Parents Guide to Prom Etiquette

The season for Prom has arrived and your daughter glows with excitement whenever the big night crosses her mind. Her dress is ordered, the shoes are shining in her closet and her date has the tickets. As a prom parent, there are some rules you must follow. You do not think rules for you are fitting; after all, she is your baby. Unfortunately, your baby is almost 18 and Prom is her night, not yours. There are hundreds of ways you, as a parent, could ruin her night or embarrass her. Smile now because you would never do anything to make your baby cry. Even teens with a history of being difficult deserve to go to the Prom, under most circumstances. Three things parents should never do on Prom night:

Chaperone the event

Parents often volunteer to chaperone school dances and other events. The act helps the school save money by allowing teachers to stay home or enjoy the activities. Parents of attendees stay home unless your daughter says differently.   Trust your child to make good decisions and stay safe on her night. Letting go is difficult but you raise your children to make them independent adults.

Celebrate with the Prom Goers

The kids are growing up and the Prom brings out the empty-nest fear in some. Other parents, however, may be tempted to treat their Prom goer a little too adult and offer them a drink before the dance. Offering a minor alcohol is against the law, as is supplying a minor alcohol. Prom officials will greet each couple at the entrance and if the smell of alcohol is present, the evening is over. If parents feel a toast is necessary before the dance, a toast with sparkling apple cider is appropriate.

The Tough Parent

Your rules have been broken repeatedly and your daughter found herself grounded for two weeks. Stick by your punishment. She is not trusted to make mature decisions and you told her beforehand the rules and consequences of breaking them. Children who repeatedly break house rules are in danger of falling into drug abuse. The problem must be stopped before they reach adulthood or they have a hard future. Giving her the night to attend the Prom is okay unless she is a constant disciplinary problem.

Prom is a milestone for teenagers and the night is full of tension. They are trying to find a piece of the evening to call romantic, but if you chaperone, no way. They are at risk enough without parents offering a drink for the road. The problem child will be okay if she misses Prom. The lesson learned will help her make better choices the next time.