Drunk driving may not be a “buzz” topic at the moment, but it perhaps should be. Drunk driving is one of the most frequent causes of death for teens. Try to imagine it: your child is out for a night with friends, they end up drinking, and then decide they’re “sober-enough” to drive home. The teen in the driver’s seat could be responsible not only for their own death, but the deaths of several-perhaps MANY other people. If your teen survived the impending crash, how would they feel? Would they ever be able to escape the guilt that might haunt them all of their days?
Let’s make some decisions for our teens that will help them avoid such a fate.
Set rules for your teen surrounding driving and drinking and stick to them so that your teen observes you being consistent with the boundaries you set down.
Have you chatted with your teen about the risks associated with drinking and driving?
Though your teen may not initially listen to you, keep gently offering communication opportunities and try to understand where they are coming from. Express empathy. You may be surprised by their reaction.
Read up on the facts.
Sites like Standford Children’s have some great info to help parents educate their teens about the risks associated with impaired driving: https://www.stanfordchildrens.org/en/topic/default?id=preventing-impaired-driving-in-your-teen-160-47
Don’t be afraid to discuss hard topics with your child. It can be awkward to get started, but if you consistently make an effort to open channels of communication with your teen, you both may really develop some excellent trust and cooperation.
You can do this! We believe in you.