Would you allow your 14 year old to go to a party and have 1 or 2 drinks?

(96 Posts)
tjah04 Fri 01-Feb-13 12:30:12

It is a house party with other kids from school.

Personally I am shocked but have been told that I have no idea and to wait until mine get older and I will understand.

I do not understand. My Dsis says that it is a compromise with a teenager and she is working on mutual respect.

I am worried that this type of compromise undermines a parents authority.

What do you think?

mrsjay Tue 05-Feb-13 10:21:14

erm no not at 14 I guess your sister is trying to be mates with her dd but that is really up to her, my eldest dds friends mum used to give her alcohol to go out with at 13/14 her reason is well at least I know what she is drinking hmm

I did let my dd drink at 16/17 on a few occasions so I suppose i am a bit of a hypocrite, I didnt give her any but was end of exams and I did tell her to not come in pissed, so not really given permission

niceguy2 Tue 05-Feb-13 10:17:20

I don't get why so many people are in such a hurry for their teens to grow up and why saying no sometimes is such a bad thing.

It's not so much I am in a rush for my DD to grow up but neither can I stop it either. It's more the fact that I believe that as a parent of a teenager my role has swapped being the final decision maker to helping her slowly make her own decisions and stand on her own two feet. Only clamping down when it's imminently dangerous.

So if she wants to try a drink or two I'd allow it since she has shown herself to be sensible & mature in other areas. So i make it clear I am trusting her with the expectation that she will not want to betray that trust. Plus it means if something goes wrong, she doesn't have to hide anything and we can step in to help if needed.

Lastly it worked for my mum. She didn't ban me and was happy to nip across the road to the off license to buy my beer. Even when I got busted at school for drinking on a school trip, she never punished me. It took away that mystique and rebel without a clue mentality which comes with alcohol. I don't drink at all now. What's the point? It's flipping expensive, bad for your health and I can enjoy myself without resorting to drugs. I guess that's what I'm aiming for with my DD. I've not seen her drink for ages even when I offer.

Saski Tue 05-Feb-13 10:17:11

No. Really, NO.

I'm not sure how hypocrisy comes into it. Can you actually be a good parent and not be a hypocrite? Bar those few angels who walk among us, there are any number of things that a parent might do that they would not want their child to do.

chocoluvva Tue 05-Feb-13 10:03:25

I have teens aged 16 and 13.

At that age she was allowed to have half a glass of wine at home. I think I managed to frighten her off drinking at these parties by explaining about the way it loosens your inhibitions with potentially very embarrassing effects, long before you're at the rolling drunk stage and how it affects your judgement so you can't resist having too much once you've started. She wasn't allowed to drink. It's not that I don't trust her - I just think that expecting a young teenager to be sensible at a party with drink is unrealistic, however sensible they normally are and the risks are too much.

(She took alcohol-free beer to one party to give the impression that she was having a drink, but that's not always going to be a good idea).

There was a news item about a year ago reporting the government chief health advisor's advice to not allow ANY alcohol before 15 at the youngest as it has a much greater effect on under 15s. Not that my teens would pay any attention to him! I think the potential for being the source of other people's entertainment and photos was what worked in my DD's case. Worth a try OP.

Alcohol at these parties does seem to be the norm now.

Arcticwaffle Tue 05-Feb-13 09:44:38

Yes I would, if child is fairly sensible in general (which my dc are so far). I'd rather they were talking to me about drinking etc and it was out in the open. I'd assume that a 14yo who really wants to drink would be doing so anyway with or without my permission.

I had an authoritarian father as a teenager and, hmm, none of us willingly go near him now. I'm going to err on the liberal side.

cory Tue 05-Feb-13 08:47:45

Dd started going to parties with drink available at 15. She does not drink personally, she is on medication and doesn't like the effect anyway, but I understand that her friends have occasionally got drunk. I see no reason in not letting her go as I trust her to make sensible decisions. She has nice friends who do not put pressure on her.

