Teen Drinking This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

Have you ever been offered an alcoholic beverage? What about someone saying “Don’t worry, just have one little sip”? Most people have their first drink by the time they’re 13. That first drink can be the start of a troubled life.

Drinking can make teens feel good, but that lasts only a short time. Teenagers on shows like “Gossip Girl” or “Degrassi” get drunk regularly, but those shows rarely ­explore the problems alcohol can cause. ­Alcohol clouds your brain and hinders your ability to make decisions. Excessive drinking literally makes your brain shrink and can cause serious damage. Binge drinking can cause learning disabilities and damage your memory. It distorts your ­vision and leads to blackouts. Teenagers often think that drinking will give you more energy, but alcohol isn’t an energy drink; it’s a depressant.

Drinking alcohol affects your inhibitions and makes you do things you wouldn’t if you were sober. Many girls get pregnant and drop out of school because they make the mistake of drinking too much and having unprotected sex. Twelve percent of 15- to 17-year-olds reported having unprotected sex when drinking or using drugs. Also, 24 percent said that because of drinking or drugs they had “done more” sexually than they had intended.

Sometimes girls don’t have a choice. Rape also happens when people drink too much. It only takes one night to mess up your life.

Drinking and driving is one of the top causes of death for teen boys. An alcohol-­related motor vehicle crash kills one person every 33 minutes and injures someone every two minutes. The rate of teenagers driving drunk is so high that the government is trying to pass new laws restricting teen driving.

When we get to high school, friends start pressuring us to drink. High school students see alcohol as glamorous and a way to become popular. I created a survey at my school. Twenty-four of the 63 respondents predicted they would drink in high school. Eleven said maybe, and 28 said they don’t plan on drinking.

Regardless of what they say now, things can change. Teens starting high school want to fit in. They ­often go from being top dog in junior high to being “fresh meat.” Some people will do anything to be accepted, including potentially hurting themselves. They think that one drink won’t do anything. A little bit of alcohol probably won’t kill you, but it can lead to poor decisions.

I’ve been pressured to do many things, ­including drinking. Drinking causes you to be vulnerable; be safe. High school is the time to experiment with what you want to do in life, but if you’re experimenting with alcohol you could hurt someone, including ­yourself.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

Join the Discussion

This article has 159 comments. Post your own now!

bob the builder said...
Nov. 16, 2010 at 11:08 am
This book explains the efeect of teens drinking.
AgnotTheOdd said...
Nov. 14, 2010 at 6:53 pm

No way.  Alcohol is bad?


 There wasn't anything original in this article.  It's been done billions of times.  I also disagree when you say that we all shouldnt drink.  I dont drink.  Ill have a sip or two and then it just tastes like medicine and I dont like it.  But I dont think we should tell others not to do something.  Especially something we've all heard millions of times.  if anything we should lower the drinking age, rai... (more »)

thecatch replied...
Feb. 10, 2011 at 1:20 pm
lower the drinking age won't do any good because then if a young teen is suffering from depression they can become addicted and that would cause serious problems.
coloredskittles said...
Nov. 14, 2010 at 5:10 pm
i agree 95%. but the other 5% is that it is their choice not ours and i hope they read ur article so they are inspired by it. great job and i hope that your righting makes a difference!
Nickypoo17 said...
Nov. 11, 2010 at 9:11 am
I agree with this article. Drinking does make you unaware or makes you think about doing things that you wouldn't normally think it. It makes you want to go wild and do whatever which is not safe. I totally agree with everything that you said in this article.
winkerdinker said...
Nov. 5, 2010 at 2:31 pm
BLAH BLAH BLAH. i like cheese
mgb405 said...
Oct. 28, 2010 at 12:05 pm
Alcohol can be dangerous, especially when teenagers drink and drive. Drinking can be a bad start in life, even when teens start drinking at a young age. I do agree that drinking and driving is one of the top ten causes of death. In my way of thinking, drinking is disgusting and gross. I wouldn't drink even if I were offered.
drf409 said...
Oct. 28, 2010 at 11:52 am
I can relate to this article because, I once was pressured to drink when I entered high school by a couple of my friends. I was smart enough to turn them down. I don't understand why teenagers find drinking or doing drugs fun. It's not fun; it'll mess up your life for good.
kmb404 said...
Oct. 28, 2010 at 11:43 am
I agree 100% -- teens and alcohol do not mix. Teens do not think when they are drunk, and  they end up doing what they will regret. Every body gets pressured into drinking, but it takes that one strong person to say "no thanks." Drinking and driving is what causes most teen deaths. 
ExtrovertedIntrovert replied...
Nov. 14, 2010 at 9:16 am

