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For teen drivers, the 100 deadliest days are fast approaching


Like most parents in Nassau County, you want what is best for your children. While effective parenting when your kids are young is not necessarily easy, trying to control teen drivers can be even worse. Still, if the young driver in your family combines drinking with driving, you may be in for some tough times. Further, if a teenager receives a DWI conviction, he or she may be in for a lifetime of hardship.

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day is the deadliest for teen drivers. As these 100 deadliest days approach, you may want to remind your son or daughter about the hazards of driving under the influence of alcohol. Here are some tips for getting the most out of your discussion.

  1. Recognize the issue

While some teenagers choose to drink alcohol, others abstain. You probably know your kids as well as anyone does. Nevertheless, if you are in denial about alcohol consumption, you may not be a valuable resource for the teenagers in your home. By recognizing the issue and formulating a plan to address it, you better position yourself to help your kids make good choices.

  1. Facilitate effective communication

Peer pressure can be an unbelievably powerful force. If your kids choose to drink at a party or somewhere else, you do not want them to climb behind the wheel. Instead, you want your children to feel comfortable calling you for a ride home. By facilitating effective communication, you encourage your kids to bring their problems to you. With some understanding and your life experience, you can likely collaborate with your teenage driver on a solution.

  1. Establish realistic expectations

Every person must find his or her own path from childhood into adulthood. Put simply, mistakes often happen during adolescence. If you set unrealistic expectations, you may encourage your children to rebel. While there is nothing wrong with having a zero-tolerance policy for drunk driving, you probably want to allow some latitude for your young ones to make mistakes. You also want to explain the consequences of a DWI conviction in terms your teenager can understand.

4. Enforce consequences

Children have thought their parents uncool since time began. Still, when it comes to drinking and driving, you must be a parent rather than a friend. If your son or daughter fails to comply with your rules, you should enforce consequences. Talking to a family therapist or counselor may help you determine which repercussions are right for underage drinking.

The summer months can be a dangerous time for teenaged drivers. As you know, alcohol and driving do not mix at any age. By teaching your kids to stay safe on the road, you help them get from May to September without injuring themselves or someone else.