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a parents paranoia
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girlEgirl



Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 6412
Location: olympia, wa
a parents paranoia  Reply with quote  

so i was thinking today about how much i dont want my son to follow in my footsteps with the hard drugs. now i have been clean for 8 years (no coincedence the boychild is 7) except for maintanance methadone as part of a treatment program ive been on for years. which ive explained to him is the reason we cant travel or even go camping for long periods because of how sick i would be if i stopped. like everything else i do it holds little interest for him.

the thing is that my own father was addicted to methamphetamines (speed) until i was two. although by the time my memories formed he was completely clean and had moved far away from temptation. in fact he never so much as cracked a beer to my knowledge during my entire childhood. he did however lecture me from time to time on the evils of drugs. but as you may have guessed these frequent warnings if anything made hard drugs all the more appealling.

now im prolly jumping the gun since the boy is only seven but his whole life has gone so fast that i feel as though im gonna wakeup one of these days with a teenager in place of my angel.

one of my bigs concerns is how to make something that i really fucking enjoyed, lack any and and all appeal to this sensitive but superbright child.

if anyone has any ideas or personal experiences to shed some light on the challenge of how to keep calico from having any interest in making the same mistakes i made.......
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Post Sun Jan 27, 2008 10:04 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Sephonae



Joined: 10 Jun 2007
Posts: 5218
Location: New York
 Reply with quote  

Off the cuff, I think the worst thing a parent can do is come down like a ton of bricks against something. To the extent of his understanding, answer him honestly when he asks questions (without getting too much into your experiences, unless you feel he's in trouble and needs to hear about them). When opportunities arise in "normal" conversation (maybe from something he sees on tv or hears at school), gently impress upon him the truth about the way of these things, as you see them. Try not to freak out, externally--God knows, some of the things my son's posed to me had me completely freaked out on the inside, but I bit back my shrieks of dismay and focused on being Doctor Mom. Then I'd call my sis when he was in the bathroom and freak out at her in fevered whispers.

My son's school district puts out the anti drug/alcohol propaganda from early years...it's a bit annoying, actually, but necessary, I suppose.
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Post Sun Jan 27, 2008 10:44 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
sockling



Joined: 19 Jan 2008
Posts: 34
Location: on pillows
 Reply with quote  

i'm gonna be 18 soon, and i still don't even know for sure what drugs look like, and i know i won't ever try them. i think what my mom did that worked for me was to talk about it very casually. she did that with everything, and i grew up without many temptations. she didn't make it seem like a big deal. i don't even remember any sit down talks we had about drugs, but i got the idea. i never even asked her if she ever tried drug, although i feel she's the kind of person who definately had.

although, i think a lot of it has to do with luck and situation. i just happened to never be around kids with drugs when i was in my most-apt-to-cave-to-peer-pressure stage of life. simple as that. but policing who your kid is friends with is worse.
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Post Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:26 pm   View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
ChrisH



Joined: 18 Jan 2008
Posts: 72
Location: Sacramento/Truckee, CA
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Hmm that's a tough one. With the availability of drugs, even in "good neighborhoods" with "good kids" (read: Affluent), a lot of kids get mixed up in them. For me I never did because I've seen what they do to people, and despite being an intensely curious guy, it's just never appealed to me (though I've smoked pot and drank, nothing else save painkillers when I played sports or was injured). Be reasonable and be honest, don't be authoritarian; remember that he has a brain and that you need not give him a reason to want to do these things.

Chris
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Post Sun Jan 27, 2008 11:32 pm   View user's profile Send private message AIM Address
zendao42



Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 13570
Location: Somewhere in a galaxy near you
 Reply with quote  

When he gets a little older, let him read Burroughs-
kept me from ever wanting to try smack...

I smoked nearly every thing you could think about (& probably a few things that wouldn't occur to you, though not always on purpose)
but I never touched a needle...

Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 4:46 am   View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
alico



Joined: 29 Dec 2007
Posts: 291
 Reply with quote  

zendao42 wrote:


I smoked nearly every thing you could think about (& probably a few things that wouldn't occur to you, though not always on purpose)
but I never touched a needle...


same here.. but i also ate and snorted plenty. needles seemed too personal, if it makes sense. nothing like a good overdose to quit experimenting Rolling Eyes
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 5:00 am   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Joelibris



Joined: 23 Mar 2006
Posts: 7557
Location: Kraptapolis, NC, U. S. of DUH-HUH
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Do what my mom did: She bought some food stamps from a friend of hers and made me go to the store with them. The lesson? Mess with drugs and you'll never make anything out of your life, so get used to using food stamps.
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 3:08 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail AIM Address Yahoo Messenger
Aubie



Joined: 17 Jan 2006
Posts: 1428
Location: Bammer
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I never tried drugs of any sort, not because they weren't available or around me, but because I had a goal and knew I personally wouldn't reach it if I got into that stuff.

Find major interests, college, sports, etc. Tell him he can do it, but it's his responsibility-that led me to a whole 'don't want to disappoint my parents' thought as well.

Drive by a trailer park. Or have him watch Requim for a Dream.
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 3:28 pm   View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Notdeadyet



Joined: 23 Nov 2006
Posts: 4056
Location: Midwest
 Reply with quote  

So I suppose my Mom's whole taking you down to the pathology lab/morgue thing isn't an option for everybody, but it was very effective. Shocked
Heroin tracks, herpes sores, not too much left to the imagination.
On the upside, the contrast between homeless dead person and doctor's driving Saab was obvious enough that anybody could've figured out which end of the table they wanted to be on when they grew up.
Anybody read David Sedaris' story about when he worked for the Coroner...
as in "OMG! He died eating a burger at Burger King?"
Then he had to check that off his list of things he could do...
the list gets onerous soon....
yeah, it was funny. Laughing
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 7:02 pm   View user's profile Send private message
girlEgirl



Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 6412
Location: olympia, wa
 Reply with quote  

Joelibris wrote:
Do what my mom did: She bought some food stamps from a friend of hers and made me go to the store with them. The lesson? Mess with drugs and you'll never make anything out of your life, so get used to using food stamps.


um..... there are quite a lot of people who use foodstamps that dont use drugs. also calico is growing up in a housing project., so im not sure the threat of poverty is gonna do the trick....
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:37 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
zendao42



Joined: 05 Sep 2006
Posts: 13570
Location: Somewhere in a galaxy near you
 Reply with quote  

girlEgirl wrote:
Joelibris wrote:
Do what my mom did: She bought some food stamps from a friend of hers and made me go to the store with them. The lesson? Mess with drugs and you'll never make anything out of your life, so get used to using food stamps.


um..... there are quite a lot of people who use foodstamps that dont use drugs. also calico is growing up in a housing project., so im not sure the threat of poverty is gonna do the trick....


Probably not, my great-grandmother had food stamps & gov't cheese-
we loved that cheese! Very Happy

Thing is, if the addiction thing runs in your family, he'll probably end up hooked on something-
it just may be something different but let's hope it'll skip a generation or 2...

Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 8:42 pm   View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
girlEgirl



Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 6412
Location: olympia, wa
 Reply with quote  

alico wrote:
zendao42 wrote:


I smoked nearly every thing you could think about (& probably a few things that wouldn't occur to you, though not always on purpose)
but I never touched a needle...


same here.. but i also ate and snorted plenty. needles seemed too personal, if it makes sense. nothing like a good overdose to quit experimenting Rolling Eyes


i happen to love needles but i hate to smoke anything. see this is why its hard to imagine myself as a good role model cause deep down i adore hard drugs. and i kinda miss life on the street.
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:05 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
girlEgirl



Joined: 19 Oct 2007
Posts: 6412
Location: olympia, wa
 Reply with quote  

thank you guys. i especially love ndy's idea.
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:12 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
sgt_steve



Joined: 18 Jan 2005
Posts: 5197
Location: Michissippi
 Reply with quote  

I'm not sure I'd actually recommend the following, but it does seem to have worked for me . . .

There is a genetic component to alcoholism and addiction. It doesn't seem to be a problem on my Mom's side of the family, but my Dad's - hoo boy. It's not like they have a lot of alcoholics there, and in fact, 90% of them are teetotallers. In my generation and up, 95%.

But that last five percent. It comes to about five people, three of whom are significantly older than me. All three are dead: one DUI, one death by complications from alcoholism and emphesyma (horrifying when you see it happen to someone in their 30s), one severely brain-damaged in a DUI and later dead from other causes.

