18 Yr Old Son Daily Pot smoker doesn't want to stop

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by just4usa, Jun 28, 2013.

  1. just4usa

    just4usa New Member

    Our boy is a great soul, kind and fun to be around. Cares about others. Thinks there is absolutely nothing wrong with pot smoking. He admits it freely and knows we are very against it because it is illegal. He was caught last summer at 17 had to go through court services, community service, counseling, diversion and charge will be expunged in 2 years if he can stay out of trouble. We paid almost $3000 to do all of this because it was his first time offense and couldn't bare to think our 17 year old would start out life with a record. I made an agreement with him that he would NOT have to pay us back if he quit smoking (didn't happen so he had to write a check a month ago). He is an average student but has the abilities to be a great one and heading to a nearby University in the fall. He works a full time job that he is proud of but has recently made poor decisions and/or not kept track of his schedule. He has accidentally blown off friends, avoids too much contact with Mom and Dad so we know the signs of what is causing this. We are only 3 and we have always been very close and communicate freely. I know that I cannot control his choice to use drugs or alcohol I can only control one person...ME. My father is a life long alcoholic, my sister recently passed from liver failure due to drug and alcohol abuse. The family history is very scary and know that my son is at a high risk of having addictive issues because of this. He is aware of all of these things yet doesn't think that will happen to him...'I am 18, college kids party'. My relationship is changing with him as my natural reaction is to detach myself as much as possible as it is difficult to maintain work and life with my husband if I don't and I cannot 'pretend' that his actions are ok with me. My other response is taking away all of the things that makes it easier for him to buy drugs. We have furnished him a truck and insurance but he is responsible for paying for gas and food. We don't give him any money. When he goes to college he will live in the dorm on an all you can eat plan and won't be given any cash from us. My husband and I have agreed that we need to love him and support his good decisions and obviously not the bad ones. We have never had him want to bolt from conversations until recently as we are constantly on his tail for the things that are resulting from the smoking. So, do we just ignore? It's obviously not helping and he has to decide to make the right choices. Our fears are the same as all parents I suppose...will he fail at college? Will he lose his job? Will he get a DUI? Will he go to jail? Will he kill himself or others in a vehicle? Will he become addicted to other drugs or become a life long addict? I have read multiple other posts and seems my boy is just at the beginning stages of disaster so I am hoping someone out there has advice that we might use to help put him back on the right track. By the way, where we live probably 75% of this age range are smoking...doesn't help and Colorado did us no favors either. When we talk to him about all of these things he thinks he is 'above' all of it and won't happen to him. Teens have a distorted sense of immortality. I am thinking about searching for a counselor but he went through over 6 months and was right back at it after his diversion was over. As a side note...I was never a drug user but do drink. My husband was a drug user for 2-3 years in high school and is a moderate drinker now. The activities our son is engaging in are very similar to my husbands past. We can only pray that our son's use will be temporary as my husband's was.
  2. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry you are sad and upset.

    Are you sure your son is just smoking pot and not doing more things? How are his grades? Do you think it's wise to fund school if he is not doing well and is using drugs? Does he work? Can he pay his own truck insurance?

    Not all teens use drugs. I have one who did and one who would never. Some just don't have the common sense that others do. I'm sure your son thinks 74 percent of his peers smoke pot/do drugs. I wouldn't take it seriously. Plenty of kids don't. Don't excuse his behavior for that perceived stat. What is a "moderate" drinker?

    You can't force your child to do anything at his age, but you can cut off his cell phone and car insurance and dorm money until he goes into treatment.

    I wish you luck. I'm really sorry you are so upset. Been there/done that.
    Last edited: Jun 28, 2013
  3. Calamity Jane

