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Slamming the Door on the Gateway Drug - Marijuana

Question:

I found marijuana in my 14-year-old son’s room. I don't know how to respond or what to say to him. He is entering high school and I am worried that the problem is going to get bigger.

 

Answer:

As a teenager, your son is trying new things, is easily influenced by his peers and doesn’t always exercise good problem-solving skills. It’s your responsibility to keep him safe. Smoking pot is unsafe, so you want him to stop using it. Like any negative behavior he may engage in, we recommend you teach to it. There are four steps to follow when teaching:

  1. Stop the problem behavior by calmly describing what happened. "Son, I found pot in your room when I was in there this morning."
  2. Describe the consequences for what happened.  “Because you had an illegal substance in our home, you will be required to attend a substance abuse class beginning on ____ and we will search your room on a regular basis.”
  3. Describe what he should do instead of using or bringing pot into your home. "The next time you are out with friends and someone offers you some pot, it would be a   better choice for you to say, ‘No.’ If we find pot again or find out that you’ve been using it, it will cost you the privilege of going out with your friends.”
  4. Have him practice what you have taught him. "Okay son, show me how you will handle the next time you are tempted to use or bring pot home."  (Your son should say something like, "No guys, if my mom finds pot in our home again or finds out I’ve been using it, I probably won't be going out with you again."

Let your son know this is a trust issue and he has broken your trust by using or bringing pot into your home. Let him know that if his using it or even having it in his possession continues, the consequences will be more serious and his free time will be restricted. He can rebuild trust by being honest, obeying house rules and being respectful.

To find substance abuse prevention classes, call your local police department or the local United Way 211 and ask for substance abuse prevention programs.

 

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