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Old 10-12-2004, 08:55 AM   #1
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Help - 16 year old smoking pot

Need some advice. In August we caught my then 15-year-old smoking pot in his room. He was grounded for about 6 weeks, and things have been going fine since. Last week he was caught again with pot in his room. I just don't know what to do at this point. I know that the desired outcome is that we don't want him smoking. He states that it is something that he enjoys from time to time and is aware of the dangers, but chooses to do so anyway. This is basically a good kid. He struggles in school academically due to learning disabilities but does try. He is home 70% of the time, and enjoys hunting and fishing with family. He is a big help at home and is wonderful to be around.

So how do I begin to sort this out. My husband is suffering from depression, and he wants him out of the house. I do not see this as an option, so we are now battling. He and our son have been very close, and he sees this as a personal attack on him. Any suggestions woudl be greatly appreciated.

 
Old 10-12-2004, 09:45 AM   #2
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

yikes! been there done this! hmmmm what do i say as now i have teens?! its like im torn with this issue too but not that ive caught them doing this but if i do, what do i say? i smoked pot at that age and to be honest i think too much of a big deal is made out of smoking pot but then again id be upset if i caught my kids doing it! i think the main point is because of the people theyd be hanging out with, i cant say you should be ok with it as it is only pot because id be torn too! kicking him out because he is smoking pot is something that shouldnt be done because that could lead to an entirely different situation meaning he could get into worse crowds or different drugs-he would def. be more suseptable. yikes this is a hard one because i havent been there yet but if he does it once in a while maybe accepting it and knowing more about his life is better than him sneaking it and doing other things, as obviously he isnt going to stop it. im by no means condoning this but this is a toughie. grounding him is just going to make him better at sneaking, yet letting him do it may show him that he is allowed to do something illegal. my parents caught me and it didnt stop me at all! but when i got older i saw that it was wrong and would NEVER touch the stuff again. good luck with this one!

 
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Old 10-12-2004, 09:53 AM   #3
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

Throwing him out of the house is not the answer. I hope your husband is just angry with your son right now and that was a quick response.
This is tough. You can't babysit your son 24/7, nor would you want to, but unfortunately, some restrictions need to be placed on him. If he doesn't like it, tell him to stop doing what he's doing! Sometimes if we treat someone with bad behaviour like a child, they grow tired of it. Especially a teenager trying to become more independent.
My cousin started smoking pot when he was 14. When my aunt and uncle caught him, they banned together and came up with a plan. They were very calm when they talked to my cousin and told him exactly what was going to happen. First, (just as you did) he was grounded. My uncle took him to school and my aunt picked him up. They went through his room, backpack, locker at school and anything else of his that could be a hiding place. They did this on a regular basis. He went to drug counseling, took drug tests and was basically in "jail" with his parent's as the "security guards". This went on for months. His parent's told him that everytime he got caught from there on out he would have to go through this again and again until he finally got the message. Oh man was he peeved! But it worked. He realized the punishment wasn't worth the crime. He is now 26, graduated from college, married with a child on the way and has a fantastic job in large accounting firm.
Everytime our families get together we laugh about the whole thing, and he still remembers how he never wanted to go through that again.
The key in all of it was his parent's. They never yelled, screamed or got mad at him. It was done very matter of fact like, and they worked together as a team to get him through it. My aunt said it was a pain having to be the "hall monitor" but well worth it because they never had another issue with it. The funny thing is, that his younger brother and sister saw what he had to go through and they NEVER even touched the stuff in fear of what might happen to them! Good luck with your son.

 
Old 10-12-2004, 04:10 PM   #4
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

