As a parent, you likely talked to your child about distracted driving before he or she got a Nevada driver’s license. However, have you had a talk with your teen about drunk driving? As parents, we like to think our child would never get behind the wheel after drinking or get into a vehicle with a drunk driver, but teens make some questionable choices. They also lack some of the reasoning skills that adults have, so they may get into a situation without even realizing it. This is why you need to address drunk driving directly with your child.
Stanford Children’s Health notes that talking to your child can help equip him or her with the tools to avoid drinking and driving or riding with an impaired driver. You want to not only focus on getting behind the wheel after drinking, but also on not drinking in the first place.
Have an open conversation with your daughter or son about alcohol; find out how she or she feels about drinking. Get an idea of drinking in your child’s social group. Make sure, though, to keep things light. You will get better responses if your child does not feel attacked or like he or she is in trouble.
Make clear statements about the consequences of drinking and driving under the influence, and explain the legal ramifications. Talk about drunk driving accidents and how they are often fatal. Let your teen know that it is never okay to get behind the wheel after drinking any amount of alcohol.
Help your son or daughter understand how to handle peer pressure to drink. Give your child the option to contact you if he or she ever has a situation with a friend driving drunk. Explain that it is better to call you than to get in the car with a drunk driver.
Being direct and open with your child sets ground rules and lets your teen know that drunk driving is never okay. You also need to be a good role model and show your child that even adults should not drink and drive.