Having a young driver in the household means freedom from having to shuttle your teen from place to place as well as new worries about their driving activities.
The following tips were suggested by parents:
-- Driving is a privilege, not a right. The teen must understand their responsibilities in order to keep this privilege.
-- Take the keys. Teens have said "the only way to stop risky behavior is to take away the keys." Remember how important it is to them to have the ability to drive.
-- Establish specific rules and guidelines with the teen. If the rules are violated, make sure the consequences are clear. Stick to what you have said. -- Help the teen get driving experience in as many conditions as possible. Have a specific plan. It takes a commitment on your part but will give you and the teen a greater level of comfort.
-- Use "stepping stones" for restrictions for new drivers. Ease into complete driving freedom. For example allow the distance from home to expand a little each month.
-- A Driving Contract is a great way to make sure that everyone knows what is expected. If you don't use one, at least use as an agenda to cover all the topics while talking with the new driver.
-- Allow only your teen as the driver and zero passengers for at least one month. Then allow one passenger for a month, then two.
-- Follow through on the consequences for their actions if there are violations. If you do not, you lose your credibility.
-- Keep it simple. Don't establish an elaborate and over-strict set of rules. This will only encourage the teen to "test" them.
-- Be consistent!