How to Talk To Your Child If You Suspect They’re Using
- Be sure your child is sober or has not been using drugs before talking.
- Begin by voicing your suspicions without making accusations. "Susan, I suspect you may be smoking pot occasionally. I love you and I'm concerned about you. Is there something going on that we need to talk about?"
- Be specific about what you have observed that made you concerned. For example, you found missing pills or an empty pill bottle. Or your child’s appearance indicates a problem.
- Be prepared emotionally for possible reactions. Your child may accuse you of snooping or say you’re crazy. Stay calm.
- If your child denies there is a problem, reinforce what you believe about drugs and how much you care for your child.
- If your child flatly refuses to talk to you about it, get help from the school counselor, school nurse, or family physician.
If you strongly suspect your child is using, talk to your family doctor, pediatrician, school nurse, or a substance abuse counselor about having your child assessed for substance abuse.
For more information on How to Talk to Your Child, see the publication, “Growing up Drug Free: A Parent’s Guide to Prevention”