What you already know

Mentor recognizes how hard it is to be a parent. No one gets formal schooling on how to be a parent. Many parents raise children in the same manner they were raised, while others try out different ways. Regardless of how you choose to raise your children, there are tips for parents about the sensitive subject of communicating with teenagers about drug use, and to raise issues about peer influence, and on how to best provide discipline that results in self-discipline — the desired outcome for any discipline we provide.

 This is my first time being a parent!

Many parents who say a child was easy to care for when young will tell you that talking to the same child during the teenage years can be a lot more difficult. Parents may have tried to set clear rules for behavior, but teenagers can find loopholes and exceptions to each rule, leaving parents feeling out-smarted and ineffective.

The good news about adolescence is that almost all teenagers — and parents — come out of the experience just fine. Even if you have not yet had the “drug talk” — or other important discussions with your child, you can still help prevent or delay potential drug use and other unhealthy behaviors by starting the conversation now.

Time to Talk Toolkit

There is a useful website provided by Partnership at Drug Free.org to help you with having a conversation with your child about drugs: the Time to Talk Toolkit.

The toolkit includes numerous resources and guides, including:

  • Begin talking with your kids about the risks of drugs and alcohol
  • Know exactly what to say
  • Answer the tough question: "Did you do drugs?"

Additional resources:

  • Tips for caring adults involved with kids
  • A practical, one-sheet guide to the drug and alcohol scene