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What to do if/when DCs ask if you've ever tried drugs???

(57 Posts)
Merse Wed 20-May-15 13:52:34

My DD has just had a talk at school about drugs. I think that's an excellent thing, but am now dreading the moment she asks me if I have ever tried/taken any. Am torn between my natural instinct which is to be honest whenever possible - and a worry that the truth could be unhelpful in this instance…… Bottom line - I did dabble with drugs back in the day, but don't want to do or say anything that might give the impression to my TEN year old DD that that is ok. If she thinks I did it and am fine then I worry she will think why not try it herself if/when she comes across them which I fear will be sooner than I can bear to imagine society being what it is

Feel really conflicted on this. Would love to hear people's views….

Bedsheets4knickers Wed 20-May-15 13:55:01

At 10 I wouldn't confess when they settled into their 30s if it ever came up I would gladly reveal my spaced out early 20s but no I would deny deny and look horrified lol.

nochurniscream Wed 20-May-15 14:12:27

Can you tell her the truth?

Mine would be, yes, I did and I wish I hadn't. It was such a waste of time and I could have done x y and z instead... I would make the point I was lucky though - I grew out of it pretty quickly but unfortunately others didn't and they died from it, and others have just wasted their lives. I would want to be honest and say I did enjoy some of it - I had a great time at festivals and smoking weed felt good at the time, but generally it wasn't a great thing to do.

I reckon you can tell when your parents are lying.

Burmama Wed 20-May-15 14:20:59

When I was about ten or possibly even younger my mum was very frank and told us she had tried LSD during the March on Washington (in US) and how scary and weird she found it. Neither my sis nor I have ever even dabbled in the hard stuff. All for honesty w out making a big thing out of it.

tomatodizzymum Wed 20-May-15 14:23:38

Been there, personally I haven't really tried them but Dh has. When the question was asked he said yes, when asked why he said because they make you feel good, that's why people take them. The problem is you need more and more of them to get the same feeling, eventually you can't feel good without them and then you are addicted to them. You have no joy in life and just sink into a hole of needing drugs to give you anything remotely resembling happiness. OK he might not have said all that! But the gist was, drugs are taken because they make you feel good, that's why they are dengerous too. That taking them is not OK and they do damage that you can't see straight away and will only see when you are hooked and can't stop. He also said he has never been hooked but has tried. He said he was lucky and others are less fortunate. You never know who is going to be hooked and how quickly so best not run the risk.

Letmeeatcakecakecake Wed 20-May-15 14:24:41

My dad accidentally smoked crack when he was in his late 20's (me and my brother would have been around 6 & 4). He was too trusting of the people he was around and was told by a 'mate' that it was a normal cannabis joint. He used that experience to teach me and my brother to never be trusting of anyone where drugs are concerned. He told us that he couldn't prevent us from doing them but to do your research about the possible consequences and ensure that you buy from a reliable source. He also told us about how his 'mate' is doing now... He lost his business, his mum had to remortgage her house to pay off his drug debts after being threatened by a gang with baseball bats and is in prison.

Me and my brother were about 16 & 14 when he told us. Needless to say, I've never touched them and my brother has taken coke on a few occasions (in Columbia of all places shock) but we are both very aware of the dangers it poses.

Sometimes being honest with your kids can be a good thing... In this case it was, as it wasn't glorified and it wasn't forbidden, we were treated like trusted grown ups when we were told and we respected his confession and the manor he did it.

However, we were older and at an age where drugs start becoming available to you. At ten years old your daughter is unlikely to be around drugs and ignorance is probably bliss for a few more years.

Shakey1500 Wed 20-May-15 14:25:57

I go down the honest route. Only ever smoked a bit of weed, mainly at parties when it was just passed round type thing, never bought any etc. DS is only 7 and asked me! confused

Merse Wed 20-May-15 16:45:01

Thank you everyone for your replies. My sense is that I'd rather be honest. But 10 does seem just far too young for all this. She is the youngest in her class so will be starting secondary school in Sept and my fear is that this sort of thing does start to crop up at that stage. Funnily enough, Burmama, my father told me about some dreadful LSD experience he'd had once and that put me off trying it for life. But I was in my 20s I think. I am going to have to pray she doesn't ask….. Or asks DH who has never tried anything. Parenting is a minefield!!

ch1134 Wed 20-May-15 18:30:00

Say no, absolutely not. At 10 they need good, strong role models. They believe parents are always right, so if you did it it's alright. And they tell their friends everything! Minefield! Just deny, for aged or forever.

NickyEds Thu 21-May-15 13:26:06

At 10? Lie. Just Lie. As pp said she'll tell her friends. It might all get built up. She doesn't really need to know, I don't see how it would help the conversation really!

IHaveBrilloHair Thu 21-May-15 13:29:33

My dd is 13 and I've lied, I kniw that being honest right now would green light it in her head.

fourchetteoff Thu 21-May-15 13:32:09

Merse - how about a bit of evasion and instead check with your dad if it's ok to use his 'bad LSD' story instead?
I think that is the kind of thing I will be doing as I did take quite a few drugs and quite the variety when I was younger. Unfortunately, all i had were positive experiences and a really fun time, so I'm not the best one for the anti-drug message.

morethanpotatoprints Thu 21-May-15 13:33:59

We usually tell ours when they get to 14, if the subject comes up any time around this age.
It's good for them to know they can talk to you about it and if you are open you stand more chance of knowing if and when they start themselves.
You can't stop them if they are going to dabble but you can educate and support and hopefully keep them as safe as you can.

smugmumofboys Thu 21-May-15 13:33:59

DS1 is 12 and has asked me. Honesty is usually my policy, but in this case I lied as he is a pupil at the school where I teach and I can't risk him blabbing.

