Question: I have a 15 year old son who we know is smoking pot. I was told he has tried other drugs including cocaine, and is going to try cocaine again. He is failing in school and his report card says 5 F’s. I have tried grounding, does not work, tried talking, begging and pleading, NO Good!
We caught him and his friends smoking pot in his friends shed, did not know really how to handle it. We have been suspicious for months that he has been stealing money from us but was not sure, now we are sure. How do we get through to him before it is too late?
Have tried offering to help him get a driving license, my husband has his old truck that he can have if only he will tow the line. This does not seem to encourage him at all. We have forbid him to hand around with certain friends but he still doe so.
Answer: Dear Sue:
First let me say I am sorry you, your family and your son are dealing with a child experiencing a substance abuse problem. Yes, he has a substance abuse problem not a discipline issue.
Now, GET to counseling, NOW before it gets worse and it will get worse. Check out Alanon and go to the meetings. Alanon is for family members of those who abuse substances regardless of whether it is alcohol or drugs.
You son does not need his driver’s license right now what he needs is treatment. His trying cocaine is not good, not good at all. It means he is probably not getting what he needs from the alcohol and the pot. Which means he has been abusing substances (and alcohol is the most commonly abused substance) for a while.
Make sure he has not access to alcohol at home. Parents often do not realize keeping their own alcohol in the house provides a resource (I am not saying you do only pointing out what could be).
Do get into counseling NOW with a qualified family counselor who has experience with substance abuse.
M Kay Keller