If you suspect your teen struggles with alcohol abuse or binge drinking, it is important to talk to them about what you see. Let them know specific behaviors you have observed that concern you and ask open ended questions. Avoid making threats or entering into a power struggle with your teen by stating facts. Explain the physical, mental, and legal consequences of underage drinking to your teen.
Consider teaching moments to bring up the subject, such as television commercials about alcohol, parties you may attend as a family where drinking occurs, or when stories of a consequence that occurred as a result of alcohol are on the news.
Eat dinner together. Research has shown that teens from families who eat together infrequently are twice as likely to engage in risky behaviors, such as alcohol abuse (CASA, 2006).