I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Influence Central for Anheuser-Busch’s
Family Talk About Drinking Program. I received a promotional item to thank me for my participation.
I’ll start here with a warning – this post is a lot longer than my average blog post. I’m pretty passionate about issues related to alcohol, especially when it comes to teens and those stupid enough to drink and drive (both teens and adults). I understand, as you will soon, that I tend to ramble a lot when I’m passionate about something. That said, what I’m about to write is
super Über important and well worth the read! If you have a teenager, please do so and then, leave me a comment to keep the conversation going!
As the mother of two teenagers I was really grateful to join in on a special round-table discussion on Family Talk About Drinking with FTAD Spokesperson, educator and certified parent coach, MJ Corcoran. Like me, the participants were concerned about preventing, and handling, the issues surrounding teen drinking. Of course, my motto is just don’t do it but that only takes me so far! It also just happens to be the end of the school year so the timing couldn’t have been better – the end of the school year can sometimes mean trouble for many teens in the midst of prom and graduation season! Parents, if you haven’t had the “drinking talk” with your teens, there’s no time like the present! If you have, now is still the perfect time to reiterate your stance!
One of my fellow participants mentioned that she talks with her teen about how dumb underage drinking is , and, although her teen agrees, she worries about how she might react to find out that her teen did in fact partake in underage drinking. MJ responded with some excellent advice, she said, “Show that you trust your teen by setting clear boundaries so she knows what the rules are, and follow through with consequences that are related. If you suspect your teen is drinking, its important not to attack her or make accusations. Address her in a neutral tone and setting – then, based on your house rules, decide on the proper consequences for her actions and ways of handling alcohol in the future.”
[Tweet “If you suspect your teen is drinking don’t attack her or make accusations #ABFamilyTalk”]
I know as a parent it’s up to me to set boundaries and expectations for my kids when it comes to underage drinking. I love the strategies and tips promoted in the Family Talk About Drinking campaign – its truly a great resource! It’s really important though, to understand how to approach your teens – even with those tips under your belt. That old adage, “there’s a time and a place for everything” really does apply! We can talk to our teens until we are blue in the face (and often do!) but unless you create the right atmosphere those deeper, more meaningul conversations about alcohol and the risks of underage drinking, especially during prom and graduation season, will be lost on them!
MJ Corcoran advises that this season is the best time to engage your kids in the conversation. She says,
When you have a teenager, windows of opportunity to talk can open and close fast. Use prom and graduation to continue the conversation around underage drinking. Set clear boundaries and encourage good decision-making this prom and graduation season.
I know better than anyone what we’re up against – especially that monster known as peer pressure! But, a ecent GfK Roper Youth study found that we’re more powerful than we might have thought – in fact, the research shows that parents have the greatest influence on teens’ decisions about drinking alcohol! That’s just one reason why its so important to connect with your teen and make sure that you listen to them and respect their opinion, even if you disagree while reinforcing what you believe to be the best way to handle a situation like teen drinking.
Also, Corcoran suggests that we, as parents, ask open ended questions to really get the conversation going and to get our teens to talk out potential scenarios involving alcohol. I think that’s great advise and I know from first-hand experience open-ended questions go a lot further than yes or no questions which tend to elicit the eye rolling “Yes, Mom!” responses as said teen starts walking away!
[Tweet “Encourage accountability and check in with a call. #Prom #ABFamilyTalk”]
Both of my teenagers in the third stage of parenting, ie, the Coach stage, ages 14-21. This is such a huge time of transition and the tips from Family Talk About Drinking are so helpful! I’m certainly taking MJ Corcoran’s advice to heart. She says,
Parenting independent thinkers requires creating a parenting style to match. Focus on listening and creating accountability. This method is the “Coach” approach — the most effective way to stay connected and extend your influence.
