Communication, Discipline, and Support

Before jumping ahead to an actual conversation with your child about drug use, let’s spend a little time defining what is meant by the words “communication”, “discipline” and ‘support’, as each of these terms represents actions that parents use to shape positive behavior in their children.

A process where both parents and youth give and receive information about their ideas, feelings, and opinions.

Discipline is encouraging behavior learned from infancy, through consistent repetition and sometimes rules of behaviors and activities reinforced by the parent. Examples include attending to personal hygiene, planning ahead, doing household chores and taking responsibilities. As the child develops and matures, he or she is more likely to learn that there are consequences if their behavior falls short of expectations or the standards set by the parents and by the surrounding community. The intended outcome is appropriate behavior that is undertaken by the individual of their own accord rather than it being enforced by rules or demands.

Showing love or affection, assisting and helping your child are ways thet parents support their children. A child who receives this support tends to have positive self-esteem because they feel they are an important part of a group (the family). When families support each other, children tend to be better at coping with daily life stresses and challenges, as well as if a major family crisis occurs.

You might remember Chapter 6 where we discussed why youth may or may not use drugs. One of the important ways to protect a child from using drugs is to have supportive parents.

These words are the framework for parent and child relationships, and can help keep the focus on partnering with your child to guide her or him through the challenging adolescent years.

Prevention-Smart launched for initial evaluation on June 26th 2009. If you have any comments or feedback, please email us via the contact form.