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#1 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 12:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#2 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 12:47 AM
 
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Wow. You really put some deep things in your post. It's really caused me to think about the reality of that situation for my own life... I'm going to reflect before I post any response. Thank you for that...

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#3 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:11 AM
 
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I also would need to ponder this for awhile,but I also feel like I can relate.We have,almost,two sets of kids....our oldest are 17,15 and 14.Our youngest three are 6,5 and 2.I have dealt with some similiar issues with my 17 yr.old(boy),especially when he started driving.I tend to approach my parenting much like you...and instead of being impractical and unrealistic and saying,"don't drink,don't smoke,don't do drugs,don't have sex...etc" I try to approach these issues with common sense.When J. started driving for instance,I said IF you drink,you are to make sure you're drinking somewhere that you'll want to be staying for awhile,because once you take that first drink DO NOT get into your car...you stay whever you're at. It's worked out,and he always calls to tell me if he's staying at a friend's house and if I say are you drinking he answers me honestly.
I think the privacy box and letting the boys know they can go into the back yard is a good idea,the only thing I worry about is you getting in trouble.All it would take is one conventional parent finding out and calling authorities,the school whatever.........and then they would pro'lly have to investigate.That could get hairy.It's just you I would be concerned about,but as far as the way you've handled it with your son,I say right on
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#4 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:20 AM
 
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I'd probably do something similar. Although my 17 year old has no interest in smoking at all. I'm not sure if it's because her dad smokes? I can't stand the smell of tobacco ( other smokes don't bother me ). If she wanted to try it I'm sure we would have provided it. I remember trying my fathers tobacco and hating it when I was about your sons ages

As for the pot, I'm personally less concerned about pot than tobacco. I had my first drink at home provided by my mom.
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#5 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#6 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#7 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:31 AM
 
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Well, we HS also My dd is older than your kids and she is well versed in stuff like The Emperor Wears No Clothes In my state pot is a ticket although not for under age people. In my case, if it was happening in our home or on our property I wouldn't be that concerned with getting caught. Of course everyones situation is different.
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#8 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:40 AM
 
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The only potential problem I can see about this is the friend being also involved. If I knew a parent was turning a blind eye to smoking pot when my child was involved, I'd probably pitch a fit. I'm not the type to say "never ever" but am the type to put a limit on "while you're a full time member of the household". When sd was a teen, we talked about pot and whatnot, and I set the limit of "wait until college" and used the fact that I was still responsible for her, her body and health, there were people in residence in the home with professional licenses to protect, etc.
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#9 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 02:28 AM
 
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Provide it? I have not even considered that. I am not sure where they are getting it (smokes or the pot) or if they are putting themselves in danger while doing so. They have total control over their money. This is just one more aspect that I have yet to consider.
The two things that jumped out at me are that A.) there is another child involved. Claiming ignorance with your own children is one thing, but I would never do it with someone else's child. I think they have to come to the same conclusions about their child, as you have with yours. So in that respect, I would put a stop to allowing the friend to be involved in said exploration. Or, talk to the parents, but if you do that then you can't pretend you didn't know. Catch 22.

And B.) you don't know where they're getting it from. While marijuana is not typically a drug that gets spiked (mixing more expensive drugs with a less expensive one doesn't make the much sense), it can happen. My issue with marijuana is the source. Locally grown (like in your friends back yard, for example) is one thing, but drugs from other countries cant support inhumane working conditions, drug related crimes, etc. Not something I'm comfortable letting my children inadvertently support because they bought a baggie from some kid at school.. you just DON'T know where it came from.

Frankenstein never scared me. Marsupials do. Because they're FAST.
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#10 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 02:41 AM - Thread Starter
 
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#11 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 03:20 AM
 
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Well, I agree, and you are echoing some of my other fears and concerns. I am just not sure what to do about it all.... I am very anxious and eager for ideas, suggestions, BTDTs, etc.
My daughter is only 17 months, so no been there done that with her.

