Home weed drug test - positive result

(36 Posts)
Parttimeslave Sun 09-Dec-12 09:54:54

Ok. So ds2 (17) been hanging out with the "wrong sort" for ages. He's a pretty good kid from a happy, secure home, currently working (reasonably) hard for his A levels and hoping to go off to uni next Sept. He has lied in the past about smoking (we knew he did, but always denied it). Has stollen small amounts of money from my purse etc (that was before he got a Saturday job last year).

I bought home testing kits for cannabis off the internet a while back when I had slight suspicions about smelling something "odd" in the house after he'd had mates around a couple of times. I told him I owned the kits and would have no trouble giving him a random test if I ever felt I needed to. That was about 10 months ago, and haven't felt the need to do so (thank god), until last night.

I asked him to give me a urine sample after smelling the "odd" smell in the house again after we'd had a night out. He abliged (bit reluctantly) and to our horror it was positive. Dh and I sat with him calmly and he told us he didn't smoke weed and that he was given a "weed cake" at a party the night before. We don't believe him!

He has willingly agreed to be checked randomly/regularly from now on. He has been given more and more freedom to stay out late (at weekends only) and go to various 18th parties etc. He has a Saturday job and earns his own money.

Advice please. Is there anymore now we should be doing other than stay on his case and keep lines of communication open? He's lost our trust again for the time being at least, and he's not going to have as much freedom as he's had recently. I was even thinking of getting home tests for other substances that I've heard about (M-cat, speed), just in case. He never appears to be high when we see him (however he gets home late and we're often in bed!). It's such a scary, heart-wrenching situation to find yourself in. My dh is on the same page as me and we just want to keep him safe. He's is off to uni (maybe) next year - we can't check up on him then!

Leave him alone. He's 17 of course he's smoking weed.

Doesn't mean he'll move onto anything worse.

CajaDeLaMemoria Sun 09-Dec-12 10:02:34

Why did you immediately dismiss his answer that he'd had a weed cake?

Do you know for a fact that it isn't true?

I ask because it's okay saying that you will be stern, and keep the lines of communication open, but if he treat him as if he is lying for no reason than it'll be very difficult to communicate with him.

Weed cakes/brownies/smoothies/cookies are big at the moment, especially for people that age. We've had a "public notice" from the council about the increase in them, warning people to both be careful what they consume if they aren't sure of the ingredients, and to warn their children that eating drugged food can be a very bad idea. You simply don't know what has been cooked into it.

I have to say that I'd be inclined to believe him, especially as he complied with your request for a urine sample, and agreed to be tested in the future. I've never taken drugs in my life (saw what they did to friends and relatives) but I would be outraged if someone demanded a urine sample. Then again, I am a lot older than your son, and rely on nobody. So there are differences.

It may be worth discussing things with him calmly. Asking who makes the cakes, how he knows what is in them, how much he takes. And of course there are drug helplines if you or him need to talk to someone professionally trained.

HoHoHokeyCokeyPigInAPokey Sun 09-Dec-12 10:05:06

Have to be honest my first thought on reading was 'bloody hell that's a bit much'

No one wants their children to smoke weed, no one, but he's 17 and he sounds like a good kid otherwise.

Try just talking to him, as someone who did a lot worse as a teen being drugs tested by my parents would have just pissed me off and made me behave even worse.

Not everyone who smokes weed ends up doing other drugs, that's not true..give him a break.

You can't police his life, he's going to Uni next year as you say so you have to start to let go.

Dededum Sun 09-Dec-12 10:05:09

Another call for leave him alone.

I, as did many of my friends, spent our A level periods off our faces smoking weed and drinking copiously. I still got 2A's and 1B and a 2.1 at Uni. If he is working hard and understands the importance of education for his future then he will make his own choice that his future is more important.

I would have been petrified of taking anything else.

I don't do drugs btw. I don't drink either.

Bit I'm responsible for 4 kids.

He's 17. Doing well at school. Earns his own money.

And smokes.recreationally.

Leave him be. And apologize.

HeathRobinson Sun 09-Dec-12 10:08:36

'He's lost our trust again'

Have you considered that you've probably lost his trust?

Theas18 Sun 09-Dec-12 10:09:43

I have absolutely no idea why people drug test their teens ( sorry op) . He's smoking weed, you know he is, he denies it. A positive test ( which I guess you have no idea how specific/ the amount needed to turn positive /how long it stays positive for / chances of a false negative etc adds nothing but a head to head conflict about it ( or ultimately him paying a non smoking mate/sibling for clean urine as druggies do).

Communicate. Maybe keep a better eye on who/ where nights out are , be in and stay up to notice what hes lie when he gets in, and lock up loose money about the house. What school grades, maybe talk o school to make sure he's not dropping off there.

If hes managing school grades as expected and on target for uni still I'm not sure what you can do apart fom express your worry without yelling him out and remind him a drug fuelled path isn't necessarily going to go well and there are risks. No least that he will end up with some ort of criminal involvement and a police record which, even if it seems like " nothing" now may close a lot of oes career wise.