CactusAnnie Thu 21-May-15 20:28:38

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Merse Fri 22-May-15 06:58:47

Really appreciate everyone's comments and thoughts. I think the answer is - there is no perfect answer! I think, going against my natural instincts, I will lie if asked now. DD thinks I am 'all-knowing' and so I suspect it would green light it in her head if I was honest. Plus, she would tell everyone… So hard. I am thinking about telling her about that poor 17 year old boy who died of a heroin overdose last week (was at Westminster - son of an eminent QC) as an example of what can happen. The problem is you can't say it is a horrible experience - as generally it isn't (or people wouldn't take drugs!!). Thank God I never took heroin.

LooksLikeImStuckHere Fri 22-May-15 07:12:03

My mum was honest when I asked her, although I can't remember how old I was.

She said she had taken it at university and that it made her feel really strange. I know that she smoked a fair amount of it.

I also knew, from probably my early teens, that her sister was heavily addicted to heroin. She always seemed very odd to me so it explained a lot of things.

Mum told me how her sister had stolen, cheated and lied about her addiction and how hard it had been for the rest of the family. She also said that it had started out as a bit of smoking and then her sister just couldn't stop.

I appreciated the honesty. I could also see the damage that had been done by her sister.

If she had told me one thing at 10 and another at 14, there's a possibility I would have remembered. I can see why you wouldn't want to be honest though, and friends will be probably be told.

For what it's worth I'm strongly anti-drugs. My mum having had some made zero difference to my outlook, it was the idea that it was something that was unable to be controlled that really stopped me ever wanting to go there.

nooka Fri 22-May-15 07:17:45

My kids (now 16 and 14) have had lots of anti-drugs education at school, starting at around 10 or so which was all the 'it's bad, very bad, if you do it you will suffer/die' type stuff. The evidence is that this is not a very effective approach, children pick up fairly early on that it's not actually true and tend then to disregard the rest of the message about risk.

I've not taken particularly 'bad' drugs in my life, but I've been fairly honest with my children, even when they were younger for example I have shared with them that marijuana generally speaking is less harmful than alcohol or cigarettes and my opinion that legalisation would be a much more rational harm reducing approach than the current approach in many countries. I've told them both about the good times and enjoyment that some drugs give you as well as the risks/issues. We have a friend who had a psychotic episode during a period when he was using a lot of skunk and so I've talked about that, as well as sharing with them that a lot of the 60's 70's music they enjoy were written/played by bands who took plenty of LSD.

Neither are interested in taking drugs, both have been offered various things and have felt fine saying no (we were talking about peer pressure tonight). We live in BC where you can often smell marijuana smoke as you walk down the road, so not much point in demonising something pretty much as widely used as beer.

To right about them parroting what you say to others though - dd really enjoyed telling her teacher that I had more of an issue with her potentially smoking cigarettes than a joint. That was a bit embarrassing (although true).

Merse Fri 22-May-15 09:43:33

I totally agree that children will just ignore everything you have to say if you come out with the totally incorrect view that it's dreadful, you'll die etc. I remember my mother being a bit like that and I just thought she had no idea what she was talking about and would never take any guidance from her on the subject. I think you have to acknowledge that it can feel good - very very good. To begin with. And that then problems can develop. Whether I fess up at this stage about myself or not is another issue. I think I will try to fudge it until she is well into her teens if I possibly can...

Bunbaker Fri 22-May-15 09:48:36

I told DD that I tried smoking weed, but as a non smoker I couldn't inhale and just gave up trying.

SycamoreMum Fri 22-May-15 10:00:27

Ahhh I dread this day and my DD is only a year. I'm hoping she gets to 30 at least thinking I'm an angel before she learns, actually mummy was a frikkin rebel without a cause. Hopefully she never googles any garage/hip hop videos and looks too closely hmm

thoughtsbecomethings Fri 22-May-15 10:04:29

I have told my Dc that I dabbled in drugs as s teenager/ early 20s I think it's important to be honest and be frank about your experiences as a teenager. My Dc are both teenagers.

nooka Fri 22-May-15 10:10:48

I'm not sure it's particularly helpful to think your parents are incredibly straight. My mother was so unconnected with popular culture that she hadn't really heard of any pop music apart from the Beatles, it didn't make is easier to relate to her!

My teens know I am human, that I had and still do have a life that's not just 'mum'. As a result they talk to me about all sorts of stuff. Things I would never have asked or shared with my parents, that helps them I think. Plus it's totally more fun grin

lljkk Fri 22-May-15 10:41:22

I economise on the truth. "I tried a few things but they made me feel stupid so I stopped pretty quick." I don't say it took quite a few yrs to figure out that I didn't like being stupid!!

Helps that my brothers are losers who have ruined their lives with drugs, very easy to steer conversation onto them. My kids think I'm so Square. If Only They Knew. grin

ChaiseLounger Fri 22-May-15 10:47:49

Unlike bedsheet I don't agree with lying to children.
We are suggesting lying to kids these days as a parenting technique? I don't agree with that. I think parents should tell the truth in a carefully worded way.

I told ds1 the truth, without going into any details.

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