What to Do If Your Son is at Risk of Getting into a North Carolina Motorcycle Crash

April 30, 2012, by Michael A. DeMayo

Maybe your son has already been involved in a scary and perhaps serious North Carolina motorcycle crash.

Or maybe you are just concerned that his driving habits and attitudes and friends have put him on a collision course with disaster. What can you do to influence his behavior, and get him to change his ways to become more safety conscious?

This problem is minimally discussed, if ever discussed, on North Carolina car accident blogs and other educational websites. Instead, we get the same old pabulum — preaching safety advice to the choir. Do you really need to be told, again and again, why it’s so important to wear a helmet while driving or why to avoid biking under the influence of drugs, alcohol, or extreme fatigue? Probably not. You are the one who always reads safety articles, forwards emails to your son, etc!

Unfortunately, it’s very difficult to solve this “preaching to the choir” problem. How do you reach out to people who seem to make an art out of ignoring your advice?

The answer is not necessarily intuitive. In fact, probably you worry that if you get overly alarmist about motorcycle safety, then you will alienate your son (or other relative) who is at risk of a North Carolina car or motorcycle crash. And you might well be right.

On the other hand, you can’t stand idly by and allow the dangerous driving behavior to continue. If you are still reeling from an actual motorcycle accident, you know in a very real and palpable way what can go wrong – or at least what has the potential to go wrong.

What you need is not necessarily better information – more alarmism, more statistics showing why you are right and he is wrong, etc. You need a new approach — a way to try to connect on a personal, empathetic level.

No one likes to be preached to or talked down to, even if they would begrudgingly acknowledge that certain messages are ultimately in their best interest to hear.

So instead of preaching, consider trying to connect with the rider by using empathy and listening. Find out what’s really going on with him. One very interesting and innovative set of tools is the so-called “nonviolent communication” paradigm, developed by renowned psychologist and negotiator, Marshall Rosenberg.

Rosenberg has created a very interesting and a useful set of communication strategies that help people connect empathetically with one and another and get their needs met. Rosenberg focuses on the feelings and needs of various parties in negotiations.

You can find out more by checking out the link below. And if you need help with a specific motorcycle accident case, connect with a North Carolina motorcycle accident law firm.

More web resources:

Marshall Rosenberg’s nonviolent communication

Why it’s so hard to communicate criticism