How to Enjoy a Safe and Pleasant Holiday With Your Family
By Gina Ciliberto, Volunteer for the Courage to Speak Foundation
Here are great tips to keep you and your teens safe this holiday season:
1.) If you are having a holiday party where adults may be drinking offer a selection of nonalcoholic drinks to your guests. Do not hand guests alcoholic drinks when they arrive, instead ask them what they would like to drink and make your guests feel just as comfortable drinking nonalcoholic drinks as they would alcohol.
2.) Do not serve alcohol to minors. Some parents may believe it is safe to serve their teens alcohol in the presence of their own home, however this will not only enforce the idea that underage drinking is acceptable, but it is against the law!
3.) If your teen plans on celebrating with friends during part of the holidays, know where they will be and who they will be with. Create a safety plan such as: your teen must check in with you periodically throughout the night, they must inform you of any changes in their plans for that night, they will NOT get into a vehicle with someone who has been drinking and they will NOT attempt to drive if they have had anything to drink. Make sure your teen knows they can call you for help at any time. Although you may not agree with your teen’s decision to drink, it is better to make sure they get home safe than for them to avoid calling you in fear of getting in trouble.
4.) Alcohol is not a holiday celebratory requirement. Remember that it is not rude to refuse alcohol and encourage your teen to have the confidence to refuse alcohol if they do not want to drink.
5.) Attend parties with others who do not plan on drinking. Remember you can have a great time without consuming alcohol!