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smoking and pot - Page 6

post #101 of 177
I wonder if part of the reason for such a stronger reaction to MJ now than in college was because of the time passed not doing it. The first alcoholic drink I had after being pg hit me hard. I felt drunk after just one drink. Before that I could have 3 drinks before I felt drunk. They have new flavors for cigs now. May not be directly advertising to kids but making products that appeal to them, peppermint and pineapple. I tried one and it made me feel tingly and lightheaded. I stod up and couldn't walk straight and that was just a regular cig. I felt like I had smoked an illicit drug. Was that because it's been years since I had one or are they somehow more potent?
post #102 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
What do you suggest the OP do? Freak out and tell them NO NO NO? Are you suggesting that her parenting must be flawed for her child to talk to her about it? If so, I wholeheartedly disagree. It would be a great thing if every child felt they could bounce their thoughts off of their parents. Most kids will do something illegal before they leave the house. Even the "really good" kids with "good" parents. Most will hide this from their parents. How does that help?

I believe it is very dangerous thinking to assume that if a parent is a "good parent" a child will never do anything the parents does not want them to. This does not leave any room for deciding what the parent will do if the "unthinkable" happens and their kid wants to talk about the joint they already smoked.
I agree! There is so much more pressure for kids to use, these days. All forms of media are saturated with messages portraying alcohol and drug use as fun, cool and exciting, and sobriety as dull and unhip. Most kids are aware that their parents used in the past and don't buy into the philosophy of "Do as I say, not as I do" that many parents put out there for their kids. Glomming MJ together with drugs like heroin, cocaine and meth just makes you look foolish, like you don't know the score or are being deceitful, because they know damn well that millions of people use it with little harmful effect, compared to narcotics or even cigarettes and alcohol.

When a child decides to use drugs, all one's notions of "good" parenting go out the window. Lots of kids from good families decide to try all kinds of things that their parents forbid them to. Putting one's self up on the high horse about your special, extra good parenting abilities just sets you up for a fall and is laughable, really. I find the shrill "Dr. Laura" impressions worthless and annoying.
post #103 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
What do you suggest the OP do? Freak out and tell them NO NO NO? Are you suggesting that her parenting must be flawed for her child to talk to her about it?

I believe it is very dangerous thinking to assume that if a parent is a "good parent" a child will never do anything the parents does not want them to.
I have suggested it already, but I don't mind repeating...

1. I do not believe OP failed as a parent.
2. I think setting boundaries is part of parenting.
3. If there is something I don't know how to do, but something I believe in as a parent, I would seek counseling, so that I can maintain open communication with my child, AND set boundaries at the same time.
post #104 of 177
Interesting thread. I think you have handled it beautifully so far. On top of the information you have already provided to your ds regarding addiction and other health effects, some other questions along the lines of life goals, self-image, etc... might be appropriate. You might want to include some of the latest research about increased incidence of schizophrenia in folks who have smoked weed, if you haven't already.

I would ask what your ds's goal are? Have him put some serious thought into his answer. Given the effects of MJ, will smoking help him attain his goals?

I haven't walked a mile in your shoes yet... When faced with the situation I'm not entirely sure how I would go about it. Perhaps you could ask him what is so appealing about MJ? Is it observing older pot smoking teens and the culture that accompanies it? Is it the culture or the weed? The culture can exist without the weed.

Sure MJ is a great escape from emotional pain, but it's not healthy (preaching the choir here )And the concern would be that escaping would more than likely drive further use. Getting him engaged in a group than is not drug using would be a great idea. The idea is keep him busy with activities there's no time to smoke weed.
post #105 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by jennas2 View Post
Getting him engaged in a group than is not drug using would be a great idea. The idea is keep him busy with activities there's no time to smoke weed.
I think that's a great advice.
post #106 of 177
There's always time to smoke weed!
post #107 of 177
Thread Starter 
But that does not make it a good idea.

An adult that can take responsibility for all facets of their choice is one thing. A child that may put himself in risk through the "scene", legally (and get his family in trouble, too), expose himself to things that may seriously (or even slightly, depending on the argument) affect his growth and development... is another thing entirely.

If he is going to do it, he may do it no matter what. Since he has not done it yet, there is still time and opportunity (thank GOODNESS for the healthy and open communication my children have with me, otherwise I would not get this chance) to keep the dialog open and to dissuade him from trying it RIGHT NOW. I know that no amount of activities or interests or other things to keep a person busy will keep them from having time to smoke pot) or do anything else that they really want to do)... but those activities may take his interests elsewhere for a while... more "while" for him to learn more about the cons of smoking and the weight of his choice to experiment with it... and more "while" for him to make friends with people focused on martial arts, rock climbing, etc (and their opinions - those of peers - on the health concerns behind smoking may make an impact on him, too).

