This post is sponsored by Single Edition Media on behalf of the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment.”
Living in Colorado means you get the most beautiful blue skies nearly every day, gorgeous views of the Rocky Mountains and the best outdoor activities that are able to keep you busy year round. It also means that the topic of marijuana may need to come up with your children sooner than you would like.
Most people are aware that Colorado has become one of the few states to legalize retail marijuana thus far. However, I don’t think it will be long before you will be seeing the majority of states facing the same battles that parents in Colorado are currently encountering. So while I am writing this post specifically for parents of children in Colorado, it’s one that any parent may want to keep in their back pocket to reference down the road.
Good to Know is a campaign that offers resources designed for Colorado parents to help educate on how to begin discussing underage marijuana use with their children. This website was created by the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment as a way to help parents, when the time comes, to broach the topic of marijuana use, laws and health effects in regards to retail marijuana.
Regardless of what the majority of teens believe to be true, being a parent means you are responsible for providing your children with the knowledge they need to make the best choices possible.
So what is the best way to do that?
- Speak openly to your children when it comes to drug use. Give them the facts about the effects that retail marijuana can have on young, developing brains and the concerns that you have as a parent. Find resources at GoodtoknowColorado.com/talk
- Keep conversations age appropriate. I personally have younger children, so my talks now are different from those that I will have with them as they mature. However, when you have retail marijuana stores popping up all over town and children that are old enough to read, you still need to address the questions asked by them.
- Help children become involved in hobbies/activities that they enjoy. Encourage them to dream, and dream big. By developing a love for something that keeps them active and working towards a goal, hopefully they will be less likely to partake in the use of marijuana.
- Listen, listen, listen! Children need not only to listen, but to be heard as well. As a parent, one of your most important jobs is to listen and hear what your children are trying to say, even if they aren’t directly saying it.
- Be a safe place. Give your children the comfort of knowing that you, as parents are always there for them. You may not always agree with the decisions your child makes, but remember to provide them with a love that allows them to feel safe in coming to you with anything. Even though children may like to think they don’t need their parents, they do. Be there for them.
Being a parent is definitely one of the hardest and most rewarding jobs there is. At the end of the day, all you can do is pray that you are doing the best job possible for your specific child. If I have learned nothing else by being a parent to two children, it is this – each one is designed unique and what works for one may not work for the other.
So what are your thoughts on retail marijuana and how best to talk to teens/children about it? I would love to hear your ideas. Also, if you visited the website, what did you think about the information provided?