Advice for parents about teenage drinking and drug use/abuse
- Don’t ignore the fact that young people start drinking alcohol at a young age.
- Talk to your children about drugs and alcohol; don’t ignore the issue!
- Teach your children about drinking responsibly.
- Be open with your children about drugs, but don’t tell them what to do.
- If your child has a problem with drink or drugs, get help and advice to understand how you can help them.
- Trying to control your child won’t stop them from using drugs.
- Age at interview:
- Emma is a first year university student and is on a University sports team. Heavy drinking every week is part of team building. She tries to be responsible by knowing her limits with alcohol. Ethnic background: White British.
Drinking age limit or not they will be able to go out and get alcohol, and, I think people have to be aware that, if they want to think of it as a problem and I think it probably is then, but they just have to be aware, it’s naïve to think that people aren’t drinking from a young age, people now probably at thirteen are going to some park with a bottle of Vodka they’ve managed to, I don’t know, take from their parents’ cupboard or an older sibling’s bought for them, or, you know whatever it is, they will be able to get hold of the alcohol and they will drink so there needs to be this awareness of, eighteen would be an ideal, you know, it’s not, it’s not like that, it’s not like that at all, so that that needs to be understood, and parents need to understand that as well, they need to understand that if they are able to talk to their children about alcohol that would probably be better, you know? If you , if you are in a situation where, you know, you’re a young person and you have been drinking too much, if you know that you can go and be like, “Mum, Dad, I’ve drunk too much I need to go to hospital.” If you had that position I think that every parent would probably see that that is better than a young person thinking ‘I can’t go home right now I’m too drunk, I’ll go’ you know, somewhere else or whatever. There needs to be an understanding of parents that it’s a, it’s a part of growing up now I guess, and if they can introduce alcohol responsibly in the home from a younger age then I’d say that’s preferable, but I think recognition that young people are drinking is very important.
- Age at interview:
- Jim lives with his partner and their baby. He works as a retail assistant. He plans to study and wants to work as a drug education practitioner. Ethnic background: White British.
You might also be interested in reading young people's views on family relationships, drugs and alcohol.
Last updated: January 2015
Review date: January 2017