The "Cool" Parents

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  1. I was just wondering what everyone's opinions were on parents providing alcohol for their underage kids, mainly kids in high school? I hear a lot about parents trying to be the "cool" parents and buying alcohol for their high school kids and their parties.

    I personally don't think parents should be providing alcohol for their underage kids and letting them drink. What do you all think of this topic? I would love to hear some more opinions.
  2. I think it's a$$anine. (Is that the word?)

    I can't think of one right reason for doing this.

    Imagine all the things that could go wrong...
  3. NO! No, no, no, no, no!

    To raise a child to drink moderately and responsibly, you have to TEACH a child to drink responsibly. (That does not mean supplying the keg. It means letting them occasionally have wine with dinner and stressing the importance of knowing when enough is enough.)
  4. I agree it takes the mystery of it all away. I wouldn't provide it for my kids friends but if they were home then I would let them try their first beers here with us in a controlled environment and not have them rebel and drink too much and drive or get into a car with someone who is driving. I don't condone underage drinking but I know that it is inevitable and I would like my kids to be prepared for it when it happens, they will be in highschool together when they reach that age. Also I would like for them to feel comfortable calling us for a ride home instead of drinking and driving or accepting a ride from someone who is drinking.
  5. I totally agree- this is what my parents did, and while yeah, I did some partying in college then- it was never a big deal to drink, so I never really got all crazy about it. I'll do the same with my daughter- but I will never, ever buy her alcohol to "party" with.
  6. I can tell you that the kids I knew with the "cool" parents ended up being the losers who could not hold jobs, failed out of college, if they bothered to go.
    Parents are not supposed to be cool, they are supposed to be parents.
  7. yes I totally agree. Kids have tons of friends and only one set of parents. I think that parents that provide alcohol and or a place to party for their kid's friends are irresponsible. I do think though and I will not know unless I am faced with this issue that I would like to provide a controlled environment not for my kids to get drunk but to try alcohol and teach them about limits and how you can drink a ton before feeling drunk and then it hits you all at once. I wouldn't provide alcohol or a place to drink for anyone elses kids.

  8. Yeap. ITA.
  9. Kids don't respect the "cool" parents.

    Remember Mean Girls?

    Mrs. George: [serving the Plastics fruit drinks] Hey, you guys! Happy hour is from four to six!
    Cady: Um, is there alcohol in this?
    Mrs. George: Oh, God, honey, no! What kind of mother do you think I am? Why, do you want a little bit? Because if you're going to drink I'd rather you do it in the house.

    Mrs. George: I just want you to know, if you ever need anything, don't be shy, OK? There are NO rules in the house. I'm not like a Regular Mom, I'm a Cool Mom. Right, Regina?
    Regina: Please stop talking.

    The movie was based on Queen Bees & Wannabes by Rosalind Wiseman. Chapter 2 is called Passport from Planet Parent to Girl World. The first section asks "What's your parenting style?"

    This what she has to say about the Hip Parent (p. 51):

    • This parent will do anything to be liked by the daughter and her friends. This is the parent who buys beer for parties during high school, often justifying the behavior (usually after a party has gotten out of hand and other parents are furious) by believing that if the kids are going to drink, they may as well do it under their own roof.
    • On its face, it seems like a good point - teens are going to drink, and it is better to have them in a safe place than driving around looking for parties. But by buying the beer, the parent is condoning the abuse of alcohol and its use as a social crutch.
    • I've never seen a child who repected the Hip or Best Friend* Parent. Both types are easily manipulated and disrespected by their children, especially in front of others.
    • So while it may feel good on the short term, it isn't responsible parenting. And forget discipline.
    • Once you go down this road, it's almost impossible to set guidelines and rules that your daughter will take seriously. Your child wants and needs you to be a parent, not a friend with the ID.

    * The Best Friend parent is the parent that believes their daughter would never do anything they wouldn't approve of because she tells them everything and they're best friends.

    (I'm gather that, because, they're 'best friends' the mother assumes the daughter doesn't do anything wrong or doesn't bother to ask. - caitlin1214)
  10. If I had teenagers, I would definitely not buy my kids and their friends alcohol. Why? Because we live in such a litigious society, and I can just imagine some other kid's parents suing me because I provided alcohol to their dear child and then that perfect child went out and got in a car accident. A cynical viewpoint, but unfortunately a realistic one.
  11. it could also have something to do with their family culture. most europeans drink with their kids (not in mass amounts of course) just cause it's accepted in their culture.
  12. my last two BF's and my best friend in high school all had parents who let them drink - one was allowed 2 beers with dinner on weekends, current bf had a mini-keg at his grad party and was one of those "if i cant stop it, at least call me if you need a ride" kids, and my best friend was allowed beer on special occasions. All of them turned out alright. I think many of our underage drinking problems in this country stem from the high drinking age, which gives it more allure than it would have in other countries like France or Canada. Some foreign students I went to college with were sort of not interested in drinking on weekends because it held no real appeal to them. My first college roommate had the "cool parents" who allowed binge drinking in their house and supplied the beer for her and her friends, which is crossing a line IMO to give alcohol to someone else's child.

    My parents were VERY strict, although my mom said NOTHING when I brought home a bag of laundry that I had puked on freshman year when I was only 17. Even now at 25 I am not allowed to drink in the house and when we visited about 2 years ago we had some beer that we had to drink after everyone was sleeping and take the cans outside to recycling right away. Once I visited at Christmas and was so stressed out, I was like I NEED a drink, so I snuck a beer upstairs while no one was looking, pulled it out of my pocket and it was...a 7oz pony. I almost cried.
  13. I think it depends on the amount of alcohol. I think you can teach your kids to drink responsibly when they are younger, and when they get older and go off to college they won't go nuts. When I was 15 and 16 I went out to bars. I would tell my mom where I was going and she was okay with it. I never got smashed and drove drunk. Of course I grew up pretty fast and started college at 16, so every situation is different.
  14. I grew up in a small farm town, where most of the parents drank with their kids, threw parties for their kids, and bought their kids alcohol. Nobody acted like it was a big deal and nobody really did anything stupid like get in a car and drive off and get in an accident. Since it was so open, everyone knew they had a place to sleep if they drank too much or didn't have a DD, and the parents knew their kids would be somewhere safe too.

    I guess we just didn't see it as a big deal where I grew up.
  15. i sort of experienced this either my freshman or sophomore year of college. my friend's parents were the "cool" parents and they let us all drink. of course they wouldn't let anyone drive home (anyone was allowed to stay over). but to be honest it made me feel really uncomfortable. i think my BF was the only one of age. so i volunteered to be the DD.

    like some of you said, my friend turned out somewhat ok. she graduated college and such but she has some serious issues (especially after her parents divorced).

    i don't think i would ever throw that kind of party for my kids and their friends. its just weird.