If you take some time to look at other articles on the internet, you may find that some of them say that the teenage years are the perfect time to talk to children about drugs and alcohol, while others may say it’s too late by this time. It’s never too late to talk to your kids about drugs and alcohol, and if they are at an age where they have a lot of understanding of adult things, even if they aren’t teenagers yet, it’s never too early either.
The point is that you want to talk to them before it is too late, when they’ve already fallen victim to the illness that is addiction. You want to make sure they understand what addiction is, and how it can ruin, or even take, their lives.
Be Honest About The Effects
Don’t sugar coat things, because all that does is make drugs and alcohol more of a temptation for them. Everyone knows that children will rebel, and they will experiment, but if you ensure your child knows all of the consequences, and that it can in fact happen to them, they will be less likely to fall prey to peer pressure.
Explain to them how alcohol and drugs directly affect them, and the health of their body’s. Show them photos of cirrhosis of the liver. Show them pictures of people that have been addicted to meth. Share stories from the newspaper with them about deaths, explosions, and even drug raids.
Not only do you want them to understand the dangers that inflict to themselves, but you also want them to understand how drugs and alcohol affect the people around them. Share with them how families are torn apart, how young children end up in foster homes, and the risk they pose every time they get behind the wheel drunk or high.
Don’t Share Your Own Stories
One thing you don’t want to do is tell them about your own experimentations with drugs and alcohol. All that does is tell them that if it worked out fine for you then it won’t hurt them at all either, after all, you’re still alive and well. Think of it this way, you lied to your kids about Santa and the Easter bunny, keeping your past addictions to yourself is no different.
Bring in A Professional
If you feel like they need real life examples, contact a local rehab facility and find out if they have any lesson programs that you can send your child through, or if you can simply take a tour of the place so they can see first hand the effects on people.
You may also want to take them to the local police station and talk with a police officer about what they see on a daily basis when it comes to drugs and alcohol. With any luck, these things just might scare your child straight.