Positively engage and set boundaries for your kids.

The way that parents interact with their children plays an important role in how they craft conversations about alcohol and, ultimately, how well children follow their rules and advice.

Encouragement and warmth combined with appropriate discipline helps parents set boundaries that children respect and understand. Children raised with both clear rules and loving support tend to be able to make better decisions. They’re more likely to look to parents for guidance as threatening situations come up in their lives.1

Think about your style of parenting as you review the important information about underage drinking and find an approach that works best for you and your child.

To learn more about different parenting styles and approaches, visit the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism.

1National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (U.S.), “Parenting to Prevent Childhood Alcohol Use,” National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, last modified February 2017.

Illustration of a dinner party with a kid holding a glass of wine.

2 in 5 PA parents find it acceptable for kids to drink alcohol on "special occasions"

About the same percentage of parents (37%) believe it’s natural for children to experiment with alcohol and trust their child to experiment responsibly.

Tip: To help your child avoid the risks associated with alcohol, it’s important to learn the facts. It’s illegal for anyone under the age of 21 to drink alcohol – regardless of the situation. And children who begin drinking at an early age can be four times more likely to have problems with alcohol later in life.

Dear Parent

If there’s alcohol abuse or addiction in your family, consider using situations your child has seen as teachable moments.