How to Keep the Kids Drug Free
The National Youth Anti-Drug Media Campaign has published a brilliant brochure entitled Keeping Your Kids Drug-Free: A How-To Guide for Parents and Caregivers.
There are several examples and ideas parents can use in keeping their kids away and off drugs. Learning the proper responses to your son or daughters drug related questions is very beneficial.
The Experts agree on a few things when it comes to how a parent should react to their child’s questions about their own drug use. When your child asks you if you ever tried drugs it is best to keep your answer honest. Lying leads to a loss of credibility with your children, especially if they ever discover that you have lied to them. If you find yourself on uncomfortable answering a specific question, it is always best to explain to your child that at that particular time is not appropriate to speak on the subject.
On other sensitive subjects, like sex, try to talk about it when you are ready. However, when it is time to talk on these matters, it is not necessary to go into extensive detail. Just provide a brief, honest response. Some typical suggestions are: Everybody makes mistakes and using drugs, was one of my biggest ones. Even though it is embarrassing for me I am telling you about this, because I love you and I want to save you from making the same stupid mistakes I made at your age.
When I was young, I tried drugs because some of my friends did. I thought they would make me fit in and I look cool. Back then we did not know as much as we do now about all the negative things that can happen when you use drugs and alcohol. If I had known then what I know now about the consequences, I never would have tried drugs, and I want to do everything I can to help you stay away from them.
I drank alcohol and tried drugs because I was bored and wanted to be a risk taker. I soon found out that I could not control the outcome or the risks. I lost trust from my friends and family.
The Anti-Drug: Parents
Getting involved in your child’s life is very important in keeping them drug free. Talking to them in an affectionate and loving tone can influence the child’s behavior dramatically. Despite what you may think, children do listen. Your words and actions do matter. The Office of National Drug Control Policy says, “Teens who learn anti-drug messages at home are 42% less likely to use drugs.” Therefore, communication is crucial. Listen to your child and talk honestly with them. Schedule a time at least once a week to talk without interruption together. Know where your child is and meet their friends. Get Monitoring who your kids hang around you can help avert a disaster. Be a part of your child’s life.
Maintain warm, strong and empathetic relationships with your kids. Through this they will not interpret rules as often. Keep in mind that you are your child’s number one role model. Keep lines of communication open between you and your child and watch your own behavior.