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Teenage Son Vaping and Drinking

Old 12-19-2019, 08:46 AM
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Default Teenage Son Vaping and Drinking

My oldest son who will be 16 in January was caught smoking pot with a friend over the summer. He swore it was the first time, that it was a lapse in judgement, yadda, yadda, yadda. About a month ago I noticed a couple of beers missing and called him on it. Of course he denied it. I figured at the very least he would be aware I was watching him. Fast forward to yesterday, we found a bunch of vape stuff and pot hidden in his room. For those who have dealt with this, how did you handle and would you do anything differently in hindsight? He is about to start driver's ed and his grandparents are giving him their old car. I'm not sure he is responsible enough to handle this. He has lost our trust by lying to us and short of taking away all privileges, what else can be done? Once you do that, how long should they be taken away? How does a kid regain your trust unless you are drug testing them? This just happened and we have not even approached him yet but the shit is about to hit the fan. I was no angel when I was his age so I can understand this behavior is not necessarily abnormal but it still needs to be corrected if that is even possible.
Old 12-19-2019, 08:50 AM
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Delay his driving each time you catch him. Do more breath checks, room checks, etc. Good luck.
Old 12-19-2019, 08:51 AM
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i know what worked for me! dads belt, my rear end, car parked in the drive way that was technically mine, how ever the keys were now in dads pocket! so i had a sore a$$ and a car i could look at while all my friends were out having fun!

personally id bring down the wrath of God! he got away the first time with a smack on the wrist, if he just gets another smack on the wrist, you have just confirmed with him you are not going to do any serious punishment and he is free to do as he pleases!
Old 12-19-2019, 08:52 AM
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Originally Posted by kennyboy View Post
Delay his driving each time you catch him. Do more breath checks, room checks, etc. Good luck.
remove his bedroom door! it can be reinstalled once he has proven he is trust worthy!
Old 12-19-2019, 08:53 AM
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It's tough not knowing more, but no matter what you do if he still has the same friends it will be nearly impossible to change his path.

My oldest son, now 23, likely used pot from that age on (socially, not daily), just graduated from college and is making six figures with a bs degree. Pot is looked on like no different than alcohol by most youth at this point. Second kid in college doest touch any drugs, but does enjoy his beers.

To me what is the bigger picture. Is son on a good path and responsible (grades, sports, etc) or just getting by at school with no long term plan and goals.
Old 12-19-2019, 08:54 AM
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When he was caught over the summer what were the consequences for that ?
Old 12-19-2019, 08:55 AM
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OMG, a teen smoking pot. Lock him up in his bedroom. I'd be more concerned about drinking. Also, 16 may be a little young. Bottom line is neither is acceptable if you're going to get behind the wheel.
Old 12-19-2019, 08:55 AM
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I'd be more concerned with the vaping than the weed. That stuff is bad.
Old 12-19-2019, 08:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolandt03 View Post
remove his bedroom door! it can be reinstalled once he has proven he is trust worthy!
You can't be serious.
Old 12-19-2019, 08:57 AM
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Originally Posted by NJFISH View Post
I'd be more concerned with the vaping than the weed. That stuff is bad.
Agreed. I also just read that pot is legal in MA.
Old 12-19-2019, 08:58 AM
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Yeah, give him hell so he resents the hell out of you and moves out as soon as he gets the chance.

NOT!!!

Might be time for a road trip and some forced alone time with him. Maybe really understand what’s going on.

Old 12-19-2019, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolandt03 View Post
i know what worked for me! dads belt, my rear end, car parked in the drive way that was technically mine, how ever the keys were now in dads pocket! so i had a sore a$$ and a car i could look at while all my friends were out having fun!
same here - I never was “grounded”, but I was pinned up against the wall, hanging 6 inches off the floor by my 6’4”. 300 lb dad screaming so loud and hard I was covered with spit by the end of it. That happened more than once.

And then it was slave labor around the house. That’s all I needed. But not at 15. I don’t think I really became a pain until 17 or so.

Interested to see the response because I will be in this position with my 4 kids soon enough
Old 12-19-2019, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Rolandt03 View Post
remove his bedroom door! it can be reinstalled once he has proven he is trust worthy!
That works wonders with teenage girls. A friend of mine did it to her daughter and it got her attention.

I got into some pot trouble as a freshman in high school. I had a lot of respect for my parents and promised them that I wouldn't do it again and that was the end of it and I was very true to my word.
My sons did real good through high school too but I saw the grief that some of their friends gave their parents. My boys knew to never cross their dad though as I commanded respect. On the flip side, they knew that their dad would do anything to help and protect them.

I'd say no license and no car until he earns your trust.Sometimes knowing that they've lost your trust, effectively banishment from the pack, is enough to get them to fly straight.
Old 12-19-2019, 09:03 AM
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Originally Posted by ericinmich View Post

To me what is the bigger picture. Is son on a good path and responsible (grades, sports, etc) or just getting by at school with no long term plan and goals.
Sort of along the lines of what I was wondering. I was no angel as a teen and made it somehow too....
Old 12-19-2019, 09:04 AM
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You need to impose some consequences, but your reactions should be constructive and proportionate. You need to stay engaged on this to get him to steer a different course. Seek out some professional help to learn effective strategies for parents to follow.

I would start by postponing the car but identifying and communicating a set of goals for him that lead to driving and then the car.

"Bigger picture" is also on the mark.
Old 12-19-2019, 09:09 AM
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Originally Posted by ericinmich View Post
It's tough not knowing more, but no matter what you do if he still has the same friends it will be nearly impossible to change his path.

