If you are a mom with children that have entered the teen
years, you are undoubtedly dealing with a new set of parenting issues, from
teenage angst, issues with peers, changing relationships and more. While all of
that is probably enough to deal with alone, your teen will soon be behind the
wheel of a car!
In the UK, you can apply for a provisional
license at the tender age of 15 years and 9 months of age. You can apply
for a full license at the age 17 for cars, and 16 for moped or motorbike
licensing. Seems so young, right?
As a parent, you will have mixed feelings about your kids
new found independence in addition to anxiety and worry over if they are safe
and sound. This is completely normal. Here are a few ways to mentally prepare
for the years ahead.
Know You Are Not Alone
Every parent goes through different emotions as their children
enter different life stages. There is no right or wrong way to feel and if you
are feeling all sorts of mixed and conflicted emotions, you must know that you
are not alone. It is perfectly normal to have some degree of anxiety over your
teenager being behind the wheel. Worry is a natural extension of parenthood and
this stage of life will be no less worrisome!
Prepare Your Teen
You will want to ensure that you are setting your teenager
up for success prior to scheduling his or her driving testing. There are many
routes you can take when it comes to preparation. If you live in the UK, a
great starting point is toptests.co.uk.
They offer all kinds of free mock testing online to prepare your teen for the
driving theory exam as well as the practical driving test. The point is, to
ensure your teen is knowledgeable about driving, is aware of the rules of the
road, and has had adequate driving school lessons.
Set Up a Driving Contract
This is a great way for parents to set out guidelines and some
rules for new teenage drivers. You can stress the importance of keeping the contract
with your teenager and there can also be a set of consequences that will occur
if your teen breaks any of the rules of the driving contract. Things to
consider for your contract are the following:
Will you permit driving at night time?
What about driving with your teen’s
Will there be a set time when your teen
must have the car home if you are restricting night time driving?
What are the consequences of breaking the
No cell phone/texting promise
These are just a few things to consider when setting up a
driving contract agreement with your teenager. You can add anything that you
like, just ensure to stress to your teen that it’s really all about managing
the important privilege of driving, while keeping your sanity as a parent!