Great News! You Can Now Blame Your Drinking Problem Entirely On Your Parents

For the longest time, your parents have probably asked you to own up to your drinking problem. To get you to admit you have “issues” with “alcohol” and get you to “seek help.”

Fucking parents are such buzzkills. And anyway, it’s probably their fault you’re so hooked on the hooch.

We already know the role genetics plays in alcoholism, but a new piece by The New York Times investigates another prominent factor.

Your idiot parents giving you booze when you were young.

That’s right. It’s all thanks to that Christmas dinner when you were 11, when you asked your Dad what his wine tastes like. Instead of saying no, for some reason he let you try a little bit.

Now, you are a deadbeat boozehound.

Researchers looked at 452 children in Pennsylvania to see what factors might predict which ones would start tasting alcohol from ages 10 to 12.

The lead author, John E. Donovan, a professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh, recently wrote to me in an email that based on the cumulative research: “Child sipping is related to earlier initiation of drinking, which is a risk factor for a lot of other problem behaviors,” and related to binge drinking and drug use. His conclusion: “Parents should not be providing alcohol to their kids.”

Well, duhhhhh. The research is backed up by other studies, which found that if parents were cool with you having booze at a young age, you were gonna drink it later on.

That connection between early sipping and more serious drinking was explored in 2015 study, again published in a specialized journal, the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, which followed a group of children from the beginning of sixth grade to the beginning of ninth grade to look at whether early sipping behavior was associated with patterns of early alcohol use. They excluded alcohol in the context of religious services. The children who had tried alcohol before sixth grade — mostly at home, mostly beer and wine, mostly given by a parent — were more likely to have had full drinks or gotten drunk by the beginning of ninth grade.

This makes perfect sense to me. Parents who have slightly looser attitudes toward alcohol — “Sure, give it a try” — are more likely to raise kids who have similarly lax views on alcohol, and thus be more inclined to not view drinking as a negative.

And then develop raging, raging alcohol problems later in life.

Thanks, Dad.

[H/T @TimHerrera and @steverousseau]