You recently decided that it was important to sit down with your teen to discuss the dangers of alcohol and drug use. Your first conversation went well. Your teen shared some of their thoughts about drinking, and you talked with him or her about some of the long-term consequences of experimenting with drugs and alcohol. This is a great start, but it is only the beginning.
It is important to realize that one conversation is not enough. You don’t have to cover all of the talking points included on this website at once. You will make a greater impact by talking often with your child. Check in with your teen often to make sure that they are still making wise decisions.
There are several opportunities throughout the year that you can use as reminders for your teen. Certain opportunities and events may prompt your teen to reconsider trying alcohol or drugs. Use the following list as a starting point to help you remember to keep this as an ongoing conversation in your home.
Is your teen traveling somewhere with another family or a group? Make sure to speak with any parents or chaperones to confirm that no underage drinking will be allowed.
Prom is a popular time for teens to plan to go all out by dressing up and spending a night out on the town. Talk with your teen to make sure that they have a schedule for the night. Make sure that any limousine service your teen may be using will only stop at prearranged locations according to this schedule. Set a curfew for your teen, and let them know that you will be waiting for them when they get home to see how prom went.
Summer vacation or extended breaks from school
Any time your teen has a long vacation from school, they may be more likely to drink alcohol. Keep any alcohol that may be in your house locked up. Do not provide an opportunity for your teens to get into whatever you have. Encourage your teen to find a part-time job or join a sports leagues to stay busy with healthy activities.
High school graduation is a major milestone for teens. Remind your teen of that fact that now – more than ever – is a time to remain safe and sober as they pursue their future plans.