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18-Year-Old Thinks His Drug Use is 'Under Control' and Gives Parents a Warning

By January 13, 2012

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A teen on the forum give parents a teenage drug use warning: As an 18 year old male high school senior, I can tell you that while some kids are simple, others like myself are threateningly intelligent for our age. While some teens are still children, others can vastly exceed all expectations.

There was a time when the control of my parents became too bothersome for my personal liking and I left home for just over a month. I attended school and took a part time job during that time, living with a roommate I found on Craigslist. I returned home with a brand new relationship between my parents and me. No longer was I their child, but their son who lived with them.

In addition to our ability to be independent, we can be far more conniving and manipulative than you'd like to believe. I maintain grades in 4 AP classes (3 As and 1 B+) doing less than the bare minimum. Last year I didn't do any work my second semester in one class before turning it in 2 months into the summer. I ended the class with a 93 and a 5 on my AP exam. If your child is smart, you're in deep trouble. They know what you want to hear, when and how much to lie and, most importantly, how to hide what they don't want you to know.

As for drugs, it really depends on the child. I personally have been smoking cigarettes on and off since my freshmen year. In these 4 years I've smoked a total of 4 packs, with another pack or so worth given to me from friends. I am fully aware of the risks but am able to control my intake and understand the biological effects of the smoke and how it affects ones health (The tar paralyzes the cilia in your airway, letting the carcinogenic compounds sit and be absorbed. Minute intake gives the cilia a better chance to remove the tar from your airway). Be glad that cigarettes are not very common among today's youth; the same cannot be said, however, for alcohol and marijuana. Alcohol runs rampant at parties. The best cure is to let your child experience it recklessly and realize that they don't like vomiting and being told of their stupid decisions the next morning. After that they will learn to control that habit, but are still unlikely to stop as a whole. I smoke marijuana rarely, primarily due to the cost associated with the habit. It really isn't as bad as you may believe. Just stress to them that it isn't safe to drive under the influence. Fortunately it's an easy habit to curb as a parent. Watch what happens with any money you give them. I suggest putting any allowance into a joint bank account with a debit card. This allows you to see all activity. If you notice cash withdraws between $50-60 every few weeks it's likely that they're off buying 1/8 of pot. If you don't do allowance but rather give cash occasionally when they ask for it, ask what it's for and request a receipt. Most other drugs are legitimately bad for you and require a firm hand in dealing with. If you suspect cocaine or any other hard drugs just threaten them with calling a K9 unit to check the house and their belongings.

If your child is smart and independent, acknowledge that they are an individual rather than your child. It sucks for you as a parent, but it is the only way to truly guide your child in a beneficial direction.

Asking our community of parents: Does this warning give you pause? It is scary to know what is going on out there, especially when intelligent kids like this one get so addicted that they arrogantly think they could possibly control themselves and their addiction. Please share your thoughts, opinions and experiences in the comments area.

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January 13, 2012 at 7:54 am
(1) alwaysworriedmamma says:

I read a lot of stories here that I can relate to but need advice and success stories, even though i can relate hearing that others are going through it will not help me..this story should be proceeded with expert advice..what do you do when your child is convinced pot is not bad,parents should constantly be lied to and tricked what they dont know wont hurt them..

January 13, 2012 at 8:12 am
(2) Denise Guide to Parenting Teens says:

Please click the links within the piece for advice, but this post is to strike up discussion with a real life example of what some teens think, not a Question and Expert Answer article.

If your teen is convinced that pot is not bad for you, you will be just spinning your wheels trying to convince them otherwise. What you need to do is allow them to have their convictions but INSIST that you have family rules and one of them is they are not to smoke pot – no matter what they think of it. Then set up, standby and follow through with consequences if your teen decides to go against your family’s rules.

January 13, 2012 at 9:30 am
(3) nyc parent says:

It is fine and dandy to be a responsible teen and want to be independent and even to tyr to prove that one can be all these things. However, the disrespect and arrogance of these comments only shows their true origin and that is adolescence. It is not okay to lie to your parents or anyone for that matter just because you get good grades and think you can be responsible. Smoking, drinking and pot are not good for anyone, ESPECIALLY the developing brain and the fact they think they know exactly what they are doing and doing it responsibly is another sign of adolescence. The truly mature person would be much more respectful to their parents, because that is what they deserve for raising them in a responsible manner, and their research about the effects of something would be much more thorough and complete, not just one-side to suit their needs. Please keep in mind that the judgements of an eighteen-year-old are still not fully developed and that is why the guidance of parents is important, but the son or daughter must do their part and really try to have the right attitude and not just be full of attitude.

