How To Help Your Kids Have a Safe Prom

Prom is a night that students look forward to long before their junior or senior year. It is idealized in pop culture for many of the reasons that keep parents awake at night with worry.

Risky behaviors:

AAA surveyed 16-19yr old kids asking if they or their friends were likely to use drugs or alcohol on prom night. 41% of them said yes. Similarly, we know that 42% of Texas students in 7-12th grade will try alcohol at least once (TSS 2022).  

As a parent, we hope to equip you with the encouragement and the resources you need to keep your teen’s prom safe and sober.  


You may not think that your teens are listening to you but they are. Research shows that parents are the single biggest influence on their teen’s decision not to drink. Make sure your child knows:

  1. You do not permit underage drinking or drug use at any age.   
  2. There will be consequences they can expect if they are caught drinking or using drugs. Make sure the consequences are consistent and appropriate.   
  3. Teen substance use has many negative outcomes and you want to see them reach the full potential of their lives. 


  • Talk often. One lecture on teen drinking at prom will not have as great an impact as when you keep the conversation going day to day. Use movies, your shopping and planning, and other teachable moments to reinforce your expectations for your teen.  
  • Have a plan. Know where your teen plans to go before and after prom and who they will be with.   
  • Brainstorm with your teen on ways they feel comfortable turning down alcohol and what they should do if they need help and are caught in an uncomfortable situation. Make sure your teen knows to never get in the car with someone has been drinking.  
  • Be a good role model. Make sure your child has opportunities to see adults gather and have fun without the influence of alcohol. 
  • Don’t offer to provide alcohol to minors. Allowing children to drink under your supervision may feel safer but teens who drink at home are more likely to drink outside the home, drive impaired, and ride with other drivers who are impaired (MADD).  
  • Know where the alcohol is in your home and how much you have so that you do not become the accidental supplier of alcohol to teens.