Teen Rave Parties

Teens and Raves

Your child wants to go to a rave. You’ve never heard of a rave party, so he tells you that it’s just a party where people dance for a long time – no alcohol, so don’t worry. It’s a place, he says, where young people respect music, art, and each other.

Sounds innocent, but don’t be fooled. Rave attendance, while generally not associated with alcohol, is closely linked with “club drugs” like ecstasy. Raves range in size from a few hundred attendees to several thousand, but the format is usually the same: Raves are dance parties that begin late at night and continue into the morning hours. They feature fast-paced, repetitive electronic music and light shows. Participants dance vigorously for hours. They may dress in costume, wear or carry glow sticks or bright accessories, eat lollipops and candy necklaces – and often take drugs either before or during the party in order to enhance the sensations and boost their energy.

While ecstasy is the drug most often associated with rave parties, other common club drugs are Ketamine, LSD, Rohypnol, and GHB. Recently, rave operators have begun searching ravers for drugs upon entry to the party and monitoring for drug use during the event. But this only encourages participants to use larger doses of drugs prior to the party so that the effects last throughout the event.

What To Do

Your child may argue, and rightfully so, that not everyone who attends raves uses illegal drugs. And rave parties are popular among many young adults, most of whom are responsible, law-abiding people. But the fact remains that raves are closely linked with drug use, and just as you wouldn’t let your child stay at a party where alcohol is served, you wouldn’t knowingly allow her to be somewhere that drugs are an integral part of the culture.

Explain to your child that it’s your job to keep him safe, even if this makes him upset at you. Discuss rave attendance as part of your family rules and make it clear what the consequences will be if he breaks these rules. Make sure that the consequences are reasonable and that you’ll be able to uphold them.