Responsibility is learned over time. Growing children are gradually introduced to chores to prepare them for eventual home ownership. A steadily mounting volume of schoolwork serves as a dress rehearsal for the rigors of the workplace. Recess in grade school teaches socialization away from the formal classroom. So when advertisements wisely advise consumers to “drink responsibly,” their statement assumes a certain amount of experience on the consumer’s part. What about those without prior experience, though? In a perfect world, adult beverages would be gradually introduced according to each individual’s temperament. The unfortunate reality is that many unprepared individuals find alcohol readily available. More specifically: developing children and teens too often have access to it.
Rising through the ranks of school is difficult enough without the element of substance abuse. The pressure to perform, social cliques, the search for identity, and growing pains gnaw at students’ physical and mental well-being. (As much as adults tend to romanticize childhood, bear in mind that difficulty is a matter of perspective.) Such turbulent times rightfully prompt children and teens to search for answers. They explore coping mechanisms, as well as self-medication options. Alcoholism is never the solution they need, but frequently the one they find.
Every underage drinker’s story is different. Their habits may begin innocently enough at a family gathering, or as part of an underhanded exchange. Your child may have had a glass of wine to accentuate a celebration, a beer to recuperate from a strenuous week, or a shot of tequila to win a bet. Perhaps the youth has a lineage of party chasers to blame. Perhaps his or her upbringing has been strict beyond peers’ wildest imaginations. Whatever the case may be, underage alcohol consumption can precipitate a downward spiral by creating or amplifying various struggles.
Consumption of adult beverages at a young age increases the possibility of alcohol dependence. As a result, juvenile drinkers run the risk of being financially and socially chained to the bottle. The inhibited brain development and memory problems brought on by adolescent drinking hinder academic progress. Impaired judgment heightens the risk of violent behavior and assault. Physical damage and stunted social adjustment often ensue in the long term. The introduction of other intoxicating substances – made all the more likely by alcoholism – can serve to multiply all of the dangers mentioned above.
Of course, endangerment of oneself and others frequently attracts the attention of law enforcement. If your child has already become embroiled in legal trouble, look no further than your local family law office. Let Thomas A. Ramunda Jr. be your family’s advocate. His services are available for Denver and the surrounding area, including Douglas, El Paso, and Arapahoe counties. Tom brings much-needed sympathy to the table while emboldening youths to turn their situation around. In court, he will contend to make their best-case scenario a reality. When unfortunate events cause your child’s life to grind to a halt, he will be there to help them renew momentum. Make the confidential call today, and jump-start an upward spiral for your son or daughter. Contact us!