Printable Version of Tips for Parents

Talking to Your Kids About Drugs

Know your role

  • Ensuring that your child can confidently speak to you about their opinions or feelings on all issues is an important factor when speaking to them about drugs.

  • Remember that having conversations with your child means listening to them and understanding their point of view as well.

  • Praise them for being confident and brave enough to ask questions and be sure to encourage future dialogue.

Empower them

  • Be sure you’re allowing your child to make his or her own decisions. 

  • Telling them not to do certain things and expecting them to blindly follow your words will not empower them to make their own choices when it comes to possible peer or media pressures in their future.

  • Providing your child with facts and support is just as important as giving them warnings. Avoiding anger is also key.

Find the right moments

  • Speaking to your child about drugs and drug abuse should not be a one-time occurrence.

  • Drug references will find their way into your child’s life through movies and TV shows, music, and popular media. When these situations arise, take the opportunity to speak about them with your child so you can gauge how they are reacting to these influences.

It’s never too early to start

  • Children are easier to influence at younger ages, and the older they get, the more they will begin making decisions for themselves, no matter what you say.

  • Make sure you establish a healthy dialogue with your child about these sensitive subjects early so he or she feels comfortable speaking to you when faced with a challenge.

  • It’s a healthy advantage to establish your child’s attitudes about drugs before the outside world can.