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Survey: Parents Let Their Own Experiences Affect Drug and Alcohol Boundaries Set for Teens at Prom and Graduation Parties
Date:5/29/2008

Teens Say Prescription Drug Abuse Also May Be Part of the Festivities

NEW YORK, May 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new survey released today from the Partnership for a Drug-Free America(R) and MetLife Foundation found that parents' personal past experiences with alcohol and drugs at prom and graduation parties may influence the rules and limits they set for their teens during this time of the year.

According to the survey, parents who drank or used drugs at their own proms or graduations were likely to be more permissive with their kids than those parents who did not. Among parents who drank or used drugs on these occasions, 66 percent set a "zero tolerance policy" for their teens. Among parents who did not drink or use drugs, that number jumps up to 87 percent of parents who set hard rules about drinking and drugs for their kids. Parents who abused drugs or alcohol are also more likely to suspect that teens will use drugs or drink at prom or graduation parties - 51 percent versus just 36 percent of parents who didn't use drugs or alcohol.

The survey also indicates that when parents talk to kids about alcohol and drug abuse teens take their parents' messages to heart - only 16 percent of teens whose parents set a zero tolerance policy reported their individual likelihood of using drugs or alcohol, whereas 45 percent of teens whose parents didn't set such boundaries reported they were likely to drink or use drugs at prom or graduation parties this year.

"Parents can't let past drug use or personal experiences at their prom parties influence their attitudes toward their kids' use today," said Steve Pasierb, president and CEO of the Partnership. "The drug abuse landscape teens face today - which includes abuse of prescription and over-the-counter medicines - is drastically different than when today's parents were teens. We know that parents are the greatest point of leverage in preventing drug and alcohol abuse, and this survey reinf
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SOURCE MetLife Foundation
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