We are all concerned when our teens are driving out on the road, but you can help your teenager be a safer, better driver by implementing a few rules that must not be broken in order to retain the privilege of driving.
First, only allow your teenager to drive if you or another trusted adult is with them in the car for a month or so until you are comfortable with your teenager behind the wheel. Just because your teenager has a drivers license does not mean they are ready to be out on the road on their own.
Don’t allow your teenager to blast music in the car while they are driving, and if you ever catch them driving where you can hear their music when they pull into the drive, or if you ever catch them start the car without their seat belt on, take away the keys. No ands, ifs, or buts. You have to be serious about safe driving, and loud music and a bad habit of not wearing a seat belt are certainly dangerous.
If your teenager calls you while they are driving, chastise them for talking on their cell phone while they are in motion and advise them that while you are glad they called to check in with you, they are not to use their phone while they are driving. If you allow your teenager to call you while they are driving, they’ll think they can call anyone while they are driving. Tell them that if they call you again without pulling over first or fail to call you when they have the car, the privilege to drive will be revoked.
Have a rule that your teenager can only drive to designated areas in town, like school and to the grocery store, or to certain friends’ houses, and must check in with you (after pulling off to the side of the road) often. If they travel outside of their approved areas, or drive to an approved area without getting your permission first, take away those keys.
You should set a rule on the amount of people your teenager can have in the car with them while they are driving, and you have the right to tell them who they are NOT allowed to have in their car. If you ever catch your teen allowing their friends to drive their car, take away the keys.
It is a good idea to set a time limit on how late your teenager is allowed to drive at night. If my cousin misses her 6PM curfew, she has to ride the bus to school for a week, which is the worst punishment EVER for a teenager.
You have to set harsh rules with your teenager when they get their drivers license to show them that you mean business about their driving privileges, and you have to be serious about taking away the keys when they abuse safety rules. Nothing is more important than your teenager’s health, and even though it may be convenient for you to have another driver in the house so you’re not lugging everybody around, if your teenager abuses the driving rules, you must be firm and take away the keys so your teenager knows you are serious about the rules you have set for their driving and their safety overall. Otherwise, your teenager will just walk all over you and drive however they want to, whenever they want to, which can be a scary situation for everybody on the road.