Are we talking about drugs? Information, education and prevention in children
As our child grows new stages appear that we have to face, but without a doubt the one that scares us the most is adolescence. That stage where they are opening up to the world, knowing new options and avoiding excessive family ties by putting their friendships first. They are more independent and obviously we can not control everything they do, what they test and all the decisions they make.
Drugs are undoubtedly one of the biggest concerns, as it is forbidden and the forbidden attracts. The worries then appear: Does my son take drugs? What I do? We are lost! It is at this point that we parents often screw up, because we use strategies that are not very adequate to know the truth and relax.
Some examples could be: invading your personal space, searching through your things, creating interrogations, talking with your friends ... This type of action separates us more from our children and therefore we will obtain the opposite effect of what we try to prevent.
Information and education
From the school there are drug prevention programs where students are explained what are the types of drugs (legal and illegal), their characteristics and the negative effects of their consumption.
These programs have a more informative than preventive effect, because many students will be sensitive to this information but many others will simply see it as educational and exaggerated lectures.
From home he is better educated. With this we do not want to underestimate the education that is received in schools about these issues. But if we educate at home, apart from the fact that education is individualized and adapted to the exact needs of our son, we can influence little by little and over time with much more effect than an isolated talk at school.
From small we must make them aware of the existence and consumption of drugs, we should not hide this part of our child's reality, but always adapting to their age and understanding.
Put examples without fear and take advantage of the contents that appear on television to increase the understanding of this is the best of the methods. Formal and serious talks cause our son to lose attention, it is always better to deal with these issues in a transversal way throughout his day to day.
The understanding against the prohibition
We must be aware that our teenage son is curious and likes to try new sensations and emotions. It's normal, we just need to look a little at our past to remember what we were like and what motivated us. Showing empathy towards our son, will not only improve our relationships but as a consequence we will increase trust and family communication.
Respond to their big problems such as "Today they laughed at my red shoes because they are not branded" with a "That's bullshit of children and forget that I buy you others", it just takes us away from him.
This does not mean that we should buy you some new shoes, but that we try to reach your level of concern, listen to it, understand it and offer help. Obviously for an adult who has greater concerns and more complex problems, this simple fact can be funny, but we must remember that our son suffers with them and therefore we must be there for him.
However, if we decide that the prohibition of drug use through threats and anger is our solution, the only thing that we will achieve is that in the event that this situation is affecting our son we are never conscious. He will hide it and become more introverted, avoid telling more than necessary and feel alone and without support, something that can push him even more towards these dangerous behaviors.
The ages at greatest risk for the consumption of drugs is from 14 to 20 years, therefore, before these ages children have to be informed and know their alternative options.
The practice of sports and healthy eating It will always give you a vision to go against your own health at the time you decide to take drugs.
Also, if we encourage a positive self-esteem and we make our son have "things clear", the social pressure of his friends before the possible incitement towards drug use will not be as decisive as that of an insecure adolescent.
Meet your son's friends. Before judging and blaming your friends for a possible case of "flirting" with drugs, invite them home, allow them to hold meetings and dinners all together. In this way, if they are in a controlled environment, uncontrolled situations will be reduced.
Establishes rules and norms that have to be fulfilled.Let your child out and have fun, do not prevent him from being autonomous, but yes, make him aware that "at home we all meet a series of rules to improve coexistence." An example could be establishing a reasonable time of arrival at home and if this rule is not met at some point the consequent punishment will be carried out (of which he must have been previously warned). This article is published for informational purposes only. You can not and should not replace the consultation with a Pediatrician. We advise you to consult your trusted pediatrician.