The Signs that Something is WRONG
Some Common Signs That Your Child is Using Drugs or Alcohol
When children start using drugs they usually exhibit many different signs which parents need to watch out for. Unfortunately, many parents often write-off these signs as normal adolescent behavior and as a result they don’t realize that their child is into drugs until it is too late. So how can you as a parent know for sure whether or not your child is in danger of falling into drugs? Simple … by understanding that every child is in danger of this. The parent who says “not my kid” is the same parent who will miss all the signs that their child has started experimenting with drugs. Often they will stay in this state of denial till their son or daughter is arrested or overdoses — and by then it is too late. So what should you as parents be looking for as signs that your child is experimenting with drugs or alcohol.
Dramatic changes in style of clothes, hair, music
These outward signs of rebellion should be obvious to a parent. Has your child started listening to radically-different music such as heavy metal or punk rock? Is your kid coloring their hair some weird color just to fit in? Is your child dressing down to fit in with friends at school? All of these are outward signs that your child is succumbing to peer pressure and all these should serve as warning signs to you that your child is in danger of falling into the same kind of peer pressure when it comes to drugs.
Hanging out with a bad crowd
Your child might try and tell you that his/her friends are cool kids. But you need to take a close look at the kinds of kids your child is hanging out with. Chances are the way these friends behave is the way your child behaves when you’re not around. Do some of your child’s friends smoke cigarettes? If so, odds are your child is smoking too. Your child’s friends are like a mirror for your son or daughter — they look at themselves in that mirror and try to conform to what they see there. One of the best ways to get a good idea of what your child is like is to look at there closest friends.
Tardiness and/or truancies
You need to stay in touch with your child’s school. Never assume that his/her school will be in touch with you if there is a problem. If your child is getting into drugs, odds are he/she will start ditching class from time to time. Kids who do this tend to take off during the middle of school and get stoned somewhere near the campus. Don’t assume that their school will let you know about this kind of behavior. And you need to realize, kids are great at covering this kind of behavior up. Every kid knows how to forge their parent’s signature — no joke. Call your child’s school from time to time and ask about your child attendance record. You need to take the initiative here!
Isolating from family
Does your child act distant? When you ask your child what he/she has been up to, does your child give some vague reply? Does you child want to eat in their room all the time instead of with the family? Children are smart – they know that the easiest lie to tell is the one they can avoid having to tell. If you child doesn’t tell you what he/she has been up to, there’s a good chance your child is hiding something.
Paranoia – everyone is out to get me
Does your son or daughter treat everybody as if they were the enemy? Do they tend to express the idea that everybody is out to get them? Do they seem overly paranoid to you? This is not normal teenage behavior; you need to understand that. This is one of the most common signs of drug abuse. It’s one of those signs you don’t have to look hard to see.
Dilated eyes – red eyes – glazed eyes
Do your son’s or daughter’s eyes look funny? Are the pupils real large or real small? Does your child wear sunglasses even at night and try and say their just trying to look cool? A person’s eyes show the effects of the drugs their on. If you think your child is experimenting with drugs, watch his or her eyes. Are they red all the time? Glazed? If so, there’s a real good chance your child is using drugs.
If your child is experimenting with drugs, he/she will be telling lots of lies to cover this up. Teens tend to be very good at covering things up. If you start wondering whether or not your child is telling you the truth there is a good chance that your instincts are right. Be persistent and learn what it is that they are trying to cover up. Drugs are an all-to-real possibility.
Dramatic mood swings
Does your child seems real happy one day, then terribly depressed the next day? Do your child’s emotions go up and down constantly? This is often confused with ‘normal’ teenage behavior, but it can also be an obvious sign of drug abuse. Don’t simply write it off.
Excessive money spending or money disappearing
Drugs cost money. If your child keeps coming to you needing money, or if money keeps coming up missing from your purse or your wallet, you need to have a serious talk with your child. Especially if they always seem to need 20 dollars or 50 dollars — round amounts — since that is often the price drugs cost.
What are some other ways parents can notice that something is wrong?
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