Ds is going to be more of a problem...

TheCatInTheHairnet Tue 05-Feb-13 03:31:51

No. There is a huge difference between a 14 year old and a 16/17 year old. I started drinking at 14 and it just isn't something i want for my children. I don't get why so many people are in such a hurry for their teens to grow up and why saying no sometimes is such a bad thing.

SirIronBottom Tue 05-Feb-13 02:33:24

Not at 14, no.

kaumana Mon 04-Feb-13 22:19:28

When I was 14/15 it was fairly easy to get booze from the local corner shop, normally vodka or cider. Parents had NO clue what we were up to!

I now have a 14 year old and my attitude to underage drinking has changed somewhat, go figure..

As a 40 odd year old I've realised the destruction that alcohol can wreck on lives both young and old, so I question why we consider it a norm that people have to do. Do we have to consume alcohol ( a toxin) to be part of society now?

Don't get me wrong I love a glass of wine but something strikes wrong when we are talking about introducing a toxic substance into our teens lives earlier than is even legal. We would not be talking about this if it was cigs or other drugs.

Not looking for an arguement just something I've been thinking about recently.

VictorAndBarry Mon 04-Feb-13 22:00:05

No way!

morethanpotatoprints Mon 04-Feb-13 21:59:05

No way on Gods earth and she wouldn't be going to the party unless I spoke to a parent, who'd be present. I would also ask the parent why alcohol was permitted?

But thats just me smile

redroseruby Mon 04-Feb-13 21:56:03

my teen went to his first party this week. All his friends were going to stay over at one house, planning to walk there after the party. I wanted mine to come home so that
1) I knew he was safe and
2) I could be certain he had not drank alcohol or had anything else!
I kept in touch with him until 2am via text, then his friends walked him home before they all went to stay at one lads house. He came in, absolutely sober - even though booze was available he has not got any desire to drink at the minute. Most of his friends did drink, but 2 or 3 of them were like him and did not bother. Apparently the girls were drinking far more than the lads - Is this usual?
Anyway I found out the next day that all the others had NOT told their parents they were going to the party ! It seems I was the only mum that knew about it. I am glad that I can trust him, that he is totally honest with me and that he chooses not to drink. I am under no illusion he may choose to drink in the future but he knows that I feel strongly that he is too young. It shocks me that some parents think its ok for under 16s to drink. It also shocks me that kids feel the need to lie to their parents about where they are because their parents will not, under any circumstances allow them to stay out late on the rare occasion there is a party. By the way, I did not drink alcohol so could have picked him up, but wanted him to show me that he could be responsible, have a good time and choose not to drink or smoke, or god forbid anything else. I also chose to stay awake until he came in.... I am expecting most parents to disagree with m here, however I am happy with the honest trusting relationship I have with my teen, and want to strengthen that so it may continue. School nights he is in by 9pm latest and in bed by 10pm latest. This was a one off .... what do people think?

Scholes34 Mon 04-Feb-13 12:36:10

OP - difficult for you to form an opinion if you don't have teenagers. You need to know your children and give them a good understanding of the effects of alchohol on their bodies and how it's not on to knock back a load of vodka someone's older sibling has provided - be it at a party, or out in the park on a warm evening in the summer.

AntimonySalts Mon 04-Feb-13 10:59:46

complexnumber - my parents weren't remotely draconian about alcohol. We had tastes of wine for special occasions when we were small, increasing to a glass of something when we were teenagers.

I never went to parties, so that wasn't a problem - and didn't drink alcohol until my final year at university. Even then, I didn't drink myself into oblivion - it was a couple of drinks and that was that. I don't drink much now - I'm not bothered either way.

But if my DC were 14 and wanting to go to parties with available alcohol, I would definitely be saying no. The only house party I ever went to was when I was 17. I rang my dad to ask him to collect me as I was so horrified by the drunkenness.

bruffin Fri 01-Feb-13 18:30:26

Ds 17 probably had hid first drink at a party at 14 and goes to lots of parties has never come home rolling drunk.

