Do I really need to confront my child?

Parents need to talk to children about their drug use. Children who start using drugs at an early age are more likely to continue using, to use other more potent drugs, and to develop problems with their drug use. Recognizing your own uncomfortable feelings about confronting your child may actually help you understand some of what your child may be thinking when you have this conversation. Remember that youth rely on parents or caregivers to keep them safe, even when their behavior suggests they don’t need you for that any more.

Some parents may feel reluctant to confront a child about drug use. Here are some of the reasons from a parent’s point of view:

  • I took drugs when I was young, and it didn’t seem to hurt me.
  • Adolescents need to experiment to find out what life is all about.
  • Everyone is doing it, and I don’t want my child to be isolated.
  • What if I’m wrong about my child’s drug use? My child will be angry, and our relationship will break down.
  • I am not a very good parent and this will be very hard for me to do.
  • I don’t know how to start this conversation.

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