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For Parents

Parental influence and involvement is an important tool in preventing substance abuse.

Five Basics of Parenting Adolescents

  • Develop and maintain a relationship that offers support and acceptance.
  • Be aware of their activities, including school performance, work experience, after-school activities, peer relationships, adult relationships, and recreational, through a process that increasingly involves less direct supervision and more communication, observation, and networking with other adults.
  • Uphold a clear but evolving set of boundaries maintaining important family rules and values, but also encouraging increased competence and maturity.
  • Provide ongoing information and support around decision-making, values, skills, goals, and interpreting and navigating the larger world, teaching by example and ongoing dialog.
  • Make available not only adequate nutrition, clothing, shelter, and health care, but also a supportive home environment and a network of caring adults.

Setting Limits

Rules and expectations are two things that adolescents may rebel against but need. One of the primary tasks of adolescent development is to push the limits of their world. A prime task of a parent is to push back by establishing and enforcing clear, consistent rules and expectations.
  • Establish age-appropriate rules that remain the same at all times.
  • Set clear expectations concerning curfew, chemical use, household duties, language, respect, what is expected as a family member, homework, and school attendance.
  • Set fair consequences for rule violations. Include the child in developing what they think are fair consequences for breaking the rules.

40 Developmental Assets

In an effort to identify the elements of a strength-based approach to healthy development, Search Institute developed the framework of developmental assets. This framework identifies 40 critical factors for young people's growth and development. When drawn together, the assets offer a set of benchmarks for positive child and adolescent development. The assets clearly show important roles that families, schools, congregations, neighborhoods, youth organizations, and others in communities play in shaping young people's lives.
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