Not to undermine your opinion, but teenagers and alcohol DO mix. I think it's the realization that they SHOULD not mix that will make the difference.

-And it's not all about resisting alcohol from friends; if you have those types of friends, you should really re-think everything in the first place. 

thecatch replied...
Feb. 10, 2011 at 1:31 pm
Alcohol and teens will never mix, nor will anything bad and humans mix. There is a connection. Have you ever noticed that there is something not right about it. Like stealing, its not right and we know it. Ever though it might not look like it, drinking isn't healthy for you. I believe that is also against the law in most states to drink till you are an adult at age 18(vary from state to state). Just saying.
ExtrovertedIntrovert replied...
Oct. 3, 2011 at 9:37 pm
There is definitely something not right about it. That's what I was referring to. Teens shouldn't drink, because it's illegal and morally wrong, but they 'mix' anyways- Having them realizize these points is what'll make a difference instead of laws, or stricter rules, so on. Saying it isn'y healthy, though, isn't going to change everyone's minds, unfortunately. But that's a good point.
403jaa said...
Oct. 28, 2010 at 11:37 am
I agree totally; drinking can lead to physical and mental changes in the body.This explains the cliche of "drinking is not for everyone." Reading this article explains that drinking has set backs regardless on how much is being consumed.
dml6609 said...
Oct. 26, 2010 at 2:22 pm
I love talking about teen drinking. I get angry when teens say that they want a drink. It is pointless to drink. Usually kids drink to be cool. I don't know how that would make a person cool. I never wanted to drink. When I do drink, I will sure be the correct age and not a little kid. This article expresses the need for awareness in drinking. It is not cool and never will be.  
Cmg6604 said...
Oct. 26, 2010 at 2:16 pm
Alcohol and teens do not mix. Teens are dangerous to themselves and to others. Teens drink a drive all the time and they endanger all other drivers on the road. Teens get in many wrecks every year because of alcohol. 
KRD108 said...
Oct. 26, 2010 at 9:16 am
I agree when you say that drinking is dangerous, but I have different opinions on all of the other opinions that were stated..  I don't think that peer pressure to consume alchohol is the only reason that kids in high school drink.  Most of the people I have seen that drink large quantities of alcohol do it because when they were younger they were restricted from doing any activities that they wanted to do.  By the time they get to high school, they go crazy with experimenting wit... (more »)
Wolf_Warriorz replied...
Jan. 19, 2011 at 5:39 pm
Thank you! I am fourteen, my dad is an alcoholic, and both my parents and older siblings have fed me alcohol since age six. And that's just as far back as I can remember Every time it's tasted like pis and given me a headache. Now that I'm in high school, I know what alcohol is really like and I never drink at the parties. I'm usually the key keeper at the parties/gatherings my brother hosts because of this, and I have to say I do a very good job. Teens? Drinking? Unmixy things. Add in... (more »)
kmd109 said...
Oct. 26, 2010 at 8:54 am
This article truly tells the struggle of everyday high school life.  I have been pressured may times to drink, but i have always been the bigger person and turned away.  I think that all teens should be informed on what harm they are causing themselves by drinking at such an early age.    
holly.nicole said...
Oct. 23, 2010 at 9:35 am
This is positively true
CallieShinezzzz said...
Sept. 9, 2010 at 9:47 am
hey are you the sarah b from tda??????
Site Feedback