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How Can You Teach Your Teen To Stand Up Against Drugs and Alcohol

Teens face a lot of pressure from their peers to fit in. Sometimes this means that they’re pressured to try drugs. As a parent, this should concern you, but what can you do about it? Believe it or not, education is a key tool in preventing your teen from giving in to this temptation. This means that as a parent, you have to play an active role here. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, this is especially if and when your teen is going through a transitional period in their life (e.g. a divorce, moving to a new city and going through puberty). There are a few things that this type of education involves.

Learn the Risk Factors

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Drugs and Alcohol

The Mayo Clinic says that your teen is at a higher risk if he comes from a family with a history of drug usage, shows aggressive behavior, has a low-level of self-esteem, or hangs around friends who are using drugs.

Find out What Your Teen Thinks of Drugs

Take a moment to ask your teen what he thinks about drugs without being accusative or argumentative as you do so. You don’t want this to become a lecture. Instead, just take a moment to listen and learn. This information, along with his nonverbal cues, will help clue you in as to whether or not he’s likely to use drugs.

Give Your Teen Reasons Why They Should Avoid Drugs

Provide your teen with reasons why he should avoid drugs. This isn’t a time to try to scare your teen away from using drugs. Instead, focus on providing your teen with useful information for him to think about. For instance, you can tell him how drug usage affects grades, athletic performance and appearance, especially when someone becomes seriously addicted to drugs.

Review Media Content With Your Teen

Take some time to watch movies and TV shows that depict drug usage. These will open doorways to discussing drug usage with your teen. Simply begin by asking him what his opinion is about the drug usage that’s occurring within these programs.

Set Rules Regarding Drugs

Make sure that you have clear rules about drug usage in place. Your teen should also know what punishment will occur if he’s found using drugs.

Help Your Teen Say “No”

While you need to understand that it’s not always easy for your teen to say “no” to peer pressure, you can help him do so. Take some time to discuss the different ways in which his friends might offer him drugs and how he can refuse.

Model The Behavior You Expect From Your Teen

Don’t use drugs yourself. This is vital because your teen looks up to you, whether he tells you this or not. So, your teen needs to know that you don’t touch drugs because of the dangers you’ve discussed with him. Your actions will speak louder than words here!

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