As a parent, it’s important to feel comfortable talking to your child about alcohol, and that in return, they feel comfortable coming to you with their questions and concerns. Being prepared to answer some common questions can help you feel more confident about having conversations about alcohol and underage drinking as they grow! Here are some of the questions that come up often—and ways to answer them in ways that resonate well with tweens.
Why is alcohol bad for me?
- It interferes with your judgment. You might make really dangerous mistakes like going to places or doing and saying things you shouldn’t.
- There are long-term effects to drinking, and starting early can lead to health issues. Drinking too much over a long period of time can damage just about every organ in your body.
- Your body and brain are still developing and growing. Alcohol dangerously interferes with that growth.
Grown-ups drink alcohol, why can’t I?
- First, it’s against the law, and there’s a reason for that. Alcohol can be misused, and people must be old enough to take responsibility for drinking. Statistics show that adolescents who drink are highly prone to accidents and dangerous situations. Plus, you are young and your body and brain are still growing.
- Also, certain privileges come with age. This is not limited to drinking alcohol but other things too. Adults not only are allowed to drink, they can also drive cars and vote. But adults have increased responsibilities in addition to the privileges that come with age: they go to work, pay taxes, and provide for their families.
Just because you drink doesn’t mean you’re drunk, right?
- Many factors affect whether people who drink are drunk These include gender, weight, how fast they are drinking, and whether they have had water and a meal with the drinks. This goes for beer, wine, or liquor.
- It is important for any adult to know their limits and to drink responsibly. Making healthy decisions is important for adults too! Here is one parent’s story about how responsibility starts with them.
Why isn’t alcohol illegal?
Alcohol is a longstanding part of our culture, and most adults who drink are able to enjoy it responsibly. There was a time in our history when it WAS illegal to consume alcohol, but now there are laws in place to make sure that people who do choose to drink do so within certain legalities.