I’m a “Family Talk About Drinking” Ambassador

I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for Anheuser-Busch’s Family Talk About Drinking program. I received a promotional item to thank me for my participation. #MC #FamilyTalk #Sponsored

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The Anheuser-Busch Family Talk About Drinking program, helps families discuss the important issues surrounding the topic of underage drinking.  As the parent of a daughter who will be turning 18 in just 11 days and headed off to live in a dorm come fall, I’m proud to announce that I’m a Mom Blog Ambassador for the Family Talk About Drinking program. 

As the mom of an “almost” grown up, I’ve recognized that through the years there are different stages of parenting and we can tie those stages right from the beginning together to open the way for discussion to the responsible use of alcohol.

We start off by being a teacher for our children at their youngest ages (1-7).  This is when we pave the way for them to come to us as their first source of information about alcohol.  We move on to be facilitator when they’re between the ages of 8-13.  During this time we help our children make sense of a complicated world and instill our own family values in them so they can make smart choices about alcohol usage. 

Then you hit the stage that I’m in right now – coaching.  This is the time where we need to encourage and affirm the good decisions our kids 14+ have made up to this point in their lives.  It’s when we should focus and really listen to them and not just lecture.  And it’s when we need to exhibit trust by setting clear boundaries.

But really the first thing we as parents need to do is sit down and ask OURSELVES questions like: “What do we really think about alcohol and underage drinking?  What rules do we want to communicate?  Are we prepared to back up our advice with actions? and Are we trying to put our kids in a bubble or give them skills to make smart choices?

The Family Talk About Drinking program has tools to help parents focus on the importance of having conversations about alcohol and underage drinking prevention.  You can find the Stages of Parenting, a Parent Guide and advice from their Parent Coach, MJ Corcoran, on their Facebook page.  I encourage you to visit the page and download the Parent Guide as it is a great resource.

In our home we’ve always had open discussions about how to use alcohol responsibly.  But with college coming up in the near future the extra reminders to our daughter about the effects alcohol has on young minds and bodies is always a good thing.  So we’ll be using the Parent Guide over the next couple of months to reinforce what we’ve already been encouraging over the years.

During this season of proms and graduation, it’s especially important to bring alcohol responsibility to the forefront, and the Family Talk About Drinking program is a great way for parents and teens/young adults to connect over the topic.

We’re all about assisting our daughter in making sound decisions regarding alcohol.  We plan on asking her open ended questions like “If your friends wanted to drink, how would you handle it?”  We’ll take the time to listen to her about the struggles she faces as a young adult and the fears she has about living on campus, and we’ll clearly let her know our expectations when it comes to underage drinking and how we’ll handle situations that may arise due to it.  We’re committed to preventing her from drinking underage.

I’ll be posting a couple of more times during this ambassadorship to share with you some advice from FTAD’s Parent Coach MJ Corcoran, and to update you on how we’ve put into practice what we’ve learned from the Family Talk About Drinking program.

How do you aim to encourage discussion about underage drinking with your children?  Even if they’re not yet tweens or teens it’s not too early to think about it.

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