Whether you’re a first-time mom or a father of three, there’s no denying that parenthood is hard. While parents have often indulged in a glass of wine here and there after a long day of running around and taking the kids to their activities, nowadays a drinking parent culture is rising, putting more adults at risk for developing alcoholism.
To keep yourself or other parents safe and healthy, here’s what you need to know about this growing phenomenon.
What is a “Drinking Parent” Culture?
Simply put, a “drinking parent” culture is one that glorifies alcohol even in areas that don’t involve drinking. Head down to any odds and ends store, and you can find coffee mugs that stay “this is vodka” and tote bags that read “I’d rather be drinking wine.”
While these are meant to be cute and decorative, they also promote a culture in which parents drink potentially more often than they should.
How This Puts Parents at Risk
Parents Can Overdo It at Wine Nights
There’s nothing wrong with having a few friends over and hosting a “parents’ night out” with a few cocktails. However, if these are common occurrences or adults overindulge with their drinks, they run the risk of building a higher tolerance and developing a dependency on their alcohol of choice.
Alcohol is More Accepted
Oftentimes, parents turn to wine over beer or liquor when winding down at the end of the day. The downside to this is that wine is generally more socially acceptable than other forms of alcohol, so people may ignore the fact that a parent is drinking several glasses a night.
Parents Feel They Need Alcohol
Many parents may struggle to balance the rewarding moments of parenthood with the stressful moments. This can lead to them turning to alcohol as a coping mechanism, feeling as though, without their nightly drink(s), they aren’t able to function during the following day.
How to Remedy This
Find Other Outlets for Stress
Rather than turning to alcohol to cope with the everyday stresses of being a parent, try to find alternative, more creative outlets for your stress. Crafting, exercising, or joining new social groups all are good ways to work out stress. These activities can also help you meet other parents who support a more sober lifestyle.
Set Aside Time Yourself
While this can seem hard as a parent, reserving even 30 minutes a day to focus on yourself and your well-being can help you unwind without turning to alcohol.
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