Many adults can’t imagine a New Year’s Eve without some bubbly, and a lot of young people associate alcohol with the end of the school year. A lot of young people drink for the first time on holidays like these, and a lot of them get into fights and have accidents, too, because they’re drunk. As a parent, there’s a lot you can do.


Ask your teenager about their plans for the day, whether people are going to be drinking alcohol, and what they think about that. Tell them what you think about drinking and that you view them drinking alcohol as unacceptable.

Teenagers care what their parents say – even if it doesn’t always seem like it at the time. Show that you’re there for them, whatever happens. It’s always better that your teenager knows they can come home drunk, even if that’s unacceptable to you.   

It's chaos on New year's Eve. Everyone's drunk. People are throwing up and running around town.

Greta, aged 15, Umeå


Young people who are given alcohol by their parents drink more. And if you buy them alcohol, you’re also telling them that it’s OK to drink, even if you’re not an adult. Some parents think that it’s OK to give their teenagers alcohol on special occasions, such as the end of the school year or at Midsummer. But warning your child about alcohol and then helping them to drink makes no sense, even if it’s only for one evening. Teenagers deal best with clarity and consistency. 


Many teenagers get ahold of alcohol through their boy- or girlfriends, friends, or other adults. Talk to the people over the age of 20 who are around your teenagers, and help them say, ”No”. Tell them that you expect them to be mature enough not to buy alcohol on your teenager’s behalf and that you need to present a united front on the subject.


Make sure that your teenager has their phone with them, or that you can get in touch with them in some way during the evening. Maybe you can agree in advance on a time or times when you can check in? And ask your teenager to let you know if their plans change.

It’s also a good idea for at least one adult to remain completely sober, so that they can drive if your teenager needs picking up. Maybe you can also get together with other parents and be out and about that evening. But tell your teenager about it first so that they understand you’re not spying on them – you’re just being there for them if something happens.

Photo: Pablo Frisk

"There are always loads of pictures from parties and stuff on social media the day after some big holiday!.

Fredrika, aged 16, Gothenburg


Talk to other parents about what you think is reasonable and what the rules are when it comes to times, for example. If your opinions differ, you can talk about it, but don’t feel you have to change your mind. You’re always the one who decides what goes for your child.


There are a lot of things young people can do during holidays. Maybe you can help your teenager find something suitable to do for your teenager and their friends – something that prevents them drinking alcohol or wandering aimlessly around town. 

More to read about the same topic

When parents are not around

Useful contacts and more info

It can sometimes be good to talk to someone who knows a bit more about teenagers and alcohol, or about anything else, for that matter.

If you want to do more

There’s a lot you can do to support and be there for teenagers. Maybe you can take part in night-time patrols, or make it easier for them to say “no”, or help promote a smarter approach to alcohol in some other way.

Other important topics to read about

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