Your Teen and DrugsFebruary 10, 2015
Drug abuse by teens can have great impacts on the lives of teens. Such teens put their safety and health at risk. Teen drug abuse can be due to factors of insecurity and looking for social acceptance. Parents can help in preventing drug abuse by talking about the consequences of drug abuse and making healthy choices. Parents may feel uncomfortable talking to teens about such a topic. Communication becomes easier once a relationship is strengthened. Such conversations between parents and their teens only bring them closer together; forming bonds of trust while helping the teens feel comfortable and confident on their choices. This requires the right setting and time to prevent any interruptions or distractions.
Having Calm Conversations
It helps when a parent sits down and talks to a teen about drugs, their risks and effects. To begin with, a parent should ask the teen about their views and perceptions. Teens would not prefer long, boring lectures, the conversation should be calm and relaxed. A parent should encourage the teen to talk while listening to the questions and opinions brought forward. Instead of asking questions, a parent should make statements, observe the nonverbal responses and listen to the verbal answers.
Scare tactics should be avoided. According to Bay Area Recovery Center, a reputable treatment center, empowering your teen is the one way of nurturing intelligence and self-confidence helping in resisting drug abuse. Emphasis should be on the effects of abusing drugs and how it would affect the daily activities like sports and education. The discussion can focus on the messages that trivialize or glamorize drug use from the media. They should be focused on brainstorming on how to resist peer pressure and turning down drug offers. One of the best ways of talking about this is a discussion on personal resistance and experiences.
As a parent, one should set boundaries for the teens, which should be enforced regularly with small conversations on drugs and drug abuse. Instead of criticizing the teen, a parent should listen respectfully on what the teen has to say. This will help the teen develop reasoning skills and open feelings and ideas.
According to Bay Area Recovery (www.bayarearecovery.com), if your teen has already experimented with drugs, do not reprimand with a temper. Be supportive and talk of the effects of drug use with great emphasis on how it breaks the trust. With this attempt, the teen will be more open to ask for advice before trying anything else. Respecting your teens and providing balanced and meaningful information will empower them to make healthy choices. A parent is the best help for their children.
Parents should not be afraid about talking to their teens about drug abuse. Having such conversations will not tempt them to experiment with drugs, but rather they will understand drug abuse, its effects and the expectations of the parents on their conduct. Having open lines of communication creates better relationships to ensure that teens can talk to their parents openly about drugs. A parent should be clear on their opinions and expectations when it comes to drug use. Be an important role model so that you can create the best defense when the topic comes up. The support and involvement of parents on their teens makes a great difference on their lives especially when dealing with their drug habits.