Parents have a responsibility to teach their children about a lot of things, don’t they? And that list is expanding all the time but while it can certainly be a difficult conversation to tackle it’s now more and important than ever to talk about the dangers of drugs with your children. If you want to research the matter yourself first (which is always going to be beneficial) check out the detoxofsouthflorida.com for some professional information.
Once you’re equipped with the facts and statistics how do you teach your children effectively? Do you have a frank conversation, or do you watch an informational video about drugs with them or do you just ask them what they already know about drugs and go from there?
There are a lot of ways you can approach this difficult subject with your children and the best way to handle it will all depend on you and your children. There’s no universal best way to talk to your children about drugs I’ am.
But before I share some tips with you about how to talk to your children about the dangers of drugs I do have some advice. This advice is all focused on you the parent and that is to make sure you’re not too embarrassed or awkward about having a conversation.
It’s understandable if you are so don’t be ashamed or embarrassed about it but if you want your child to take what you say seriously you’re going to need to sound confident. So, take the time to prepare what you’re going to say and even take notes if you think it will help.
So, now you know how to get yourself ready let’s take a look at how you can effectively teach your children about the dangers of drug use.
Think About How Old Your Children Are
OK, when should you start telling your children about the dangers of drugs? There are many opinions about this but in general many professionals suggest you should wait till around 4 or 5 years of age in most circumstances. At this age children will have a more limited understanding about drugs, but you can take this opportunity to explain what they are.
Remember if you want to talk about the dangers of drugs with your children you need to look at all kinds of drugs, not just the illegal ones. Talk about things like cigarettes and painkillers and how even drugs that are legal and sometimes even beneficial can also be dangerous.
As your child gets older you can (and probably will need to) talk to them about drugs in more detail. You can outline the dangers of more illegal drugs and talk about how they might be tempted to use them. When children move into their teenage years you should make sure to have a more open discussion with them about illegal drugs and their dangers as well.
Be Factual Not Fearful
OK, this sounds easy in practice but when you’re actually talking to your children it can become a lot more difficult to remain composed and stay factual. Trying to scare your children (especially if they’re older) into staying away from drugs will rarely have the desired effect.
So, it’s important that you stick to the facts and remain calm when talking to your children. Focus on telling them about how drugs can help people but can also be harmful as well and why they need to know about the dangers of them. It’s easier than you think to fall into scare tactics when talking to your children about dangerous subjects like drugs, so make sure you are balanced and level-headed.
Ask Your Child Questions And Listen
When you’re talking to your children about the dangers of drugs you shouldn’t just spout of a lot of facts either you should try to keep the conversation as casual as you can. And any conversation that is going to be effective means one party shouldn’t be doing all the talking.
This means you need to let your child talk and ask questions as well, the older your child is the more they will likely know about drugs and they’ll understandably be curious. Drugs are a popular topic in movies, TV shows, and books so don’t be surprised if your child knows quite a bit about them. Remember you’re having a conversation with your child not giving them a lecture so listen to them and give them chance to talk.
Be Realistic About What You Expect
Yes, the majority of parents would prefer that their children stay away from drugs but there is a high risk that they will at some point in their life use recreational drugs of some kind. This is more common than you might think but as a parent, the best thing you can do is explain to your child about the dangers of using such drugs.
Yes, they might still experiment during their teen years but remember that won’t always turn into an addiction, if you’re worried your child’s friends might already be using drugs then you might want to keep a closer eye on things and ask your child to limit contact with them.
Tell Them You’ll Always Be There For Them
Overall, the best thing you can do when it comes to telling your children about the dangers of drugs is to say you’ll always be there for them if they need you. This is really the best thing you can do whether your children have experimented with drugs or not, just let them know they can always come to you for support or to talk.
Talking about drugs with your children is going to be complicated and probably a little awkward at first but it’s important that you do it and don’t be surprised if you feel to the need to do it more than once as they grow up. Be supportive and try not to be anxious or worried just be open and stick to the facts.