Why are there so many teenagers smoking weed? How can we help theses teenagers?

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Sara - posted on 05/26/2012

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Hi Michelle,

Not sure if this question was asked tongue-in-cheek or not... but..... I'm a high school teacher and am concerned about this also. I think teenagers are definitely smoking more weed now than they did when I was young (although cigarette smoking has fallen drastically, and perhaps even drinking). The real problem I see is that kids think nothing of it. So many messages in the media basically say its harmless, but I strongly think otherwise. Yes, it's less addictive and potentially less dangerous than other hard drugs like cocaine, lsd and meth, but the frequency with which youth are smoking it these days has not been extensively studied. And more and more research is pointing to cognitive and emotional impairments (paranoia, lack of motivation, problems with logical thinking and concentration) in teenagers who smoke regularly (a couple of times a week +). And for teenagers, this comes at a critical time when academic performance can determine what type life they will have.

Amanda - posted on 10/15/2012

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The rate of drug use has not really increased nor decreased, its the increase in funding of the drug war that actually is taking its toll on people and communities. The only way to get drugs out of the hands of children, is to take them out of the black market, and for the people of the USA we view this as something horrible and terrifying, something that will rip apart the fabric of our nation. :oP Many countries that have decriminalized cannabis (and many other drugs) have actually seen a decrease in the use among their teenage and adult population. So in answer to your question, we need to regulate it, the same way we would alcohol or sudafed. It's been made quite clear in the last 75 years that we can't make anyone stop partaking of cannabis.

Christine - posted on 05/22/2012

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I think weed is the least of the evils that befall kids these days. Not that it shouldn't be a concern, but I feel like there are bigger problems that need more attention than weed smoke. Just a personal opinion, though I agree with the first response. The only thing you can do is let your kids know where you stand, and that you're there for them no matter what. Ultimately, they make the decision, you just choose the tolerance level, while of course keeping in mind the more harsh your tolerance is, the more they rebel. My kids are young, I can't speak from experience however. I just hope the worst my kids do is smoke weed. I don't need any serious drug addictions!!

Jennifer - posted on 05/22/2012

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Drugs are everywhere, and so easy to get ahold of. Unless you plan on locking your kid(s) up until they're 30, there is no way to completely stop them. You just have to talk to them about it, and all the consequences that come with drugs from going to jail, down to the emotional side effects. Then, just pray that they make the right decision when the opportunity arises.

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Amanda - posted on 11/16/2012

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Teenagers are much more likely to experiment with drugs than an adult is. Cannabis is a gateway drug because the same person dealing cannabis may also be dealing crack, cocaine, heroin, and who knows what other drugs. So these teens, who call their dealer on a bad day, may be more willing to try a drug that will destroy their lives, yet keep said dealer in business.



If cannabis is everywhere, then isn't this the clue that prohibition has be a monumental failure? Most teens in rehab are there because the choice is that or jail time. And as Barbara said, a case can be made of anything. I knew teens who would drink a bottle of Robitussin so that they could 'robotrip,' and I had friends who inhaled from spray products (I don't know what they used I did have a little sense growing up not to screw up my brain.) That's the reason Cali made it illegal for children under 18 to buy so many products. I just don't see teen use declining until cannabis is regulated, and yes the black market will thrive for a while afterwards, but since adults will be buying from stores, people who grow will get the permits necessary and sell to the highest bidder (which will not be people looking to buy from street dealers.) The only problem this then creates is the other drugs available to teens that are dealt by the black market, but considering that cannabis is the biggest seller hopefully those dealers will become harder to find. Anyway... that's my take on it. I don't expect you to agree, just hope you consider it. :)

User - posted on 11/15/2012

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I wish I knew the answer sure wasnt as available when I was in school I feel its to available,lack of morals and concern for our children from drug dealers and lack of educatiom we had good drug program when I was in school I wasnt ever even offered drugs went to 5 a school my kids attend small 2a school and have seen many things kids should not see from peers there age and up its sad and I fear that its only going to get worse google adolesent rehabs ull b shocked how many exist def disnt have those when I was a adolescent maybe so,e but far and few between and as a mom my heart breaks for the lack of conern for marijuana I to use to say well its the milder drug at least not wantinh my kids to do any experiamenting mothers drea,.but seeing the tolls on my family as we to have addiction as well as most families do but my bf who im very proud of hit hos bottom when loosing us was wasnt a choice it was a definate and he had lost me and the boys he needed that bottom to hit to makr his way back up and is now 9 months clean and changed so much and will fight this demon theu call meth from now on and y because he tried it once but started with jus that simple herb that wont kill u or they say not addictive yet hes learned that it opened a world hed rather left closed and 13 yrs later he is finally clean 9 moths and tells the boys alll the time that marijuana may seem not so bad until u tru otjer more harsh drugs and that it usually dont just stop with pot and yet we have our own situation with one of the boys were def not ignoring and getting aheqd of it now may not change a thing but we as parents can say we didnt ignore it and allow it to happen as parents thats our job protect our kids and if I,have to ground mine indef and make them stay in my sight as much as possible even send them to rehab get any help we can for them thats ehat I feel parrnts should do ignoring a prob or allowing a behavior doesnt make it fade away or fix itself what seems so simple that herb tht isnt addicting can lead to a world ur family would rather not enter and this I learned attending class at the rehab and never thought much bout myself marijuana does open the big big door to the drug world

