If you’ve just discovered or have reason to believe your child is using substances, the first thing to do is sit down and take a deep breath. We know this is scary, but you’re in the right place. Take a beat and prepare yourself for the important conversations ahead. Some brief preparation now can lay a foundation for more positive outcomes ahead.

    How to get started

    The following resources focus on ways to better communicate and create boundaries, and techniques for encouraging behavior change. Keep in mind that addressing an unhealthy behavior is less about imposing change on someone, but rather making changes together, and supporting their goals.

    Prepare to Take Action if You Suspect Teen or Young Adult Drug Use

    Is your child using drugs? Use these tips to prepare for the conversation ahead, and lay the foundation for more positive outcomes.
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    If You Discover Your Child is Using Drugs: Start Talking

    Take action to address drug and alcohol use early. Learn how talk with your child and have a productive conversation addressing their substance use.
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    Addressing Substance Use: Set Limits & Monitor Behavior

    Limits show your teen that you care. The tricky part is finding a balance between your need for control and their need for independence.
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    Use Positive Reinforcement to Help Change Behavior

    Providing some kind of reward to increase the chances that a healthy behavior will be repeated is central to helping change your child's substance use.
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    Need more help?

    We have trained and caring specialists ready to listen, help you find answers and make an action plan, with support available in English and Spanish. Not ready to connect with someone directly? Sign up for Help & Hope by Text to receive daily messages customized to address your specific concerns.

    Get One-on-One Help to Address Your Child’s Substance Use

    Parent support specialists are available to listen, answer questions and help you create a plan to address your child's substance use.
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    Get Help & Hope by Text

    Have a concern about your son or daughter struggling with substance use? Get ongoing support and resources tailored to you and your child's needs.


    May 2020