Thursday, February 21, 2008

How to keep your teen boy safe when he parties

The best way to keep your teen boy safe when he parties is to have the parties in your home. That way you know where he is, whom he is hanging out with, and what he is doing. It can be stressful having a bunch of teens in your home all the time, making a mess and eating all your food. Is it more stressful then worrying about what your teen boy is up to when he is not in your home? The reality of your home being the party house is slim to none. Teens will go to the home with the least supervision, no adults there, or adults that don’t care.

These days you don’t have much control over your teen boy. Sure you can GPS them, make them check in every hour, drug test them, control most of the money they have unless they have a job, and in some ways control who they hang out with, when and where. But only your son can control his actions and decisions. The best protection for your son when he is outside of your control is for him to be well informed about his options and the consequences of his actions. This means making sure he is well informed about the realities and consequences of sex, drugs, alcohol, crime and violence.

Do not just have the “don’t do drugs, drink, have sex or break the law” conversation. You need to show your teen boy what drugs and alcohol will do to him and his friends. What the real affect drugs and alcohol have on them. How it changes what they think and do, how “dumb” they become under the influence. How over time it changes your physical appearance from young and healthy to sickly and ugly. How it can kill him and his friends in many ways from overdose to being around the wrong people and being killed for the drugs or money. Find a way to show them what detox is actually like. Let them know all the realities about drug and alcohol use, not some Disney version of it.

Sex, well they are going to want to do it. You son needs to know what can happen when he has sex. This includes pregnancy and STD’s. He also needs a clear idea of what is OK and not OK, the “if a person says no it means no” conversation. It is not OK to have sex with a person just because they are too drunk to say no. Keep him safe from misunderstandings and mixed messages. These are things you can talk with him about and help him understand the complexity of having sex with some one. Most people don’t think of it as just sex, so there are the relationship issues to deal with.

Most problems come about because teen boys will do some very stupid things to impress a girl so he can have sex with her. This can lead to fights, and criminal activity like drag racing or theft so he can have the money and clothing to impress her. This is going to be harder to deal with, as you probably have no idea it is going on. Again you have to give them as much information about what is right and wrong and the consequences and then trust them enough to let them make their own mistakes.

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