Parents allowing children to use drugs

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Parents allowing children to use drugs

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One of the things that confused me and I know confuses a lot of other parents is first of all I think that we believe that when our kids are older, they don´t really listen to us anymore when they are older teenagers. First of all, that´s not true. I mean parents´values matter more than anything else in a child´s life, even if you don´t see it, if it appears that their peers are more influential. And so, the messages we give are really, really important. I hear all the time from parents who are confused. They might tell their kids at a certain point I would rather have you just drink beer, it is okay to smoke a little pot, don´t ever use heroin or something like that. I mean they gives these mixed messages. One of the things I hear parents say a lot is if you go to a party, I would understand. It is okay if you use a little bit, but don´t ever get in the car with somebody who is drunk. Or they might say I want my kids to learn moderation, so I let them drink at home, have a glass of wine or if they are with their friends. As long as they are using responsibly because otherwise when they go off to college, they are just going to be binge drinking and using drugs in way they have never learned how to do that. All the research says that´s wrong thinking. If we are giving permission to our kids to use, then they are more likely to use. Any approval, any conditions that we set, basically what´s underlying that is that we are saying that it is okay, that we are saying that it is okay. We are giving our kids permission to use drugs. In some ways it makes sense. We don´t want our kids getting into the car with somebody who is drinking or is high. We don´t want our kids going off to college and binge drinking. But the problem is that we know now. In other words, those thoughts and arguments make some sense, but all the research says that´s wrong thinking. The earlier someone uses, the more likely they are going to have drug problems. And so, if a child has not used by the time they are 18 and then they go off to college, it is far less likely that they are going to end up being addicted. It is far less likely they are going to have drug problems, they are going to be binge drinking. It doesn´t mean. None of these things guarantee that your kids are going to be okay. All we want to do is give them the best shot.

See David Sheff's video on Parents allowing children to use drugs...

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David Sheff

Writer

David Sheff is the author of Clean: Overcoming Addiction and Ending America’s Greatest Tragedy, the follow-up to his New York Times #1 bestseller, Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s AddictionClean is the result of the years Sheff spent investigating the disease of addiction and America’s drug problem, which he sees as the greatest public-health challenge of our time.

Beautiful Boy was based on Sheff’s article, “My Addicted Son,” which appeared in the New York Times Magazine and won an award from the American Psychological Association for “outstanding contribution to the understanding of addiction.”  It was named the nonfiction book of the year by Entertainment Weekly.  

Named to the Time 100, Time Magazine’s list of the World’s Most Influential People, Sheff also won the 2013 College of Problems on Drug Dependence Media Award. Sanjay Gupta, MD, said, "As a clear-eyed chronicler of addiction, David is without peer.”

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