With cheap, cold beer available on nearly every street corner in Beijing, no drinking age and a nightly fuss of World Cup celebrations, some parents, both in Beijing and abroad, might be wondering how to monitor their teens’ drinking habits. A recent New York Times forum shares the attitudes of some kids whose parents chose to not keep them corralled and instead exposed them to alcohol early.
Despite the U.S. law against giving alcohol to minors, these now-adults claim they’re reaping the benefits of learning about the risks of alcohol before leaving home. Some say they had an ability to better monitor their drinking because they possessed a more mature and responsible outlook on liquor, when compared to college students who binged. Others, however, argue not all parents can successfully manage a house party where they’re responsible for children other than their own. U.S. laws vary from state to state on the conditions in which parents can provide—or not provide—their own children with alcohol.