To-do lists, gift shopping and celebrations with family and friends can sometimes dominate the holiday season. Even though your hands are likely full, don’t loosen rules and expectations with your teens, especially when it comes to underage drinking. Opportunities for your teens to encounter peer pressure can heighten during the holidays.
Keep these pointers in mind to help prevent underage drinking this holiday season:
1. Be consistent.
Reinforce the same expectations you have had with your teens throughout the year. The holidays should not be a time to bend the rules.
2. Ask open-ended questions.
Ask open-ended questions to learn about your teens’ holiday plans, understand their approach to situations involving underage drinking and help build their confidence to say no.
3. Watch your schedule.
Make sure you’re not leaving teens with nothing to do and room to engage in underage drinking. Invite them to join you in crossing off to-do list items as a way to spend more time together and create holiday memories.
4. Be mindful of adult-only celebrations.
Parents are the no.1 influence on children with regard to underage drinking. If you’re serving alcohol in your home during the holidays, make sure it’s an adult-only celebration.
5. Monitor overnight stays.
The holiday break means more down time for teens and opportunities to spend quality time with friends. If your teens plan a sleepover, be sure to talk with their friends’ parents to make sure everyone is on the same page to prevent underage drinking. A great tool to help you to monitor is the Upriver Youth SAFE HOMES Network.
Safe Homes is an initiative to encourage communication and positive peer pressure among
and other drug use, and to protect our children from environments where irresponsible and unsafe substance abuse can create life-long dependency.