Hard Drugs Warning Signals: A Message To Parents
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Hard Drugs Warning Signals: A Message To Parents

All of the following warning signs have been suggested by professionals in the field of detecting and caring for drug abusers and addicts. One sign alone may mean nothing; several together can be very significant.
        hard drugs in market

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All of the following warning signs have been suggested by professionals in the field of detecting and caring for drug abusers and addicts. One sign alone may mean nothing; several together can be very significant.

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1. School grades suddenly go down - This is an important sign. The teenager may offer many different reasons and excuses; but there may be another reason - drugs. A closely related sign is the absence of report cards: They are no longer being shown to you. Check into it; you may find that your A and B student may suddenly have become a C, with occasional F, student.

2. Suddenly different friends - Young people feel that they have a right to select their own friends; and so they may not appreciate your interest in who their friends are. Notice a strange narrowing of the circle of friends that your adolescent is chumming around with. Keep track of who their friends are. If they suddenly change, or narrow to only a few friends, or seem to drop off entirely, ask about this some evening and see what the reaction is. The kind of friends we have reveals our values and interests. Friends reveal behavior. When our values and actions change, our friendships will change also.

3. Suddenly older friends - If their friends suddenly change from their own age to four or five years older, this is significant. Why the new acquaintances? The older person has something that the younger wants; and the younger has something the older one wants.

4. A major change in attitudes and feelings - Temper tantrums, extreme irritability, or no feelings at all. How did all this start? What has made the change? What caused the switch from an upbeat, energetic attitude to an apathetic, indifferent shrug which seems to be uninterested or not involved in anything worthwhile?

5. Suddenly money coming in - Does your son or daughter act as if he or she has inherited wealth? Clothes, food, drink, recreational equipment, electronics.

6. Suddenly money going out - This is the opposite of the previous possibility: Does your son or daughter suddenly have no money, when he used to have enough for his simple needs?

7. Phone calls at odd hours - When the phone rings at 11:30 p.m. on a school night and your son yells "I'll get it." Phone calls late at night after your known bedtime are a cause for concern. Listen in and confront him if what you have heard is the awful truth you have suspected.

8. The bedroom - What does his or her bedroom look like? Has it recently changed from neatness to sloppiness? Does it look like a cave or a horror movie? Are there blankets on the windows to shut out all light? Is there a total disregard to health and proper environment? Is their unusual equipment in the bedroom (such as hypodermic needles, smoking gadgets, spoons, saucers, white or brown powders, pills, tablets, or ampoules)?

9. Living in an unreal world - Does you teenager live in a totally different world than most of his or her companions? Does he dream of a great occupation as an astronaut, yet gives no attention to school studies? Does she dream of romance with a rock star, yet shuts herself away from boys her own age? Living in a fantasy world can be an early step into the drug culture. Becoming conditioned to not want to cope with real life can prepare one for the unreal dead-end street of drug entertainment.

10. Concerned neighbors and friends - People tend to keep to themselves and not speak up, even when they should. But if some of your friends and neighbors begin warning you about the behavior of your teenager, then you had better sit up and listen. If someone comes to you about your youngster, it may be serious. Pay attention and do something about it.

First, try to solve the problem in your home; and, if that does not work, there are resources outside the home. Be a loving, helpful parent. But also be watchful. And if warning signs arise, bring it out into the open. If necessary tell them, "If you're buying dope, I want to know about it. I'm not going to throw you out. I love you, but I want to know about it."

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Six more signs - (1) The youngster becomes sleepy, apathetic, secretive, cranky, and unreliable. (2). He loses interest in his schoolwork, his hobbies, and in physical exertion. (3) He locks himself in the bathroom for long periods. (4) He takes money or articles of value from the home. (5) He wants to quit school and usually does. (6) His arms may be covered with the marks of a hypodermic needle.

 

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