How to Talk to Your Teen About Drugs and Alcohol

20 Jun How to Talk to Your Teen About Drugs and Alcohol

As a parent, some of the conversations you will have with your teen are not easy. However, communicating with them about substance abuse and its consequences is important to keeping them aware, healthy and safe. Here are some tips on how to talk to your teen about drugs and alcohol.

How to Talk to Your Teen About Drugs and Alcohol

By Teen Rehab

Discussing drugs and alcohol with your teen might be challenging but it's important—especially since experimenting with these substances is common during adolescence. Here are some tips to approaching that conversation. 

  • Don't Make Assumptions

    By Teen Rehab

    It can be tempting to enter a conversation with your teen feeling [like you know where they stand](http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/09/23/talking-with-your-teen-about-drugs-alcohol/) and that you’re going to have to fight back. Instead, listen to what they have to say about drugs and alcohol first and don’t assume to know what their thoughts and feelings are. 

  • Use Media as a Tool

    By Teen Rehab

    Drugs and alcohol use are more present than ever in media and pop culture. Use the news, TV and music as an opportunity to open up a conversation with your teen. Always be sure to start by asking them what they think about the substances you are discussing. 

  • Be Honest About Boundaries and Consequences

    By Teen Rehab

    Setting boundaries and expectations with your teen about what they can and can’t engage with is important. Be sure to make these extremely clear and outline the consequences for not following through. It also helps to explain why you are setting out these boundaries (to keep them safe, because you love them etc.) so that it comes from a place of care and concern. 

  • Express Concern and Compassion

    By Teen Rehab

    It helps to [show your concern](http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/09/23/talking-with-your-teen-about-drugs-alcohol/) for individuals who struggle with substance abuse. The conversation doesn’t have to be all about your teen, but let them know that you have seen how drugs and alcohol can affect a person’s well-being and life. 

  • Keep the Conversation Open

    By Teen Rehab

    This topic should not only be discussed [once](http://www.webmd.com/parenting/features/talking-to-teens-about-drugs). While it’s great to address drugs and alcohol with your teen when they are younger, be sure to let them know that they can always ask you questions and that you will also bring it up again as they grow and circumstances change. 

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