You have a good relationship with your teenage son or daughter, but that doesn’t mean you always know about everything he or she does or what they think. Conversations with your teens can be so enlightening, particularly as you learn about their fears, aspirations and random thoughts.
Inasmuch smoking is not as popular as it was when you were young, it still represents a rite of passage for many youngsters. Clearly, you don’t want your teen to smoke, therefore it is important that you have a conversation, one that will steer them from a habit that is hard to break.
- Just ask him. If you and your teen converse on any number of subjects, simply asking him if he smokes is the best approach. You don’t have to accuse, even if you suspect that he does, but you should create an opportunity for him to answer honestly. This is not an area where you want a wall put up between him and you.
- Dig a bit deeper. If your child says that she isn’t smoking, you can always ask if she has been tempted to do so. You want to gauge what pressure she may be under at school or when she is with her friends. You may learn that some people she knows have already moved past smoking and are now drinking or doing drugs. This conversation then needs to expand to discussing the other vices. Keep the dialogue going and do not panic.
- Discuss the health consequences. Granted, your child may not be in the mood to discuss the health consequences of smoking, but it is important that you do so. He may be aware of some things, but seem unaware of other matters. Besides the smell that goes with it, smoking can stunt growth and lead to an early cancer diagnosis. It can be hard for teens to grasp the health effects when they are so young. Don’t preach, but do teach — you’re a student here too.
- Lay down the law. As a parent, you can tell your child not to smoke. Teens are under age, under your care and don’t always make the right decisions. You can tell your son or daughter to quit. Moreover, you can provide consequences. At the same time, you may realize that your child is hooked. In that case you may need to take him to the doctor for a nicotine patch. You might also consider allowing him to vape with an electronic cigarette advises FitVapes.
Chances are your teen is going through a time when he or she is trying to discover what he or she is all about. Lots of teens smoke for just a while and quit. The cost of smoking, the foul taste and even social disapproval can have them quitting. Still, it is important that you keep the lines of communication open as smoking is not the end of the world. You’ve been with your child through much thus far, and helping him through it all can be possible.