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  #1  
Old 12-20-2008
kmweiss's Avatar
kmweiss kmweiss is offline
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Kids - smoking, drinking, etc.

Without getting too personal, trying to figure out what to do with my middle kid who seems more prone to the bad influences around him than my older child did. How have you folks with teenagers dealt with catching your kids with cigarettes, beer, pot, pills, etc? I was no angel growing up but obviously its very different when you are a parent. Hate having to deal with this!! Without exaggeration, I would say that at least 50% of the kids 15 and older in this part of northern NJ are either getting stoned or drunk on weekend nights as well as other times. Most parents seem oblivious and very lenient. We are on the stricter side of things but its certainly not like the army here!

Anyway, any ideas, stories, or methods are all appreciated!

Happy holidays everyone!

Kenny
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  #2  
Old 12-20-2008
LildeviladyK
 
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This sounds like a good place for a "parents of teenagers support thread"

2 boys, 16 and 19.

We struggle because my husband is a lot more lenient than I am. I was not an angel either as a teen, but I knew when not to go too far. The problem is if you discipline them at this age, then they just rebel and make things worse!

Seems like if they experience it, they'll get it out of their system. I know it's really really hard for us as parents. I shared my teenager of the 1970's events with them, and how bad some of the things were at that time.

Here's something that a friend suggested to me to try and it works, so I will pass it on:

Search for stories in the news about teenagers getting in trouble for drunk driving or better yet, dying from it, people getting cancer from smoking, and sharing stories of famous people who f-ed themselves up, like Chris Farley and John Belushi and Jimi Hendrix. Show these things to your kids in a non-threatening unassuming manner and it'll stay in their minds......it's worked for my kids, but not all kids are the same. Good luck

Hang in there, we all go through this as parents. It's nice to compare notes with others because then you realize it's not anything you did, it's just the nature of this teenage age.

Love,
Yo Boardmom, mum, and mammy
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  #3  
Old 12-20-2008
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JoMama JoMama is offline
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I am going through this myself.
Remembering how I thought/made decisions at that age, I had a few advantages thrown my way:
On a fishing trip, with a cigarette-smoking dad and uncle in the front seat of the car, two brothers in the back seat thought they could sneak a couple of tokes and blow it out the window, since the oldsters up front were smoking cigs and awash in smoke...
The uncle suddenly turns around and demands that the "whacky tobacky" gets shared, so by the time we reach our destination (out on a frozen lake--an ice-fishing house), we all are stoned and laughing.
Kind of took the edge off the "generation gap".
As a parent, I am lucky that growing my hair out and being a fan of hippies' music, my kid is rebelling by dating a clean-cut Richie Cunningham-type Army kid who's already enlisted to go in after high school.
That wasn't even planned.
But then, I don't really mind if kids smoke weed. It's alcohol abuse that concerns me more, as we lost a kid here a couple years ago who rolled his car. With no seatbelt on, he was crushed by the car after being thrown out.
Tell your kids that the first thing to happen when a car rolls is the doors pop open, so they'd better buckle up. They can always crawl out later...
Otherwise, do as the Europeans do: Let them have the odd glass of wine at the family meals and holiday get-togethers. They may get a little buzz, but they're in secure company. They learn slowly, perhaps. Don't let them drive, and certainly talk to them about the dangers of driving impaired. Thankfully the paper publishes the fines given to people driving while intoxicated.
Take the time to talk to them, and they'll listen to you, ultimately, because even though they're "rebelling" right now, they still trust your guidance.
If you weren't an angel, but you seemed to turn out ok, then take that as advice to yourself--YOU made it through, they will probably too.
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Last edited by JoMama : 12-21-2008 at 03:32 AM.
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Old 12-20-2008
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Jedey Jedey is offline
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I would make the kid sit down and watch a bunch of episodes of Intervention. It scares the crap out of me how bad these folks get.

Bad Influences

http://www.aetv.com/intervention/
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Last edited by Jedey : 12-20-2008 at 05:36 PM.
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Old 12-20-2008
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sybilskelton sybilskelton is offline
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When I was growing up and I would ask permission to do something, my mother's standard answer was "if you think you're big enough". By the time I was a teenager there was an understanding of what being "big enough" meant. My mother was extremely lenient and relied on our sense of responsibility to guide our behavior. I always understood that if I was big enough to do something I had to be big enough to deal with any consequences. I think if kids have a good grounding in right and wrong it will win out eventually, and it sounds to me like you've done that with your kids, Kenny. Trust yourself.

I pretty much took my mom's approach with my kids, and it worked okay I suppose. My son went wild for a while, smoking pot, slacking in school, etc., but he pretty much outgrew it. My daughter has been little miss perfect so I guess I lucked out.

The one thing I've always told both of them was to never call me from the jailhouse because I ain't coming to get them. You get yourself in there, you get yourself out. I guess they believed me because I only got that call once - he only called to let me know where he was, not to bail him out, and he stayed for 3 days.

Sybil
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Old 12-20-2008
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kmweiss kmweiss is offline
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All good stuff. Nice to know that we are not alone in this!

I think that if my son were always an A or B student, then I would worry less. However, since at the moment he often chooses to underachieve, I am concerned that his choices will be very limited when it comes time for college. Of course, those discussions fall mostly on deaf ears as it is the rare kid that can see that far in to the future (although its only 4 years away for him). Frustrating, as he has great potential. Sounds like you guys have been there, too.

Sybil -- I love the jail story. I tell my kids that, too!

I'm also hoping he sticks with sports since he is a good athlete and it takes up time that might otherwise be spent.....ummm...not as wisely! He says he will play lacrosse in the spring. We'll see.
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Old 12-20-2008
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Make him smoke two packs of cigarettes and drink a bottle of Jacks. Wake him up early next morning and take him fishing on a boat......... I only had three girls so I guess I am not really quallified. Good luck though Kenny.
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Old 12-21-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bryn View Post
Make him smoke two packs of cigarettes and drink a bottle of Jacks. Wake him up early next morning and take him fishing on a boat......... I only had three girls so I guess I am not really quallified. Good luck though Kenny.
That's the standard deal with a lot of folks who catch their kids sneaking cigs: Sit them down in a room and make them smoke one after another until they're so sick of them they detest them.
I'm not so sure it works if the parent administering the punishment is a smoker though. I don't know, I just remember the Lung Association commercials on TV when I was a kid, we'd look up at Dad and tell him "see, it would be smart for you to quit!", and he'd snap back "I CAN'T quit, so don't you even START!"
Oddly, when I would sit all day in the fishing boat with him and my uncle, I was witness to a lot of beer-drinking, swearing and cigarettes. My uncle could hand-roll a cigarette with one hand because the other was holding the fishing pole. He even figured out how to fold a paper match over and scratch it to light it with one hand. Do you think a child will learn to not smoke after watching that circus act?!
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