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Old 04-23-2020, 12:17 PM
 
41 posts, read 16,440 times
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I'm not a parent but I was talking to my aunt who has a new baby and she said that drug use destroyed led to homelessness of her son (my cousin). She was wondering how she'll prevent him from using drugs in 15-20yrs time when he's a teenager/young adult.

What do you think the best strategy is; abstinence only "Don't do drugs", or harm reduction "We don't want you to do drugs but if you do, use them safely".
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Old 04-23-2020, 02:12 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
26,265 posts, read 16,923,469 times
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I think being a good example in not over indulging in mood changing substances oneself is a good strategy. If a kid sees mom or dad dealing with stress by drinking or doing cannabis, this would be signaling that dealing with stress or adversity is only a drink or puff away.

I also think allowing the child to express feelings, and encouraging him to speak about feeling rage or jealousy and putting names to those feelings is a helpful thing. (I hear this these days: "use your words." I wish I had thought of that phrase for my kids. Another saying that I hear now is, "you can do hard things." I think that's another good phrase to use when a kid is struggling.)

In my own child rearing days I was influenced by an article I read in a popular magazine, describing the kind of kids who tended to use alcohol early and become addicted. It said that kids need to learn how to do things. It said that many kids never are allowed to learn how to function without their parents. I had my kids learn simple tasks whenever I could. I had them doing laundry early, for instance, and making their lunches, and pumping gas and making coffee. Simple stuff, but important things for understanding that one can do things. I made sure that if the kid misbehaved in school, punishment at school would be supported. I never tried to intervene on things like that. Kids need to understand that actions have consequences.

I never chastised them for complaining, although I tended to make fun of them a bit. I wanted my kids to talk to me about anything.

I had my kids in church, and in a youth group that was involved in good activities. This is not a panacea, or a sub for good parenting, but I found it helpful and enriching for my kids.

I do not fool myself that my kids never did anything wrong, because I know they experimented with alcohol. But they have turned out well. They are solid, functional, good people of whom I am proud.

I don't imagine this is a formula, or blueprint for you. But it might give you and your sister a good jumping off point for discussion.

Also, my kids had to get jobs, and make decent grades to be allowed to drive.
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Old 04-23-2020, 03:42 PM
 
1,970 posts, read 574,565 times
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I really don’t know what makes certain people try drugs. I’ve seen people who come from very loving happy families go on to do them. Parents who tried to do the right things all along. Some people try them and get addicted and that’s that.
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Old 04-23-2020, 03:54 PM
 
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Now that our youngest is about to turn 28, I think we can finally breathe a huge sigh of relief that none of the 3 fell prey to drugs. We did stress education, and responsibility, but also supported them in their love of sports. I don't know if that was the answer, I don't have the answer, I'm just grateful that it's not something we've had to deal with. Knock wood, because I know drugs are around us, but we somehow ended up with 3 sons who avoided them.
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Old 04-23-2020, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Laurentia
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I was a very curious kid growing up and the firstborn of three. I got into a lot of drugs as far as trying them though luckily never got really hooked on anything.

Kids are curious about drugs, alcohol, cigarettes and other things that are forbidden. One of the best things you can do as a parent is to be proactive and address that curiosity early by talking with the kids and telling them that there are a lot of substances out there that they might be offered or might be tempted to try. Parents should talk about the dangers of the drugs/alcohol and answer questions honestly. Make sure that kids feel comfortable approaching you with questions or worries.

Drugs/alcohol weren't talked about in my house when I was growing up so I went out to find the answers myself.

Keeping them busy also helps out. After school activities that they choose helps to occupy them and lessens the chance they will get involved with drugs.

