As they get older, teens want more independence. This usually comes in the shape of a car and driver’s licence. While everyone is remaining at home right now because of COVID-19, the crisis won’t last forever. Before you know it, your teen will be asking to have driving lessons. This causes alarm for many parents because you may not be sure if your teen is ready for such a big responsibility.
The good news is that there are ways to tell if your teen has successfully reached this stage in their life. Our team at Wynperle Law has handled many motor vehicle accidents and will provide our expertise to give you some peace of mind.
How Do You Drive?
Parents influence their children much more than their friends, so it’s essential that you act as a good role model when it comes to driving. It will help your teen gain confidence and reduce their likelihood of accidents.
Are you guilty of forgetting to wear your seat belt? Do you cruise through Stop signs instead of coming to a complete stop? Your teen will pick on little things like this and telling them “Do what I say, not what I do” is not enough.
According to MADD, the leading cause of death for individuals between 16 and 25 are motor vehicle accidents. In 55% of those accidents, alcohol and/or drugs was a factor.
You may be an experienced driver, but you and your passengers are still vulnerable to accidents.
What Is Your Relationship with Your Teen?
Learning to drive a car is thrilling and scary, so your teen will need reassurance and support. Reading up on driving laws and discussing them with your teen will show them that they’re not alone. You can share your own experiences to put them at ease.
To help children learn, they need structure. Although they’re getting older, teens are no different and still require rules and enforcement of those rules, such as implementing a curfew. This is to help them build character and provide them with the opportunity to show that they can handle responsibility.
Parents need to also take an interest in their teen’s life, which includes meeting their friends and engaging in their teen’s interests to a certain extent.
What Choices Does Your Teen Make?
To answer this, you’ll need to be observant and think back on your teen’s judgement calls. Teenagers need a certain level of maturity in order to drive. When you place the keys in their hands, you’re giving them the responsibility of taking care of your vehicle, as well as making them responsible for their life and their passengers’ lives.
Defence driving entails making the best decision in seconds. Here are some questions that will help you to determine whether or not your teen makes good choices with and without pressure:
- Friends: What has your teen said about their friends? What kind of anecdotes do they recount? Have you met their friends and seen how they act and speak together? Do you know their friends’ parents?
We’re not saying to judge your teen or their friends, but to observe how they are in order to give you some insight into your teen’s personality and what role they are in. For example, do they listen to their friends without a second thought or is there more of a give-and-take relationship between them?
- Hobbies: Some teens don’t proclaim to have any hobbies, like coin collecting or knitting. If they do, are they dedicated to the activity or is it just to pass the time? If they play a sport, speak with their coach and watch their games. Is your teen good with devising strategies? Do they run to their teammate’s side when they’re injured or watch from a distance?
- Promises: If your teen says they’ll meet you or their friends, are they always late? Do they give themselves enough time to study or do they cram the night before a test? If your teen breaks their promises more often than they keep them, it’s a sign that they don’t take things seriously.
Understanding your teen from a psychological perspective will help you to know whether or not they’ll make the right decisions when they’re behind the wheel. If they’re the type of person to keep their promises and work hard at school, they’re likely to always put their seatbelt on and to say “no” to their friends if they propose a bad idea.
Call Wynperle Call Accident Lawyers
Not every car accident your teen gets into will be their fault. Another driver may rear-end them while they’re parked or forget to signal when changing lanes. Whatever the case, Wynperle Law is here to assist you and your teen while defending your rights.
At this time, we are working remotely because of the COVID-19 crisis, but you can still get in touch with us. Schedule a free consultation today!