Video:How to Talk to Your Teen About Marijuanawith Patricia O'Laughlin
Learning about the right way to talk to your teen about marijuana can make a huge difference. Here, see helpful tips and tricks for talking to your teen about marijuana.See Transcript
Transcript:How to Talk to Your Teen About MarijuanaHi, my name is Patricia O'Laughlin and I'm a Marriage and Family Therapist with TherapyForParents.com. Today I'm talking to you on behalf of About.com on how to talk to your teen about marijuana.
Tips for How to Talk to Your Teen About MarijuanaThe first thing to consider is when to talk to your teenager about marijuana. It's important to approach them when you are calm. Don't approach them in the moment when you are nervous that they might have used marijuana and when you are angry about their behaviors. Also, these discussions about marijuana should really start when the teen is younger, even in elementary school.
5 Things to Consider When You Talk to Your Teen About MarijuanaThere are 5 things to consider when talking to your teen about marijuana.
The first thing is let your teen know that addiction is not something somebody chooses. While marijuana is not a highly addictive drug, it can be over time. Not everybody gets addicted to marijuana but there are those that do. It is important that your teen understands that this might be out their control. People don't choose to be addicts; addiction chooses them.
The second thing is that your teen must know that there are environmental and genetic factors that contribute to addiction. They might think they can control it but that isn't the case. There are things that happen inside of our bodies that are beyond our control that tell us whether or not we will like something so much to where we cannot control it.
The third thing is that your teen should know that using marijuana as a teenager is dangerous. The brain is in its final stage of developmental changes. When marijuana enters the system it affects these changes. Depression and anxiety can be increased with the use of marijuana.
The fourth thing is don't tell your teen that marijuana is more dangerous than it is. Your teen will know that you are lying and they will know that they can't trust you. Reinforce the emotional and legal consequences of marijuana use as a way to help your teen understand why using marijuana is dangerous. Talk to them about getting behind the wheel while intoxicated, or engaging in risky behaviors with their friends while using marijuana.
The fifth thing is don't engage in a lecture with your teen about marijuana. This will just stop them from listening. Validate to them that people use marijuana because it helps them feel better, and to escape their problems. Let them know that you know life can be difficult and that you want to help support them to find different ways to deal with their problems than using marijuana. I know that talking to your teen about marijuana can be difficult. It can be a very scary thing to think about, that your teen is doing these dangerous behaviors. However it is really important to get the support you need to talk to them and if your teen needs support to get them the help.
Thank you so much for watching. For more information, visit us on the web at About.com.
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