Underage drinking at home not safer

2015-05-21 06:00

PARENTS who believe that allowing their teenage children to drink alcohol at home is safer, are wrong.

The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag) recently said it is parents’ responsibility to encourage children against underage drinking, including saying no to them drinking at home.

“As a parent it is your responsibility to your children safe from underage drinking by teaching them that alcohol is for adult consumption only and to equip them with the right tools and knowledge to say no to alcohol when they are away from your supervision,” said Naazia Ismail, project manager of Sadag.

She said there are no benefits by allowing children to drink at the home or in a controlled environment.

According to Sadag, it is an adult’s responsibility to keep communication open with their children in order for them to understand the consequences and dangers of underage drinking.

She said open communication also allows guidance to be given to teenagers on how to say no to peer pressure.

“The more open your relationship with your children is, the more likely they will feel comfortable with talking to you about any issues, including alcohol. Listen to them, don’t judge and let them know they can come to you and trust you,” said Ismail.

Teaching children how to say no to their friends “without losing face” is one of the key tactics to deal with peer pressure.

“If your child is offered alcohol, they can either leave the scene, change the subject or laugh it off,” she said.

Ismail said children must learn to say no to adults who send them to the shop or tavern to buy alcohol.

Encouraging teens to take part in sport or develop interests and skills that will help them feel good about themselves is another way of curbing alcohol use in teens.

“If you don’t tell them the facts, someone else will. The ‘facts’ they get from friends are seldom true. Instead of waiting until a problem arises, talk to your teen about your concerns and the messages they may be getting from the media and their peers,” Ismail advised.

If your child is offered alcohol, here are some examples of what he or she can say, which includes using white lies that involve you or the other parent:

• “No thanks.”

• “Not today, thanks.”

• “I don’t like the way it [beer, wine, cider] tastes.”

• “I’ll be grounded for life if my dad finds out I’ve been drinking.”

• “My mom will not teach me how to drive if she finds out I have been drinking.”

• “I need all my brain cells for rugby practice [maths test, homework] tomorrow.”

To sign the pledge against underage drinking, go to www.sabstories.co.za

• People who begin drinking before the age of 15 are four times more likely to become alcohol-dependent than those who have their first drink at age 20 or older.

• Teens who use alcohol are three times more likely to be involved in violent crime.

• 67% of teens who drink before the age of 15 will go on to use illegal drugs.

• In 56% of reported rape cases, the victims have been under the influence of alcohol

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
PARTNER CONTENT
INFOGRAPHIC: New thinking required for retirement

Everything we believe about retirement is fast becoming outdated.

PARTNER CONTENT
WATCH: How education can change a life

A university education gives students the chance to create a better future for themselves, their families and to opportunity achieve their dreams.

/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.