Every teenager is going to deal with peer pressure at some point, and they are also likely to inflict the same thing upon other teens. In some instances, this can be relatively harmless, but peer pressure can also cause teenagers to undertake risky behavior such as drinking, experimenting with drugs and having sex before they are emotionally ready to take such a big step.
Because of this, it is imperative for parents to take the time to discuss these issues with their teen. Keep in mind that getting drunk even one time could lead to serious legal consequences, especially if your teenager makes the bad decision to get behind the wheel while they are intoxicated.
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Tips for Discussing Peer Pressure and Alcohol with Your Teenager
1. Be Honest
The main reason that teens tend to tune adults out is that they believe that the majority of the warnings that they are given are very hypocritical. For example, if you keep alcohol in the house, it will be harder to convince your teenager that alcohol is bad for them. Therefore, you should utilize the honest approach to let them know about the negative side effects of drinking that you have personally experienced.
Keep in mind that most teens are terrified of the thought of being embarrassed in front of their peers, and you can use this to your advantage by letting them know about situations from your past when you vomited or did something inappropriate in front of others because of alcohol.
2. Discuss Consequences
Many states have a zero tolerance policy for underage drivers, and this could cause your teen to lose their license for an extended period. Additionally, having a DUI on their record can prevent them from getting certain jobs, and it could even bar them from attending their college of choice. In other words, even if they do end up drinking with their friends, you need to make sure that they understand that driving while they are intoxicated is one of the worst decisions that they could ever make.
In fact, many parents opt to let their teen know that they will pick them up if they are drunk instead of taking the risk of needing to hire a DUI lawyer to help prevent their teen from ruining their life with one mistake. One DUI lawyer Philadelphia based, states “I strongly believe that every client deserves a strong defense when he or she is accused of a crime, especially one that can have such far-reaching implication on his or her life.” When this happens retaining a lawyer is vital for your teen.
3. Encourage their Individuality
The truth about teenage drinking is that many teens would avoid alcohol altogether if they felt strong enough to stand up to peer pressure. Therefore, you should always take steps to help your teenager feel confident so that they will not easily give in to peer pressure.
Realistically speaking, most teens will end up experimenting with alcohol at some point. However, if you take the time to discuss the negative consequences of drinking with your teenager, you should be able to help prevent them from doing anything that could jeopardize their future. Keep in mind that the best way to do this is to be honest and to let them feel secure enough to call you for a ride if they end up getting drunk.
As a mother to 3 teens, Lisa Coleman understands the importance of discussing alcohol with your teens, including the consequences such as DUI’s. The Law Offices of Steven E Kellis, a DUI lawyer Philadelphia based, can represent and counsel a client facing such charges.