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Alcohol And Parenting: Safety Rationale Behind Serving Alcohol To Minor

Can Minors Drink With Parents?


I have been thinking more about the topic of parents giving alcohol to teens. I wonder if those parents feel like they are protecting the kids. In our house, when we have people over and there are drinks, you and dad let me take a few sips of your drink. You have told me that you don’t want me to feel like there’s any mystery behind drinking. You’d much rather have me try alcohol in a controlled environment under your safety than out with a bunch of irresponsible teenagers drinking whatever they get their hands on.

Serving Alcohol to Minors

Perhaps these other parents feel the same way about bigger parties, that they can at least control the environment and keep an eye on how much the kids are drinking. I personally don’t think that this position compensates for the risks involved. But it is a better explanation than the idea that parents are doing it just to be the cool mom and dad.


I’m ok with parents deciding how best to raise their own kids (assuming it is legal, and what is considered appropriate by our society (and by the way this type of activity is shaky)). But other parents do not have the right to “control the environment”, or teach my kids to be responsible adults without running it by me first!


That seems like a likely explanation for why parents would supply. It makes sense for their own kids, but when it comes to other people’s kids I think the logic falls through. Sure, they are keeping all the kids at the party safe by monitoring them. But they are putting them at risk by giving them alcohol in the first place. There is NO WAY a parent can claim that they are able to watch a party full of high school kids and make sure nothing bad is happening. They could take the kids keys, but that only eliminates one possible hazard. I mean I have seen kids at parties play with fire, jump from high places, jump on trampolines, or just disappear.

Don’t get me wrong, I feel like high school parties are an important part of growing up and experiencing and understanding what freedom can feel like. But that doesn’t mean parents should be sponsoring the event. That’s just stupid.


If parents want to serve alcohol to their own kids in their own house, fine, that is their choice. However, they have absolutely no right to serve alcohol to my children without the my permission, whether it’s to be cool parents or to provide a safer environment.

I agree with Devon. Parents are kiddingthemselves if they think they can control a party where teens are drinking. For example, we all know prescription drug abuse is on the rise. What if one teen has taken Percocet or Vicodin and then mixes it with alcohol? I doubt the parent checks with each child about what they have consumed before coming to the party. And, as Devon said some kids just disappear. I remember a couple of years ago, teens in Connecticut were drinking during the winter, outside in a shed. They decided to walk home and one of them froze to death. I guess he sat down in the snow to take a rest, passed out and never woke up.

One of my worst fears is that these kids will get in a car, drive off and hit one of us! Serving alcohol to minors is just not worth the risk, on so many levels.


I think it’s up to the parents. If they want to serve alcohol to their kids and their kid’s friends, then fine. However, as a parent, I would start to get angry. Because then those kinds of parents are not only endangering their own kids, but my son or daughter as well. Parents can do what they want with their own kids. But if I was a parent, I would want to be in control of my kid’s safety.

Mindy Gallagher is the Social Media Manager for Your Teen Magazine. She is the assistant coach for the girls’ lacrosse team for Solon High School in Ohio.

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