But I grew up in a home much like yours, in that my parents preferred us to explore in the comfort and safety of our own home as opposed to sneaking out into the bushes. My parents, however, would never have supported us in stealing so we could explore. Either they fully supported us, which involved supplying the beer, or they didn't. But they never would have allowed us to steal beer from someone else's home and then bring it home and drink it, as long as we covered our tracks and didn't expose ourselves. So in that respect, I have sort of been there done that. I had my first "smoke" with my dad at 14 at a Pink Floyd concert.

I also grew up with pot being no more serious then beer or wine, or any other legal and socially acceptable substance. There wasn't that taboo-ness about it, which I think you're still harboring since your "official stance" is that you don't know they're doing it. I understand you wanting them to feel safe doing it at home so they're not out getting high somewhere in public, and that's great. But if you are not a supporter of marijuana in the sense that you want to purchase ethically grown pot and supervise them doing it (which my dad did), thus KNOWING about it, then I don't know how to suggest not supporting it without possibly pushing them out of the home.

I'm also curious to hear from those who allow it but don't fully support it.

Frankenstein never scared me. Marsupials do. Because they're FAST.
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#12 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 09:26 AM
 
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In my state pot is a ticket although not for under age people.
Actually, it could be a much more serious problem for the parents, since smoking ANYthing is illegal for kids.It is entirely possible that, should their activities come to light, one or the other kid will let spill that the parents knew and condoned the behavior. Hello, CPS.
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#13 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 09:35 AM
 
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Interesting post and I do understand where you're coming from. I do have an issue with pot though because unfortunately it is illegal. If pot were legal, I'd rather my kids smoked a joint on occasion rather than drinking. Both my daughters smoke cigs however, and I blame myself for that being a lifelong smoker. By the time I discovered that they smoked they were addicted to them just like i am and they have no desire to quit. I do let them smoke at home and I do buy their cigarettes for them now. It's a nasty habit, but who am I to talk ughhh. Anyway just my opinion and good luck. Barb
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#14 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 10:32 AM
 
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You could have bigger problems than getting in trouble for them using pot. If you allow them to have it and use it on your property and a teen who can drive does so, you can be held responsible for injuries and death to that teen or caused by that teen behing the wheel.

A case, involving alcohol, just went all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court and the Pareants lost. They have to go to jail for years, there other children are being taken from them etc.....

I think that given your open relationship with your kids you need to explain to them that they are putting you at risk of jail and themselves and their siblings at risk of losing YOU.
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#15 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 12:01 PM
 
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I told them that I will honor their privacy as long as they honor the household and family;
You don't think doing illegal drugs as children is dishonoring your house and family?

I'm not flaming you....I'm just asking. There are 2 things I strive to teach my children by example: to respect your body and to respect the law. Even if you disagree with that law, you can try to change it but you have to respect it because that is the difference between a state of civilized union and chaos.

So by allowing my child to do drugs and smoke in my home, I'd be giving them permission to disrespect my home, their bodies, the law and my family.

I think it's totally fab that you are honest and open and encouraging to your kids to be honest with you. I agree that sneaking and secrets are not healthy.

But I also think that sometimes kids test boundaries, for various reasons. And they need to know that you are going to help them establish boundaries for their own safety and well being. Putting your foot down about not allowing drug use would be, I think, basic boundary setting.
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#16 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 12:41 PM
 
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I think that like one of the PP's said,alot of this would have to do on how you as an individual feels about mj in general. I don't agree either,with people that say boundary setting is necessary,and by doing so you would teach that these things are wrong,not allowed,etc. The majority of teens that DON'T try anything(cigs,pot,drinking,sex)is probably pretty small. I think the OP is jus' trying to approach this from a practical standpoint. It would be different if she came to her son and his friend and said since I know someday you're probably going to try this stuff,how about we just go ahead and give you these allowances in order to do so. She knew the boys were curious and probably already experimenting....so she would rather take an honest approach,for their safety,then to have them sneaking around. ITA with her approach,though before I had teenagers I don't know if I would've. When you are put in these situations,it makes you take a very different look at things.
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#17 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:24 PM
 
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so she would rather take an honest approach,for their safety,then to have them sneaking around. ITA with her approach,though before I had teenagers I don't know if I would've. When you are put in these situations,it makes you take a very different look at things.
I agree with the approach as well, but I think that substance use needs to be accompanied by a certain level of responsibility to be considered safe and ethical (as much as can be considering it IS illegal). If the kids are not able to do that and are instant on exploring, then either they are not ready, or they need the guidance of someone who can teach them how to use these substances responsibly and safely.

