End of exams Leaving Cert Blow-out:
Advice on partying for teens, and parents!
After a couple of years of hard work and study teens are finally happily wrapping-up their exams this week. It is perfectly reasonable to expect that they might want to mark this with a party! Although not as big a night out (or media sensation) as the Junior or Leaving Cert results party night, the exam blow-out could be a pretty alcoholic fuelled affair.
If your teen has completed their Leaving Cert this week, are confident in how they did, is over 18 years old (or maybe not!), then you can probably expect some serious partying - likely including alcohol. However, drinkaware.ie published a great Leaving Cert Support Guide and information for parents aimed at teens in order to educate them on surviving exams, and how to best enjoy their night out without drinking heavily.
Here are some of drinkaware.ie's tips for students (and anxious parents!)
#1 There are lots of people who choose not to drink, or aren't old enough to drink, it’s not your job to give them a hard time about. Respect other people’s choices. Just because you enjoy drinking doesn't mean everyone else will;. Don't encourage it, everyone has their own reasons not to.
#2 Be prepared. Plan on how you're getting home in advance… make sure you have your keys, enough spare cash to get you home, and a topped-up phone. Parents can offer lifts home if necessary.
#3 Eat before you go out. Make sure you always have a decent meal before you hit the town as this is essential for stopping you getting too drunk or getting sick and ruining your night.
#4 Pace yourself. Drinking water in between alcoholic drinks will help you pace yourself, keep you hydrated and refreshed along with helping curb the dreaded hangover.
#5 Don’t let friends walk home after drinking if they live far away. Get ready to call a taxi at the end of the night. Stick together as much as possible.
If you are hosting a party in your own home for your teen and their friends, or are planning your own party, here’s some advice on creating a successful night.
#1 Mocktails. If you are over 18 and plan on drinking then a good idea at home is to provide ‘mocktails’ for people who are younger or who don’t drink. Taking the attention off alcohol consumption will keep the party lasting longer than an hour (and somebody destroying your parent’s couch with vomit.)
#2 Serve food. Everybody will enjoy a snack and will stop people drinking on empty stomach.
#3 Don’t top-up. Let your friends drink at their own pace. Topping-up isn't part of being a host anymore.
#4 Water. If friends are getting too drunk, offer water and keep an eye out for them.
#5 Taxi! Don’t let them walk home after drinking if they live far away. Get ready to call a taxi at the end of the night.
If you're worried about alcohol and your children, here is our advice on helping teens who consume alcohol.