Personal Injury, Criminal Law, Traffic Violations, and Family Law & Divorce

Why do people drink when they’re underage?

On Behalf of | Jan 16, 2024 | Drug Charges

Underage drinking can certainly be an issue for many people, leading to potential criminal charges at such a young age. Teenagers can get arrested for possessing alcohol or consuming it, for example. Some of them get pulled over for underage drunk driving violations, where they have a lower legal limit specifically because they are underage.

In other words, it’s very risky for teenagers to drink alcohol. They could face serious, criminal ramifications that have a major impact on their future. So why did they do it?


One reason is that young people like to experiment with substances and have new experiences. They often see adults drinking – either in their own lives or in popular culture, like movies and television shows. This makes them curious and they want to learn more about drinking themselves, whether or not it is legal. This is also the reason some young people will use illegal drugs.

Stress and transitions

Next, some young people will begin drinking during major transitions in their lives that create additional stress. For example, someone may never drink in high school, but they may start drinking when they get to college. They’re still only 18, but they’re suddenly in an environment that is much different, that brings a high level of stress and where it is easier to get alcoholic beverages.

Peer pressure

Finally, many young people will drink due to peer pressure. They want to fit in with their social groups or make a good impression on their friends. They may also be worried about negative ramifications. A teen may drink specifically so that they are not the only person at the party who isn’t drinking, because that would make them feel marginalized or like they weren’t really part of the group.

No matter why young people use alcohol or other drugs, it can lead to arrest. Parents need to be well aware of the criminal defense options they have as they focus on their child’s future.