- Why is my kid on drugs?
- How should I handle my child doing drugs?
- My children do drugs, how can I help them?
Discovered that your teen is doing drugs and is at a loss for what to do? Don’t know what is the right way to react? Read this guide to mindfully handle the situation.
According to a recent BBC report this year, one in 10 teens in the UK has tried hard drugs including cocaine, ketamine, acid, ecstasy, acid and other psychoactive substances. The knowledge that your child is harming themselves is traumatic for any parent.
Though what’s more important is helping your child manage, recover and most likely with support stop their usage of drugs.
Why is my kid on drugs?
Wells-based Elaine Hutchinson, the director of Creating Calm and a creative play therapist who largely counsels teens says “boredom, to become popular among peers, curiosity or just because they want to do something rebellious” are just some of the reasons why kids do drugs.
🔥 Expert Tip: “Parents must understand the teen perspective; where, unlike adults, they only see the ‘positives’ of drugs,” says Hutchinson. “Which is that it gives them a high and lets them escape an unpleasant situation.”
This also means that kids or teens don’t have the foresight that drugs will cause adverse long-term effects on their physical and mental health.
How should I handle my child doing drugs?
The only way Hutchinson says parents can be sure if their teens are using drugs is “if they hear it directly from their mouth.”
Often, chances are that kids are holding onto drugs for a friend, deliberating whether to try them out, or just have a prescription drug for medical reasons.
Break The Taboo
Hutchinson advises parents to break the taboo around issues like sexuality and drugs with students when they are young. As prevention is always better than cure.
Parents can start with initiating light conversations around the use and misuse of common drugs like caffeine, cigarettes and alcohol, that students often see being used by adults around them.
This way parents can also vocalise boundaries on what drug usage is acceptable and non-acceptable for them.
🔥 Expert Tip: “Parents’ perspective on drugs will influence children’s own value judgment when they have an opportunity to try it themselves,” says Hutchinson.
Know Their Friends
Be the parent whose home the kids are most likely to always hang out.
Hutchinson feels that this way parents can be aware of potential drug culture in their teens’ peer group and help them find other friends. 🤝
Hutchinson says understanding whether your teen's drug use is recreational or habitual is key to forming your reaction as a parent.
While both situations are undesirable; in Hutchinson’s opinion “the former is better than the latter.”
Moreover, a misjudged reaction will be a parenting mistake and make teens hostile. 😟
Before judgement, Hutchinson advises that parents must first understand the motive behind their teens’ drug usage.
This is because teens will only be open to considering another perspective on drugs if they feel that parents are ‘hearing’ their side too.
🔥 Expert Tip: “Parents can be firm in their opinion on drugs without being judgmental or losing their temper on kids,” says Hutchinson.
My children do drugs, how can I help them?
Hutchinson strongly advises parents to get specialist help when dealing with drug usage or addiction in teens.
🔥 Expert Tip: “More often kids know more about drugs than parents do,” says Hutchinson. “So giving them polarising information will not make them trust you.”
🔥 Expert Tip: “Reassure your child that while you might not approve of their use of drugs, you still love them unconditionally,” says Hutchinson. This will allow students to turn to their parents for advice and help. ❤️
Hutchinson says parents must make students aware that they are legally accountable for the drugs they are using.
This isn’t a scare tactic but a hard truth that will prompt students to make a discerning decision on their drug choice and usage.
- What happens if you mix your drugs and alcohol?
- What happens if someone gives you a stronger drug dose than you used to have?
- What if you pass out at a party due to drugs and someone takes advantage of you?
Such accountability questions will make students aware of the probable harmful consequences of their drug use. Which could most likely prevent them from using drugs irresponsibly or even refrain from it altogether! ✊
Have Their Back
There will be times when students will themselves in a situation where drugs are being used, but won’t know how to exit it due to peer pressure.
Here is where Hutchinson feels parents can become the saviours.
- Let children have a ‘safe phrase’ they can use with parents that indicate they are in an overwhelming situation. This way parents can come and get them right away without students having to confront their friends.
- Let children know that if they need to get away from a situation where they feel at risk, you will pay undoubtedly pay for the taxi they take to get back home. Questions will be asked only the next day!
These are ways in which, Hutchinson feels, kids know that with their parents – “they will never fall into trouble when asking for help.”
At GoStudent we want parents to be stress-free from students’ academic performance and let us take care of it. So they can have time to strengthen their relationship with students and look out for them outside the classroom. To have this life with your child book a trial lesson with one of our tutors! 🚀