Today is the last weekday of a rainy and gloomy spring break. It’s been a long week of my kids bickering and whining. Listening to them argue and meeting this week’s deadlines was stressful to say the least.
All their antics made me wish for a glass of wine at the end of the day. Mom’s special drink.
But does stress release really means a special drink?
Even more importantly, do our kids need to hear us say, “What a rough day. I need some of mommy’s magic juice.”? Especially if their behavior is the cause of our stress?
As one of this year’s #TalkEarly bloggers, I’m rethinking how I talk about alcohol with other adults in front of my kids. My husband and I have been very open about our alcohol consumption with our kids. We’ve discussed with Sophia and Jaxson how alcoholic drinks are for adults and how alcohol affects our brains and bodies. We tell them how harmful it is for children.
While that discussion is important, it wasn’t until I joined the #TalkEarly that I noticed how often I and other moms around me talked about alcohol as stress release. Especially on Facebook on Fridays. I laugh out loud at the memes about 5 o’clock and wine because I can relate. Parenting is hard. Especially when your kids are stuck indoors during a rainy spring break.
So what message do I give my kids whenever I reach for a glass of wine after complaining about my rough day? What about when my husband sees how tired and stressed I am and tells the kids, “Mom’s had a rough day. I’m making her special drink.” (Which by the way is margarita. He makes a mean margarita!)
I didn’t really think of the implications of this kind of talk before. I don’t say in front of my kids “I’m feel fat” because I want both my daughter and son to have healthy perceptions about body image. Instead we talk about eating healthy and exercising instead of body size. Why can’t I talk about decompressing and alcohol in a similar way?
There’s nothing wrong with having a glass of wine or margarita at the end of the day. Some nights I relax by binge watching House of Cards in my bed, and other evenings I decompress with a glass of red wine. To be honest, bubble baths and trashy magazines are my favorite way to relax. So maybe Entrepreneur and Oprah magazine aren’t trashy mags, but they’re my fun reads.
Since April is Alcohol Responsibility Month, take a few minutes today and think about how you talk about alcohol and stress/destressing, especially in front of your kids. Check out Responsibility.org for great resources about talking to your children about alcohol.
And yes, I’m so glad it’s Friday and the kids go back to school next week.
I am compensated for my participation as a #TalkEarly blogger. All opinions and stress are my own. But I can share my stress if you want some.