If I Suspect My Son Has A Drug Addiction, What Should I Do?

Suspecting that your son has a drug addiction is an incredibly hard place to be as a parent. There is the constant worry that if you ask them about it, and you are wrong, you could alienate your child. But on the other side, if you don’t ask and your son does have a substance abuse problem, you could be missing out on your opportunity to intervene.

As experts on troubled teens, we have seen many struggling teenage boys in our program who were recovering from substance abuse. Over the years, we have helped many parents identify drug addiction in their children and today, we wanted to share our years of insights into teen substance abuse and how your son can overcome his addiction.

Double-Check Your Intuition

Before you consider confronting your son about his possible drug addiction, we highly recommend you double-check your intuition. Several of the signs of drug abuse can be signs that he has recently broken up with his romantic interest, that your son is overextended or other reasons which have nothing to do with drugs.

To assess if your son is abusing drugs or other illegal substances, see if he is showing these signs:

  • Often moody, going from one extreme to another
  • Noticeable weight fluctuations
  • Sharp drop in grades
  • Prefers to keep to his room and generally withdrawn
  • Swings from hyperactivity to lethargic
  • Steals money and valuable item from family and friends
  • Hides eyes, whether due to sensitivity or bloodshot
  • Loss of interest in hobbies and activities

If your son is exhibiting several of these signs, you likely can make a strong case when you are ready to confront him about your suspicions.

Remain Calm As You Talk To Your Son

It can be easy to have your feelings run away with you when it comes to confronting your son about his potential drug addiction, but it is vital that you remain calm. Approaching your son in a negative manner will cause him to clam up quickly and basically assure that he will not be honest with you.

To help you remain calm, practice what you are going to say and how you will say it. That way, when you do confront your son, you can remain calm and composed.

Have Your Son Tested For Substance Abuse

After your talk with your son, you will likely need to have him tested for substance abuse. Even if your son does admit to some drug abuse, which is an unlikely event, there is a high possibility that he will lie to you about the extent of the abuse.

It is important you know at least what drugs he is taking. Your son’s treatment can depend on what substances he has been abusing, so it is critical that you have your son tested.

You can opt for an over-the-counter test or take them in for professional testing. It may be best to leave the testing to medical professionals, as their tests are more precise and your son can have the appropriate medication prescribed if necessary.

Access Resources To Help Your Son Recover

Once you have confirmation of your son’s substance abuse, it is time to reach out and find resources that will help your son back onto the right track. Addictions of all kinds are incredibly difficult to break, and it is very likely that your son will need more help than your family can provide, through no fault of your family.

There is a web of excellent resources you can access to help your son recover and beat his drug addiction. Some of the best ones are:

  • Therapists - Working with a therapist is key to helping your son overcome his drug addiction. Not only can he learn ways to avoid and disengage from substance abuse, but he can work through the mental and emotional issues which led him to drugs in the first place with the help of a good therapist.
  • Support groups - Attending a Narcotics Anonymous group or other support groups can help your son gain both perspectives on his life and his struggles with drug addiction. There are also support groups for family members of people who are addicted or have troubled teens. These groups can help you come to terms with your struggles as well as support you through the ups and downs of your son’s recovery process.
  • School counselor and administration - Your son’s school will play an important role in his recovery, as your son will likely need direct help from his teachers to recover his grades. Coaches, school counselors, administration, and teachers are all great resources to help support your son during the hours you don’t see him.
  • Residential treatment centers - At residential treatment centers for troubled teens, your son can work with people who specialize in helping teen recover from their substance abuse and other difficulties. These long-term care units are a combination of boarding school and treatment center, and teens can receive an education while attending daily therapy.
  • Liahona Treatment Center is a residential treatment center that has assisted many teenage boys to rediscover themselves, so they can go home to their families a changed buy. If you would like to learn more about our program and how we can help your teenage son overcome his past substance abuse, contact us. Our program advisors will be happy to answer all your questions, so you can help your son back onto the right path.

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