For many people, bringing up the subject of drugs is difficult. Your teens may try to dodge the discussion, and you yourself may feel unsure about how to proceed. To boost your chances for a productive conversation, take some time to think through the issues you want to discuss before you talk with your parents or teen. Also, think about how you might react and respond to questions and feeling.

When You Talk About Drugs

  • Tell your parent or teen that you love them and that you are worried that he/she might be using drugs or alcohol.
  • Tell them It makes you worried and concerned about them when they do drugs.
  • You are there to help and listen to them.

Teens who learn from their parents about the dangers of drinking, smoking marijuana and other harmful substances like meth, are more likely to seek help and recovery.

When talking to teens

Ask why he/she is using drugs. Reinforce the importance of family. Get to know your kid’s friends and their parents. Remember a saying in Spanish that says: Tell me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are. When you get a better idea of the situation, then you can decide what the next steps should be. These could include setting new rules and consequences that are reasonable and enforceable — such as a new, earlier curfew, no cell phone or computer privileges for a period of time, or less time hanging out with friends.

You may want to get them involved in positive new activities that help them meet new people in settings that are drug-free. They can also spend time with their families, such as helping their grandparents with errands like grocery shopping. For more information about how to address your teen’s alcohol and drug use and how to set and enforce rules, go to www.TheAntiDrug.info.

Ask your teen if there is someone they trust or feel comfortable talking to. They shouldn’t necessarily make the final decision, but they are more likely to be an active participant if they have a say in what happens. Take your teen to the doctor or talk to the school nurse and ask him or her about screening your teen for drugs and alcohol. This may involve the health professional asking your teen a simple question, or it may involve a drug screen.

Sharing your concerns with your health professional can help you get the advice and assistance you need. If you have an appointment with your teen’s doctor, call ahead to make time to discuss this issue. It may also help to talk to other parents who have experienced what you are going through. You may feel as though you are the only family dealing with this issue, but know that there are parent support groups in your community or you can speak to extended family, neighbors and friends for their support.

It's not enough to tell your young teen that he or she should avoid alcohol or drugs, you also need to help your child figure out how.

What can your daughter say when she goes to a party and a friend offers her a beer?
Or what should your son do if he finds himself in a home where kids are passing around a bottle of wine and parents are nowhere in sight? What should their response be if they are offered a ride home with an older friend who has been drinking?

Brainstorm with your teen for ways that he or she might handle these and other difficult situations, and make clear how you are willing to support your child.

An example: If you find yourself at a home where kids are drinking, call me and I’ll pick you up—and there will be no scolding or punishment.

The more prepared your child is, the better able he or she will be to handle high-pressure situations that involve drinking.

Reasoning: Telling a person reasons why they should try something or why it would be OK if they did. (Nobody said these were good reasons.) Some examples of pressure by reasoning are:

  • It won't hurt you.
  • Your parents will never find out.
  • You'll have more fun.
Author's Bio: 

My name is Chris from Sacramento,CA. I have been an addict for over 20 years. I started using meth when I was 16 and have been clean since Feb 2006. You can read more from me at Meth Kills