i'm 21, so i'm not too much older then your son. the fact is, is that no matter what you tell him, how you punish him, if he wants to smoke out every once in a while then he's gonna do it one way or another. there's no stopping it. he can find ways to smoke it at school, on his way home from school, when you guys are gone, when he's out and about. you and your husband just have to realize its not your "fault" he's smoking it, the fact is is that all teenagers experiment with weed, alcohol, and other drugs. just be glad its weed and not meth, or crack, or heroin. i am getting to the age where i am getting ready to want to have kids, and personally if i were you, i would sit down with him and tell him that if he wants to smoke it then fine, but it can't interfer with school work, household chores and outings, no driving or going to school or family functions while he's stoned and no smoking in the house. and that its not to be laying out anywhere for anyone to see. if he's gonna smoke it, make him do it responsibly. this is gonna show him that he can come to you for anything, and that you're not gonna just like totally freak out on him. he needs to trust you, and telling him not to do it isn't going to solve anything, and neither is kicking him out. if anything those will make him rebel more. and in turn for asking him to do it responsibly ask him to think twice before trying any other drug, because those are so much worse and dangerous then weed. he will find it surprising that you would be so ok with letting him do it, although you really might be torn up inside, but giving him the space to learn and try things might just make him more open to you if he thinks he can come talk to you about it.
~andrea~

 
Old 10-12-2004, 10:26 PM   #5
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

Hi, sorry but I cant really agree with the previous poster....My son is almost 19 yrs old and his life is totally ruined by dope I had to throw him out of the house at the young age of 16 because he turned violent and uncontrollable. He started smoking pot at 14, I did everything I could to try and stop it, then I did what the previous poster said to do and told him fine, smoke it, BUT not in my house and dont let it affect the rest of your life etc....WELL he took that as a green light to go ahead and do what he wanted when he wanted. He became unbearable to live with, damaged my home and like I said got violent towards me .....In the end I had to have him removed by the police...He is about to turn 19 in January and is even worse now....His WHOLE entire life is consumed by pot...He becomes demented if he cant get it ....He wont work or do ANYTHING.......
What I suggest is get councelling ASAP.....
I know not all kids end up like mine did through pot, but dont take the chance whatever you do...
GOOD LUCK !
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Old 10-13-2004, 01:12 AM   #6
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

i've never heard or seen anyone act like that on weed.... not to like say anything bad, but it sounds like your kid was dealing with a lot more then just weed. even from personal usage, i've never gotten violent on weed. i think each kid is different, the point is is to be honest and hear your son out. wouldn't you rather him be at home stoned, with his weed stashed safely there (where nobody else is gonna see it) then to be out smoking it and hiding it and possibly getting in trouble while having to lie to you? i'd rather my son feel he can be open and honest with me then out getting caught trying to get high in a park so i don't know and him getting caught by the cops, even if it does mean he goes out in to the back yard and lights it once in a while. at least he's safe at home and he's not hiding things from you or getting in trouble. like i said, if he likes getting high, he's gonna find a way to do it whether you let him or not, i know i did and still do every once in a blue moon, and i still don't tell my parents and they've never known about any of my experimentation with anything. and if they had known when i was still a minor, they would have acted i'm sure the way susie described or the way you've handled it so far, and personally i would have still done it, just behind their back and i would have been home less often, would have been lying about where i was or needed to go, and would definately still be doing it to this day. all teens experiment, whether its in high school, or when they get out on their own after graduation. you have to let them figure things out for themselves.
~andrea~

 
Old 10-13-2004, 03:26 AM   #7
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

Let me tell you a little story:

I got caught smoking pot when I was 13. I got grounded and did not touch the stuff again until I went to college. It was there I turned into a DOPEHEAD. I would go crazy if I could not get any and would hound my dealer til he got me some. So those who say this drug is not addictive and not dangerous - PooPoo on you. It nearly wrecked my life. I did end up in a 28day rehab and got my life together THANK GOD. I know I will face this issue some day. I have 3 small sons now, but they will get bigger. My husband and I are both recovering addicts and alcholics and my children have a greater risk of going that route. I personally like the suggestion of person whose Aunt and Uncle "policed" their son. It sounds like it was very effective. While it might be a bit extreme and inconvenient, we had children to be parents to them not friends (that comes later when they are adults) and a 16 year old needs parenting, discipline and boundaries. Throwing him out is not the answer. Don't just let it go and give him the green light to do this. You are in charge, so take charge. No teenage feels like they can go to their parents with everything. They go to their friends and peers. They cannot believe their parents were ever teenager themselves. I would go with the "policing" idea and nip this in the bud right now. When he is out of the house and an adult then he do what ever he wants, but for now, your house, your rules.
Amy

Last edited by atibbert; 10-13-2004 at 03:27 AM.

