Meet the MacPhersons - Mum's Decision

Listen to the scenario below


1. Does mum provide the alcohol thinking that’s what other parents will do?

Many parents provide alcohol thinking they then know what young people are drinking, but:

  • There is evidence parents can benefit their children by delaying their initiation to drinking alcohol
  • Drinking with parents doesn't protect against risky drinking.
  • The earlier a child starts drinking the higher their chances of experiencing alcohol related problems once adults
  • Family based programs can help to prevent young people misusing alcohol
  • Young people may take this as ok to drink excessively
  • They may still drink more. It’s good to agree boundaries and set clear rules.

2. Does mum discuss with Katie the dangers of drinking alcohol and what risky things can happen when you’re under the influence?

It’s better to have this conversation before young people start experimenting with alcohol.

It's recommended that those under the age of 15 refrain from drinking and that initiation is delayed for as long as possible, at least until over 18. Young bodies are more vulnerable to the effects than adults. Family rows, difficulties at school and problems with behaviour can be linked to underage drinking.

Risks of being drunk include:

  • Unintentional sex, and consequent unplanned pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections
  • Being a victim of crime and violence
  • Unsafe driving by young people or their friends
  • Hypothermia

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