Drunk driving kills about 30 people in the US a day. According to the CDC, this suggests that one person dies around every 48 minutes in an alcohol related accident. Children are often the victims of drunk driving and teenagers are often the ones responsible for these deaths. Because teenagers are so often at the wheel during drunk driving accidents, it is important for parents to talk to them about drunk driving before it happens. Here are some suggestions to help you talk to your children about driving while under the influence.
Start talking when they are young
Tell children about the consequences of drunk driving before they hit their teenage years. Teenagers are more prone to rebellion and more likely to be involved in a culture of social drinking. It can be hard to get them to stop when they have already started. Instilling a sense of responsibility in them when they are young can help.
Go beyond statistics
Statistics can help make a point, but people rarely connect with them on an emotional level, so they are easily forgotten. Bring the statistics related to drunk driving home with more elaborate examples of the damages drunk driving has caused.
Use real life stories
Using stories of the victims of DUI related deaths can make the consequences of drunk driving more real to children. It can help them realize that the victims of DUI related crashes are people with real lives, emotions and families.
Use examples they can relate to
If someone you know has been the victim of a DUI related accident, tell your children about it. Realizing that alcohol related accidents have touched people you or they know can help children and teenagers understand that such accidents don’t just happen to other people.
Use visuals and videos
Words, whether written or spoken are more easily forgotten than pictures and video. Images of accidents or video dramatizations are more memorable.
Viewing pictures of victims before and after DUI related accidents can help put things into perspective. Victims like Jacqui Saburido, disfigured by burns, but still full of personality and spirit, can help children understand how tragic DUI related accidents can be.
Tell them about the legal implications
Make sure they understand the legal trouble they can get into. While attorneys like Suhre Law & Associates can help, the legal consequences of DUI related accidents can be staggering.
Earnest Parenting: helping parents with strategies to teach children to avoid drunk driving.