Saturday, October 24, 2009

Stop Your Teenage Daughter’s Drug Abuse

image by lightfusio, sxc.hu

Bond With Them

It has got to do with Nature. The surge of hormones that begins at the onset of puberty does things to the innards of the sweet little angel. Your little bundle of joy once used to believe in fairy tales and would rush into your arms whenever something scary showed up on the telly. Not anymore. Teenage and adolescence is the time to explore! Explore the world and explore all that it holds! So the same girl now does not think twice to fool her mother or other elder and dips her hands into the lock-box that stores the prescription drugs when nobody is around. She now enjoys inhalants and methamphetamines and drinking and smoking and marijuana and doesn’t mind lying and stealing to get her hands on them. Unprotected sex, date rape, unintended pregnancy, sexually-transmitted infections, HIV... aren’t they but just steps away, if she hasn’t walked them already?

The Family Context Of Adolescent Drug Use - Robert H Coombs and Fawzy I Fawzy, Amazon.com._*

* ’The Family Context Of Adolescent Drug Use’ - Robert H Coombs and Fawzy I Fawzy, Amazon.com.

Studies on family interaction say that these steps can be avoided - and if they have already been taken then they can be reversed - if the family steps in to foster parent-child attachment. Kids have been found to reduce and in certain circumstances even stop substance abuse when they begin to have warm, nurturing relationships with their parents and other elders. In the absence of any such relationship, the kids attach themselves to peers. It is not a surprise that the deviant ones attract them the most.

image by lightfusio, sxc.hu

One such study that practically demonstrated how mothers can pull their daughters back from the slide into the precipice was conducted by sociologists from the University of Toronto and Columbia University. 591 pairs of teenage girls (between 11 and 13 years) and their mothers from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut were recruited for this purpose and subjected to a year-long study. “Mothers” also included other women in the kid's life who assumed the role of mother, such as grandmothers, stepmothers, legal guardians, aunts, and the like. The intervention pairs were given training to handle their interpersonal relationships in a better manner so as to increase bonding. They were encouraged to plan and spend an entire, special day together as frequently as possible. The girls and mothers were asked to share with each other their difficult feelings.

image by trublueboy, sxc.hu

The outcome of this study showed clearly what parental love and affection can do to veer the child away from substance abuse. The awareness that parents are now supervising their discretionary time, plus the quality time they were spending together, along with the continued bombardment of negative effects of substance abuse through videos which the pairs were made to watch - had a salutary effect on the teenage girls’ attitude. At the end of the study, not only did the girls report lower consumption of alcohol, marijuana, prescription and OTC drugs, they also reported a stronger ability to refuse peer pressure. [Here is the paper, if you are interested in knowing more about the study.] Remember that during the progress of the study, the girls were already approaching 14, and the urge to explore the world must have been growing, too.

image by mama, sxc.hu

The significance of this study to us parents is very clear. Keep the channels of communication open. Spend as much quality time with them as is possible within the constraints. Make them feel special. And directly and indirectly show them what is right and what is not.

image by brierley, sxc.hu

[Had our kids sent in an application before they took birth in our family? "Dear Sir / Madam, Kindly accept me as a son / daughter in your family."? Whether it was planned or not, it was our choice, was it not? How good a parent have we turned out to be? Read about it here: "Pinocchio, Everything's Fine With Your Nose".]

image by cmykcyba, sxc.hu

3 comments:

  1. Hi,
    How do I get in touch with blog owner? My question is regard partnering with inspirational jewelry website.
    Thanks
    Yaron Shaool
    yshaool@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. I just read your post on Teenage Daughter's Drug Abuse and whilst I agree with a lot of it, I think we need to remember that in many many cases there is an underlying cause or reason associated with this initial drug use.

    I am not saying that this is always the case, there are some girls and guys out there who will simply try it to see how it makes them feel, however in my experience 8 times out of 10 there is an underlying cause.

    Regards
    MaryAnn

    ReplyDelete
  3. There are more deeper cause of engaging through drugs. One is through their peer groups, most of them to be accepted in their group you must use drugs to be accepted that they couldn't see within their family. When a teen is under the influence of drugs, it is hardly to eliminate. Parents are alarmed on his/her behavior when a teen used and abuse drugs.

    -Charm Stevenson

    ReplyDelete