Questions Parent Should ask Themselves

We all want all youth to live happy, healthy and productive lives.  This of course includes avoiding alcohol and other drugs.  Parents and other adults involved in youths lives often aren’t sure what they need to know, do and say to teens to prevent alcohol and drug use.  Research supported by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) has shown the important role that parents play in preventing their children from starting to use drugs.

We encourage parents and other adults to think about the following five questions, developed by the Child and Family Center at the University of Oregon, which highlight parenting skills that are important in preventing drug use and alcohol use among youth.  The parenting skills highlighted are communication, encouragement, negotiation, setting limits and supervision. When you click each question below you will be directed to the NIDA (National Institute for Drug Abuse) Family Check Up program.  Each link shows a video clip with positive and negative examples of the skill and additional videos and information are provided to help you practice positive parenting skills.


  1. Are you able to communicate calmly and clearly with your teenager regarding relationship problems?
  2. Do you encourage positive behaviors in your teenager on a daily basis?
  3. Are you able to negotiate emotional conflicts with your teenager and work toward a solution?
  4. Are you able to calmly set limits when your teenager is defiant or disrespectful? Are you able to set limits on more serious problem behavior such as drug use, if or when it occurs?
  5. Do you monitor your teenager to assure that s/he does not spend too much unsupervised time with peers?

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