said well you should have given him sparkling water instead of alcohol, which is true. My friend could have made a better choice and gave him the sparkling water instead of champagne. She figures it’s just a taste. What harm can it do? Before this she has never allowed her son to drink anything except this one time.

My friend’s Father use to be addicted to drugs and was an alcoholic. He had a rough childhood. He had parents that really didn’t care and let him do what he wants. He has changed his life for the better and now is a born again Christian. He tells her that by giving him that taste can ruin his life. He tells her that he could become an alcoholic and a drug addict and that it is illegal to give alcohol to minors. I thought she made a bad decision, but how can you determine what the future holds for your child with just a sip of alcohol? Explaining to him that it was just one time, he goes on and asks her; What if I just shot somebody one time. Is that ok? I asked myself what that has to do with the situation now. How can you compare murder to giving a half of cup of champagne to a minor? There is no comparison. He acts as if she gave him a taste of evil.

He says that he’s not trying to make her seem like a bad mother, but he had a funny way of showing it. She’s a wonderful mother and would never tell her child that it is ok to drink or do any kind of drugs. She had never done any drugs besides smoked some marijuana and that was long ago. I think he made too much out of the situation. He could have just discussed it and let her know he disagrees with what she has done. Instead he has made her feel like a bad mother and that she has ruined their son’s future. Determining someone’s future from just a cup of cheap champagne is ridiculous. I agree that she should not do it again, but she says she wasn’t planning on too. It was just one time. She has learned her lesson.

I don’t think her son’s father should not make out what there son’s future is going to be like because of the life he has lead in the past. You can raise your children up to be honest and to treat people fairly, but sometimes their life does not turn out the way you have hoped it to be. One mistake is one mistake and you learn from it. Something that is really not too serious shouldn’t be based on the whole life of one’s future.

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