Talking About Alcohol With Your Teenager

drinking alcohol

Reading time: 4 minutes

Suitable for: Families of secondary-age children

Many teenagers experiment with alcohol. They may do it because they are curious about the effect it will have on them, to fit in with peers, or because they see parents or other adults using alcohol socially.

Every family has their own rules and feelings about alcohol, but it may be wise to educate your teenagers about the facts and risks surrounding drinking alcohol. It might feel hard to talk to teenagers about drinking, but in doing so, it can help to keep them safe. 


What does the law say? 


If you’re under 18, it’s against the law: 

  • for someone to sell you alcohol 

  • to buy or try to buy alcohol 
  • for an adult to buy or try to buy alcohol for you 
  • to drink alcohol in licensed premises (such as a pub or restaurant) without a meal or supervised by an adult 
  • to give a child alcohol if they are under 5 years old 

It is legal: 

  • for 16- or 17-year-olds accompanied by an adult, to have an alcoholic drink (but not buy) such as beer, wine, or cider with a meal in a licensed premise such as a pub. 
  • for 5- to 17-year-olds to drink alcohol at home or on other private premises. 




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