User - posted on 11/15/2012

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Im a mother of two teenage boys living in a small ng town kIwhere apparents are very.easy to get im dealing qwith suspisions of one son who might b headed down the wrong path therefore im seeking and getting help many feel marijuanas no big deal but I learned in my bf family class at tconsidered he rehab hes in cutrrntley 9 months clean a long time for him to be clean in 13 yrs anyway attending his weekly classes taught me alot and one thing I had never or considered was that the simple so called harmless drug called marijuana that most people have tried actually opens the door to the drug world now that doesnt mean everyone who smokes pot becomes a meth,coke or bad junkie just means when u start with marijuana and it seems simple safe non addic open tinh that it could open up a world that will and does destroy ur life and some never venture more than marijuana but many do.So for me witor h two teenage boys in a small town with more drugs than our town needs or even our county where I,have lea rned in talking to my boys and my bf who grew up in this area that even that simple so called herb can lead to a world cold dark and lonley and in a blink of a eye that so called friends offering u a new drug to try and that drug just so happens to only take one time tie t time of trying and ur life changes forever.Ive had close friends and my bf experiance this road and I wouldnt ever and wont just blow off marijuana use it could and usually does lead to bigger morr dangerouse drugs taking this from a who knows and now 9 months clean and proud and thankful to be clean that long since his fitrst time 13 yrs ago they dont lie when they say very addicting just ask anyone who battles the meth addiction.and for all I knw who have been into harsh hard highly addicting drugs it all started with that herb called marijuana so for me as a mom I dont take it lightley and will do something if found for sure any of my 3 boys r even occasionally smoking since im a motjer of 4 raising 3 due to sids I,dont wanna loose another child to deayh or the drug world

User - posted on 11/15/2012

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Im a mother of two teenage boys living in a small ng town kIwhere apparents are very.easy to get im dealing qwith suspisions of one son who might b headed down the wrong path therefore im seeking and getting help many feel marijuanas no big deal but I learned in my bf family class at tconsidered he rehab hes in cutrrntley 9 months clean a long time for him to be clean in 13 yrs anyway attending his weekly classes taught me alot and one thing I had never or considered was that the simple so called harmless drug called marijuana that most people have tried actually opens the door to the drug world now that doesnt mean everyone who smokes pot becomes a meth,coke or bad junkie just means when u start with marijuana and it seems simple safe non addic open tinh that it could open up a world that will and does destroy ur life and some never venture more than marijuana but many do.So for me witor h two teenage boys in a small town with more drugs than our town needs or even our county where I,have lea rned in talking to my boys and my bf who grew up in this area that even that simple so called herb can lead to a world cold dark and lonley and in a blink of a eye that so called friends offering u a new drug to try and that drug just so happens to only take one time tie t time of trying and ur life changes forever.Ive had close friends and my bf experiance this road and I wouldnt ever and wont just blow off marijuana use it could and usually does lead to bigger morr dangerouse drugs taking this from a who knows and now 9 months clean and proud and thankful to

Barbara - posted on 11/15/2012

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I completely agree. Our family has lost at least three family members to drug usage and they ALL started with marijuana. I could only support legalized marijuana if it were prescribed by an MD, dispensed from a conventional pharmacy by a licensed pharmacist, just like other controlled medications. The drug store can lose their license to dispense and the doctor and pharmacist can both lose his/her license to practice if abused. My daughter, now 15, refuses to associate with kids in school who use any form of drugs, including alcohol, because of the losses to our family. Even as a teen, she has witnessed first hand the devastation it causes. I'm sorry for the pain our family members caused her, but am glad if it's turned her away from something so harmful.

