5 Holiday Party Rules for Moms and Dads

party rules

The holidays are a great time for making merry, and you may find your social calendar busier now ever. But with every social gathering, there are choices to be made about just how you’ll celebrate. We write a lot here at iMOM about warning your teens of the dangers of alcohol and making wise choices, but good parents adhere to some common sense party rules themselves.

One of the keys to making good choices in any social situation is to decide in advance if you’ll be drinking, what your limits are, and what your transportation plans will be. And truly, there’s never a justification for overindulging. As parents, we have children who depend on us to be good examples and to be alive. If moderation is a hard thing for you to maintain in a social setting, don’t drink at all. It’s a terribly small sacrifice for your kids.

So take a look at these five holiday party rules for moms and dads and keep your celebrations merry and bright!

1. Plan ahead.

Think through your plans and determine whether alcohol is being served at the gathering you’re attending and if you’ll partake. If you expect to drink at all, plan to have another person drive. If both you and your spouse will be enjoying an adult beverage or two, call a cab. There are countless adults who can tell you about the time they didn’t necessarily feel too impaired to drive, yet wound up with a DUI or involved in a serious accident. It’s a nightmare that can cost you thousands in legal fees, destroy your career, or cost you your life–and it’s all totally avoidable!

2. Be reasonable.

Know how alcohol affects you, and stay well within your limits. Women, because of our lower body weight and other factors,  we are more readily affected by alcohol than men. One or two drinks over the course of the evening or with dinner probably won’t cause a problem, but beyond that, impairment can show up in a hurry.

3. Check yourself with this question.

Ask yourself, “Would I drink the same amount if my child were present?” Even if your children are in the care of another adult, you’ll likely see them when you arrive back home. And here’s a newsflash: Your kids aren’t stupid. They can recognize slurred speech and glazed eyes and know when you’ve had too much. Don’t live one way in front of them and then ask them to live to a higher standard. It never works.

4. When in doubt, keep things dry.

If you have to ask yourself if another drink is really a good idea, the answer is no. {Tweet This} Always err on the side of caution. Have a ginger ale, or ask the bartender to whip up something festive, but alcohol-free.

5. Be a good neighbor.

You’ll doubtless see other holiday partygoers who’ve let things get a little out of hand. Offer to drive friends home or call a cab for them. If you can get them home to their children in one piece, you will have given that family a tremendous holiday gift.

Last, but not least, don’t forget to talk to your teens about the dangers of alcohol and drugs. Give them the information they need to make good decisions and be safe.

Dana Hall McCain writes about marriage, parenting, faith and wellness. She is a mom of two, and has been married to a wonderful guy for over 18 years.

In The Comments

How do you keep yourself safe and accountable in social settings where alcohol is served?