Dr. Marvin Krank speaks to parents and youth about drugs at Vernon Secondary School. Close to 100 people attended the session.

Parents urged to talk to kids

Marvin Krank’s research focuses on the development of substance abuse in teens

While parents often feel like the teacher in Charlie Brown when they’re talking to their teens, the truth is that what they say matters. And kids are listening.

Sure, they might glaze over after the tenth time you’ve asked them to clean their room this week, but when it comes to drugs and alcohol, they are listening.

“What you say and do matters,” said Dr. Marvin Krank, who recently gave a public presentation at Vernon Secondary School titled Talking To Your Kids About Drugs.

A professor of psychology, Krank’s research focuses on the development of substance abuse in teens and young adults. Over the past 20 years, he has studied the unrealistic thoughts and beliefs held by youth that lead to risky substance use and he will share that evidence at the presentation.

Along with being a good role model, Krank urges parents to set clear expectations.

That means setting no use expectations, not telling kids that it’s OK to have a little.

“When we say that, all they hear is marijuana and alcohol are OK,” said Doug Rogers, substance abuse prevention counsellor for the Vernon School District.

“The mixed messages are really tough for kids.

“Things need to be very clear for kids.”

Things have changed in the past decade with increased knowledge around how a parent’s relaxed rules can impact a youth’s behaviour.

“Now we know through research that the messaging we give to kids is ‘they’re allowed to use,’” said Rogers of any accepted drug or alcohol use.

“We also know that the earlier kids start the more likely they are to continue into adulthood.”

Along with setting clear expectations, Krank reminds parents: “We need to tell them more than what not to do.”

He offers seven rules:

1. Model low risk use

2. Set clear no substance use expectations

3. Monitor: Ask about where they are going, who they are going with and what they are going to do

4. Be supportive; listen and empathize

5. Ask questions about the risks

6. Encourage healthy alternatives

7. Accept mistakes as learning experiences

“Contrary to appearances, they need you more than ever,” said Krank.

Rogers is pleased with the turnout of the recent presentation, with close to 100 parents, students and teachers attending.

“It was outstanding. A lot of families came and the kids were listening because it’s always nice to hear from someone different than your parents.”



Just Posted

Power outage leaves 1,500 Vernon residents in the dark

BC Hydro restores Westside Road outage within an hour

Vernon woman collecting socks for less fortunate

Jennylee Cowie hopes to collect 100 pairs of socks to give to the Gospel Mission in Kelowna

UPDATE: Water back on for Vernon residents

Water main break shut water off temporarily to Okanagan Avenue homes; repaired Tuesday evening

Vernon’s Vasek Pospisil rolling at Davis Cup

Vernon player teams up with Denis Shapovalov to lead Canada into quarterfinals

WATCH: Coldstream garage fire as hot as 275 C: deputy fire Chief

Shop fire potential for ‘one heck of a fireworks show,’ O’Hara says

VIDEO: Ron MacLean says he doesn’t believe former co-host Don Cherry is racist

Sportsnet fired Cherry on Nov. 11, two days after controversial on-air comments during ‘Coach’s Corner’

B.C. woman puts call out for 10,000 personal, heartfelt Christmas cards for the homeless

Christmas Card Collective enters into third year of making spirits bright

No turn signals, double-parking among top concerns for B.C. drivers: poll

Two-thirds of B.C. drivers said that not using turn signals was their biggest pet peeve

PHOTOS: Patients pelt doctors with snowballs, all for BC Children’s Hospital

The snowball fight was to raise funds for the annual Snowball Fight for Kids Campaign

‘Our culture is not a religion,’ Indigenous educator tells B.C. Supreme Court in case of smudging at school

Mother also gave evidence Tuesday in Nanaimo courtroom, case continues Wednesday

Rocky start to Rider Express’ first year operating in B.C.

Company hopes to add a night bus between Vancouver and Calgary

B.C. man who killed Belgian tourist near Boston Bar gets life in prison, no parole until 2042

Sean McKenzie pleaded guilty to second-degree murder of 28-year-old Amelie Christelle Sakkalis

Escape Santa Claus’ workshop at Pritchard Hall

Players must find their way out of three puzzle-filled rooms

Court hears man’s multiple property crimes in Shuswap fueled by addiction

Accused completes sentence, states he’s ready to do good things

Most Read