“I Think My Teen Is Using Drugs”
When safety trumps privacy, it’s time to snoop.
Let’s face it, teenagers can be very sleek at concealing what they are doing. Parents have a difficult task of keeping up with their teen’s activities, grades, friends and whereabouts — and today we have the added challenge of technology.
I am a firm believer that a parent’s gut can be a good trigger if there is something suspicious going on with your child. In many cases, a parent can sense when their teenager is struggling. But do we act on it or assume it is a phase and will pass?
We hear from many teens that since marijuana is legal in many states that it’s harmless. As parents we know differently, but convincing our child can be a struggle. More and more we are hearing reports of fentanyl laced marijuana. This can be deadly.
Fentanyl is a leading cause of drug overdoses in the United States, and some people who overdose do not know they are using fentanyl.
You suspect your teen may be using drugs. You have asked them and they deny it. Do you believe them?
Let’s consider some red flags:
- Is your teen becoming very secretive?
- Is your teen withdrawn?
- Is your teen changing peer groups?
- Is your teen sleeping a lot?
- Is your teen changing their eating habits?
- Is your teen sneaking out?
- Is your teen becoming defiant, full of rage, angry?
- Are their grades dropping – are they failing?
- Overall, is your teen slowly becoming a child you don’t recognize?
Know the Drug Slang
Do you know what they are really saying? Are you familiar with drug-slang that teens are using?
Just as important as who your kids are hanging with, parents need to be in touch with the slang-chat that teens using today. Have you reviewed their text messages? Their social media sites? Emails?
Your gut-check has now informed you that the average monitoring is going to cross the boundaries into snooping. But when safety trumps privacy, your child’s health is a priority. Keep in mind, we like to have trust with our children (which is earned), but when we believe their safety is at risk — we are a parent first.
Knowledge is power and being in the know can help you help your teen sooner rather than later.
If you see or hear your teen talking about the following terms or using them in text messages or on social networking sites, your teen might be involved in some type of drug activity.
- Red Devils, Velvet, Drex, Rojo, Candy, Dex, Robo, Skittles, Tussin, Vitamin D: OTC -Cough Medicine (Dextromethorphan) Kids who use cough syrup are often called “syrup heads”
- CCC, Triple C: OTC Cough Syrup with Coricidin
- Snow, Coke, Nose candy, White, Toot, Charlie, Powder: Cocaine
- Green, Trees, Pot, Herb, Grass, Weed, 420, Chronic, Tea, Blunt: Marijuana
- Special K, Vitamin K, Breakfast cereal, K, Ket, Horse Tranquilizer: Ketamine
- Ecstasy, E, Essence, Hug Drug, Molly, X, Stacy, XTC, Adam, Clarity, Lover’s speed: (MDMA)
- Brown sugar, H, Horse, Junk, Smack, Anti-freeze, Poison: (Heroin)
- Speed, Crank, Chalk, Fire, Glass, Ice: Methamphetamine
- Kibbles and Bits, Pineapple: Ritalin
- Roofies, R-2, Roachies: Rohypnol – Date rape drug
(Sources: WedMD, AboveTheInfluence)
Keeping up with slang can be a challenge since it is always changing, as with the drug trends and nicknames the kids are using. It is imperative that you stay up-to-date with the latest drugs and slang that is being used.
Be an educated parent and always take the time to sit down with your teenager and discuss the trends with them. Show your teen you are a concerned parent and you care about their safety and their health. Never stop talking about the risks — especially with the reports of fentanyl laced marijuana since many of our young people believe this can never happen to them.
Opening the doors of communication is never easy in teen-hood, but always necessary. Never stop being a parent first — it’s worth it.
Image provided by Pexels.