They say that being a teenager is stressful… clearly these people have never tried being a parent of a teenager! While they’re battling their way through secondary school, you’re the one waiting on the sidelines to support them; an activity that goes unnoticed and unappreciated a lot of the time.
Of course, nothing will ever prepare you for the stress and worry that ensues once your kids begin learning to drive. Whether it’s the stress of teaching your kids to drive yourself or the worry that creeps in when they’re back a little later than you thought, being the parent of a learner driver isn’t easy! Don’t panic; it might be difficult but it’s not impossible! Here are our top tips to help you out:
1. Set Ground Rules & Stick to Them
It doesn’t matter if you’ll be the person teaching your child to drive or if they’ll be taking private lessons, you need to set ground rules from the very beginning. Common ground rules include keeping the radio at a low volume or off completely, keeping to the speed limit at all times and keeping their phone turned off or on silent while driving. This is especially important if you’ll be taking your child out driving as, unfortunately, there are more likely to be arguments and disagreements.
2. Buying a Car That You Are Happy With
Every new, young driver will want an expensive fast car with a big engine but that doesn’t necessarily mean that that’s what they’ll be getting! You need to know that once they’ve passed their test, your child will be safe and many parents prefer their kids to start off with a car with a smaller engine. It doesn’t matter if you’re buying the car or not, make sure that your child will be driving a car that they’ll be safe in and that you’re happy with. Bear in mind that a smaller engine can also mean cheaper insurance costs!
3. Stay Calm… Or At Least Try To
Ah yes, the infamous arguments of a parent teaching their child to drive! It’s certainly not an easy task and temperatures can run high. While it may be difficult to keep your cool it’s vital that both you and your child keep calm at all times. When arguments start, your child is much more likely to lose concentration and have an accident. If you can see an argument starting, pull over and only resume driving when you’re both calm. If you just can’t see eye to eye in the teaching process, try getting an experienced driver in your family to take over; you’ll find that your child is much less likely to argue back with someone that is slightly removed.
4. Learner Driver Insurance Can Keep Costs Down
Learning to drive is an expensive endeavour and it’s in everyone’s interests to keep these costs down wherever possible. Driving lessons are a great tool to give your child the skills that they need to become a safe driver but it is experience on the roads that will give them confidence and ability. Unfortunately, driving lessons can be very expensive and taking out a full insurance policy can be equally so. Taking out short term learner driver insurance that allows your child to drive your car means that you can take them out in the evenings and on weekends to get the private driving experience that they need.
5. Don’t Pass On Your Own Bad Habits
When you’ve been driving for a number of years, it’s common to pick up some bad driving habits. Whether it’s a tendency to coast towards a junction or crossing your hands on the steering wheel when turning, it’s important that you don’t pass these habits on to your children as they’re learning to drive. Not only can these habits be dangerous, they will affect your child’s chances of passing their driving test and most importantly, can stop them becoming a safe driver. Teaching your children to drive is no easy task but if you keep these 5 things in mind, it shouldn’t be too terrible! Good luck!
This article was written by Jennifer Griffiths, whose 17 year old daughter is learning to drive. They took out learner driver insurance from Insure Learner Driver to help her daughter get the experience she needs to pass her driving test.