    Calamity Jane Well-Known Member

    It's true that you don't know if he'll be a life long user or just a typical teen experimenting, but there is a family history there. It certainly doesn't help that it's so accepted and prevalent now, and college away from home is almost a license to party excessively.
    The only thing I'd suggest is letting him feel the consequences of his poor choices...don't run in and save him. If you are paying for school, if he fails, he must repay you. He'll never learn to act as an adult if he isn't given adult consequences. You're definitely on the right track - I don't think you're overreacting.
    When our son was on his path twd. self destruction and drug abuse in high school, we sought a psychiatrist that was recommended by the school. He was excellent, but I asked him the same questions about my son, who was always a diligent student, etc. I didn't want him to have a record, or to not be accepted to his school of choice, etc., and the dr. said we had to do something very hard: to lay out our rules, stick by them, and wait for him to make his decisions and choices. If those choices were bad (they were very bad), he had to face the consequences and lose freedom, esteem, good friends, job, girlfriend, family connections, etc. until what he lost was worth more than the drugs. With therapy and time, he seemed to have turned a corner, but who knows? He's a world class manipulator and frequent embellisher/liar, and that didn't change, even after he stopped using drugs. You are so right when you say the only person you can change is you.
    You may want to join a group like Families Anonymous to hear others' perspectives, also. It can be very helpful.
  4. just4usa

    just4usa New Member

    He is taking a student loan to pay for tuition which we changed after he decided to take the wrong path. We have agreed to pay for the dorm and food plan for 1 semester. If he gets A's or B's we will pay that part of the student loan...but all grades have to be C's or better or the deal is off and he will pay it all. He does work almost full time which he enjoys.

    Not all teens use drugs but in this area we are very close to tons of families and they are talking about the same issues...I actually can't think of one of our friends that doesn't have one of their kids using.

    His grades are very close to a B average after graduating high school (which hasn't changed his whole life - not what I would consider a serious student but I am a chronic over achiever) He wants to go to college and won't deny him at least 1 semester...but I know he will be back home at Christmas and will be going to the local community college and working. Have to give him a chance I think - he already says we don't trust that he can do well - I told him that I couldn't be happier if he came home at the end of the semester and waived his grades in my face...so will pray that he does just that and stays on the right path.

    As far as other drugs don't think we haven't thought about it...but have no indication of anything else. If we ask him about smoking he is honest and tells us what he has been doing...says he doesn't want to lie to us. But, we don't believe everything he says...you just can't.

    Thanks for the response. Sad that so many parents and families going through all of this when it takes one moment to say no.
  5. just4usa

    just4usa New Member

    I am going to write a contract that all 3 of us sign...mom, dad and him. I don't know what difficult child is? Looked in the urban dictionary but wasn't sure? I want to post the contract when I get it done so I can see if there are any things that others might add or change. The general idea is this...if he chooses the correct path, gets good grades, stays away from drugs, keeps his job and himself in good standing we will support him financially, physically and emotionally. If he chooses the opposite then we will support him in every way except financially. We have already made him start paying for all his personal expenses except we pay for his truck and insurance - he doesn't make enough to pay those but we can change that too. Part of the contract is going to say that if he gets in trouble the truck comes home and he will have to take the bus. He will be going to a college where there is plenty of public transportation...we are only allowing him the use of the truck because he wants to keep the job he currently has and will be a 20 minute drive with no public transport available. He has worked there for 9 months and loves it - previously had a job for over a year in the restaurant sector which I would advise all parents to say no to ...seems that a large drug crowd is attracted to restaurant business...

    Good luck with your family.
  6. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Hello and welcome.

    I'm sorry that your son is starting down this path. I truly hope that it is just experimentation but daily use seems like a bigger problem than that. I hope I am wrong.

  7. DettiMama

    DettiMama New Member

    To make matters worst how our current laws are coming along it will be legal for our youth to smoke dope, then what are we gonna say?It's already hard enough to make them understand drinking, smoking, or any other street drugs are just a form or escape from reality. When I had my talk with my 16 year old who by the way smokes pot he said how about you mom ? You drink coffee every day ! They totally think smoking dope is harmless . There are many study's out there who proves smoking dope is less harmful then drinking alcohol. Sometimes I feel our parenting generation is losing a battle.
  8. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    Dettimon...lol. You are at the beginning og that ugly road where difficult child's try to "pass the responsibility". Coffee compared to weed? Give me a break! Hang in there 'cause rough times are on the horizon. DDD
  9. DettiMama

    DettiMama New Member

    Naw not the beginning of the road , I've been there for a while, things started to go sour 3 years ago when he first stole money from us and since then just a rain of problems are upon Us.The good news is last September I joined a patenting group called Bily =Because I Love You . It's helps a lot ! Support is the most important thing!
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  10. Kathy813

    Kathy813 Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I had not heard of the support group. I googled it and found that there is a group within driving distance of me. Is it focused on adolescents? Is it based on a 12-step program?