I got a phone call from a parent when Dd 15 was 14 and asked if she could have a drink. I said okay if she wanted. She tried 1 wicked and wasn't over keen. She has been to 2 or 3 more parties and again hasn't drunk.
We don't drink much at home but let them have a drink on special occasions and they are sensible and don't see the point of getting ao drunk you can't remember what you were doing.

Nope! When I was 14 we got our friend with big boobs and a low cut top to buy vodka for us. The '1 or 2 drinks' (usually something sugary and not tasting of alcohol at all) were provided by parents, we then topped that up very easily!

cantspel Fri 01-Feb-13 17:41:27

My youngest is 15 and i would trust him to have a couple of beers if he went to a house party. A couple meaning 2 and only normal strenght like fosters or carling.
He has done nothing to make me think i couldn't trust him so until such a time as he proves my trust misplaced then i will continue to treat him like the responsible young man he is.

Oh an as a 15yr old, I was completely sloshed most saturday afternoons at a rugby club.

I'm not sure about this one tbh. I think it depends a lot on what the friends are like, and each individual child.

Chances are, most kids will have a drink at a party anyway, even if they have said they won't be/haven't.

My just 15yr old went to a new year party and had 2 drinks, and came home and told me so. At first I wasn't overly pleased she'd been drinking but then she was responsible enough to stop at 2, and was open enough to tell me too.

amicissimma Fri 01-Feb-13 17:32:48

No. And that is the recommendation of my DCs (one teen, one early 20s) who reckon that the people who go to those young teen drinking parties are 'the sad losers'.

Lafaminute Fri 01-Feb-13 17:32:45

Ì drank at 14. I was not wild (though I had pretty adventurous friends who've turned VERY respectable in old age and are horrified that THEIR teens are trying to get up to same as they didconfused!) but my parents did their best to be understanding and open in the hope that I would be open back - that aspect did make me try to do my best by them - while keeping up with my adventurous friends. I would have been OFF THE RAILS if my parents had openly condoned my drinking underage. I dread my children reaching their teens but my rough plan is to try and instill responsibility and an understanding of their health and then fingers crossed and hoping and praying and involking an assortment of Gods to look after them......hmm

complexnumber Fri 01-Feb-13 17:31:48

I started drinking in pubs when aged 14 (I think things were a bit more lax in the 70's). I'm not trying to argue that was a good thing, but there were plenty others my age doing the same

I'd be interested to hear from those posters who think 14 is too young, when did they start drinking alcohol, and what was their parents attitude at the time.

(As an aside, I remember my aunts telling me that my dad was captain of his pub's darts team aged 15, he's now in his mid 80's)

TroublesomeEx Fri 01-Feb-13 17:30:39

Oh and he isn't doing it without my knowledge, because we're quite open about discussing stuff and he's allowed to have a small drink with a meal at special occasions at home.

He isn't interested in having a small drink with a meal and he doesn't go to the parties.

TroublesomeEx Fri 01-Feb-13 17:29:03

No, I wouldn't allow it.

My son is 14 and I know that some of the kids in his year are having house parties and some get drunk.

He doesn't have any interest in drinking but I didn't at the same age either.

HoneyStepMummy Fri 01-Feb-13 17:20:13

Compromise?? What is there to compromise about?? My DSD is 16 and there is absolutely no way I would allow her to drink. I'm not naiive and of course I know that teens drink and do drugs, but that doesn't make it OK. We are responsible for her safety. I understand that I can't control what goes on behind my back, but I can control what goes on in front of me and what values we teach and portray.

We had made it very clear to her to never drink and drive. We said that if you ever are in a situation where your ride is drunk (or you are) to call us for a ride or a taxi and we won't get mad. Well, a bit mad maybe...

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