This worries me...

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My "official" stance is that I don't even know that it is happening, and I would like for the kids to make sure that there is no evidence or carelessness to suggest the contrary.
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I think that they may be getting the non-pot (and the pot?) smokables from his mom (probably not by permission, though).
Have you talked to your son about where they are getting their "smokables" from? If I had any suspicions that my daughter was stealing, or using a substance that was acquired through theft, that would have to be addressed immediately.

The bottom line is that while I understand what you're trying to accomplish, I don't think the message you're sending is how to acquire, use, and manage substance use responsibly. And that could be for anything from cigarettes to beer, to pot.

Part of safe exploration, in our home anyway, was also being responsible for ALL facets of substance use. Not just the "go home and smoke it where I'm safe" part. He may be safe IN your backyard, but he may not be safe from the people with whom he's dealing, from the actual substance itself, and from the law. Not only because pot is a controlled substance, but because he *may* be involved in theft (even just for cigarettes.. I can't imagine any parents, however handsoff, being thrilled with finding out their son and possibly his friend have been stealing from them).

I don't see these issues changing when DD becomes a teenager. But I can see this coming down to how badly I want her to learn how to be responsible for substance use, versus just being safe when she uses it. The former would entail my involvement, but, I am Ok with that.

Frankenstein never scared me. Marsupials do. Because they're FAST.
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#18 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 01:41 PM
 
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I think you're handling the situation really well. Good job, mama.

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#19 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 02:01 PM
 
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I don't have a lot of advice. I just wanted to say that I hope that I'm able to have as open a relationship with my kids as you have with yours. The other posters have made some really good points. I wish you peace in your decisions. This can't be easy!
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#20 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 02:19 PM
 
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Embers, you might find this thread helpful and insightful.

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=702913

Frankenstein never scared me. Marsupials do. Because they're FAST.
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#21 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 02:51 PM
 
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I guess I'll be the voice of dissent here.

My kids lost 3 of their 4 grandparents as a result of lifelong smoking. Two died of metastatic lung cancer and one due to cardiomyopathy/CHF/chronic obstructive lung disease. All 3 of these grandparents began smoking as teens and tried many times over the years to quit without success. We cared for them as they were dying and it was the most horrific process to be part of. Even with hospice and an incredible amount of medication, the pain they were in was overwhelming.

I think it is naive to believe that "experimenting" won't lead to more smoking (nicotine is one of the most addictive stubstances there is), and exposure at such a young age will only make dependence worse.

I understand that you are attempting to have an open relationship with excellent communication, but parenting also involves setting boundaries and protecting children, not just being their friend. At 13 they are unable to predict the consequences of their actions and cannot see how their behavior today will affect them later in life. That's where you come in.
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#22 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 03:26 PM
 
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i don't see the previous posters as being casual about their teens smoking pot. they seem caring and concerned and trying to take an approach that will not alienate their kids or disrupt an open dialogue and trusting relationship.
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#23 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 04:55 PM
 
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I've been mulling over this post all afternoon, mostly because I'm one of the only people who disagreed with allowing children to smoke cigarettes and marijuana.

I posted earlier about tobacco, but here are my thoughts on marijuana. Right now, in this country, it is illegal. Whether you think mj should or should not be lealized is irrelevant. Bottom line, if you allow your kids to smoke you are both breaking the law.

So my philosphical take on this is why is it acceptable for you to decide which laws you will abide by? Do you (or anyone else) just simply get to pick and choose based on which ones you like or agree with? Is stealing appropriate if we feel the price of something is too high? Can we park our cars anywhere we feel like it? Can we refuse to pay bills/taxes because we fundamentally disagee with the process? An extreme example would be can we kill someone because we don't like them?

