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5 Tips for Making Your Teen’s Prom Sober and Safe


Throughout May and June, high school seniors begin gearing up for what can feel like the biggest night of their lives. Prom night can be a great way for your child and his or her friends to celebrate making it through four years of school together. And in all reality, prom night can sometimes lead to reckless drinking and drug use.

Dealing with Reality

Prom after-parties are where most of the drugs and libations flow and, as has been well-documented, the results can be potentially fatal.

Luckily, as a parent, you have a great deal of control over how your child’s prom night goes. Here are five simple tips to help ensure your teen’s prom is enjoyable and safe.

Talk Honestly with Them

Find out details on the prom night. Do you know their date or the group of friends they’ll be hanging out with? What time does the event start and end? Getting as much information as possible will be able to help you set reasonable expectations.

Set Some Ground Rules

Although it may seem implied that your child shouldn’t be drinking or getting in a car with someone who has, teenagers often get caught up in the moment on prom night. Make  it clear that you expect them to follow the rules you’ve set.

Establish a Curfew

The chance of car crashes and deaths increase exponentially late at night. In 2008, 56% of teen motor vehicle crashes occurred on weekend nights between 3:00pm and midnight. If your child asks to have their curfew extended that night, find out where they will be, who is supervising the party and when they will be home.

Don’t Rent a Hotel Room

An unsupervised hotel room is simply asking for a party where drugs and alcohol take place. Keep the party local and, if your teen insists on getting a hotel room, make sure an adult is supervising the party.

Be Up When They Come Home

As the old saying goes, “Nothing good happens after midnight.”  Make sure you’re in a position to be awake when your child comes home. You’ll likely be pleasantly surprised that they followed your ground rules and they’ll have some fun stories to share with you.

The potential dangers of prom night can be easily avoided. With a small bit of communication and effort on both sides, your child can close out their high school career on a strong note.

Additional Reading: Keeping Your Teen Sober is a Family Affair