Talking to your kids about drug abuse isn’t like talking to them about other things. It’s not like you can just take them on a tour of one of the low cost drug rehab centers for further clarification on this large issue. In fact, talking to them about drug abuse is more about opening the door for them to talk to you, than it is about you talking to them.
Create an Open Environment
How many times have you told your children to tell the truth, and then punished them for the actions they were honest about? This is no time to even think about punishment. Rather, it’s time to open the doors of communication as wide as possible. Even if they have tried drugs, punishment is only going to lead to them into hiding information that might be dangerous. Offer a calm demeanor and let them know there won’t be any penalties for what they tell you. By doing this, you might even be offering them a sense of relief as they get a chance to express their own concerns.
In part, you can present the topic much like teachers do in class. Find out what they know, and build upon that existing knowledge. However, avoid lectures, because this is when their eyes will glaze over, and they will stop listening. Answer questions honestly, and with facts. Avoid exaggerating any truths. Your kids have access to any kind of knowledge they want. If they find out you are exaggerating one truth, they may assume you are doing the same with all the details. If you don’t know the answer, be honest about that, too, and take this opportunity to look things up with your child.
Instead of judging, show empathy and let your child know about your own experiences. Not only does this help them learn some of the information you have to share, but it creates an environment that makes you look more open to discussion and less judgmental. If there is a problem, be sure to discuss affordable drug rehab options openly and honestly.