 
Old 10-13-2004, 06:54 AM   #8
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

There is always the possibility here that your son is self medicating for some mental issue like depression.the one response I read regarding the violent behavior in their son?This does not sound the norm with just smoking pot.My son was exhibiting this type of behavior and was eventually dxed with bi polar III.it took placement in a mental health facility after yet another over the top anger type episode occured to actually ,finally find out that the real problem was not the pot,it was just a way for my son to try and mellow himself out when he felt the anxiety start rearing its ugly head.don't just always assume that any bizarre behavior is being strictly caused by the use of drugs.They may just be trying to self medicate for a problem that they just don't understand.good luck, Marcia

 
Old 10-13-2004, 07:28 AM   #9
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

Wow - Thanks to all for the replies. All very different opions, but all very good points. I have been thinking and thinking about this to the point where it makes me ill. I am so torn. I know that throwing him out is not an option. At this point, my husband is being so closed minded and downright verbally abusive to me about the situation. My son has tried to talk to him and will not speak to him. He says that in his eyes he is dead. I think that this is his hurt and his mental illness speaking, so that is entirely another issues in itself.

As far as my son goes, I do not condone smoking pot, but I do not want him sneaking around or getting into more trouble. I just don't want him to smoke, but know in my heart that it is almost impossible to police him every minute, especially with his lifestyle. He is rarely out wandering around or cohorting with friends. I would have to keep him prisoner in his room. On the other hand, I do not want to take a buddy appraoch and make him think that this is acceptable behavior. We have very open communication and I don't want to loose that, especially now.

I did speak to him about counseling, as I believe he may be self medicating some underlying issues. I just told him that he had a lot on his plate, and he may feel better to speak to someone with un unbaised opinion and that if he found it was not for him I would not force him to continue. He described to me that when he was punished for this two months ago, staying in the house made him feel "crazy". He wasn't sleeping at night, and would often wish not to wake up. And as my husband is suffering from depression, this may be the case also. He said he would consider the idea of counseling.

He came to me last night and said that smoking pot is definately not worth all the problems that are coming from it. He said that he is all done and would prove this by taking himserlf for urine screens. I don't know what to think or believe at this point. There is just so much going on beyond this issue that I'm doing my best just to keep myself going.

I know that I do not agree with my husband's appraoch, nor do I believe it works. My son stated that things at home continue the way they have been over the last week, with his father treating him like dirt, he will move out anyway. He says he just can't live like this. I actually feel at this point that I need to protect his own mental health and do not want to see him subjected to this. I guess I'll see what they day brings as I never know what faces me when I get home.

Thanks to all - your replies and advice are very comforting.

 
Old 10-13-2004, 09:50 AM   #10
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

I hate to say this, but it sounds like your husband could use some counseling too. He has GOT to get over this anger he has towards your son.

 
Old 10-13-2004, 10:26 AM   #11
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

its good that you and your son have such an open relationship. that is the key, and the one thing you don't want to lose. it seems as though smoking pot is his way of getting away from everything that's going on, it puts him in state of mind where he doesn't have to think about it. it does seem like some counseling would be useful, for the whole family to bring you all back together and on the same playing field. and maybe your husband should think about getting on an anti-depressant. lexapro is a very good one, my disease (RSD) messes with with the part of the brain that deals with emotions and what not and that's what i take. it helps a lot. good luck

 
Old 10-13-2004, 11:28 AM   #12
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

He actually has been in treatment since July 27th and has been taking Lexapro. He has been doing a little bit better since then, until this happened, and just sent him right back where he started. He refused to take his pills this morning, and states that he is "all done" with counseling, and they are just wackos that think like I do. Everyone is right but him. I don't know how much longer I can take this. it's like I can't even deal with the problem with my son, becuase he is consuming all my time/energy. this has been going on with my husband since June, and it has been a long haul

 
Old 10-13-2004, 02:36 PM   #13
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