January 13, 2012 at 11:02 am
(4) Becky says:

It is wrong for our children to ber dishonest with us but, if you want honesty then you need to be able to hear what they are saying also. You, us as parents, can’t have it both ways. If we expect honesty then we also must WANT honesty. If we tell them they can come to us about anything then that is what we need to allow them to do. It also depends on the age of the teen. Does anyone really believe that at 17 or 18 years our children will tell us the truth if everytime they do we lecture or give consequences? Personally Id rather my child of 17 make some mistakes, talk to me about the mistakes, and allow me to try to reinforce the reasons I think they need to make better choices. I dont want my child to be completely sheltered and unaware of the dangers of adulthood because I, as a parent, didnt want to TELL THEM the Truth. Drugs and alcohol arent to just be lectured about. Be real and truthful with them, so they feel they can be real with you.

January 13, 2012 at 3:36 pm
(5) Rozie says:

I think a lot of folks are misreading this and not taking it for what it is, a warning or a watch list for parents to use to monitor thier children for drug use, this person was only saying because your children are doing well in school, don’t assume that they are not drinking and doing drugs. He lets parents know that there IS alchohol at parties teens attend. He states that he can’t afford marajuana so his use is controlled and advises how to monitor your teens spending to see if perhaps they are buying it.
Take it for what it’s worth from someone who is in the teen world and learn from it rather than condem it.

January 14, 2012 at 12:34 pm
(6) Ivana Pejakovic says:

Parents, my advice for intelligent teens with an attitude is this:

Intelligence about how cigarettes and drugs work in our body is ‘surface knowledge’. Anybody can google ‘the effects of smoking on your lungs’ and find out what hapens. We live in the age of the internet so this knowledge is not all that impressive.

True intelligence is possessed by people who are able to say ‘No’ to something they know can harm them. True intelligence is possessed by those who respect their bodies and will not make arrogant decisions just to prove to others that “I can if I want to”.

Parents know their teens can do anything they want to. In that sense, parents are not trying to control their teens, they are hoping their ‘parental power’ will stop them from making the questionnable choices.

Teens may be ‘intelligent’ in terms of the information they have gathered and they know how to manipulate their unsuspecting parents, but they lack maturity, something that only experience can give them.

Parents know their teens’ choices will catch up to them and they will question the ‘intelligence’ they thought they once possessed.

Unfortunately, for some of these teens only experience will provide them with lessons learned.

Best Wishes!

January 14, 2012 at 3:26 pm
(7) Flora Lujara says:

I have two of my brother in law’s boys one is 18 another is 17 who have been taking marijuana, we found out and they have been warned and be told the effect of taking marijuana, i have a boy of my own who is 16 and is close to them,in the process i have asked if he is taking too but denied,even boys count him out,but today i wasw told by the wife of my brother that there was a time my son confess to her daughter by text message that he is taking marijuana and my sister in law asked me to watch him closely,i use to talk to my son about so many things like relationships,friendships also drugs alcohol and marijuana and he told me that he knows those things are bad he told me he knew my inlaws were taking the stuff,by the way, i have no any doubt with him even by looking at him he looks okay all time no any suspicion whatsoever,please help me,how can i prove whether he is taking marijuana?so far i havent asked him about it

January 15, 2012 at 4:23 pm
(8) M Rose says:

Why is this teen equating rebellion to a higher IQ level? AP course difficulty varies greatly from school to school. Must be in a slacker school district, which has given him a delusional sense of his true level of intelligence. And he may be surrounded by other underachievers who also make him think he is quite superior. Sounds to me as though the parents have contributed to this attitude by allowing him to remain unaccountable for his actions as well.
I don’t think this student is typical of the truly brilliant types of kids out there. Parents, all you need to do is make intolerance of drug and alcohol use black and white. Do not send mixed or ambiguous messages in this regard.

