On The Talk today, the ladies touched briefly on the subject of drinking while on a “playdate”. Now, I don’t do traditional playdates very often. I don’t get with other moms, whip out our blackberries and day planners, debate over when to meet, for how long, and what snacks will be served. Most of the time, my friend Jen comes over with her son, and she and I sit at the table and talk while the boys systematically dismantle my basement. It’s the way that God intended.
But neither of us are really drinkers, so the thought of introducing a glass of wine or a cocktail into the mix never crosses our minds. Maybe hers, but since I don’t drink, it doesn’t cross mine. And I think, if she said, “I’m gonna drink this bottle of Smirnoff Ice (her drink of choice) while they play,” I don’t think I’d have a problem with it. It’s not like she’s drinking the entire case. If I drank, I might mix myself a Mojito, as well.
Well, I was watching that show today, and the ladies brought up the idea of drinking while at a playdate, and is it appropriate?
“Somebody needs to stay stone, cold sober,” was one of the comments.
Well, obviously. I don’t think anyone thinks that getting rollicking drunk while your kids play Legos in the next room is a great idea. But is there harm in having a single glass of wine, or a beer while the kids play?
Sharon (Osborne, married to Ozzie-the-Bat-Eater) said that when her children were young, Ozzie was an active alcoholic, so she was very sensitive to the children seeing any kind of alcoholic use at all. I can understand her paranoia, of course. An alcoholic cannot give a balanced example of responsible alcohol use. There is no way that kind of drinking is a good influence on children, and she was right to try and keep it far away from them.
But NO alcohol at all? How does that give a model of good behavior? How does that teach children that yes, an adult can have a glass of something, still remain sober, and have good judgement? When I was young, my parents didn’t drink, but plenty of relatives did. I saw adults having a glass of wine with dinner, or a cocktail in the late afternoon while they sat and talked. It was never hidden, never forbidden, it was simply a fact of life. I grew up and had an occasional sip of Christmas Champagne, or snuck a swig of beer, screwed up my nose, and vowed to NEVER drink that disgusting stuff again. And, aside from my college years, never really did.
But I really think that my family’s responsible attitude toward drinking had a profound influence on me. As I said, my parents never drank, but they also never shielded me from those who did. When I had questions about it, they were answered frankly. Yes, people can drink too much and that can cause problems. No, you may not have an entire beer, but if you really want to know how nasty it tastes, go ahead and taste.
When did our society become so paranoid about everything? Is this really a nationwide problem, moms getting drunk while their children play? Do you think it’s completely inappropriate to have a glass of wine or a beer at a children’s playdate?