Keeping our Teens Drug and Alcohol Free

End of the Year Celebrations: Keeping our Kids Safe

Teens eating pizza around backyard bonfireAs a parent, are you finding it harder to keep up with your middle school and high
school kids? With the warmer weather and upcoming events like prom, after parties, graduation and summer, it’s about to get busier! And while it gets harder for us to manage busy schedules, it seems easier for our kids to engage in risky behaviors. With a smartphone, common social media apps, and online stores, trouble can be delivered right to our door.

While most of our students choose to be drug-free, the temptation can be strong. Here’s how we can protect them and be ready to intervene:

  • Be aware of what teens can use to conceal alcohol and drugs. You know best when your teen/tween is trying to hide something, but it’s always tough to know for sure. If you have concerns but can’t quite put your finger on what it is, this video of a mock teen’s bedroom might provide some insight. It gives examples of what might be hiding in plain sight – how common items (deodorant, hair brushes, batteries, etc.) can be used to hide things. While the video may seem overwhelming, keep in mind that most teens don’t have any of these items, while others have one or two.
  • Keep the lines of communication open with these age-appropriate talking tips and 5 conversation goals that show your child you care and are on their side. At every age, continue to praise and encourage your child for what they do well and the positive choices they make.
  • Check out our teen-approved party tool kit of safe activities and venues created by DHS & HPHS students in collaboration with local parents.
  • Planning an after party? Email the guests’ parents ahead using this sample email to lay the ground rules, reinforce your expectations and give peace of mind to the other parents. When your teen is a guest at an after party, check their bags for “hidden” items (also seen in video above) before they leave so it isn’t all on the host to catch everything.

We want our teens to be able to safely enjoy their get togethers and end of the year celebrations!

CTAD Parent Committee Member & DHS Parent

Source: Glenbard Parent Series, Wake Up Call! Drug Trends: Proactive Parenting Strategies