It has been said that "there is a time and place for everything". If as an adult my son chooses to experiment with any type of drug, I will at least know that I have given him good information, serious perspective and content for thought, and that he is not bumbling in blindly. If as a child he does experiment with any type of substance, he will have good information, serious perspective and content for thought... and a fearless relationship with his parents that will allow him to get help if he needs it.

I am still on the fence about a lot of things that have been said here and a lot of things I have said to my child. This is a work in progress. Thanks for the input.
post #108 of 177
This is more anecdotal evidence, but in 34 years of living, I've never known anyone to get into legal trouble related to weed. I've known plenty of people (including my self way back when) to get into trouble related to alcohol.

MJ is illegal, but you are unlikely to do anything illegal while you're doing it. Probably less likely than if you don't smoke anything.
post #109 of 177
Thread Starter 
The legal trouble I am concerned about is not based on intoxication and actions, etc. It is the fact that pot is illegal, the concerning person is a minor, and he has a friend also interested. I do not want my child to get into legal trouble, I do not want the custody of my four children to be threatened, I do not want to go to jail for facilitating or allowing. These are reasonable concerns. I am an outlaw, I am an anarchist; for these reason I am AWARE and WARY of laws because I rather enjoy "flying under the radar". I am considerate about the laws which I chose to disregard in and which manner I chose to do so. If the question was should my husband or myself smoke pot, this would be a different matter (and not in this part of the forum!), but the legal concern would still be high because the ramifications can affect my children. As a momma, my worst fears include legal intervention in my family concerning my children and my parenting. If we did not have kids and/or if we were not already considerate outlaws, I may feel different about the legal risk (FOR MY FAMILY - not judging others) involved with pot. But I am concerned. I am concerned about messed up laws, a messed up government, and a messed up system to support it.... not concerned especially about the legal trouble behind someone smoking pot and then doing something dumb. In that sense, alcohol is much more frightening to me. I am GLAD that my children have shown no interest in drinking... not to say that I am happy that there has been interest in smoking.
post #110 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by embers View Post
But that does not make it a good idea.

An adult that can take responsibility for all facets of their choice is one thing. A child that may put himself in risk through the "scene", legally (and get his family in trouble, too), expose himself to things that may seriously (or even slightly, depending on the argument) affect his growth and development... is another thing entirely.

If he is going to do it, he may do it no matter what. Since he has not done it yet, there is still time and opportunity (thank GOODNESS for the healthy and open communication my children have with me, otherwise I would not get this chance) to keep the dialog open and to dissuade him from trying it RIGHT NOW. I know that no amount of activities or interests or other things to keep a person busy will keep them from having time to smoke pot) or do anything else that they really want to do)... but those activities may take his interests elsewhere for a while... more "while" for him to learn more about the cons of smoking and the weight of his choice to experiment with it... and more "while" for him to make friends with people focused on martial arts, rock climbing, etc (and their opinions - those of peers - on the health concerns behind smoking may make an impact on him, too).

Yup, exactly my thoughts. Get him in an environment beyond the fabulous one he's already in and among peers and adults who think smoking MJ, cigs, drinking=not a great choice. Give him time for is brain to mature. A whole lot of brain growth happens in the teen years and well into the early twenties. Hell, I wouldn't be superised if the brain continues to mature beyond 25 yrs. which is what the latest research shows.

All pre-teens and teens are impressionable, some just have better impulse control, the ability to look beyond immediate gratification and are able to see the bigger picture of their choices down the road. Surrounding him around with folks whom he respects who share your same values goes a long way. Also minimizing opportunities where smoking weed can happen. The mere fact that he feels safe enough to come to you with these questions and not get defensive, shows a remarkable connection and that your parenting is right on track.

Ok, starting to ramble a bit. Plus, I'm sure these are thoughts that have already swirled around in your head.
post #111 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tishie View Post
There's always time to smoke weed!
LOL! True, true. However, if you are fully engaged in various constructive activities be it skating, snowboarding, martial arts, team sports, chess etc... and majority if not all of your peer base and adults in your life are not down with MJ, drinking etc... The chances of using are minimized.
post #112 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by embers View Post

