What Parents Can Do
Navigating through teen years can be difficult. Here are some simple things you can do to guide your teen through these challenging adolescent years.
Talk early. Talk often. Talk about alcohol.
Set Family Rules
It is important that your teen knows your position and expectations when it comes to underage drinking and illegal drug use. Research shows that clear, strong parental disapproval is the key reason teens have chosen not to drink.
Get to Know Your Teens Friends
An effective way to head off peer pressure your teenager may be feeling, is to get to know your teenager’s friends.
Be Home and Awake When Your Teen Comes Home
The majority (70%) of Barrington High School teens report that their parents would probably not catch them if they were to go out drinking. This is partly due to sleepovers and partly due to parents not being home or not being awake when their teens come home.
Careful consideration must be given to sleepovers. Contact the hosting parents and confirm that they will be home and engaged to ensure that the teenagers will not consume alcohol.
Make a commitment that you will be home and awake when your teenage returns home after being out with friends. Your teen should know you will be home and awake.
Monitor Your Household Alcohol
Most teens don’t buy their alcohol at the local store. They take it from their home, without the knowledge of their parents or they steal it from refrigerators in open, unattended garages.
Talk to your teen about the alcohol around the house. This alcohol is not for their use. Close your garage door when the garage is unattended, or remove alcohol from a garage refrigerator.
Have a Code Word for Difficult Situations
You and your teenage need to develop a “Code Word” which they can say on the phone or put in a text alerting you that they need help getting out of a difficult/dangerous situation. Work out this “Code Word” in advance and be ready and willing to help your teen if they ever use this “Code Word.”
It’s Never Too Early to Talk With Your Kids
Discuss drugs and alcohol with your kids early and it often. The Barrington LEADs website provides age-appropriate suggestions for talking with your kids (link)a bout drugs and alcohol. It’s not just one conversation, repeated and frequent conversations are shown to be most effective.
Be prepared for tough questions. Did you drink when you were my age? If drinking is bad for me now, then why do you drink? When you talk with your kids about alcohol and drugs, be ready to field these tough questions. Learn More…
Spread the Word
Talk to other parents and spread the word about the importance of addressing underage drinking. On this issue, there truly is strength in numbers.
Join Barrington Leads
Membership is free and it is a great way to stay knowledgeable and up to date on this issue. Join Barrington LEADs
Attend Leads Parent Coffees
These informative sessions typically start with a local expert providing background on a particular related topic, followed by open discussion among parents. View the upcoming schedule. Barrington LEADs Parent Coffees. Learn More…
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