At last, summer is underway. It’s the time of year when the days are long with endless hours for play and fun—at least for our kids (don’t even get me started about how little holiday time we have in this country). It’s fairly simple (though not inexpensive) to keep children busy in a variety of enriching camps and other activities. Things get tricky when our kids become teens, especially in those awkward years when they’ve decided they’re too old for summer camp but the local economy has decided they’re too young for a job.
All that unstructured time and freedom sounds like heaven for them. But as family therapist Alyson Schafer points out, all that freedom can lead to another state that ends with “dom”— boredom. Teenagers with too much time on their hands naturally look for ways to amuse themselves, she says. And when that time is completely unplanned and unsupervised, it can mean trouble.
“The teen brain is hard-wired to seek excitement and adventure, so boredom sometimes provides a spark of creativity that ignites risk-taking behaviors,” she says. “Teens who can’t tolerate being alone or find it challenging to keep themselves occupied just might decide to experiment with alcohol. Mix underage drinking with summer activities such as swimming, boating, driving and things can get pretty risky.”
Sure, it’s natural for teens to try stuff. But parents can make youth aware of the dangers of underage drinking and reduce the risk through education and awareness. Sadly, many teens will still decide to drink alcohol despite being aware of the possibility that they could be arrested if caught redhanded by the police. Fortunately, Richmond Underage Possession of Alcohol Lawyers are on hand to help those who have suffered this fate. I’ve always found that Alyson is a master at giving parents realistic ideas on how to approach potentially loaded topics with their kids. Happily, you can get Alyson’s tips for preventing underage drinking during the summer holidays with this great video:
Alyson Schafer is a family therapist and one of Canada’s most notable parenting experts. She is the resident expert for Huffpost parents and The Marilyn Denis Show. She is a member of Canada AM‘s parenting panel. Alyson is the best selling author of “Breaking The Good Mom Myth” and “Honey, I Wrecked The Kids” and her latest, “Ain’t Misbehavin.” She is an internationally sought out speaker and you can find her free parenting tips at alysonschafer.com.