I am still on the fence about a lot of things that have been said here and a lot of things I have said to my child. This is a work in progress. Thanks for the input.
Never underestimate the influence parents, respected adults and peers.
post #113 of 177
I have read it all...allowing a 13 year old KID to become addicted to cigs, and let him play with a drug.: Unbelievably SAD. Why, why, do parents feel the need to no longer parent, but to just be a friend? Why are parents so afraid of saying No.
post #114 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by pumpkinyum View Post
I have read it all...allowing a 13 year old KID to become addicted to cigs, and let him play with a drug.: Unbelievably SAD. Why, why, do parents feel the need to no longer parent, but to just be a friend? Why are parents so afraid of saying No.
The concept of "allowing" anyone to do anything is an illusion. Control over others is an illusion. I think the OP recognizes this and has chosen a logical position. Just because a parent posts a rule against something and does not "allow" it does not mean a teen will abide by said rule. OP has already stated her opinion and preference. I think she probably does this on a regular basis. Parent saying no to teen has little to do with teen's final decision. I am sure teens take into consideration their parent's preferences, but ultimately -- just saying no is not a very effective strategy compared with sharing preferences, information and respect for autonomy.

People of all ages will do what they want to do and the best possible choice a a parent can make is to be fair, honest, provide information and safety. It does not in anyway equate "condoning" or even agreement. The idea of keeping kids so busy they will not think about experimenting is another illusion. Very busy and productive people still find time to relax and smoke some mj or have a drink. Such indulgences are in no way comparable to smoking crack or slamming heroine. We need to keep it real. Humans have receptors for marijuana much like cats have receptors for catnip. It should never have been outlawed.

Does anyone even consider the serious dangers of fast food and how much more dangerous this is? Could you imagine someone throwing you in jail or ticketing you for over-indulging in MacDonald's? The red-eyes do not give you away, just the diabetes and bulging waistline. Scary thought, isn't it? We really are not too far away from living in a police state imo.

Our culture tends to exist in a very punish/reward paradigm and it is quite challenging to think outside this box, but imo-- this is where you will find the best way to solve problems and live with others.
post #115 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by pumpkinyum View Post
I have read it all...allowing a 13 year old KID to become addicted to cigs, and let him play with a drug.: Unbelievably SAD. Why, why, do parents feel the need to no longer parent, but to just be a friend? Why are parents so afraid of saying No.
Really? The OP is all for having her child addicted to nicotine and "playing" with drugs?

Where are the suggestions?
post #116 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by Susie1 View Post
The concept of "allowing" anyone to do anything is an illusion. Control over others is an illusion. I think the OP recognizes this and has chosen a logical position. Just because a parent posts a rule against something and does not "allow" it does not mean a teen will abide by said rule.
Absolutely. I had a great relationship with my parents, but that didn't influence my wanting to do things that they didn't approve of (tattoos, moving out, school issues, etc).

I'm a little humored by the "we have boundaries so my children will respect me" notion. (Obviously not verbatim, but the tone is there...).

Quote:
Does anyone even consider the serious dangers of fast food and how much more dangerous this is? Could you imagine someone throwing you in jail or ticketing you for over-indulging in MacDonald's? The red-eyes do not give you away, just the diabetes and bulging waistline. Scary thought, isn't it? We really are not too far away from living in a police state imo.

Our culture tends to exist in a very punish/reward paradigm and it is quite challenging to think outside this box, but imo-- this is where you will find the best way to solve problems and live with others.
You took the thoughts right out of my head. Yeah, MJ is illegal, but there are far worse substances out there that ARE legal, and to me, that is down right frightening!!
post #117 of 177
Quote:
Originally Posted by jennas2 View Post
You might want to include some of the latest research about increased incidence of schizophrenia in folks who have smoked weed
Smoking MJ now causes schizophrenia? : Please, do share this latest "research"!!

Quote:
Sure MJ is a great escape from emotional pain, but it's not healthy (preaching the choir here )And the concern would be that escaping would more than likely drive further use.
I'm always curious to hear why a person automatically assumes one's appeal to any substance, MJ or not, is due to some repressed need to drown emotional issues.

For me? I like it! That's it. I'm also fat and like food. No, I'm not an emotional eater, I just like the taste of food. That's it. Sometimes we create more problems by over analyzing. I love the smell of good herb. I like the taste of it, and even though you don't get "high" when you make tea, I still drink it. This, to me, is the difference between substance abuse, and substance USE. There is a difference. Not all teenagers are abusing substances. But as evidenced by the misinformation in this thread, one has to know enough about the substance to tell the difference.
post #118 of 177
Thread Starter 
I have heard of people that have schizophrenia, bi-polar, and a few other disorders having a sudden onset after smoking pot for a while. The pot did not create the disorders (they were already there), but it did uncover them for the user.

