Prom almost seems like a coming of age for many high school-aged teens. However, there are so many pressures that come with planning this ceremonial night. Finding the perfect dress or tux, getting your hair to look just right for all the pictures, deciding whether to have a date or go solo with friends, and so much more. Not to say that the evening can't be memorable and fun, but many get caught up in the illusion that the evening will be a magical moment like the movies play it out to be.
Not only is the dance and preparing for the dance stressful but how about deciding what to do after? There are enough pressures that come with being in high school and trying to fit in, prom typically is no different. Some like to take a safe route to be sober or go to a safe Prom after the event but that is not always the case. Much like the movies, there are pressures to drink, do drugs, and even engage in sexual activities. Sometimes driving while under the influence is also one of the risky behaviors teens choose to engage in.
But is any of this necessary? Plain and simple, no. Why take the chance of letting one night's activities have the potential to ruin the future. Now not every scenario will end badly if they engage in risky behaviors but you have no idea how badly things can get out of hand. So why not just keep it safe, sober, and fun?
The night can be much more memorable (good memorable) if teens just distance themselves from these things and the pressure from their peers to do so. They say that "nothing good ever happens after midnight" (times may vary depending on the quote/stolen quote). So why not just blame it on curfew? It is so much easier to blame it on that than to even attend a party where many of these risky behaviors will be taking place. Then they can just remove themselves from the potential of making a poor choice that could not only affect them but their family and many others.
Repercussions come with any act, whether the act be good or bad. Teens deserve to make this time special and can do so by participating in activities that don't have a potential to have any scary repercussions or harm their future.
So all of the items our Teen Advisory Board came up with for the PROM campaign in Jefferson County have Please Return On Monday on them for a reason. The idea is to return on Monday the way they were before Prom, safe, alive and in one piece.