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Poll: Should Parents Host Prom Parties?

With prom season upon us, many teens are preparing for the big dance and making plans for places to hang out late night. Should parents allow them to party at their place if it includes alcohol?

It won't be long before Masuk seniors primp and prep for the prom. In this area, various businesses are already advertising sales on gowns and tuxedos, transportation and flowers. Special fashion shows will be held and gown expos planned.

But what happens after the big dance?

It can be a struggle for parents who want to know that their children are safe. Do they allow their child and their child’s friends to crash at their place? Do they allow them to drink alcohol and take the car keys away?

In his regular informational blog on takes a moment to answer one parent’s question about the legalities of allowing his 18-year-old son to host an after-prom party at his home. Baron also addresses the question of whether the legal responsibility changes if the teens BYOB (bring their own beer/booze) versus if the parent provides the alcohol?

What do you think about the issue? Is it worth it to allow teens to drink in your home on prom night because you could keep them off the roads and safe? Tell us in the comment section and take the Patch Poll.

Wolfe April 15, 2012 at 04:38 PM
I don't think so. Alcohol is illegal to serve to anyone under the age of 21 in the state of Connecticut. Why would a parent basically offer to be a bartender? Who knows if a kid would leave the party and try to drive home? Post-prom parties without alcohol are safer.
Cindy Cervini April 15, 2012 at 06:07 PM
The dangers of drinking alcohol go way beyond simply drunk driving. Any parent who allows that in their home, no matter WHO supplies it, should be held 100% responsible for the consequences.
Wolfe April 15, 2012 at 08:33 PM
Cindy, I don't think that parent should be 100% responsible. The person drinking has to bear SOME responsibility when they drink. If you were to go to a bar, have a few drinks and then drive home and have an accident, is that bartender responsible?? NO!! You are, because you are the one who did the drinking!! Kids have to be taught how to take some responsibility. You, Debbie, Lisa, Colleen, Greg, Joe, myself, and everyone else we grew up with, we all took risks. But we also took responsibility for our actions. I don't think that today's teen-agers know how to do that----take responsibility for their actions.
QWERTY April 15, 2012 at 09:40 PM
Having lived at a traditional undergraduate university for 4 years, every person I've ever known consumed alcohol underage. I'm not saying I have a refined suggestion but I do believe parents should be given leeway to determine how best their children experience, adapt and react to alcohol. I'd rather my 17 year old consume alcohol for the first time in the safety of my own home then to rely on newly formed college friends for assistance, where most underage drinking takes place. Obviously, a little deviated from this particular topic...
Lani April 16, 2012 at 12:45 PM
Actually, Wolfe, the bartender may be responsible. google it.
Lani April 16, 2012 at 12:48 PM
I find it interesting that so many seem to think it is okay to serve other children alcohol in their home, which is illegal in this state. Yet they don't comment about it. Personally, as a parent, that is MY decision in MY home.. don't make that decision for me about MY kids in YOUR home. And I won't make it for your kid either. So no, I wouldn't serve alcohol, or allow it to be consumed in my home. Isn't this what the post prom party at the school is all about? A safe, and fun, activity afterwards.
Donna Gail April 16, 2012 at 01:36 PM
It is absolutely NOT okay. I've had 4 kids go through the school system, and I can't believe how many parents would rather have their kids be popular and host drinking parties then find alternative ways to have fun. These kids have the prom and post prom to enjoy, and they have each other. They should be able to do it without alcohol. And they should keep the pictures of themselves drinking off Facebook!
I am paying attention April 16, 2012 at 01:59 PM
In this day in age where teenagers do NOT accept responsibility for their actions, how are they responsible enough to even consider drinking alcohol. Teenagers will drink in excess for the sole purpose to get drunk, that is irresponsible. If any parent provides alcohol to a teenager, and that teenager does something stupid, then BOTH the parent and the teenager should accept responsibility and consequences for anything that can and will happen.... don't play the blame game!
Christine E. April 16, 2012 at 03:32 PM
I can't understand why any parent would ever think it's okay to serve alcohol to other people's children. I also can't understand why, in 2012, they would want that kind of liability on their shoulders. It's simple...not your kid, not your decision. If someone elses kid shows up at your house with booze in hand, kick them out and give the parent a call to let them know. The parent will either be mad at their kid, or they won't be. Either way, at least you've given them the courtesy of parenting the way they want to...and they'll probably be appreciative that you kept them informed.
Alex April 16, 2012 at 08:42 PM
Lani is right. The bartender can be held responsible if they knowingly let a person drive drunk, though I've rarely seen cases where they are actually held responsible because it's very difficult to prove. As for the actual question here... Laws have a silly effect on a person's perception of right and wrong. I'd imagine some of you were 18 when drinking was legal for anyone 18 or older. Do you know why the law was changed? Were you in favor of that law change when it was enacted? I can assure you, not a whole lot has changed to warrant why 18 year olds today can no longer drink, but 40 years ago it was perfectly acceptable. Since I don't have children I can't really say if I would allow them to have a party at my house with them allowed to drink. I would allow my own children to drink moderately, but I think I would be infringing on other parent's rights if I let their children drink without their permission. While dropping the minimum age to 18 won't help many high school students (probably make the whole situation even worse with some students legal and some not), it still makes no sense to me that you can vote, own property, buy a weapon, go to war and die for your country, but don't even think about drinking a drop of alcohol because that's illegal. But let's be honest: Most will drink whether you let them or not.
Lani April 18, 2012 at 10:35 AM
Interesting study reported on this morning. One in four teens reports that they get the alcohol from a parent or family member! And 3/4ths of teens report that their parents' attitudes about underage drinking are their biggest influence. So your assumption that your kids "will probably drink" may just be why they ARE drinking as teens.

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