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Avatar universal

Youth And Addiction-Any Advice?

There are so many more young people on this forum now with addiction or am I wrong? I wish I would have realized i was an addict at 20 instead of 32, it would have saved me a lot of pain and grief. I think at a young age it is even more difficult to stay clean and drugs seem like they are everywhere now and so easy to get. It's heartbreaking for anyone having to battle this, but even more seeing teenagers and college kids getting into this mess, not realizing what awaits them. I was so stubborn saying I could quit when I wanted, but that was just a lie I belived, I couldn't stop till i got a bit of help, but that is just me. To you young people out there, make some changes now, don't let addiction destroy your life, take the advice here given by the veteran's, they know what they are talking about.

To those that have been there and done that, what advice would you give to our young members here on how to get and STAY clean? How do we make them understand? I am very worried about a couple of kids here and not sure how to help right now? Please any advice would be great, ty.
13 Responses
Avatar universal
well you know all my answers will be rooted in the 12steps.....so here it goes
i started going to aa when i was in highschool, at the time i had never tried alcohol, but thats all there was, just aa, i had no idea there were so many 12step programs at the time
i remember reading several things they had at the meeting for parents of alcoholic teens, and stuff for the teens, it was a long time ago so i will not have that much info. on the aa lit.
na also has groups for teens, and liturature for them, i used to speak at young patients at charter behavioral health every other friday back home, it was a great experience, the families did not feel comfortable sending their kids to regular na meetings so charter decided to have free meetings for teens, most of the people that helped out with that got clean in their teens or early 20's, sometimes it was hard for these young people to relate to the 30 yr old, but when the older addict started talking about using in school and going to rehab as a teen all the patients started to pay attention, my story with drugs started with ritalin when i was 9, so i know there are so many young people out there who are going to have to deal with addiction, i also think about how many kids will try drugs for the first time today
you can give them my name, i will look for that liturature now, love you gizzy

ps....there are also meetings for the gay community, back home we had one every friday night, that meeting was so much fun, i laughed so hard!! i miss it
we also had another late night meeting on mondays, and weds., it was literally taken over by teenagers, it was just a fun meeting, the young man who chaired the meeting was a trip, he was not even old enough to drive but he chaired that meeting like a champ!
Avatar universal
i posted some info on the step forum, i also found a meeting list for nayco
http://www.medhelp.org/forums/Step-forum/show/465
Avatar universal
well im 22 now and been battling coke addiction since i was 17/18 ive had good times and bad but just keep on relapsing.

i have no one but myself to blame as its always my idea its like a trigger will alarm in my brain and thats it once im past a certain point there is no going back. what has alarmed me lately is it has been at the most weird times i.e coming home from work one day on a thursday and also yesterday when i knew i had work the next day, it is very strange behaviour for me as i havnt done that in years.

What i do know is this site is wonderful and has helped me so much in the past that i wont ever go back to the darkest place i was at a year or so ago, and its great that so many young people are to using the site
Avatar universal
I sooo agree and support your post in that I have seen ALOT more YOUNG people becoming addicted to ANYTHING that's out there.. but mostly the prescription drugs...
I had NEVER heard of PHARM parties until I became a parent...

Apparently.. one of the THINGS TO DO at parties or where-ever is to get into your parents pills and take whatever you can and then put them into a bowl and grap whatever you can get (and take them) and SEE what happens....We could be talking about Blood pressure meds, Insulin meds... WHAT EVER you grap.. you take...

