The Norman Transcript

March 28, 2014

Parent urged to get help with concerns son is using drugs


The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Q: I know my son is using drugs ... I just know it. His grades have dropped, and he is totally uninterested in anything, including extra-curricular activities. My husband refuses to believe it, so what should I do?

— No name, please

A: The second you finish reading this, please contact Parents Helping Parents. It is an organization for parents having gone through or currently going through the same thing as you. The contact person is Hugh at 278-1221 or email him at phpnorman1@yahoo.com. These are non-judgmental, struggling parents, just as you are.

As far as your husband being in denial, this wonderful organization will have dealt with the same situation and will be able to give you guidance as to what the best way to handle this would be.

We have heard of many helpful residential treatment programs in our time as school counselors. This, again, depending on the severity of the problem, is something Parents Helping Parents can give great advice regarding.

One successful program is Teen Challenge. It has been around since 1958. You can read more about it at teenchallengeusa.com or call the Oklahoma City location at 600-1920 for more information.

We sincerely hope that you do not just ignore this problem thinking (or hoping) it’s just a phase and will go away or your son will grow out of it. Many parents who have done nothing would give anything to turn the clock back and be in your position. Please be proactive. Wishing you the best.

Dear Readers,

In light of the above question, we would like to make sure you are aware that statistics show that first-time drug use rises during the summer months when kids have free time and are often times unsupervised for extended periods of time.

Obviously guiding children from a young age to make good decisions should be every parent’s goal. However, we all know when put in a peer-pressure situation, many kids have not been taught the skills to remove themselves from certain predicaments.

If you can, explain to your kids what they will be jeopardizing by experimenting with drugs; make it personal in such a way they can understand how it will specifically affect them. For example, if you have a son whose passion is athletics and he starts abusing drugs, it will affect his performance and possibly cost him his place on the team.

Making sure your kids have a focus for the summer, no matter how old they are, is always a good idea. Don’t wait until school is out to begin thinking of ways to occupy your kids’ time.

Send questions to questions.classact@gmail.com. Jeannie and Sally are certified school counselors with 49 years combined educational experience. Jeannie has two children, Sally three. The responses presented don’t necessarily represent the views of any certain school district.

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