Theas18 Sun 09-Dec-12 10:11:57

As for the trust- YOU blew that out of the water by testing him I'm afraid.

Are you in the US?

BrittaPerry Sun 09-Dec-12 10:21:37

You drug test your SEVENTEEN YEAR OLD?

I don't take drugs, and only had the odd weed cake as a teenager. Most people do.

Even my dad is mega against drugs (he used to be a biker and saw a few friends get badly affected by LSD I think, he hasn't properly explained) and he respects us enough as people to not treat us like criminals.

Wow.

You do know this is, if anything, likely to drive him to try things you are less likely to detect? Either that or he will leave home at 18 (university?) and be unable to make his own decisions because his mummy isn't there threatening to ground him...

Make it clear you disapprove highly. Ban it in your house. Make him scared you will find out, so he only has a bit if he must. But drug tests? Only in very very exceptional circumstances, like actual addiction.

My friend got caught by a sniffer dog because he had been wearing the same coat at a party. Would urine tests pick up passive smoking? Would you prefer he sat at home apart from boy scouts?

We had one friend whose mum went crazy if she so much as went to a Party where there was drugs or alcohol. She ran away a 17 with a 30 year old from the internet. He made her feel like she was, well, not 5. Another friend used to lie that she was having a study sleepover, get off her face and then not be able to ask for help because she knew she would get chucked out.

None of their parents used drug tests.

BrittaPerry Sun 09-Dec-12 10:25:58

How long till he is 18? I would bet that is when you will have a spare room to keep your drug tests in.

Why not get him an ankle tag so he keeps curfew?

You do know he is considered old enough to get married or join the amy, don't you? We have a fragmented transition to adulthood in this country, and he is well into it.

zzzzz Sun 09-Dec-12 10:37:43

Read this,

www.amazon.co.uk/Mum-Can-Lend-Twenty-Quid/dp/0749951729

I have no idea how serious "weed cake" at 17, because I was way too square to do that sort of thing at that age, but I would want to be informed.

I'm guessing if op is drugs testing her teen, there are already warning bells ringing in her head.

flow4 Sun 09-Dec-12 11:47:49

Parttime, you are at risk of creating a bigger problem here, while you try to 'solve' a small one.

Those drug test kits are only any good as a preventative measure - and they are not very good even at that, since many kids (your DS included) smoke/take cannabis even if they know their parents have the kits in their drawers. Once a young person starts using, the kits are absolutely no good at all, because they give you the info that your child has used cannabis but nothing more... What you really need is info about the drug's risks, or what to do about it...

The point is, teenagers will take drugs if they want to. Parents cannot stop them - they can only inform and help to motivate young people to make positive choices.

You need to ask yourself what you want to achieve here. Presumably, most of all, you want your DS to be safe.

To be safe, your DS needs good, reliable info. He needs to know about the drugs he's taking - their effects and especially their risks. He is more likely to get this, if you make yourself better informed too - start here: www.talktofrank.com/

To be safe, your DS needs to be able to talk to you, and especially to tell you if he has a problem. If you make drugs taboo and do random test on him, he will stop talking to you.

Just to give you an example of how important communication can be... I had a scary experience with my DS in the summer, when he took something unknown, and the friend who had given it to him started having seizures and an ambulance had to be called. Because my DS trusts me, he told me, and I was able to then take practical steps: e.g. make sure he made himself sick and drank lots of water; got the name of the tablet he'd taken so I could google it, and discover if it was likely to be a medical emergency; watch him while he slept; have a conversation with him the next day about how very stupid it is to take unknown drugs... Ask yourself whether your DS would be likely to talk to you under similar circumstances? If not, you are not going to be able to help keep him safe...

To be safe, your son needs to know how to evaluate and manage risks for himself, and make his own judgements about dangers. This may well include trying out some drugs you would much rather he did not try, but it is all part of growing up. As you say, he is off to uni soon, and he needs to be able to keep himself safe by then. If you drug test him now, you risk two things: (a) he won't need to make so many decisions for himself, because you are keeping more of the control, and (b) he may just postpone experimentation until you are not there to help him...

To be safe, your DS is probably better off smoking weed than taking many other drugs. Random drug testing for cannabis may actually make him less safe, because he may switch to other drugs that cannot (yet) be reliably tested, like m-cat, or ones that have a much shorter 'test life' that reduce his chances of getting caught unless you are testing very frequently (e.g. cocaine and I think speed are only in your system for 2 days). I can imagine a situation where he has drugs 'binge' nights after you test him, because he knows he'll be 'clean' again by the time you next test him sad Incidentally, I do not think cannabis is harmless, but many other drugs are worse. Skunk is bad, and imo should not be considered the same as other forms of weed, because it has different and much worse effects, including a risk of psychosis.