My brother started smoking pot at the age of 13 and my parents did not figure it out until was 16. At that point, he was thrown out of the house by my father. My mother was against it but did nothing to stop it. I have no idea where my brother went, but he would sneak by the house after school to see me a few days a week. He was a wonderful person and very thoughtful of everyones feelings, EXCEPT WHEN HE WAS HIGH! Eventually he was allowed to move back in (by my mother) & that caused huge problems with her & my dad. They faught constantly about her letting him come home. WELL......he was caught smoking AGAIN and then my mother was to throw him out this time. I will spare you all of the drama (as you have enough of your own), but my brother was executed January 27, 2000. He spent 16 years in prison before he was executed and we kept a very close relationship. At one point I asked him what I could do when I run into this problems with my children and he was very honest with me. He said that the MOST important thing is to make sure that my kids no how much my husband & I love them & will be there for them no matter what mistakes they have made. & then he said that counseling would have been the key factor in his situation. He needed it and basically the ENTIRE family needed it. My parents were too good for that "sort of thing" and did not see any good in speaking about our dysfunction outside of the house.
It sounds as if your husband has taken the same approach as my father did, and that is not the answer. My drinks and drives, and has done and still does ALL LOT of things that are against the law. But he has never done drugs, so he thinks he is better than anyone who does.
Have you or your husband ever smoked pot or done anything else that was "not the right thing to do"? Please do not take this in the wrong tone of "type". But WE ALL have done things that we are not proud of and I think that most of us learn from those mistake. And then there are tohers that continue to make mistake after mistake after mistake and NEVER learn. Figure out which one of those your son is and decide what would be best for you and him and the entire family. I think you are doing a great job of letting your son know that he can talk to you and not be judged. He is only human and the Good Lords knows we ALL screw up from time to time.
I can't tell you what to do, but I can tell you that your husband reactions are not just towards your son getting high. I am sure that is a huge disappointment to him, but that is not all of it. You son just happens to be the outlet at this point. But I am sure you know that.
It does not sound as if your son has issues as bad as my brother at his "breaking point" but it can get to that point. Especially if he chooses to turn to the "high" to escape the hurtfull feelings that are swirlling are between he & his dad.
If you would like me to, I will be more that happy to tell Bill's (my brother) story if you think by reading it, it my help your son to understand that "pot" is not "just pot" all of the time.
And by all means THROW out DADDY before you let him throw out your baby boy! (if it ever comes to that off course)
You are in my prayers and please keep us posted.
Kim
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Old 10-13-2004, 08:26 PM   #14
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

Hi again I just wanted to clarify something...I never said that my son was being violent whilst ON pot....He gets violent if he cant get ANY ....I will never ever believe that pot isnt addictive....They say its not physically addictive, but boy oh boy it is mentally addictive......Thank god as far as I know my son hasnt used any HARDER drugs YET...But it has been proven that pot leads to other heavier drugs such as heroin etc.....Now that more of your story has come out, yes there is obviously probs with your husband etc...It must be very hard for you Its really hard to know how to advise you in this situation......My gut reaction is put your son first ! But on the other hand we dont know why your husband is depressed ? Maybe its a viscous (sp) circle......IE is your husband depressed by your sons behaviour ?
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Old 10-14-2004, 06:47 AM   #15
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Re: Help - 16 year old smoking pot

First of all - Kim thank you so much for your story. I know in my heart I'm doing the right thing for my son, but reading your story just reinforces that all the more. I have decided that my children will alway come first and that if my husband wants to self destruct and throw his life away I really have no control over that. I love and support him, but my child must come first. My husband has been depressed and angry for a long time, but really went down hill in June when his uncle, who was his father figure suddenly died of cancer.

My son went away last weekend to visit his grandmother who has a friend staying with her. This friend lost her daughter to heroin at the age of 21. They all had a very long talk together. He told her that he loves himself way to much to ever get into those kinds of drugs and that the bottom line is that he just enjoys smoking pot, so I definately believe he is using it as a way to relax, so I'm going to keep trying to pitch the counseling to him. I don't want him to hate himself becuase of this. He feels so bad about the way my husband is treating him, and he sees what I am going through and he feels terrible. It is very hard to deal with the actual issue at hand with all this going on. I hope my husband calms down soon.

Thank you all for your replies. I really appreciate it. Kim, thank you for your prayers.

 
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