Oh my gosh.... how frightening is this?!?!?
1047946 tn?1332608029
That scares the he!! out of me! I have a 9 and 6 year old and if it's like that now what is it gonna be like in 5 years! When I was in high school the only thing we did at parties was drink and smoke pot. I don't think I ever even saw someone have or take a pill. I didn't take my first pain pill until I was in the Marine Corps due to a burn injury. I'm only 32 but times sure have changed fast!
I wish I had the answer to Gizzy's question. There is just so much peer pressure out there nowadays. If one friend is doing it, than the other one is too. I guess one good thing about being a addict is I'll be able to recognize if my children ever get in to any kind of drug abuse. It's too easy for parents to think that "my child" would never use anything. I know in high school there were people that drank or smoked that you would never expect. Parents really have to be aware that their child isn't immune to drug abuse and need to learn what to look for and not think that their children would never use. I personally think it starts at home and parents need to educate their children. I know this is easier said than done I'm sure. I pray I will never have to deal with it but I know I will be aware. It will just be difficult going about it the right way when I have to have that first talk. Kids can be so stubborn and if you go about it the wrong way and make them mad they might use just because we said not too. Man I'm so not looking forward to those years!
1047946 tn?1332608029
One more quick comment. As I previously stated it starts at home, every parent needs to lock up their meds or keep a close eye out for missing pills. Maybe even replace pills in the bottle with some sort of vitamin just to see if their child is taking their pills so they can put a stop to it before addiction becomes a problem. Just a thought.
Avatar universal
When I was in high school pills were so rare and i am not that old. It was mostly booze and pot too. We also had assembly's about drug awareness, not sure how much that helped though, do they still have them???. Your right bm, i think it has to start at home and somehow need to get these drugs out of the schools like they are right now. I knew quite a few young teenagers selling dope during break at schools, something is wrong there.
390416 tn?1275185087
Prevention...prevention...prevention!!

I just attended a workshop for parents called "Drugs 101: What Parents Need to Know."

They had a mock teenagers bedroom setup w/ over 70 things teens use related to drugs and drinking. It was a 2hr. presentation. The main goal was for parents to learn facts of drug use, and to identify signs of drug use, and identify the things kids use these days to hide things in their room.

They  said they believe parents can maintain a strong influence over their kids, as long as the parents themselves are positive role models who their children respect. They also stressed frequent communication about drugs and drinking, and start it while they are young.

I have been in AA for 19 yrs. and my kids probably get tired of these conversations...but even though you think they dont' listen...they ARE hearing what you say!!
Avatar universal
I think a big part is just constantly being around the environment. It's part of the lifestyle, everywhere I go kids are using drugs and drinking and partying and it's just so easy to be like, yeah sure i'll take a line of this or hit of that or drink of that. Boredom is a huge thing too. When you're just hanging out with your friends all day and it's around your like why not, i've got nothing better to do. If i could give some ADVICE TO PARENTS i'd say, get your kid involved in whatever they like. Help them to find things they are passionate about and interested in and help them to do that, music, art, sports, volunteer work, writing for a newspaper or whatever it is. That is an environment that they can be surrounded by positive people who share the same interests in stuff and inspire them to want to stay away from the drugs and alcohol and instead do the things they love. People who they can look up to relate with and learn from. I'm not saying don;t let your kids hang out with their friends, obviously that is not realistic, but if it's balanced with other things they love to do and are passionate for then they will be less liekly to go down the dark path of drugs. I know a huge reason I use is just like nothing else to do with my time and I get bored. But i remember that when I had things in the afternoon filling up my time that i was passionate about, drugs just weren't even on my mind, I just didn't even care for it because I was finding happiness and satisfaction from positive outlets in my life.

Also, talk to your kids about drugs and be open with them. Share your own experiences and make them feel liek they aren't alone and liek you understand. WIth my parents, I have just never had the courage to bring it up to them but with my own kids I will let them know my own struggles and that it is okay. That as long as they come to me I will be there for them without getting angry or judgemental. Let your kids know you are always there for them and love them no matter what.

This is just my opinion, my perspective from what i've seen and experienced. I am 19 and have partied a lot for my age, and done to many drugs, and i'm now trying to stop them. If any other parents ever have any questions id be happy to help.
Avatar universal
Where I live, in Arizona, the addiction to pills is something to expect in people, rather than to think they weren't doing it. I'm only 19, addicted to benzos and opiates myself, but going through junior high was easy, mainly pot and alcohol, then i went to one of the most popular schools in the area, if you were LDS you fit in better. At that school I would hang out with all the kids that smoked pot, or did meth...

