Certain social situations can be difficult to navigate. When your child first went to college, you may have had many concerns about how he or she would handle those situations, but you had confidence in his or her judgment. Of course, alcohol consumption takes place at many college events in Indiana, and peer pressure is a serious issue.
Though you have undoubtedly talked with your child about the effects of alcohol and the fact that underage drinking is against the law, you will not be at every event to monitor whether he or she avoids trouble. Unfortunately, if someone tries to pressure your child into drinking, he or she may have a hard time saying no.
Obvious peer pressure
Various types of peer pressure exist, and your child may not even realize that someone is trying to pressure him or her into drinking or into drinking more. Some of the more obvious types of peer pressure in regard to drinking include the following actions:
- Handing someone an alcoholic beverage whether he or she asked for it or not
- Encouraging someone to drink, even if that person seems hesitant or disinclined
- Refilling a person’s drink with more alcohol without asking
- Hassling a person for not drinking
Even if someone else knows that your child is underage, that person could still encourage your child to drink with a complete disregard for the law and for your child’s well-being. Still, being in a situation where any of the previously mentioned actions occurs can make it more difficult for your child to avoid drinking.
Subtle peer pressure
Peer pressure can also occur in more subtle ways. For example, others may tell stories about their nights out drinking and make it seem as if they had a great time. Of course, many of these adventures may be exaggerated or not have happened at all. Still, your child may feel left out if he or she does not have such stories to tell. The popular groups at school could also portray drinking as being cool, and others may consider drinking a way to fit in.
It can be immensely difficult to feel like an outcast, and if your child does give in to peer pressure to drink, it may not go well. Your child could end up facing criminal charges for underage consumption, and if so, you may need to help him or her find the best way to address such an ordeal.