My two youngest boys (4 and 6) play baseball in a local league. We have played in other leagues and I also grew up at the ball fields. So I have been astonished to see parents drinking alcohol at my son's practices. When I consulted other family and friends, this seems to be more acceptable than not. The league rules state no alcohol, but it is happening in the fields and at the concession stands. Am I being ridiculous for showing concern?
Dr. Harley Rotbart: Alcohol has no place at Little League -- whether on the bleachers, at the concession stands, or in the parking lot. In addition to setting a bad example for kids, parents who drink are more likely to be inappropriate with their actions and words, and they can display poor sportsmanship. Speak to the league officials and insist on sign placements that clearly state zero tolerance for alcoholic beverages. If the league officials do not comply with your requests, report them to the parent organization (Little League; Pony League; Babe Ruth/Cal Ripken baseball, etc.). In the worst-case scenario, you may have to find a different place for your kids to play, but there are plenty of other leagues that do not allow alcoholic beverages at practices or games.
Dr. Harley Rotbart, a nationally-recognized parenting expert, author, speaker, and educator, has been a Pediatrics specialist for the past 30 years and is Professor and Vice Chairman of Pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and Children's Hospital Colorado.
This article first appeared on Parents.com.