I wanted to include some tips for talking to teens, not just about drugs or substance abuse, but these mostly work for a wide range of scenarios... 1. Educate yourself first. Teens tend to think that their parents lack credibility and could not understand "what they're going through", and in some cases that may be right. The world has certainly changed dramatically in the last 20 years. If you're talking to your teen about anything from drugs to social media, make sure that you've educated yourself on the topic. Nobody wants to be the parent talking to his teen about "smoking tweeds". 2. Have more than 1 "talk". I hear this one all the time in therapy with teens in crisis. "I talk to him/her about drugs." It's true, most parents have a talk with their teens, but do they follow up on that? Do they check in and see where their heads are as they mature and experience more in their social circles? Talking about drugs & alcohol should be an ever evolving dialog, not just on serious conversation. 3. Ask questions that create conversation. "Are you drinking?" comes across a whole lot more aggressive than, "What do you think about drinking?" Asking questions that require thought and discussion will also make you teen feel like you value their input and opinion.