I'm desparate for some advice. My son has always been a good kid, kind, responsible and good grades in school. This year he started at a new school, which he had to apply for- excellent opportunity. We were so excited that he got in. However, since he started it's been all downhill. At first it seemed great- he made tons of new friends and was always out at the movies/mall. I was sad because his best friend from his old school didn't like this new crowd- I shoulda known then. But my son has also stated that his is bisexual, as some of these new friends are, and I thought his old best friend was just kinda uncomfortable with that. My son began dressing differently, got a piercing, and became less friendly with his little sister, which bothered her. I thought it was the bisexual thing, all the changes, but then his 1st report card came and his grades were awful. He attributed to his new social life and schedule, and promised to work harder. Well, recently his English teacher emailed me stating that Angel (my boy) isn't even trying. I made a new homework rule, 2 hours a night with no cell phone, and figured that would take care of it. Yesterday I got his report card- he is failing 3 subjects, and his English teacher said he's worse than ever.,
I confronted him, asked him what was wrong. Then I asked if he was using drugs. He began shaking and his eyes filled with tears and he was yelling,"No!! I can't believe you- no!!! I swear I'm not!" But his crying and shaking and utter fear told me that he's lying. I told him, just tell me what you're using, but he wouldn;'t break. As a former drug user myself, I know the reactions of someone who was just caught, and that was it.
Today I'm getting a 12panel drug test and noit letting him out of my sight for a very long time. Problem is, a drug test won't show inhalant use. I have also emailed his guidance counselor at school, and am looking for a counselor for the family. I will call his pediatrician on Monday.ight now, I'm not sure whether to take his cell phone too, break all ties with these new kids, or let him have his phone but go through it at night. I already grabbed it this morning and found 2 drug references in it. One was his friend saying,"But I didn't say anything sketchy and I covered my mouth with my notebook." Obviously hiding drug/alcohol use. Then Angel asking,"Are you tired... or really tired?"
So... do you all think I should take his cell phone? Any other advice? I'm so lost, this doesn't feel real.
Yes to everything, ground him certainly take the cell phone, be with him as much as you can be, get help for him , counselling, this is time for over reacting ,do not let him near those friends, trust me, I have seen this and you have to get tough to help him,will his old friend come back make friends again, he saw the writing on the wall he would be a good ally, get you son so busy he wonders what hit him, get your own "Boot Camp" going, lots of sports lots of strenuous activity if theres a Dad around get him involved , ask for help.Home work Homework get those grades up again , this is your goal in life from now on.Good luck ,you are one heck of a caring MOM..Come back and tell me how hes doing .
I would definitely not over react or accuse even if you are positive. I am a drug and alcohol interventionist at a high school and this is the biggest mistake I see parents make. I too am the parent of two teen age boys both 15. It is very common for grades and attitude to drop starting around 13 and 14 yo. I also advise you to place him back in his old school if at all possible. It sounds like he is involved with some people that are only going to drag him down. I would also seek out some drug education in your area for your son to attend, make sure they are specific for teens. I am sure it will be fine, try not to panic too much and keep your communication and relationship strong and positive, even though I know how hard this can be when fear kicks in. *hugs*
Thank you both so much for your advice. I have good, but puzzling, news- Angel's 12panel drug test came back negative for everything. I was shocked, since his reaction to my asking him screamed "guilty". I asked him if he is doing inhalants and he says no. Hmmm... but then why the shaking, teary terrified reaction when I questioned him about drug use?? So strange. The things that DON'T fit with drug use, beside the clean drug screen, is the fact that he is doing great in his shop class, graphic arts- I would think if he was using something that caused all his other grades to drop so drastically, he would be unable to function normally in any class. Also, he still willingly spends time with me and goes overnight on some Saturdays to my mom's house. He has always been close to his grandma.
When I questioned him, at one point he said,"It's just my friends..." Then wouldn't say anymore. I'm beginning to wonder if his friends are using. That would explain the fear and his unwillingness to talk. I am still going to call Angel's doctor tomorrow to see if he recommends further drug testing. If not, he will still get a complete evaluation with a professional, to offer some insight. He hates the idea of counseling, but I think he needs it.
Margy, I've let him keep his cell since the drug test came back negative. But I'm taking him out once or twice a week, with no cell, so we can actually talk without that thing distracting him. And I'm all over the homework- I want to see each day what he has to do, then check it after it's completed. No more assuming it's getting done. And once I get him assessed for emotional health and drug use, I would like to see him get back into either karate or track. I agree that strenuous activity is great for kids- builds selfesteem and keeps their bodies healthy, which in turn supports good choices in their lifestyle.
Jen, I'm trying to be supportive and let Angel know that I'm on his side, even though I'm making rules that he doesn't like. I can understand why overreacting/accusing can be very destructive to parent/child relationships, because if the parent becomes "the enemy", the kid will never reach out for help or confide in them. I just want Angel to know that I'm here to help him, no matter what. I think you're right- these friends are not good for him. Thing is, this school is awesome- I'd hate to pull him out. Hopefully, after a break from all this, he will start using his own mind again.. I will keep you posted!
Thanks for the advice- it's greatly appreciated :) .
THat is good news and I expect you are feeling very relieved definatly keep an eye on the frien'd situation as you son may not be using but he is still under their influence, get him really busy so he doesnt have time or energy for much else,sports and games is the way to go, you have nipped it in the bud, You have handled this well, and certainly Angel will know you are there for him well done.and good luck
I think that he's 14 and thus is going to want to prove his independence very badly. I also know that parents who are former drug users are often a little heavy handed in their "never, ever use drugs" rhetoric, which will encourage a young teen to try it more than if you offered to get high with him yourself.
On the other hand, if you are vehemently anti-drug, and he's a good kid who wants his parents' approval, then of course he would be terrified by you asking.
I think he's depressed, thus the drop in grades, and also thus the excessively anxious reaction. In his mind, he's such a horrible person that his mother, who has probably presented drug use as one of the worst things a person can do, thinks he's turned into that kind of person. Of -course- he was scared.
He needs to know that he has your unconditional support, and that he can tell you if he's doing something you wouldn't like without getting in trouble.
I'm a former drug user myself, and I can tell you that not everyone responds that way when thy get caught. I would get angry, or act confused...Obviously him using drugs is among your greatest fears, but please don't let paranoia get in the way. of finding out what's up with him. If you act mistrustful (i.e. testing him for drugs) I guarantee he will never tell you anything about his life ever again.
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