Teens who don’t consider all the consequences are more likely to drink and drive. Since teens pay most attention to short-term consequences, parents need to set clear no-alcohol use rules and enforce consequences. Riding with an Impaired Driver Someday your teen may be faced with deciding whether or not to ride in a car with an individual who has been drinking. Emphasize to your teen that getting in a car with any impaired driver is extremely dangerous. Set a clear family rule: No riding with any driver under the age of 21 who has been drinking.
Wrong Message? Some parents worry that offering a ride home could send the wrong message and make teens believe it’s okay to drink alcohol. Even if you offer a ride home, you can still enforce previously established consequences for breaking the no-alcohol rule. Assure your teen that safety is the first priority. When teens have good communication with their parents and trust that their parents won’t overreact (by getting angry and setting harsh or unknown punishments), teens are more likely to call home for help.
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