With examples like that hanging around, it's no wonder that almost nobody else in the family will drink. But there are a few in the family who didn't get to see those three go thru the process: me, my sister, and my brother.

My sister doesn't drink on religious grounds.

That leaves me and my brother. Both of us grew up in Southern California rather than southern Indiana. In the 60s. And we both started drinking as teenagers. Looking back, it's pretty obvious that he inherited the addictive personality tendency. His situation was no doubt aggravated by the fact that I didn't. But to this day, once every couple of years I'll go without a drink for months, just to convince myself that I can. If I ever find that cessation difficult, it'll immediately become a permanent cessation - because the last thing I ever want is to become what those four became.

I'm not going to go into details on what's happened with him and why; it's not relevant. What is relevant is that when a family has this sort of problem, you shouldn't hide it from the younger kids. You should do the opposite. You should use it as an example. When my son started showing signs of experimenting, I told him in a matter-of-fact way about his dead and missing relatives. I told him that I stop drinking on a regular basis, even tho after 35 years I'm pretty sure I'm in control. I told him about the uncle he's never met, the brain-damaged cousin he'll never meet, why my cousin used to carry around that green tank and have a tube up his nose.

I told him he was going to have to make his own choices about what to start doing. That some people (like his Dad) were lucky enough to be able to choose to stop and start as they pleased. But he needed to know that there were things I've never said yes to because I saw that once my brother started them, he couldn't say no. That when he made his choices, he needed to understand that sometimes you can't unchoose. Once you're an addict, you're an addict. You may be able to stop yielding to your addiction, but somewhere in the back of your head you never stop wanting to yield.

It was, pun unintended, a sobering conversation. In some ways, it was the first really adult conversation I had with him. Just truths, no urging. Just examples, no admonishment.

It seems to have worked fairly well. He avoided most things, then got an object lesson when he started smoking - or more correctly, when he tried to quit a couple of years later. It seems to have gotten him into a good place.

Some of the suggestions here - the morgue, the needle marks, 'Requiem for a Dream' - are so extreme that it's easy for a kid to think you're just trying to scare him with worst case scenarios, that those are the unlucky ones: "that's them, not me." It's a lot harder when he has to say "That's Mom, that's Grandpa." So be frank with him. No horror shows like the morgue, but don't spare him any truths about you or your father or any other relatives who have similar histories. Show him it runs in families. And tell him he's going to have to make his own choices. Given the facts, he's much more likely to make a good choice.

Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:16 pm   View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website
Notdeadyet



Joined: 23 Nov 2006
Posts: 4056
Location: Midwest
 Reply with quote  

Yeah, my experience was definitely NOT like a scared straight thing..... my mom just got me a job working in her office filing when I was fourteen, as I got older I could help do tissue sections, staining, dye bath slides, etc.
It really wasn't like she ever went about trying to teach me a lesson. It was just there. She never TOLD me what those things were, it was just on the reports you know?
There were also a lot of people that died that were perfectly nice people and they died just miserable deaths, so it wasn't like anyone was trying to teach a lesson that doing those things led to some sort of cosmic punishment. it just was... if that makes sense.
And let's face it, when you're a teenager the gross out factor is enormous.
But the whole overall effect of growing up in that environment was I NEVER don't wear a seat belt. I NEVER drink if I'm in charge of kids or if I'm going to drive. I NEVER drive anywhere after 3 p.m. on New Year's eve or St. Patricks unless it's a freaking blood emergency.
And I drive VERY carefully.
In fact, yeah, I'm a nervous wreck about some things...
maybe you shouldn't get him a job in the morgue just yet.
I guess what had more effect was that in a hospital you are exposed to people from ALL walks of life, and you see pretty rapidly how people's choices can lead to some pretty disastrous results.
Another thing about working in a hospital is you almost never just see the person, you also see the family and what it does to them.
Also, my parents didn't try to shield me from anything. No subject was taboo.
And to make it even worse, right around that time was when they first became aware of AIDS but hadn't identified the virus yet. It was really freaking miserable for everybody. I remember my mom gave me the book to read entitled "my own country". That really had an influence on me, it's amazing I ever had sex.My Own Country
Mom was sneaky that way, letting me see for myself, leaving books around to give me ideas, and then letting me come to my own conclusions. Cool
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Post Mon Jan 28, 2008 9:40 pm   View user's profile Send private message
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