Moody teen and the "drug talk"

Moody teen and the "drug talk"

Anonymous's picture
9 answers

Is there anything I should do to prepare for the conversation with my teens about their drug use? Any tips, words of advice? He's been so moody and distant lately - I'm nervous about what his reaction will be.  


Ron Grover's picture

The Partnership has a lot of wonderful resources, before you talk you should be educated. Read some of the things you see on this site. If you think your teen is already using go to the Intervene page and read what other parents are writing that are dealing intimately with an addicted child.

Sheryl's picture

Yes, arm yourself to the teeth with as much knowledge as you can about drugs and addiction. Read, read, and read some more. And above all, LISTEN to what your child is saying. Have a discussion, not a lecture. Let them know they can tell you anything. What they say might be very painful to hear but the knowledge will help you in your ongoing discussions. And always let them know you love them.

Olivia's picture

In addition to the comments above, there are a few more things that might help you prepare for the "drug talk" with your teen. I’ve compiled some tips from scientists and experts in the field and here’s what they had to say:
- Talk with your spouse/partners. It’s important to get on the same page as your spouse or partner before you intervene with your child. This means committing to present a united front, even if the two of you disagree on the issue. This is a stressful situation for both you and your spouse, and you will need one another’s support. Do not blame your partner for your teen’s drug or alcohol use, or allow him/her to blame you. Your teen’s problem is no one’s fault, but you and partner do need to work together to deal with it.
- Set a desired outcome for your intervention. The “drug talk” is actually not one talk – it’s a series of conversations. Chances are, your first intervention will not resolve all problems – and that’s okay. But if you set a goal (even a small one) before you start talking, you will know where you want your conversation to ultimately lead. Would you like your teen to see a therapist? Stop binge drinking at parties? Obey curfew? Come up with a specific purpose for your intervention, and then work toward achieving it. Remember: Don’t set your expectations too high. Your teen may not even admit to drug use the first time you intervene, let alone pledge to stop using or get help. Set reasonable goals, and realize that just expressing to your teen that you don’t want him using drugs or drinking is a small triumph.
- Prepare yourself for your teen’s reaction. Your teen will not be happy that you’re approaching him about his drug or alcohol use. That’s to be expected. What you might not expect is to be called a liar, hypocrite or snoop. Think about how you will handle these accusations if they come up.

For more information, please download our free Intervention eBook in the "Learn" section of TTGH – there’s a great chart to help you navigate possible scenarios of the “drug talk.”

michiel923's picture

The Raising any teenager can be tough, but raising a defiant teenager is especially difficult. It's like a slap in the face to see the sweet child you raised Thanks for sharing the information.

PurpleHope's picture

Why must you nervous about it? Have you sensed anything yet? Are you worried he might be consuming alcohol or doing drugs? If you see that most of his friends are a bit.. too hippie or too party like, than you must be worried. I ain't saying to follow him or to prohibit him to get out and have fun, but you must let him get the impression you let him do almost anything, and you on the other hand are actually aware of his every step. This way he'll do what he want, but with you eyes upon him. You can give him for the beginning a brochure from a treatment program for example, to see how a treatment goes, the people that go there, etc.

arleziana's picture

Well having the drug talk is a hard thing most children just do not listen, the best way I found to do it is with some images I have found on the internet and by appealing to what my son wants. He likes having money, and I told him that if he becomes an addict at one point we will no longer be and he will actually end up leaving on the streets, or forced into some drug rehab center and a dead end job, this really scared him.

jonesp's picture

Very helpful resource. I’m a new reader on your blog, I just want to let you know that I really appreciate the information that you share here. Keep up the good work.

ria22's picture

I'm curious about a comparison with other drugs that cause a similar level/type of high, as opposed to nicotine.

joanlala's picture

This site is a great help to everyone to young age to be aware, to parents to have well idea on how to guide their children.