Teen life coaching
is a great fit for teens involved in any way with drugs
or alcohol. Alcohol and drug use or
abuse comes up in almost all my coaching calls with
parents and teens. Parents are wondering if their
teen is using and if so are unsure how to proceed in
dealing with this. Teens are often concerned about
their or a friend’s use and are also at a loss.
Parents talk with family
and friends and get more and more frustrated and upset.
Teens are afraid to tell their parents what is going on
for fear of punishment and disappointment.
We as parents have to take
the lead on protecting our children from drug and
alcohol use/abuse. We all know someone or someone’s teen
who has gotten into trouble as a result of using.
The Warning Signs of Teen Alcohol and Drug Use/Abuse
• Missing work or school
• Not saying where he or she is going
• Lying about where he or she has been
• Stopping activities the teen used to enjoy and not
filling the time with other fun activities
• Borrowing money from parents or friends; can’t explain
loss of money or valuable
• Sniffling, running nose, dilated pupils or red eyes
• Losing appetite
• Associating with a new group of friends, often with
those who use drugs
• Hiding things that would show alcohol or drug use-
liquor bottles, rolling papers, pipes
Institute on Drug Abuse
Teen Life Coach’s Tips on What You Can Do
• Parental Monitoring
- Supervise your teen or know where your teen is and
what they are doing
• Make a Plan -
Decide what you will say before you talk to your teen if
you suspect drug or alcohol use. (Avoid
negativity- express your concerns, caring, and love).
• State the Facts -
Say what changes you have noted from the above warning
• Be Open - Listen
to your teen’s response.
• Set and Enforce Rules
- With care and concern, let your teen know that you
will not put up with drug or alcohol use. Use a
positive frame like, “ I know you can’t stand it when I
make rules, but I am your mom/dad and it is my job to
keep you safe”. Hold your teen accountable for
his/her actions with clear consequences for not obeying
• Obstacles - Many
teens will become very angry and get up and leave the
room. Keep calm and take a break and go back for
• Keep Talking - Any
chance you get, bring up your love and concern and what
you notice. Be clear and reasonable. Don’t give up, no
matter how uncomfortable you are.
• Design a Contract
- about rules and consequences for drinking and driving.
If you feel that you need an extra push, nudge, support,
email me for a free Teen Life Coaching session. In
one 45-minute call we will develop a plan to help you
design a plan to discuss alcohol and drug use/abuse with
Contact Susan for a
teen life coaching.
Susan P, Epstein, LCSW,
parent coach and
family coach, works with parents and families
looking for satisfaction, balance and growth.
Susan is an expert in the areas of family dynamics,
parenting and child development and her unique blend of
therapy and coaching combine to make her a powerful
catalyst for change.
She practiced psychotherapy for 23 years before becoming
a coach, writer and speaker. Susan graduated from
University of California at Berkeley School of Social
Welfare. She is a licensed clinical social worker
in Connecticut and Rhode Island. Susan also
completed training with the Coaches Training Institute,
an internationally accredited coach training
more about Susan.
Articles and Specialties of Susan Epstein, Teen Life
Family Coach: Six
Tips to Less Stress at Home
Grief Coach: Advice
on Helping Children Grieve the Loss of a Family Member:
The Making of a Teen
Teen Life Coach
Riffs on the College Homesick Blues
Teen Life Coaching Workshop
Teen Life Coaching:
Drugs and Alcohol
Family Coach: Six Tips
for Enjoying Your Kids While Working From Home
Coaching: Through the Generation Gap
Coaching in the Fast Lane (workshop)
Attention Parents! No More Yelling!
Attention Parents! No More Yelling! (part 2)
Rediscover the Joy
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