Remember when your grade school teacher told you there was no such thing as a stupid question? Turns out there's no such thing as a stupid lecture for your kids either. No really, no matter how basic and common sense a topic is, you might want to talk to your kids about it. You don't want your kid being one of the 20 percent of teens who actually think drugs and alcohol make them better drivers, do you?
I read that little bomb dropped by SADD this week, and my head just started aching. Haven't we had SADD and MADD and all that jazz around for long enough now that kids should know better?
But before you grab your can of Ensure and start barking on about "kids today," you might want to hear why the folks at SADD think our kids are idiots this is happening:
A lot of parents grew up on the don’t-drink-and-drive message. They figure, ‘Our kids hear this all the time,’ because they heard it all the time.
Got that, parents?
It's all on us.
So let's go back to that "no stupid lecture" theory, shall we?
Sometimes I feel like I have to tell my daughter the same thing 359 times before it will actually sink in. She should know by now that you need to put your plate up high so the dog doesn't steal your grilled cheese. I've said it enough times. The dog has stolen her food enough times. And she's NOT an idiot. She's a pretty smart kid all in all. But still, I repeat myself.
Over. And over. And over again.
And really, this is just a grilled cheese being stolen. It's not life changing. We can throw bread and cheese together pretty easily.
We all do this as parents. So why do we drop the ball when it comes to the important stuff? Why do we expect our teens to have any more common sense than they did when they were 8 or 9?
Because they're older?
OK, yes, they should have it. Should.
But that doesn't mean they do -- just look at this survey. The messages are just passing 'em on by.
Whether they're 7 or 17, you need to make sure your kid really "gets" what you're talking about before you stop hammering it home. It may be annoying (to them and to you). It may feel like you're wasting your time. It may even make you want to scream and cry that they're just NOT GETTING IT.
But trust me, you don't want to be the parent asking herself why she never talked to her kid about the dangers of driving drunk.
Do you expect your kids to know this by now? Have you talked to them about it?
Image via jonas_foyn/Flickr