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How To Set Rules With Your Teen Driver

As a parent of a newly licensed driver, you might be feeling a mix of emotions. On the one hand, you don’t need to play chauffeur anymore.

However, you also have new worries to think about like distracted driving and other dangers on the road. As soon as your teen starts driving and before they begin driving alone, it’s a good idea to set some rules.

Setting rules and sticking to them can be difficult. However, here are some ways to make rules for your new driver and keep them.

Make Your Expectations Clear

Even though every parent of a newly licensed driver wants the same thing for their teen (to stay safe behind the wheel), you can’t assume your teen knows what you want. If you expect your son or daughter to take on some of the driving responsibilities, such as taking younger siblings to school, make that clear before you hand over the keys.

Discuss everything from allowing (or not allowing) passengers and driving during nighttime hours to having a curfew and filling up the gas tank

Let Your Teen Help Make Decisions

While you should have the final say in setting up rules with your teen, you may want to consider letting him or her be part of the decision making process. Have an open and honest discussion, ask for feedback, and see what his or her expectations are when it comes to driving.

If you forgo asking your new driver what he or she thinks or feels, you may end up having a disinterested driver.

The Law Is On Your Side

It’s not uncommon for adolescents to challenge expectations and questions rules set by their parents. An excellent way to avoid resistance or an unnecessary argument is to discuss state driving laws.

If you set rules based on laws, your teen driver is more likely to follow them rather than think you’re too strict.

State driving laws can also be helpful when discussing consequences of poor driving decisions. For example, if your teen breaks the law, you can talk about how to handle the fines and other things associated with driving rules.

Have A Little Fun

Setting rules can be a little stressful, and you might even end up feeling like the bad guy (even if you’re looking out for the best interest of your teen). Want a way to break up the serious discussion but still stress the importance of being a safe and responsible driver?

Cards of Distractibility” is a free online game that simulates distracted driving and allows you to see how well you drive while distracted in a safe and fun way. The “driver” receives texts while driving and there are signs on the side of the road that flash and change.

At the end of the session, the driver plays a game of memory to see how difficult it is to “multitask” while driving. This online tool is a great way to connect with your teen and even have a little friendly competition.

About The Author

Matt Rhoney is an avid reader on trending topics and a writer in his spare time. On the beautiful coast of North Carolina, you will usually find him catching up on the latest news with locals or the beach surfing, kayaking or paddle boarding. He loves to write pieces on health, fitness, and wellness, but often writes about families and safety.

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