Alcohol Drug Class Could Help Parents Take off the Blinders

by: Mike Miller

Since the beginning of time parents always give their own children the benefit of the doubt. I know that was the case with my mom. It was never her “Angel’s” fault. It had to be the influences of a few bad apples.

It comes as no surprise that when it comes to parents thinking about their own teens, they often put blinders on. A national poll finds that parents underestimate the likelihood that their own teenager has used alcohol or marijuana, while overestimating the drug use of other teens.

One in 10 parents surveyed believed their own teenage child had used alcohol during the previous year. And just one in 20 believed their teen had smoked marijuana.

Teens themselves reported a much higher rate of substance use in a separate poll released late last year. About half of 10th-graders said they had used alcohol over the previous 12 months; about one in 4 (28%) reported marijuana use.

More than half of the parents polled in the latest survey believed general alcohol use among teens -- other than their children -- was higher than reflected in the earlier poll and about a third overestimated marijuana use among other teens.

I guess parents don’t want to believe their kids are involved doing the things they did themselves as teens. The key is communication and observation. Encourage teens to take an online drug class to ensure they are educated as to dangers of drugs and alcohol.