How to handle talking about drugs and alcohol with your kids

(WMAR) - Your kids are going to sporting events, parties, school dances, and sooner or later the topic is going to come up.

"I always find the best way to talk to our kids about drugs and alcohol is only answer what they are asking you at the time."

Mia Redrick, the Mom Strategist says it's important to keep the lines of communication open.

"They're going to ask you things, but more importantly what I found over the years with my three kids is that they see things in their world that they want clarity around.  When your child goes to that party or the school dances and realizes that kids are putting vodka in a water bottle, okay that's not something you'd bring up as a parent, that's something your child is going to bring up and you want to keep the doors open for communication when those things are happening."

Redrick says you need to be a consultant and not a manager when it comes to taking on this touchy subject.

"The goal Kelly is to get your kids to learn what is appropriate and what is not appropriate for them as it relates to drugs and alcohol.  It's not for you to manage their world and the situation."

Redrick says use current events as a segue for conversation.

"It's your opportunity to say wow did you see this article, did you see what happens, teenagers don't always understand the consequences of bad choices."

See who your kids are hanging out with and watch for changes in behavior if you suspect they may be using. Most importantly keep the lines of communication open.

"Drugs have been around since the beginning of time, and we're not going to stop that, as parents you want your child coming to you when they see something that is inappropriate or if they've had their own drugs or alcohol experience you want your kids coming to you as the source, not their friends."

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