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.
Now that your teenager has graduated high school, I am pretty sure that their plans may include going off to college. If so, be sure to sit down with him or her and discuss these 3 topics before they head off on their own.
1. Saving Money
Most teenagers don’t think about saving money. However, when they head off to college, they really need to make sure that they start saving money.
Mom and dad won’t always be around to bail them out when things happen — such as their car breaking down, a textbook that gets ruined, or even just saving to make sure they have money for later on in their life. The key here is get to saving.
2. Stay Safe
In recent years, college campuses have not been that safe for young women or men for that matter, so talk to your teen about being safe. Walk in groups when leaving the dorms, especially late at night, and never stare at your phone for long periods of time. By doing that you are basically not paying attention to your surroundings.
In fact — don’t even look at your phone while you are walking. Pay attention to the people and your surroundings.
3. Underage Drinking
When teenagers head off to college, they are most likely going to branch out and start doing things that when they were at home, you and I both would not allow. NOW is the time to talk to them about this.
Underage drinking runs rampant in teenagers — but if you talk to them about this now and inform them of the dangers, then you could possibly help them to stay out of trouble in the future.
The thing about underage drinking — especially in college — is that if you drink too much and get drunk, then you no longer have control over your actions or the actions of others.
In my town where I grew up, a young adult went to a college party, they got him drunk, and then took advantage of him causing serious injuries to his body. It saddens me to think about this and my heart breaks for him. Had he not been drinking at a party, he could have prevented this from happening because he would have been sober and able to speak for himself and walk out of this party.
The best thing to do is to ask open-ended questions that help them think through their actions, the consequences and how those choices could affect their future.
Parents CAN Make a Difference
Research from the GfK Roper Youth Report shows that parents have been the greatest influence on teens’ decisions about drinking alcohol ages for 20 years. This year’s report also shows a 24 percent increase in parents’ influence since 1991.*
If you are unsure of how to start talking to your teen about underage drinking, I offer three tips to get you started here.
For more than 20 years, Anheuser-Busch has shared the Family Talk About Drinking Program with parents to help provide them with tips on having an open dialog about alcohol with their children of all ages.
The Family Talk About Drinking website will help you discover how and when to talk to your teenager about drinking. Now that prom and graduation are right around the corner, now is the best time to talk to them.
Is your child headed off to college this fall? Don’t wait — talk to them NOW.