Bridging the Technology Gap: Study Confirms Teens Open to Discussing Drugs and Alcohol With Parents By Email, Cell Phones
- Some Parents Missing Opportunities to Connect -
- Only 1 in 4 Teens Report Parents Have Warned of Prescription Drug Abuse Dangers -
“Parents who are waiting for the “right time” to talk with their kids about drugs and alcohol may be missing everyday opportunities to connect on this important issue, said
The survey underscores that “Generation Text” has arrived — when asked which was more important for everyday communication with friends, texting or social networking; teens were far more likely to communicate directly by texting (63 percent) than to rely on websites like Facebook (38 percent) to stay connected. And teens don’t only want to hear from their friends. A majority of teens — 67 percent — were open to receiving texts from their parents after school — a time when teens are most likely to be unsupervised. For many parents, texting may be an additional tool for monitoring and staying in touch with teens.
“Some parents may still feel apprehensive about embracing technology as a way of communicating with their children,” said
For parents who are reluctant or don’t know how to send text messages, the Partnership has created a downloadable guide called “Time To Text.” The tool is free at TimeToTalk.org, and gives parents quick tips on how to text, suggests different messages to send to teens and provides a cheat sheet parents can keep in their wallet.
Disconnect Between Parents and Teens
Additional findings from the Partnership/MetLife Foundation survey revealed an ongoing disconnect about the discussions that are taking place between parents and teens about drugs and alcohol. Parents reported discussing virtually all forms of substance abuse “at length” with their teens, but alcohol is the only topic that 60 percent or more of teens reported their parents had covered in depth. In fact, just 26 percent of teens said their parents had talked to them about the abuse of prescription drugs to get high — a troubling finding in light of the fact that 1 in 5 teens has reported engaging in this dangerous behavior.
The Partnership/MetLife Foundation study was conducted among 1,001 nationally representative parents of American teens and 1,009 nationally representative teens. The survey was conducted by Wakefield Research and has a margin of error +/- 3.1 percent.
For more information, visit www.drugfree.org
SOURCE Partnership for a Drug-Free America