January 16, 2012 at 1:43 pm
(9) Tricia says:

I agree with number 4 of the commenters. And seems to me like this teen is reaching out honestly to parents who follow this forum. Most of the comments read as self-righteous, judgemental indignation at a teen being honest from his perspective and giving a ‘heads up’. And seriously, no one commenting ever lied to their parents or withheld information that their own parents would have disapproved of and lectured about?! Get real people. Or maybe you’ve never made mistakes and can throw stones.

March 12, 2012 at 10:10 am
(10) Trish says:

Everything that teen says is true. What we all need to face, more importantly, is that the weed kids get today has other chemicals in it. It has become a toxic, addictive, substance.

March 15, 2012 at 4:45 pm
(11) Jake Thomas says:

Parents are always upset and convinced that marijuana is really and life threateningly bad for you. The funny thing is, physically, it’s not very bad. In comparison to alcohol, it’s not a danger at all. Psychologically, it has its downfalls, long-term use increases chances in schizophrenia and it really does make you more lazy. I smoked the illicit herb from grades 10 until last year, my first year of University, and honestly, it’s not that bad for you. What I do agree with is the fact that it IS illegal and it DOES make you care less about things. For instance, I could never write an essay under the influence, it spaces you out and makes you practically useless and it is a large waste of money.

The drug has different effects on alot of people, personally, it put me to sleep, which helped me extremely after a final because I would have extreme stress and constant anxiety attacks. Do I support the use of marijuana? No. Do I believe that the use of it is really a large problem? Absolutely not. The best way you could possibly talk a child through it would be to ask them if they have been, but do not be incriminating, ask them why they find it a good expense and why do they really feel the need to use it. I smoked it for awhile, and finally realized that it is a huge waste of money and being clear minded is actually alot less stressful on my life.

May 22, 2012 at 5:04 pm
(12) Matthew says:

to the people saying that parents should only teach, “black and white” when coming to drugs, this is a stupid method. If your child has half an IQ point they will think, “if it is that bad why do people do it?,” this leads to the teen taking it due to subconscious negative suggestion. They feel the need to rebel and take it. If you are honest with them and tell them the HIGHS as well as the lows they will have a far more educated opinion on the matter.

If you say that cannabis is all bad you are deluding yourself. I have smoked it before and can say that it is not that bad at all. It is less damaging than alcohol and can only cause and does not cause schizophrenia but merely brings the existing condition into the spotlight. It does however eat your money and make you lazier.

p.s. out of interest, how many people who are against it have actually tried it?

July 3, 2012 at 10:20 am
(13) Carol says:

In response to Matthew’s questioning who many of those opposed to marijuana use have ever tried it: I’m opposed to it and I used it extensively from ages 14 – 26.

I agree that it’s far less physically damaging than alcohol but at least for me it lowered my inhibitions so much that I engaged in risky sexual behavior. Some of the most mind-blowing sex of my life occurred while high on weed but it was always unprotected with a different stranger I never saw again. I never became pregnant because I was on the Pill but it’s truly amazing that I never contracted an STD (I never missed my annual pelvic exams and was tested for all of them).

Marijuana use also led me to try cocaine and mushrooms once out of curiosity (not at the same time). I hated both and never touched either again. My experiences with both led me to decide not to try anything else, either.

I finally stopped when I realized I’d outgrown that lifestyle. I was tired of waking up in a different stranger’s bed every Sunday morning. I was tired of being tired and stupid all day; it almost cost me my job. At 49 my short-term memory has been shot for years. After cleaning up my act I finally met someone I wanted to be with physically and emotionally without numbing my mind. We just celebrated our 18 happy years of marriage. We have a beautiful, brilliant 13 year old daughter, and when I remember my pot smoking days I shudder to think of her engaging in that same behavior.

That’s why I’m a former marijuana smoker who’s opposed to it, Matthew.

August 23, 2012 at 12:02 pm
(14) veronica says:

Hi there,parents.I would like to know what to do if-my son 17 went for daga rehab 4 moths ago,he had a relapse 3 weeks ago.I took him to an organisation for help.we went in someone spoke to him in private,he then left the room and said he does not have a problem.we got home and he left to go and smoke again.WHAT SOULD I DO!
Can anybody relate to a situation similar,to answer what to do next.I have no more tools to put down.

Pls,if there is anyone out there.
Any help or sugestions I would be gratefull

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