Underage Drinking Prevention Education Project (VAHPERD- Virginia Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance)
Resources for Parents & Other Caring Adults
- The Underage Drinking "Talk" Saves Lives
- "No Drinks for You” - Anti-Social Hosting
- Law Enforcement: Social Hosting
- Don’t be a Party to Teenage Drinking
- There are Costs to Being the Life of the Party
Parents are the Key to Preventing Underage Drinking
Virginia teens say they ride in cars with impaired drivers and that their parents don’t talk to them about underage drinking*. It is a fact that parents are the key to good decision making related to drinking and driving.
Research has shown that young people are less likely to drink when parents are involved in their lives and have close relationships with them.
Adolescents are less likely to drink and have alcohol related problems when their parents:
- Have close relationships with them and are actively involved in their lives;
- Message that underage drinking is unacceptable;
- Set clear rules and expectations about drinking; and
- Provide consistent, caring discipline for infractions.
And, while it is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that teens are “safe” as long as they drink in your own home or under adult supervision; this may actually encourage underage drinking and result in higher levels of harmful alcohol consequences for young people… and for you. So:
- Get to know your children’s friends;
- Have regular conversations about life in general;
- Remind your teens that most teens do not drink alcohol or use drugs;
- Connect with other parents about sending clear messages about the importance of not drinking alcohol;
- Do not make alcohol available to your children; and
- Supervise all parties to make sure there is no alcohol.
* 2018 Choose Your Vibe twitter chats raise concerns about impaired teen drivers; Only 20% students in 2018 campus focus group recalled parent alcohol conversations before college.