User - posted on 11/15/2012

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Im a mother of two teenage boys living in a small ng town where apparents are very.easy to get im dealing qwith suspisions of one son who might b headed down the wrong path therefore im seeking and getting help many feel marijuanas no big deal but I learned in my bf family class at tconsidered he rehab hes in cutrrntley 9 months clean a long time for him to be clean in 13 yrs anyway attending his weekly classes taught me alot and one thing I had never or considered was that the simple so called harmless drug called marijuana that most people have tried actually opens the door to the drug world now that doesnt mean everyone who smokes pot becomes a meth,coke or bad junkie just means when u start with marijuana and it seems simple safe non addic open tinh that it could open up a world that will and does destroy ur life and some never venture more than marijuana but many do.So for me witor h two teenage boys in a small town with more drugs than our town needs or even our county where I,have learned in talking to my boys and my bf who grew up in this area that even that simple so called herb can lead to a world cold dark and lonley and in a blink of a eye that so called friends offering u a new drug to try and that drug just so happens to only take one time of trying and ur life changes forever.Ive had close friends and my bf experiance this road and I wouldnt ever and wont just blow off marijuana use it could and usually does lead to bigger morr dangerouse drugs taking this from a man who knows and now 9 months clean and proud and thankful to

Michele - posted on 10/25/2012

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It's everywhere. I worked in drugs rehab clinics in the seventies and know that drugs were not as easily or cheaply available in schools as they are now, especially in the independent schools. Teachers and police turn a blind eye by and large - they lost the war on drugs years ago. My 17 year old (im a very old Mum) has been doing marijuana since he was 15. His personality has changed and his exams have suffered hugely. The worst is his total lack of motivation. We have tried everything, starting with grounding him for nearly 6 months. A more co-operative approach (trying to limit the drugs) is slightly better. The biggest problem now is boredom. His full time college course is only 2 days a week and there are no recreational sports . there is one competitive footy team and he isnt good enough to join. He has tried hard to get part time work, but without success. He has even tried giving up completely but peer pressure and boredom stop this happening. THC in domestic (as opposed to eastern i.e. afghan etc) marijuana is much stronger than 30 or 40 years ago and at his worst he was smoking 8 spliffs a day which is very worrying. I wish the tolerant parents were right but I am pretty sure they are kidding themselves

Cynthia - posted on 10/24/2012

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Well for one, most drugs are a lot easier to get a hold of than alcohol. A majority of it is only marijuana though. If your child starts using other narcotics, you might want to be concerned.

Barbara - posted on 10/18/2012

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A case can be made for or against any particular behavior. Coffee, while it may contain 500 chemicals, doesn't impair judgement, influence cognitive thought and have long term side effects.

Marijuana has always been referred to as the gateway to harder drugs, just like beer has always been considered the path to hard alcohol. Drugs and alcohol damage families. I've seen it, I have personally witnessed the devastation this behavior has brought to children and their parents as well as their extended families. It has taken my cousin from me and, indirectly via auto accident, killed my husband. I will never be a supporter of any mind altering substance. Medicinal marijuana prescribed by a physician for specific patients and to ease pain is the only exception and should, in my opinion, be handled exactly like other prescriptive drugs/medications at the local Rx and dispensed by a licensed pharmacist who could lose his/her license if violations occur.

Jennifer - posted on 10/11/2012

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http://www.abovetheignorance.com/

Look at this website. Everyone was taught that marijuana was bad when in reality it's not even close to as harmful as they say it is. It can cause cancer if you SMOKE it but that is very rare because the average weed smoker smokes less than the average chain smoker. If its a vaporizer there is no chance. They try to say its bad because it has over 400 chemicals. You know what they're not telling you? Things such as coffee have over 500 chemicals in them.

Corinne - posted on 05/31/2012

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Weed is the least of your problems dear. Heroin is easier to get than pot nowadays and that worries me. I'm an adult and still prefer smoking pot to drinking; it's so much healthier. I think a big mistake parents make is never talking about it honestly with their kids. I grew up with only getting the D.A.R.E. info on drugs and went through quite the experimental stage. Have no idea how I didn't overdose on some hard drugs. My fiance grew up in a very honest home. His parents told him their stories and it wasn't mysterious anymore and he to this day doesn't really like drinking or anything.
When my daughters grow up I will tell them everything I've seen and been through including detoxing from alcohol and coke at 16. If they want to smoke weed at 17 I don't really see a problem with it; I'ld rather them do that than anything else including smoking cigarettes.

Jodi - posted on 05/23/2012

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I think you will find there were plenty of teenagers smoking weed 20 years ago too. I know hardly anyone who didn't try it back in the 80s. To be honest, I'd be more concerned about the other drugs on the market. While I don't really want my kids smoking weed, if it is the worst they ever do, then I won't worry myself sick. To be honest, alcohol and smoking is worse for them, and that's legal.

I think the best you can do is give them factual information, not just about weed, but about smoking, alcohol, other drugs, sex, etc, and then you have to leave the decision up to them.

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