Parents hold the key to keeping their kids stay drug and alcohol free. It may be a challenging task, but parents who are devoted and aware can succeed in helping their teens make smart choices.
The teenage years are typically when adolescents have the urge to take risks and explore new things. When parents do not take the initiative and talk to their kids about the dangers of drugs or alcohol, teens tend to follow the crowd and do what feels good, rather than what is smart or healthy. The result is that many young adults experiment with drugs and alcohol or become involved with risky behavior.
Parents Must Stay Connected
Just like with any lesson that parents want their kids to know, parents must spend time talking to their child about the dangers of substance abuse. While keeping a teen away from drugs and alcohol may be an intimidating job, laying the groundwork for a drug-free teen is really quite simple.
The number one way a parent can keep their teen away from drugs and alcohol is to stay connected with their child. The first and easiest way this happens is through communication. Parents need to talk to their child in order to know what they are experiencing and feeling, to learn about their challenges, and to hear about their hopes and dreams. The more parents talk to their pre-teen and teen, the more connected they will become, and a stronger bond means greater trust and respect in the relationship. According to , teens who know what their parents expect of them regarding drugs and alcohol are up to 50% more likely to avoid substance abuse.
Families lead busy lives these days, and it is sometimes hard for parents to find time for real conversations with their teens. It is also difficult for parents to be involved in all of their teen’s activities. However, it is vitally important that parents stay active and show a genuine interest in their teen’s life, in order to build a stronger bond with their teen.
It’s never too late for parents to cultivate a relationship with their kids. Teens respond best to regular, ongoing conversations that are open and informative.