Q. What are the trends in teen partying?  Are teens partying more or less in the summer?  During the school year?  On weekends?  During the week?  At school related events?  
Teens Answer:
  • I think partying has become popular year round.  A lot of partying stems off of school events like dances and sports events.  More people attend those events and are looking for something fun and daring to do after.
  • People at my school party a lot more during the summer – at concerts and music festivals.  On weekends is when people typically party during the school year.
  • Teens party a lot more during the summer – sometimes almost every day of the week.  During the school year, people party on the weekends, and at school events – especially Friday night football games.  Teens are partying before the game, are “lit” at the game, and then it continues at the after parties.
Q. Where do teens typically party?
Teens Answer:
  • I see people smoking weed in cars or out in the woods – although that’s just small numbers of people.  I also think that kids sometimes party at school or just before games/dances.  Other than that, people and parents do host parties at their houses.
  • A lot of kids put alcohol in their cars for “pre-partying”.  There are a lot of home parties where the parents are fully aware of what’s happening but would rather have all the drinking contained.
  • Teens mostly party at homes and most parents are aware and allow the drinking to happen in their house.
  • I am aware of lots of kids smoking weed in cars.
Q.  Why do you think teens are choosing to party – since they probably know it’s wrong and illegal?  Do you think they think of their goals?  Values?
Teens Answer:
  • I know kids who choose to party because of the pressure of school — they want to just have some “fun” once a week.  Some have goals, but I don’t think that affects if someone drinks or not.
  • I think it’s all about social status.  The higher up the ladder you are the more you feel you have to act a certain way – party and drink.
  • I think teens feel that drinking is the only way to have fun.  They also want to fit-in with what everyone else is doing.
  • Some teens do it for popularity, some do it because of peer pressure.  They all have goals and values except they think doing these things isn’t a big deal or they don’t think it will affect them.
  • I think a lot of teens choose to party because they are bored and looking for fulfillment.
Q.  What do you think drives teens to drink and drug more often – to the point of a problem?
Teens Answer:
  • I think drinking and drug use becomes a problem when it stops being just a social thing and they start drinking or using drugs by themselves out of necessity…. to escape the pressure.
  • Peer pressure.  People say it’s not real, but it is.  People don’t want to be left out or looked at differently by their friends.
  • Addiction — they like how it feels and feel like they need to.  And peer pressure – they feel like it will bring t them closer to their friends.
Q. How do you handle peer pressure if you’re at a party or in a situation where there is partying going on?
Teens Answer:
·         I think teens should be able to just say “No” Or use athletics, grades or other things important to you as an excuse.
·         I just say “No thanks.”  But honestly from what I see, most of the time people end up succumbing to the pressure. 
·         I know I don’t want to drink – I don’t see the point or fun in doing it.  If other people around me want to drink I won’t judge them, but I never let it affect me or pressure me.
·         In my opinion, peer pressure is an internal force instead of something forced upon students.  It is easy for me to turn down offers because I know no one cares if I don’t.
Q. We are hearing just how much stress and pressure teens are feeling.  Like they are so overwhelmed and think they cannot make a mistake.  So then, how do you handle the stress, pressure and your anxiety?  Do you feel you have resources and/or support or someone to go to?  If not, what else can be done to better support you?
Teens Answer:
·         When I’m stressed, I sit down and do something I love – like my art.
·         If I am stressed I try working it out with exercise – that helps and it is good for you.  Also, taking time away from school and homework to hang out with my friends helps me.
·         I feel like things are becoming so competitive and this just stresses us out.  But I do feel we have support – through our friends, adults and counselors.
·         I try to take some time for myself and I find or designate time to relax.  I also talk to my friends who can relate to my situation.
·         I feel like I can talk to my parents about any problems I’m having.  I think more teens could open to their parents, counselors or adults, but they don’t think they can.
·         If I’m feeling stressed about school I try to remind myself that it’s not as big of a deal as it seems and there’s always an alternative.  It’s important for teens to know that they are not alone in your stress, pressures and problems.
#teenstalkingaboutthetrends  #Peoplelistenup!