What to Do if You Suspect Your Child Is Drinking

Maybe your child comes home from a party smelling like beer. Or you find that a bottle of wine has gone missing. Whatever has roused your suspicion, it’s important to take action right away—the earlier the issue is addressed, the better the situation will be.

  • If you suspect that your child has a serious drinking problem, don’t hesitate to get professional support and help. Many physicians and addiction counselors can offer information on treatment options. You can also use the Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator from the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration to find a treatment program near you.
  • If your children try alcohol, address the issue directly and positively. Use it as an opportunity to help them learn from mistakes and make better decisions in the future.
  • Many kids respect a direct, honest approach; if you think your child is drinking, it may be best to just ask them directly. Don’t be condemning or judgmental—just try to get the facts.
  • If your child is drinking, it’s very likely that her friends are drinking as well. Talk to your child’s friends’ parents about ways you can ensure that parties and get-togethers remain alcohol-free, such as by having an adult supervise these events.
  • Getting other adults involved can be a great help if your child begins drinking. By recruiting your relatives, your friends, your child’s friends’ parents, and other caring adults to your cause, you can ensure that your child is receiving positive messages about avoiding alcohol use on a regular basis.

Many teenagers experiment with alcohol, so if you find that your daughter or son has had a few drinks, don’t get too freaked out. It doesn’t mean that she or he is a bad kid—just that you’ll need to take some positive action. Talk to your child right away and work with her or him (and other parents) to prevent further underage alcohol use.

 

Comments

1

You say “talk to them”, but you don’t give any hints about what to say, and what might work to encourage them to refrain from drinking.

I have just found out my daughter has tried pot and tried drinking alcohol. I have told her that she has made bad judgment in boyfriend (who is the one who got her to try the pot) that he is not allowed to drive her around and not allowed in our home. We also have shutdown her privileges in sleepovers where it was boys and girls ( where this drinking took place) . She was told that is the way it is until she proves that she can be trusted again. Do you think this a good approach?

i think they should talk to somebody and go threw some type of class that will help them an keep them from drinking and driving. then there parents will not have to worry about anything or be worried any more ..

The day after my birthday I found out my 16yr old was drinking. She came in the house stumbling and doing unthinkable things. To put it shortly that was an eyeopener AND the longest night of my life.I worked in a bar for over 25yrs and I have thought about since that night, have I EVER looked or acted like that. I havent touched alcohol since.

say no to drugs!!! and apple syrup!!

As a teen, I would say that some of these approaches are a bit extreme. If your kid is in highschool, there is a good chance they will have at least tried drinking and maybe some marijuana. If you over react, your child will feel the urge to rebel even more. The most important thing in this situation is to make sure your child is safe. My mom and I have an agreement where I can go to parties but I must tell her where I am at all times and never drink and drive. This works out great for us- she knows that I am safe and I can do the things I want without lying.

My son just turned 17 and working full time. He has started to drink with his so called mates after work during the week.

We would like some advice as to what to do?

He’s actually buying it as he looks older than he is, he has grown a beard in order to buy beer. He had a six pack tonight at someone’s house.

Please if anyone has advice as I don’t want to lose my son

What you need to do is tell him that if hes going to drink just please dont drink and drive

i think you should sit down with your child and calm down and the start asking a few questions related to drinking just to see where is her/his mind.and the conversation will stat to grow up from there

characteristics of alcohol

5

hank you my son is now in Rehab

You are more likely to influence your child’s drinking behaviour if you have a good relationship with them and you don’t drink yourself (in other words, lead by example).

Just let him go. He will learn in due time. Don’t ******* castrate him. Help him.

Help me please , I have a 18 year old daughter, who since her early teens has been smoking , drinking and doing pot , its got progressively worse since meeting a boy about 12 months ago , I have tried talking to her calmly , ive tried grounding her , ive tried taking things away from her , none of this has worked , she is now stealing money from us , please someone help me , im loosing my precious daughter , what do I do ???

This is a good article about the dangers of young people drinking. Don't forget to impress upon your kids the dangers of drinking and driving. Young men and women cannot process alcohol quickly and their tolerance level is very low. I have been a DUI attorney in Grand Rapids, MI for many years, and its very sad to have a client who is underage and busted for drunk driving.

It was 7am that my son came home. He was In a friends party. I saw him parking his car in the driveway. Came out of the car and started throwing up right in front of the entrance door. We watched him from inside of the house. When I opened the door he said his friend dropped him. I was very mad. But he was so drunk that he went to his room. There is no use to talk to him at this stage. Please help me what to do.

I don’t think that refraining from drinking in front of your child will really help in keeping them from drinking. I think that showing them how to be responsible is more of a way to go. However, if my child finds that my not drinking will help them I will do it. I believe that I have a good relationship with my teenager. My child even told the doctor at a doctor’s appointment that we were close. I do have a drink on occasion in front of my teenager, but I am over the age of 21 and I am a responsible drinker. I don’t drink to get drunk, don’t drink & drive, don’t drink to feel better and I am okay not having a drink when I go to a party. I do have 2 other children that are over 21 and have told them and my teenager that my father is an alcoholic so they need to be careful when and if they drink. I have also told them things to do at a party to protect themselves. Having said all that it doesn’t mean that things aren’t going to happen. I just them my teenager know that I love her and am there for her.

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