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Talk to Drinkaware about various issues surrounding underage drinking – x3 £200 voucher prize draw NOW CLOSED

(207 Posts)

As with sex, drugs and the internet, I am not waiting for a particular age to start any conversations with my DCs, they have a constant drip, drip, drip of information (in a child friendly manner!) all of the time

InMySpareTime Mon 07-Oct-13 16:57:56

We've been very open with the DCs about alcohol since they were 6 or 7, answering their questions honestly, and modelling a responsible attitude towards drinking.
I don't think there's an "ideal age" to begin conversations about alcohol, it needs to be part of an ongoing conversation about personal safety, risk and responsibility.

MoogDroog Mon 07-Oct-13 16:16:59

I think it is vitally important, as are conversations about other drugs. My DC are very little at the moment, but I'll talk about alcohol if the subject crops up e.g. What are you drinking daddy? I'll talk about it in an age appropriate way.

I think I'll start having the proper conversations around age 9 or 10. The attitude to alcohol in this country alarms me, and as someone who used to work in substance misuse education I understand more than most the potential dangers. I don't expect them not to experiment when their older, but I want to minimise the harm and risk.

supermariossister Mon 07-Oct-13 14:11:01

i think its likely by the age of nine a child would have seen alcohol in day to day life and be able to understand what it is and seeing it consumed in a responsible way would be important. at around nine to ten i would feel comfortable explaining

teenagetantrums Mon 07-Oct-13 11:34:09

I would say drink is one of those like sex that has to explained in an age appropriate way, and they are never to young, when ours were little they knew that wine and beer were grown up drinks and they were not allowed to have them as they would make them sick. Obviously when they went to high school we had a more in depth discussion with them, about the effects of drinking, what it can do to their bodies and how drinking can effect their judgement of how to be behave in certain situations. We revisited these conversations more regularly when they were 15/16 and started going to parties, especially in regard to drinks being spiked, after this happened to my cousin. My teenagers are allowed to drink, they will have one at celebrations with the family. I'm sure they drink more when with friends but I have yet to see either of them drunk.

dahville Mon 07-Oct-13 11:31:06

It is absolutely critical that we speak to our children about alcohol awareness; I don't want my kids growing up thinking that falling down drunk and being sick after drinking is normal or acceptable.

I think 8 is the right age for gentle conversations about alcohol, maybe after they've someone a bit tipsy. Definitely by age 10 I want to have had a good, serious conversation about it.

MichelleMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 07-Oct-13 11:12:12

Drinkaware would like to find out Mumsnetters' opinions on talking to your children about alcohol and underage drinking.

Here's what Drinkaware have to say, Drinkaware is pleased to be working in partnership with Mumsnet to raise awareness about the issues surrounding children and alcohol. By providing tips and expert advice to mums, we hope to encourage them to feel confident in talking to their children about alcohol in the pre-teen years, before the onset of peer pressure. For more detailed information on how to do this and to practice conversations using our interactive video, go to"

This thread will be open for one month, during which we will add new questions (with a total of three questions over the month) to the thread. All of the questions will centre around how to approach issues surrounding alcohol with your children.

Before we add a new question to the discussion there will be a prize draw for a £200 Amazon voucher for everyone who added has their comments and thoughts to the thread so far.


1. "Thinking about those (sometimes) tricky conversations with your children about topics such as sex and relationships, drugs, online safety: how important do you think it is to talk to them about alcohol, and at what age do you think is the best time?"

2 "Medical experts recommend children are not allowed any alcohol before 16. Do you think this is the right age? Or do you think that you should introduce children gradually to alcohol from a young age under your supervision?"

3 "How much of an influence do you think your own drinking behaviour has on your child? Do you think it is OK for your child to see you or your partner drunk?"

Thanks and good luck!


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