My mom talked to me about drugs, how she used to sell them but never do them... Soo I remember her going to Mexico with me and I'd buy hundreds of somas, or like one trip 300 valium to sell at school. (right on mom!)

I became a drug dealer basically, only focused on selling them, never taking them. Then I remember taking 7 10mg Valium when I came across them because I didn't know what they were. I took them with a few shots of vodka. all I remember is being drowsy as heck for two weeks.

Then I started taking Somas, then valium, then vicodin, pot, coke, cigarettes, xanax. Anything I could get my hands on.

I switched schools, not much different, but they were very aware of teens and drugs, they monitored everyone, school cops on campus, security guards.

Even though I agree that the teen and drug problem starts at home, it also should lead into and throughout school. One school seemed to only care about the majority of the students and academics. Another school, more open-eyed would catch the kids dealing or doing drugs.

The awareness just needs to be all over. its horrible these days.
Avatar universal
My son's school still pushes the DARE anti-drug classes. He is 13 in the 7th grade.  

He has one class a day that focuses on drugs this semester.. but honestly I am extremely disappointed so far with the cirriculum..

They PUSH really hard on the anti-smoking agenda.. and not so much on anything else.  

So far this semester they spent WEEKS discussing the dangers of cigarettes, ONE week discussing the dangers of alcohol and ONE DAY discussing the dangers of..."AND OTHERS".... meaning coke, pot, heroine, pills.   Grrr.

Now I am all for anti-smoking teaching.. however its important that kids know what the real dangerous drugs are (IMO).  I am NOT embarassed to talk about it with him though.  

He and I talk about it all the time and we watch intervention on A&E.  I think its important that he sees the real outcome of addiction and what it does to your life and your family.  Kids/songs/movies can glorify drug use sometimes, so I show him any chance I get what it really looks like and what it can really do.  

822153 tn?1333062995
As usual Gizzy, another wonderful thought for us all to ponder. Unfortunately a very frightnening one. You are correct-everyone is "doing it" younger. Hell,I started young-14, and I'm "29" now,lol!! Seriously, my son is 7 and he has posters in his grade school that have a huge black circle with METH written inside the circle and an "X" thru it. Scary. High school for me,most kids smoked pot and drank.
  I agree with the others though...prevention ,education, and information is the key. On both sides of the fence. Parents need to wake up and stop the excuses and the "not my kid". They also need to educate themselves and stop thinking it's not going to affect them!!!It's in everyone's back yard!!!! Here in WI last year 2 high school girls died from heroin od's and they just sent up the dealers for life (I think that's what they got). Kids need to also stop thinking it won't happen to them.I'd lay $$ down that almost all of us have od's at least 1 time.....and we are the lucky ones who pulled thru.
Ugh....could rant/talk/discuss for hours Gizzy!!Why do you get me going,lol?!?! My advicxe for the "young ones"; quit while you are ahead.You have your whole life ahead of you. It's not cool,glamorous,fun.Please listen to those of us who have been thru hell and back with these drugs.It's not worth your life. We're here to help,listen,guide. Drugs are a dead end road,bottom line. ~Anne
711224 tn?1344771687
I am horrified to see how easy it is to get anything. It seems that parents have lost the need to educate their kids about it. I remember my mom taking me to all the conferences and meetings. She was involved in fighting drug addiction tho.
She took me to places where they were only addicts, I remember being very scared I must have been 10 at the most. But later on, every time I was confronted with s/o trying to give me something, I just kept on saying NO having these images coming back like printed on my retina.
She was a working mom so she pushed me to have a lot of activities after school to make sure I was busy and under some kinda "control" all the time, and I sure was, too much sometimes! lol
I never had any education at school about it, it was not talked about and not mentioned, like taboo, never understood why.

Anyways, to all them youngster out there, life is not dope, dope is death. So please listen to the older ones and what they have been thru coz of their addiction, the price is very high to pay, some of us are still fighting heavy health issues coz of our addiction days.
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