Howard County teens say:
"Howard County makes underage drinking seem normal."
"I drink to feel numb."
"I think kids drink so much because of stress about grades."
"I think 90% of kids drink."
"If you're underage and drinking, you're going to binge drink."
"Drinking is a popularity stunt."
"I used to drink alot when I was younger, then I found drugs. They're better."
"Alcohol is a gateway drug, just like pot."
"I used pills and they got too expensive. Heroin is cheaper."
"Drug dealers don't card."
As part of HC DrugFree's ongoing effort to provide pertinent prevention services to the Howard County Community, we had the privilege of speaking with groups of teens and young adults to learn more about their perceptions of underage drinking in Howard County. The quotes in this email come directly from the teens who were very honest and open about their perceptions. The following is information gathered in the survey.
- 90% of survey respondents said that it is very easy or somewhat easy for someone under the age of 21 to obtain alcohol in Howard County.
- 88% responded that underage drinking in Howard County is somewhat or very common.
- 77% responded that binge drinking among 15-18 year olds is somewhat or very common.
- When asked what they considered effective prevention measures, the answers that rated highest in importance were: parent and peer attitudes.
- Most teens indicated that the most common way for someone underage to get alcohol is by giving money to someone older. Of those who filled in a response to this question, by far the most common response was: from home.
As adults, it is our responsibility to listen to what the teens are telling us. We may want to believe that they've exaggerated, nevertheless THIS is their reality.
Please make a holiday tax deductible donation to HC DrugFree to help us fulfill our mission to keep youth in Howard County drug and alcohol free. To honor or recognize a loved one on HC DrugFree's website please donate in their name this holiday season.
Joan Webb Scornaienchi
Executive Director, HC DrugFree
Teens want parents to know:
"Have consequences for your kids. Make them stick."
"Anger doesn't help."
"Pay closer attention to what you (parents) do in your own home."
"Listen to your kids."
"Remember, drugs don't discriminate."