Research shows that parents are the greatest influence on teens. Exercising that influence by actively listening and holding their teens accountable for decisions about underage drinking is something that parents should be encouraged to do. Asking open-ended questions gets teens thinking about what they would do when and if they’re offered a drink – and the potential consequences.
The San Ramon Valley Alcohol Policy Coalition is a group of community members working to reduce underage drinking and youth access to alcohol. We want to remind parents of the resources available to assist them in helping their children make decisions. Talk. They Hear You, is a campaign that aims to reduce underage drinking by providing parents and caregivers with information and resources they need to start addressing the issue of alcohol with their children early (Web Link). MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) also has practical information to help you have what might be an uncomfortable talk (Web Link). Effective communication, paired with education and effective law enforcement, are essential to reducing underage drinking.
Remember, it’s our collective responsibility to help prevent underage drinking. For more information, please contact Patty Hoyt, Alcohol Policy Coordinator at Discovery Counseling Center (925)837-0505 X417. Visit the San Ramon Valley Alcohol Policy Coalition on Facebook.