About the Anheuser-Busch Family Talk About Drinking Program
Anheuser-Busch collaborated with MJ Corcoran M.Ed to create Family Talk About Drinking, a program that helps parents talk to their kids about alcohol, underage drinking and responsible choices.
More than just a set of rules, Family Talk About Drinking is a supportive community that allows parents to learn new ideas, share stories, and ask questions about how best to tackle the problem of underage drinking.
Visit the website here or find Family Talk About Drinking on Facebook and be sure to download the free Family Talk About Drinking Parent Guide here!
$25 e-Gift Card Giveaway
Enter below to win a $25 e-gift card for you to spend time with your teen(s) discussing the topic. Contest entrants are only eligible to win once per sweepstake, per household as part of a campaign sponsored by Influence Central.
17 thoughts on “Anheuser-Busch Family Talk About Drinking Tips and a $25 e-Gift #Giveaway to Kick Off Your #ABFamilyTalk”
This is a hard topic to discuss with your teens. As a parent, you don’t want to come on too strong where they won’t share information with you, but you don’t want to be too soft about it and give them a sense that you don’t think this is an important topic. You also need to let your child know that if they got into a bad situation or a friend did, that you are always a phone call away to help them with no questions asked at that moment, but know that it will be discussed later once things settle down.
I am lucky. I never had a problem with drinking with my teenagers. I did tell them, though, that if they ever needed to, that they could call us anytime of the day or night to come get them. At home, they knew if they wanted a beer or glass of wine (whe they were over 16) they could have it. They never did. I guess it took the fun out of it?
My tip is be honest. Use the internet for pictures and stats. It may be graphic but sometimes teens need a shock, I think.
I think you are right. They tend to have the “not to me” belief and the truth is bad things can happen to anyone!
I have two teenage sons and my husband and I have spoken to them about drinking. We have also told them that if ever they get into a situation that either them or someone who is to drive is drinking, to call us with no questions asked and we’ll pick them up wherever and whenever.
I live in Wisconsin.. drinking is pretty much all we do here haha.
I think first it is important to lead by example. Our children never saw us abuse alcohol or drink before driving. They also knew that if they were ever in need of a ride they could call us no matter what.
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I found it easier when I talk to my teens is to not talk down to them. They like it when I am completely honest with them.
My tips to offer other parents are to keep an open dialogue with your children, and when they are teens, you should move from a supervisor role to an adviser role. Thanks for the giveaway!
I think being very open with your children is very important. Let your kids ask questions and answer them honestly.
We have had the talk about drinking and driving to our teenagers. Our son now is 21 and knows that if he goes out and drinks then he needs to call one of us to drive him home.
My tip is be honest and tell the truth.
I would say to be honest with your kids about it. Sharing a story about yourself and maybe how you drank when you were young and regretted it might help. I think it would help kids relate.
I know my daughter has had alcohol as a teenager but I have talked to her honestly about the effects of drinking if you drink and drive, or drink a lot.We do not keep alcohol in the house or drink in front of the kids.I want to be an example for them.Every opportunity I get I show them news reports of teenagers that have died from alcohol poisoning.I am very aware of what can happen,my brother is an alcoholic.
My best tip is to be as honest as possible with them. It is a good idea to have plenty of facts with you when you sit down to discuss it. I think it is also important to do it in a gentle way and ask them to ask you any questions they might have.
I grew up in an alcoholic home. My father was a falling down drunk who could not hold a job. My mother was mentally ill. We suffered terribly. When I had my four sons we attended a Christian church & school where drinking was frowned upon completely. The oldest at age 16 or 17 started when he went to a different high school. The next three did not drink until they were sophomores in college. Now only the 1st and 3 enjoy drinking. None are alcoholics. I think the longer you keep them away from alcohol the better. But THEY LEARN BY EXAMPLE. If a parent drinks and parties that is what being a grownup looks like to them. You cannot tell them not to drink and then drink to excess yourself. My husband drank until my oldest was 22 so I think it’s why my oldest followed in his footsteps.