In the United States, the legal drinking age is 21, and for other countries, it varies. Nonetheless, being the teens that they are, they will always find ways to find and drink alcohol before reaching such age. As a matter of fact, based on statistics, most teens have tried drinking one or two by the time they reach the age of 17. This could also imply that your teen may try driving even after a few drinks. Perhaps they may even get inside a car with someone who has been drinking and is now driving.
If you have a teen, this fact can be very much scary. However, this should never cross your mind if you educate your teens about the risks they face when they drive intoxicated. What follows are some things to do and to tell your teen to stop them from driving after putting some alcohol in their system.
1. Be there for your teen. This may sound very basic, and you may even think that your child will come to you with just about anything. However, most teens these days avoid picking up their phones and calling their parents when they need a ride home. Why? Well, a lot of teens find it embarrassing to be calling their parents to pick them up after they have been drinking, more so, if they know that they will be punished for it. However, for your teen’s safety, you should talk to them and tell them that you are there for them. Let them understand that it is okay for them to call you or your spouse for a ride home regardless of the time.
2. Let your child understand that you know that teens not of legal drinking age still drink. Just be sure that you also explain to them that there is no reason for them to drive drunk or ride with someone who has been drinking. Once your teen knows that you do not condone their drinking, they will have more chances of avoiding drinking while driving.
3. Give them a transportation alternative. You can take away the temptation or need to drive from your teen by giving them extra money for some Uber or taxi if they do end up in a sticky situation.
4. Do not drink and drive yourself. Children will always learn from what their parents are doing. Thus, if you do not drink and drive, you can expect your children to not do the same regardless if it is just a glass of cocktail or wine at dinner.
5. Educate them about what will likely happen to them if they will drive after drinking. Let them read the news clips, explain the consequences to them, and show them photographs. The more they know about the dangers of drunk driving, the less likely it is that they will do it.
6. Keep your home free from alcohol. If you have any alcohol inside of your home, lock them up. If possible, you should not let your children see you drinking at home. If your children can easily see them or have easy access to them, then drinking may become a normal and casual thing for them to do. And clearly, they will not have to think twice anymore with driving after they have had a few drinks.