At last -you are totally your own boss at this point in your life –open to all possibilities. Making responsible choices about all the new possibilities will set standards for the rest of your life.
Use of any substance is going to be totally up to you. Some students use alcohol, tobacco and other drugs to deal with stress. When you are finished drinking or smoking you are still stressed – you haven’t really dealt with the stress. As well, if you are using substances to deal with stress, you miss the opportunity to develop your own personal coping skills.
Some students use alcohol and drugs to feel more at ease in social situations. Again, if you don’t balance your use, you aren’t developing social skills, you are developing drug skills.
Binge drinking puts you at risk. (Binging is defined as 5 or more drinks in one session.) Every year students who thought it would never happen to them end up with alcohol poisoning. You are particularly at risk when you play drinking games.
Party smart and avoid binge drinking. Be creative – party drug and alcohol free. What a concept!
Learn to say NO. Don’t be led by the herd mentality. Be clear with yourself about making your own choices. No one makes you do anything at this point in your life. You are free to choose and free to be responsible for yourself.
Some party smart tips and info:
1) Go out with a group of friends you trust and have clear agreements about making sure everyone gets home safely.
2) Those most at risk for assault are those who are getting drunk frequently. Talk to a friend if you are concerned about their behavior. Encourage them to see one of the counsellors here at Loyalist.
3) Females and males have different notions about what they want when they are being "sexual." Females may be ok with kissing and some "making out" whereas males may feel this means they have permission for full sexual intercourse. It is important to know that whether you are male or female, you have the right to say "NO" at any point. Even if you have indicated you are ready for a full sexual encounter, you can say NO at any point. This is not bizzare behavior, nor is it "being a tease." This is adult, responsible behavior and people who call you names for the choices you make or make you feel ashamed do not have your best interests in their heart. This is not a person you want to be intimate with!
4) Alcohol and other drugs alter your awareness levels; that is why you use them, right? You want a break from your usual state of mind. Fine. Just remember that this is not a state in which you want to have a sexual encounter.
At this website choose "substance use" from the list of topics on the left and then choose "frequently asked questions (FAQs)" on the right for interesting facts on drugs and alcohol.
This site offer some good tips for “drinking smarts.”