Looking the other way,need advice?

Discussion in 'Substance Abuse' started by UpandDown, Apr 19, 2016.

  1. UpandDown

    UpandDown Active Member

    I have posted on this site many times asking for advice for my 16 year old son. He has been diagnosed with anxiety and depression and the last several years have been extremely difficult. His angry moods would dictate the mood of the whole household and his temper was making life hell for the rest of our family. We have tried everything,honestly everything. From weekly therapy to wilderness therapy, diversion program from police, you name it. He has tried many medications and won't stay on them. He is now a regular marijuana smoker. And I am certain that is all he is using. He has been tested numerous times. I hate it, he knows how we feel. We have taken it away, grounded him, called the police, etc. I tell you nothing stops him. We have finally gotten to the point where we don't fight him. Meaning I don't read his text messages and warn the dealers to stay away. I don't tear his room apart looking. I don't follow him when he slips out of the house. The line we have drawn is, do not bring it near our house,do not drive and do not go to school high. Here is the reason I am posting. We have gone from a household of chaos and anger with him snapping at everyone, raging and breaking things, refusing to help or do his chores to a household where he is calm, talkative, joins in with his siblings, is willing to help out and even go above to help out his siblings. There is peace for the first time in years. I would never choose this and I am well aware what weed is doing to his young brain, etc. He is still participating in weekly therapy and of course I am praying that he will see for himself that this is not the answer. Last night my younger daughter asked us why we are allowing him to use drugs and not stopping him. I couldn't even come up with a decent answer. Except to say, he has free will. I feel so conflicted and sick with worry. Worry about the horrible message that is being sent. The only thing that we have left as a possibility is to force him into rehab. Again. And honestly I have no idea how to make that happen. In a little over a year he will be 18. I know its crazy to say but he is going to school regularly, working on his schoolwork, keeping grades up, paying for his own gas and personal expenses, helping out around the house, and generally pleasant to be around. Yet smoking weed several times a day. If anyone has advice, I would love to hear it.
  2. kt4394

    kt4394 Member

    You sound like you could be me. My 15 year is a regular smoker with depression and anxiety. Our house is over-run by him and his anger, his druggie friends, his decisions. Its such a battle. I would probably be in just your place, accepting it with limitations, if my son could keep up with the rest of the world. But, he can't. He is failing in school, he is bringing dealers/druggie friends to my house, smoking in the house, stealing, etc, etc. I honestly don't know that I would be so worried and opposed to him smoking if he could handle it, if I thought it was really helping him.
    God Bless. I feel your pain and discomfort. Please keep the updates coming. :staystrong:
  3. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet


    I had looked the other way with my 20 year old son also. A little weed and a few beers seemed okay if he wasn't causing trouble but with us it escalated.

    Sometimes you just get so tired and have to pick your battles...I know.

    It is horrible to live in a house where kid(s) run the show though and we did that too. It sounds crazy because we both have pretty strong personalities and are pretty particular about things.

    Thankfully he is now an adult and we are no longer doing that and while he is still tethered to us, he is making his own way. It's still a long road for us but much better. Until they are adults all you can do is what you can do. We did all the interventions etc. and looking back don't know how we could have done any better than we did.

    I just kept praying and continue to do so. That gives me comfort. Do whatever you need to do to keep your sanity.
  4. New Leaf

    New Leaf Well-Known Member

    This is a tough one. I might be inclined to not fight that battle either, considering their is improvement. I mean what could you do? Does his therapist know he is smoking several times a day? What is the alternative?
    I have heard that antidepressants are tricky medications, even anxiety medications......
    The hard part is younger daughter questioning.....
    Sorry I do not have advice, just feel for you in this situation.
    Darned if you do, darned if you don't..........
    Keep posting and let us know how you are doing.
  5. Origami

    Origami Active Member

    My son's therapist actually recommended that we continue to let him smoke cigarettes (regular ones) because he'd get such severe anxiety when he tried to quit. He's been a smoker since about age 14 (age 19 now). My husband and I have given in to buying cigarettes for him just to keep the peace, even though neither of us has ever smoked and we are against it. My son told me he tried marijuana and didn't like it, so I haven't had that experience with him.