Though it may or may not affect this conversation, but my son is adopted. He has experienced some trauma in his life. He also shows many attributes of ADHD. It is possible that he could use pot as a way to process pain or to use as a crutch or something. Or it is possible that he could try it and just like getting giggly and stuff with his friends. He may like the calming effects. He may like that it gives him the munchies (he has a low appitite and it bothers him often, especially when he feels low energy and knows its because he should eat, but just does not FEEL like eating). He could self-medicate. He could become addicted. It could uncover schizophrenia. He could really like to just zone out on video games and read. He may not like it at all. It could give him a head ache. I do not know. I would like to keep no knowing, because I would like for him to not smoke pot.

I have not allowed him to become addicted to cigs nor have I let him play with drugs. I have had some really great conversations, I have lots a lot of sleep, I have asked for suggestions on how to do things differently, and I have not shut the door on any subject or possible way to handle it. Shame on me for not being a good parent : I am not being just a friend to my son. But I do not think that parents need to be unfriendly or unfriendlike. I think that the trend in our culture to justify being disconnected from our children by feeling like we are hurting them by also being their friend is really sad.

Quote:
However, if you are fully engaged in various constructive activities be it skating, snowboarding, martial arts, team sports, chess etc... and majority if not all of your peer base and adults in your life are not down with MJ, drinking etc... The chances of using are minimized.
This makes sense to me. Even if he does still try pot, having other interests and activities is great, and the pot may be a passing fancy, but the martial arts and chess team may last well through his adulthood.

My son's interest with pot seems to be with "hippie culture", Oregon subculture, self-exploration, etc. "Trying on hats" about what kind of teen he is and want to be. My husband is getting our son together with some of the people through the SCA tonight that both do and do not smoke, for conversations on why, the ups and downs in their personal lives, how it has affected them, etc (especially since so many ARE that cool, self-exploring, active hippie type that DON'T smoke... and a few that do are the ones that would likely discourage it and talk about some of the realities - ie. use it for pain management, have tried to quit and can't, have been arrested, etc).

I have been talking to my son at length about the level of responsibility and things he needs to consider when thinking of experimenting with pot. There is so much more to it than spending $10 at the skatepark to some kid with pot and then grabbing a pop can. I have discussed the legal side, the ethical sides that I can see with buying it, getting other people involved, the risks in getting caught on the effect on the family, knowing where the pot is coming from, getting involved in a "scene", etc. Meanwhile, I am getting the boys involved with a peaceful anarchy group and Food not Bombs (for that "cool" hippie crowd through volunteering and service work in a public place). I want to get them into a bike repair and riding group, rock climbing, concerts and music with a focus on learning to PLAY music, too (we wrote on several instruments last night on Craigslist), etc. They are also starting to show an interest in martial arts - something that I intend to support completely and enthusiastically. Unlike some of the posters on MDC, I am not anti-exploration... especially in a thoughtful and academic way (which is what it is right now). This can be a wonderful time in a teen's life; it seems like our culture is scared of our older children and sees teens (especially boys) as "bad". I, on the other hand, am just glad that the kids have allowed me to be part of this process (as opposed to thinking they are skating and drinking soda and get a call from the police because some older kids was pulled over, my kids were with them, and they are drinking and smoking).
post #119 of 177
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pumpkinyum View Post
I have read it all...allowing a 13 year old KID to become addicted to cigs, and let him play with a drug.: Unbelievably SAD. Why, why, do parents feel the need to no longer parent, but to just be a friend? Why are parents so afraid of saying No.
So, what would you do if your 13 year old KID came to you openly about his interest in trying cigarettes and pot? Would you ground him? Spank him? Send him to boarding school? Or would you give him information on why these things are not a good idea, try to listen to why he is interested in offer alternatives, talk about safety, ask him to not go sneaking and lying if he is just going to go and do it anyway, loose some sleep and get some extra wrinkles, and ask around to other people with teens and almost teens for suggestions and advise?

Please, do tell. I promise I wont accidentally become your friend... you know, since friendship is so dangerous to parenting, I would hate to accidentally contribute.
post #120 of 177
My kids would laugh in your face if you described me as being their "friend", and I have said no plenty of times in my mothering career. If wishing made it so, I would be the greatest parent on the face of the earth! I used to pontificate on message boards about the "right" way to parent, because my children never did anything wrong. Then reality (in the form of two teenagers) hit me right between the eyes. My perfect daughter was out drinking about two weeks ago, (at least she didn't drive, thank God), and I know my son has been around drinking and drugs (I don't think he participated, but I certainly wouldn't swear to it). I did everything I thought needed to be done, and alcohol/drugs found us anyway.

Embers, I have no wonderful words of advice, but I wanted to offer a hug from someone who has walked in your shoes.
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