My oldest son, now 23, likely used pot from that age on (socially, not daily), just graduated from college and is making six figures with a bs degree. Pot is looked on like no different than alcohol by most youth at this point. Second kid in college doest touch any drugs, but does enjoy his beers.

To me what is the bigger picture. Is son on a good path and responsible (grades, sports, etc) or just getting by at school with no long term plan and goals.
^ - This!
I know you are worried. Push him too far or hard and you will forever lose a relationship with him. It's a tough world for teens, and maybe tougher for parents.

If you are too strict with him, you can loosen the reigns as he gains back trust and respect. If you have let the reigns be too lose all along, if you try tightening them now he will buck, and it will only get worse. Peer pressure may be the most powerful thing in a teens' life. You can try to get him away from the friends, but if he doesn't have an alternative social structure and friends to hang with, it won't work, and again, push him away and alienate him.

It's tough being a mean parent, but somebody has to do it. Teens need a parent, not a friend. You can be his friend as he grows, but he still needs guidance. You can be friends with other people's teens, but not yours. You have to be the parent.

The thing is, after about the age of 10 or 12, you are no longer raising them, you are merely guiding them. The base operating system has already been laid down, and you can't format it and start over.

You could try counseling or treatment, but it doesn't sound like he is at that point .... yet....

Good luck. I know you are worried. If you have given him a solid foundation, he has a good chance of turning out ok. If he is struggling in areas, it gets harder to put it all back into place.

Let him know - if he gets in trouble at home, you can fix that. If he gets in trouble out in the world - arrests, drugs, stealing, etc. - you may not be able to fix that, and he is heading down a road he may not like or be able to control.

Former neighbor FINALLY had to completely write off her heroin addict grown-ass son after multiple arrests, police visits, DUIs, ODs, thefts from her repeatedly. It was ugly. And she is the cause of a lot of this young mans issues because of how she treated and raised him through the years.

Good luck to you and your family.
Old 12-19-2019, 09:13 AM
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Thanks for the replies so far. As for the first incident, he was kicked out of summer camp and we decided that the embarrassment was punishment enough if he promised to stay on the straight and narrow. I can't say I like the path he is on right now although he is doing well enough in school. He has been dealing with some depression issues and has withdrawn from a lot of his local friends. He has a long distance girlfriend who he spends hours talking to in his room. We know she also smokes pot and is a year younger than him. He has been begging to have her come to visit and there is no way that is happening now. I wasn't keen on the idea to begin with. He has started seeing a therapist and taking Prozac which seems to have improved his mood and attitude. I am wary of bringing the house down on him now and sinking him into a deeper depression. We will be consulting his therapist today to get her feedback also.
Old 12-19-2019, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Tuna Colada View Post
My oldest son who will be 16 in January was caught smoking pot with a friend over the summer. He swore it was the first time, that it was a lapse in judgement, yadda, yadda, yadda. About a month ago I noticed a couple of beers missing and called him on it. Of course he denied it. I figured at the very least he would be aware I was watching him. Fast forward to yesterday, we found a bunch of vape stuff and pot hidden in his room. For those who have dealt with this, how did you handle and would you do anything differently in hindsight? He is about to start driver's ed and his grandparents are giving him their old car. I'm not sure he is responsible enough to handle this. He has lost our trust by lying to us and short of taking away all privileges, what else can be done? Once you do that, how long should they be taken away? How does a kid regain your trust unless you are drug testing them? This just happened and we have not even approached him yet but the shit is about to hit the fan. I was no angel when I was his age so I can understand this behavior is not necessarily abnormal but it still needs to be corrected if that is even possible.
Remind him that not only is it but but it is illegal.Does he want you to come down on him or the police when he get's caught up in the wrong place at the wrong time. A young kid 15yrs old or so from my sons baseball team almost died a few months ago smoking pot that was laced with some sort of chemical, the kid had to be airlifted to the hospital and was in for over a month trying to recuperate. So stupid, my son already knows I would dis own him if he did anything so stupid, I hope he has the fear built into him at this point, he is 14.
Old 12-19-2019, 09:15 AM
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How is he in other aspects of his life? Is he responsible? Does he do his chores without being hounded? Does he get good grades?

I'll give you 2 scenarios.

My Nephew. He started drinking and pot smoking around that age. He was NOT a responsible kid and was barley getting by in school. Now he's a meth and heroine addict, steals from his relatives, and in an out of jail. I think he is in a serious pickle now and doing several years in the state penn.

My cousin - Nearly my age. Been smoking pot and doing coke since high school. Went to college and owns a business. Pretty responsible guy.

I'm sorry I don't have an answer for you, but I think you have to judge what he is like in other aspects of his life. But if it were my kid, I would shut that shit down immediately. There would be no car, no freedom, no social media until I knew for sure that was all clear. I also would NOT have him on my insurance with a risk of a DWI.
Old 12-19-2019, 09:18 AM
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If it was me, I would try and set down at first and have a talk. Bring the things you found in his room and lay them on the table. I would ask why he wants to do these things? I would address the vaping first and I would print some stuff off the internet about the fact that the material in the vape cartridges can contain marijuana that contains pesticides alot of this is coming from mexico. Once burned it can make a person very sick. That would be my priority one.

Second is he smoking pot because his friends do it is he trying to fit in, etc? Then I would try to get him to understand why you don't want him doing it, also I would explain how he is putting everyone in the house in danger if the police came to check the house out etc.

I feel blowing up on him out the gate doesn't do any good, I would want to talk first, from that conversation you can learn alot about whats going on even from his body language etc.

Then if he continues you will need to take more drastic actions.

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