The point I am trying to make is even if you don't agree with mj being illegal, does that make it ok to break the law? What would happen if everyone only abided by the laws they believed in? Wouldn't that create absolute chaos? What kind of message does that send to very young teens about socitial responsibility?

Just some moral/ethical/philosophical points to ponder.................
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#24 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 05:02 PM
 
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Just some moral/ethical/philosophical points to ponder.................
Perhaps a spin off thread about the legalization of MJ would be better then taking this thread down that path. If you search for that topic you'll find a ton of threads about it.

But comparing a few puffs on a joint to murder is ridiculous and totally unproductive to this conversation.

Frankenstein never scared me. Marsupials do. Because they're FAST.
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#25 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 05:10 PM
 
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what's going to happen when this 13yo boy and his friends wants to "experiment" w/ smoking crack? : I think letting them smoke anything in your home or on your property is sending the wrong message. because how are they not "hiding" when they smoke out of your DS back window and you don't know about it? because you ARE condoning it indirectly by allowing it, or is it ok and it's not hiding because they are telling you about it? not understanding this at all? I think you are sending very mixed messages to your kids. not to mention 12 ans 13yo is waaaay to young to begin experimenting w/ smoking too, nictotine, pot or otherwise! ickk. : :

Blissful Mama to DD-(5), DS-(6) and someone new due in November!
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#26 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 05:15 PM
 
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Personally, I wouldn't be worried about marijuana, if it wasn't illegal. I'd definitely allow my child to experiment with it in appropriate settings. We'd discuss making responsible choices about when and where and with whom and how often. I would most certainly want to know how they were acquiring it, because that it the most dangerous part of the marijuana experience.

Tobacco is totally different however. It is EXTREMELY addictive. I know this because I am a former smoker and spent years of my life withdrawing from this addictive substance. If my children want to experiment with smoking tobacco I will urge them as strongly as possible to stay away from it. It's so easy to become addicted, that even occasional use is dangerous.

It hasn't come up with my 13 yo yet although we have had many discussions on the subject. I'm thinking my younger kids will be more likely to want to experiment with this stuff.

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#27 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 05:18 PM
 
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But comparing a few puffs on a joint to murder is ridiculous and totally unproductive to this conversation.
No, this is not unproductive. If fact, it raises some very important issues. By allowing your children to engage in an illegal act with your consent you are sending the message that some laws are ok to be broken. It is impossible to have a discussion about a 13yo using mj without acknowledging the legal ramifications of the act.
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#28 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 05:27 PM
 
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No, this is not unproductive. If fact, it raises some very important issues. By allowing your children to engage in an illegal act with your consent you are sending the message that some laws are ok to be broken. It is impossible to have a discussion about a 13yo using mj without acknowledging the legal ramifications of the act.

Some of us do think that not all laws need to be blindly followed. I would encourage my children to evade a military draft, for example. My DH drives over the speed limit regularly, etc.

Rainbow.gif ~ Molly
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#29 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 05:48 PM
 
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I'm going to go back to my position of not encouraging children to break the law but rather, help them find ways to set out to change it. Not to mention, mj use has NOT been studied, long term, anywhere near enough to know what it's true dangers are. It strikes me as irresponsible parenting to give the go ahead for your child to use illegal drugs. What kind of world will we live in if everyone did that?

I'm not trying to slam the OP, but I am really sad about this. I hope your son gets the direction he needs to head on a path of good choices.
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#30 of 177 Old 08-17-2007, 05:55 PM
 
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Some of us do think that not all laws need to be blindly followed. I would encourage my children to evade a military draft, for example. My DH drives over the speed limit regularly, etc.
Not to mention that in some states (mine included) direct-entry midwives are illegal. Should they also have to follow the law (and no longer catch babies, which in these states, would basically force women into hospital births) just because it's the law? I think the "because the government says so" is a dangerous line of thinking. BTW- I am for legalizing pot too. And I can't really have an opinion of what I would do if my 13 y.o. wanted to do it b/c my oldest is only 2!

CNM mama.

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