Talking Kits: 9th-12th Grade

Conversation Goals

The primary goal of conversations at this age is to maintain open lines of communication and to reinforce your teen’s healthy coping strategies. Other goals include: discussing the consequences of drug use (e.g., addiction, legal trouble, damaged relationships, etc.) establishing a clear connection between opioids and heroin, expressing your disapproval of their drug and alcohol use, and setting and reinforcing consequences.

Conversation Starters

Talking Tips

  1. Avoid asking yes or no questions (they are likely to be met with shrugs, grunts, eye-rolls, and non-answers).
  2. Encourage healthy, positive activities. Pursuing hobbies or activities (e.g., school events, sports, clubs, etc.) helps prevent teens from experimenting with drugs or alcohol substances out of boredom, curiosity, or as a way to fit-in.
  3. Talk about the long-term, and short-term negative side effects that opioid misuse and addiction can cause.
  4. Take an active interest in what’s going on in your teen’s life and who their friends are. Fact: teens are less likely to use alcohol and other drugs when they feel their parents are involved in their lives.
  5. Explain what addiction is and how drugs like opioids can affect their lives.
  6. Build relationships with your teen’s friends’ parents. These relationships can help you make sure that other parents are maintaining similar expectations and rules with their teen and that they’ll maintain your expectations with your teen.
  7. Help your teen establish goals and identify steps to reach them.
Need more help? Call NCADA at (314) 962-3456