To be safe and happy, your son needs to be able to continue his life, including studies, work, relationships, etc. It sounds like he is already doing this. For as long as he manages to do well at college/uni, and engage fully in life, I do not think you need to worry to much about his weed smoking. Lots of 17yo's try weed, and 30% or so smoke it regularly, but only a small proportion develop any kind of problem with it. IMO there are two entirely different types of use: smoking to relax at the end of a busy day, and smoking to block out life. If you keep communication with you DS open and honest, you are much more likely to spot any warning signs that he might be slipping from one group to the other...

To be safe, your son needs to be motivated to have a full happy life. Young people who have aspirations and things they enjoy in life do not tend to wreck their lives with drugs. They may take them, but they keep their use under control. If you feel your son does not already have this (though it sounds from what you say that he does smile ) then you can help by supporting him to find things he really wants to do - things that will engage him and give him joy and satisfaction - whether that is useful work or new hobbies. smile

It will probably also help you to talk to him and understand why he takes drugs, how well informed he is, his understanding of risks and 'risk management', etc. My advice, seriously, would be to throw away the drugs test kits, and start talking.

Good luck!

FFS you drug test your 17yo.

That is absolutely shocking.

All thats going to happen is you are going to push him out the door the minute he gets a chance. I left home when I was 16 because of controlling parents and now no longer speak to my Mum. I think you could be heading down the same road.

flow4 Sun 09-Dec-12 12:03:26

Oh and by the way, the unknown drug my DS took wasn't an illegal drug, it was a prescription drug, taken from the other boy's dad's medicine cupboard. My DS told me he thought it would be OK, because "doctors give it to people". hmm sad

NotWankinginaWinterWonderland Sun 09-Dec-12 12:23:44

I can't believe the amount of people thinking weed is okay....

They have no socilisation skills because they have been smoking weed so long. I would test my sons also if I thought they smoked weed, just because many people haven't moved on from weed to harder drugs doesn't mean your son will not, it's illegal for one thing, and not everyone doesn't go onto harder drugs!

Do you have a drop in drugs service where you are?

AngelGabrielWreakinHavoc Sun 09-Dec-12 12:31:34

That is awful behaviour from you op. You sound very controlling.
If you are not careful he will be out the door like a shot, first chance he gets.

timeforachangebaby Sun 09-Dec-12 12:34:39

gobsmacked that this is for real! Poor kid.

Bigwuss Sun 09-Dec-12 12:38:37

Great post flow4,

Testing may give an answer, but think about the consequences, testing isn't going to make him stop, just develop better skills at hiding things from you.

I spent years hiding things from a controlling mother and it affects the relationship for life.

flow4 Sun 09-Dec-12 12:55:33

NotWanking, a drop in drugs service will not be any use at all to the OP. They are geared up to support people with real problems, which the OP's son does not appear to have. Young people have to attend voluntarily - there is no way of forcing them - and the drugs service asks the YP very careful Qs about why they are there and what they hope to achieve: they quickly identify whether the YP themselves think they have a problem.

As a parent, drugs services can provide you with info, and some of them will also provide counselling for parents, but they will not discuss your DC's drug use with you, and they cannot work with your DC because you want them to - only if the young person themselves want help.

NotWankinginaWinterWonderland Sun 09-Dec-12 13:02:42

I was thinking of the Ops son rather than her, both my brothers started smoking weed at 14/15, they both still do, one is okay, he has a great job etc, the other isn't he has been in/out all sorts of hospital, they both moved onto harder drugs, one is fine the other, isn't, I guess I have just seen bad experiences coming from a little bit of weed smoking.

Let's hope he just sticks to a smoke and eventually gets fed up then....I do have experiences of drug drop ins, I worked in one. It was worse than weed though, I just dislike all drugs, talk to my eldest regularly about the effects of weed, which most people will say there are none... there are though imo.

flow4 Sun 09-Dec-12 13:03:50

And also NotWank, I don't think people are saying "weed is OK"; I think they are saying testing won't help, and might harm, for various reasons including because it damages trust and communication.

NotWankinginaWinterWonderland Sun 09-Dec-12 13:07:24

Yeah I agree with that, I doubt my son would give me a sample if he knew I had a test in the house, he would go find a way to trick it. Sorry I have jumped in here without thinking it through, I just think of my wacko brother barking at washing machines (not weed related)

flow4 Sun 09-Dec-12 13:07:34

Yes, I realised you meant the OP's son - sorry, I didn't express myself well. My point is that a drugs service will only help her DS if he chooses to go there, not if she tries to 'make' him. She may be able to get a little bit of info and support for herself, but it is likely to be rather limited, because such services are intended for people, and the families of people, with much more serious problems.

NotWankinginaWinterWonderland Sun 09-Dec-12 13:10:16

Yes I totally understand that Flow4, drug around here are rife. I like to give my Dc talks a lot, I guess most people do experiment with weed, I did. For many years...thankfully I didn't move onto the 'barking at washing machine drugs' smile

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