Sometimes kids will get tied up with drugs despite best efforts. In this case, parents should always be alert to signs such as changes in behavior.
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Old 04-23-2020, 08:20 PM
 
Location: Tampa Bay Burbs
134 posts, read 154,850 times
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Most will try. The teens that continue are those with part time jobs who have money. Some continue because they have access to prescription drugs from family so they either use or sell to others. Some teens who are diagnosed with attention deficit disorders as children choose to sell their medication so they can buy other drugs.
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Old 04-23-2020, 10:58 PM
 
Location: Northern Maine
5,350 posts, read 1,945,861 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sundestroyer View Post
I'm not a parent but I was talking to my aunt who has a new baby and she said that drug use destroyed led to homelessness of her son (my cousin). She was wondering how she'll prevent him from using drugs in 15-20yrs time when he's a teenager/young adult.

What do you think the best strategy is; abstinence only "Don't do drugs", or harm reduction "We don't want you to do drugs but if you do, use them safely".
Don't do drugs.?
First thing they do is what is forbidden.

Use drugs safely.?
If you're gonna shoot yourself in the head, wash the bullets first so you don't get an infection.

Successful parents have children who want to emulate and seek approval from them.
Good parents know its easier to pull a length of string through a maze than try to push it.
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Old 04-24-2020, 02:32 AM
Status: "For the night is dark and full of terrors" (set 15 days ago)
 
Location: DMV Area/NYC/Honolulu
17,585 posts, read 8,291,821 times
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Honestly, all you can really do as a parent is to try to instill the importance of making the right decisions. This can include showing real life examples of what not to do, keeping your kids actively involved in extracurricular activities, and making sure they hang out around the right crowd. One thing I would not do is shelter your kids, as that's a recipe for them rebelling hard down the line.

Honestly, even with all of that, there's no guarantee that your kids won't use drugs. All you can do is do your part to impart in them good values and hope that they stick with them.
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Old 04-24-2020, 06:59 AM
 
17 posts, read 4,207 times
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This by silibran:


I think being a good example in not over indulging in mood changing substances oneself is a good strategy. If a kid sees mom or dad dealing with stress by drinking or doing cannabis, this would be signaling that dealing with stress or adversity is only a drink or puff away.


Children are not stupid. They will see and mimic behavior they observe in their own homes. As a parent, you also need to know who their friends are, and if they spend time at their friends' houses, who their friends' parents are. And I am a big believer of having a family sit down dinner every night at the dining table where you can see your kids close up and ask them questions. If they slip and indulge, and you catch them, then there need to be consequences (e.g., if I can not trust you not to do drugs, then I can not trust you to drive the car).
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Old 04-24-2020, 07:41 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
27,952 posts, read 66,304,958 times
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Keep them busy. Having something to do, will keep them from trying drugs because they are bored. Intense sports can turn their life around. I am not a sports aficionado, but one of our sons was headed down a dark path and then he started rowing. Now a national champion, coach and health-nut, he can tell you the effect that almost any substance will have on your health and rowing performance. He is not likely to risk smoking anything as he already has asthma and that is enough of a handicap to overcome. Intense cardio sports like running, bike racing, rowing, swimming, etc seem to be the best, because you cannot continue to do them and do (most) drugs. Besides, they can replace drug use with dopamine, similar effect, less damage. (Dopamine is a chemical your body releases during/after intense exercise and gives you a drug like rush.



Try to make them feel like they are worthwhile and can make a difference in the world, without telling them (or yourself) that they are special and without making them the center of the world. It can be too much of a blow when they find out they are not special and the world is not centered on them.



Get them involved in community service, especially serving homeless people in a way that they are forced to interact with them (like serving food).



Avoid prescription narcotic pain medications outside of a hospital. Yes, it is better to deal with the pain and whatever relief Advil can give than to risk addiction destroying your life. People lived successfully for thousands of years without narcotics. Your kids can do it too. The risk is too great for the benefit they provide IMO.



Pray.


If it happen, dont blame yourself. Seemingly perfect kids often fall prey to drugs. Med school students with perfect histories suddenly become heroine addicts. OTOH kids with drug addict parents often turn out to be model citizens and never drink or take any drugs.



A lot has to do with what their friends do or think is ok to do. Peer pressure outweighs parent pressure almost all the time. Telling them they cannot be friends with certain kids will have the o opposite of the intended effect most of the time. Try to keep them communicative with you and discuss respectfully as you can if they start hanging out with problem kids.
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