28/04/2011 07:23 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 06:12 BST

Children More Likely To Abuse Alcohol If Parents Let Them Drink

Children more likely to abuse alcohol if parents let them drink Getty Images

A new study has found that children whose parents give them alcohol to encourage 'responsible drinking' are actually more likely to suffer alcohol related problems.

The report's authors claim that instead of fostering a sensible approach to drinking, mums and dads who allow their children a 'tipple' at meal times, or under supervision, are actually giving them mixed messages about alcohol.
The study found that kids allowed to drink under parental supervision not only drink more than their peers, but are also a third more likely to suffer alcohol-related problems such as getting into fights and suffering blackouts.

The report's author Dr Barbara McMorris, from the University of Minnesota, said: 'Despite the fact that peers and friends become important influences as adolescents get older, parents still have a big impact.

'Kids need parents to be parents and not drinking buddies. Adults need to be clear about what messages they are sending. Kids need black and white messages early on.

Such messages will help reinforce limits as teens get older and opportunities to drink increase.'

What do you think?
Do you allow your children to drink alcohol?
Do you think you are teaching them about responsible drinking by doing so?

Half of all kids have seen their parents drunk