HELPING KIDS MAKE GOOD CHOICES The biggest reason why teens drink is peer pressure. A friend might directly suggest your child participate, saying “Let’s go get drunk,” or your teen might assume everyone else is doing it and that it’s an acceptable thing to do. Kids need ways to resist this pressure. You can suggest they use simple “one-liners” that remove the pressure without making a big scene or issue about it. For example, your child could respond simply: • “It’s just not for me; it’s not what I want.” • “I don’t drink.” • “No thanks.” Your child might also consider: • Offering an alternative, like “I’d rather have soda.” • Making an excuse, like “I have a test to study for tomorrow” or “My family is waiting for me, and I’ve got to go.” • Having an explanation, like “I really just don’t like the taste.” • Changing the subject. You can’t completely protect your son or daughter from peer pressure, but teaching your teen to make good choices and by supervising and monitoring his or her activities, you can help shield your teen from the most dangerous situations.
To learn about alternative activities to drinking that other kids have recommended and to take our underage drinking myths quiz, visit madd.org/powerofparents. ALTERNATIVE ACTIVITIES
Helping Kids Make Good Choices
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