    My other difficult son, however, started with marijuana in high school and is now a heroin addict at age 29. So I'd say keep your guard up for evidence of any other type of drug use, which of course is a much more serious issue. If his grades start slipping, he's skipping classes, being habitually late, etc. or showing other physical symptoms, you would want to see what's up.
  6. ColleenB

    ColleenB Active Member

    I hear your pain. We too have given up on fighting the weed wars.... It doesn't help when our federal govt announced today that in a year, it will move forward to legalizing pot.

    I do feel torn. I don't agree with the pot use, but with my son, who also has anxiety and depression, he uses it to self medicate.

    I wish I had great advice. I don't. I honestly think each of our cases are all different and we have to follow a path we can live with. I am learning to stop trying to fix him, and focus on my own mental health.

    It's not an easy road. I'm sorry you are on this trek...... I wish it was different.
  7. toughlovin

    toughlovin Well-Known Member

    Ok I think setting clear boundaries in your home is important. Fact is you can't stop him from using as much as you might want to. He may go on to use harder drugs and he may not. Fighting battles in your house with him won't keep him from harder drugs.

    I think the thing to keep looking at is his overall behavior. He is being calm and pleasant, doing his school work...that is all good and what you want to encourage. That changes then pay attention and deal with that.

    As far as your younger daughter...not sure how to handle that but to be clear that you don't approve, don't like it and that it is risky. Maybe ask her what she thinks you should do....engage her in conversation about it.

  8. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    My son, who is in sober living in Florida now and was diagnosed with anxiety and depression many years ago/times, told me that he stopped taking his Sequel to help him sleep and instead uses CBD oil on his tongue at night. He takes Effexor in the morning for his anxiety/depression and he struggled with falling asleep at night. I am happy that he found this oil and it is legal and natural so there is no problem with it. Not sure if this is something any parents here may want to look into.
  9. UpandDown

    UpandDown Active Member

    Thank you for all the advice and thoughts. I have spent a lot of time scouring the internet looking for information on the validity of marijuana for depression/anxiety. Its so contradictory because what I see in my own child and hear from him is against what I have always heard about weed and what the therapists have told me. I was surprised to find some information about doctors that strongly believe it is helpful with adhd. Yikes, that is one of the diagnoses my son has. Oh well, I agree that I should focus on the good things he is doing and the progress he is making. I will keep watching for any signs of him using other drugs.
  10. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    We were told that the five most common substances for self-medicating for ADHD are:
    - caffeine
    - nicotine
    - alcohol
    - marijuana
    - cocaine

    Caffeine and nicotine are stimulants - help with the "focus" part, just like stimulant medications do.
    Alcohol and marijuana show the brain down - takes down some of the impulsivity and hyperactivity. Also slows productivity, but lots of medications have side effects, right? (just kidding)
    • Informative Informative x 1
    • List
  11. Wisconsingirl1818

    Wisconsingirl1818 New Member

    I can certainly relate with the last couple posts. My 16 yr old is out of control. We live in CO and pot is SO easy to get because for 18+ it is legal. Don't be fooled, there is usually more than one drugs involved. Mine has started drinking too. I would love to put my son in rehab but again in CO they have to go willingly and can check out anytime they want.....
    SO much more to my story but
    Just venting thanks for listening
  12. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    Well.pot will be legal shortly all over. Alcohol and cigarettes already are.bbut there are ages when you are too young to indulge or you are breaking the law.

    This is what I do about legal substances.

    I cant control what people do when they are away from me, but in my castle/on my property nobody is allowed to smoke ANYTHING. My rules are different from the law and are strictly enforced.

    For alcohol, if you are 21 without a drinking addiction you can byob and have one or two. We dont buy alcohol. If you are underage or drink to excess, no. You can't. If you cant follow our house rules, you will be shown the door. I reluctantly and very sadly made my daughter leave the house,although she was also usiing pills.

    Although there are laws out there, every single person has a right to make their own house laws. Our houses are our sanctuaries and do not belong to our wayward kids. Kids should not control us although I understand letting certain things slide for the sake of peace until they turn 18 and can legally leave.

    Its our decision.

    I agree 100 percent that most heavy pot smokers are also on other stuff that is easier to hide. We learned that the hard way. by the way, Wisconsin here too!
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2016