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A Letter to Parents
The Drug Dealer
Where do we go now – a users Poem
Quiz – Are your children substance abusers


A LETTER to PARENTS

You have taken a major step by reviewing this web site—a step that shows you care enough about your children to want to learn about how to recognize the symptoms of kids on drugs as well as how to test them for drugs and alcohol. This site also has resources to show where to seek the help (if needed) for them to address the problem and their situation.

Substance usage is a major issue and has so many angles to it, from experimentation to serious drug and alcohol abuse, as well as the involvement of prescription medications and inhalants that are abused. You will want to understand that the problem is not hopeless because many users and abusers have beat the habit and gone on to living normal lives. The secret is discovering the problem early enough to nip it while still manageable.

We hear parents say all the time, "I can't test my kids. They'll think I don't trust them." The truth is that they'll get over that....but they won't get over addiction. Rest assured that you are doing the right thing by purchasing this product, and that you are being a good, loving parent. If you did nothing, you would be remiss and responsible for your child's addiction as well as all the problems that stem from that condition: Thievery and other crimes, overdose, personality distortions, poor grades, and the whole gamut of what drugs can do. And being that your child may be a minor, you will be held accountable for any crime they commit, even if it's an accident. Parents have gone to jail for their children, as well as paid out hefty amounts in compensatory costs to the victims of drug and alcohol users.

The longer you wait to test your kids, the deeper their use and abuse becomes.

So you've taken the right step, and we applaud you.


The Drug Dealer

Can you picture him? The guy with the wide-brimmed, straw hat, funk, neon colored suit, sunglasses, and maybe a gold chain hanging around his neck, or a gold fob falling off his pants. He's the big-time dealer, right? He's the one who tempts your kids, gets them to try illicit drugs, gets them hooked, and then makes them rely on him for their future supplies while he collects all the money. Right?   WRONG!!!!

Drug dealers come in all sizes and shapes, as individuals, big drug cartels, as strangers and as the kid-next-door. They are of all races and gender, all religions and nationalities, all educational and income levels, and they are everywhere. Likely your child's first contact will be with a schoolmate who encourages taking that first drag on a reefer (marijuana), or that first sip of beer or liquor.

When your child is confronted by a drug dealer who is a classmate or a friend, an acquaintance, or a friend of a friend, he becomes confused because the dealer doesn't look like a drug dealer. Some of his friends may be dealers and not stand out because they are involved in the same activities (such as sports). The traditional, old image of a drug dealer is incongruous with the image of the kid down the block who your child played sandlot football with. It is such an inconsistent picture that your child becomes deceived and instantly thinks that this kid offering him a sip of beer, or a hit on a joint, or a half of a Darvon pill can't be so bad. So your child takes the offer. What your child doesn't learn at home, he learns in the streets. It is crucial to discuss drugs with your child at home.

Thus, it's important to know that—yes, there are guys in suits out there selling drugs, and, yes, there are major drug groups (cartels) who deal in big business buying, selling, smuggling drugs and alcohol, and, yes, there are gangs who would love to get to your innocent child—the average drug dealer is a kid who goes to school with your child. The simplest solution to helping your child is to teach him to refuse any offer of illicit drugs, alcohol, and prescription medications in any form, along with over-the-counter drugs that can be toyed with and mutated. Selling drugs to children is a business. It is not a random act of irrational stupidity; they have a "business" plan just like real organizations.

Seldom do dealers sell any pure substance. They may start a new user with good, pure substances, but once your kid is hooked, they begin to mix it with other substances, many of which are straight junk and "crap," and a lot of which is bad for the health. Once your kid becomes a user, he or she will rely on that dealer (and others) for their ready supply, but the dealer wants to make money off your kid, so he'll keep raising the price of the stash while diluting it with other substances, so that he makes a profit in the end. Some of these substances can be deadly, such as the heroin that's been cut with Fentanyl.

Your child ends up not only hooked and ingesting crap, but also in the poverty line because he can no longer support his habit. He or she then resorts to stealing, usually starting with family members first, and then on to friends, and next, on to strangers, and then he graduates to shoplifting and robbery, murder and/or suicide. None of it is a pretty picture, but all of it can be prevented simply by testing your child periodically to let him or her know that you're watching everything they do, and you are not going to let them get sucked into the wormhole of substance abuse. Testing has the capability of deterring your child from even trying substances; having the drug test kit in your home is a deterrent in itself.

You, the parent, may actually be a drug dealer by having readily available prescription and over-the-counter medications easily available to your children. You may be contributing to your son's or daughter's problem without even realizing it. This is one way a parent can actually enable the child. If you are taking prescribed meds, lock them up; the same for OTC drugs, as well as for any alcohol you might have in the house. Even older children will start sneaking pills and alcohol if they know where you keep them and how much is available to them without you knowing they took some.

And don't do drugs or drink in front of your kids. If illicit drugs are illegal for them, they're illegal for you, too. Don't abuse your prescription medications, either. Take them as described; do not self-medicate. And teach your children to respect prescription medications as well. Your children are much, much more inclined to do what they see you do, than to do what you tell them to do.

Believe it or not, young children do not want a "cool" friend for a parent. They yearn for discipline or they feel like you don't care. This makes them think they can do whatever they want, disregarding right and wrong.

But you also have to do your job in keeping over-the-counter and prescription medications out of your children's sight; in learning who their friends are and what kind of homes and families these friends come from; in investigating their school lives, their grades, their activities; in keeping tabs on the amount of money they have to spend, where they're getting the money, and how much they're spending and on what; in giving of your time to them, just talking, enjoying one another's company, sharing stories, partaking in activities together; and in setting down the rules and consequences, and in being consistent in enforcing them and then disciplining when needed.

Consider this image via an anonymous poem as offered on the internet of what a drug dealer does:

He swaggers and is full of it
Overjoyed your kid will take a hit.
He'll suck him in, ruining your love for he who you gave birth
Knowing he is stealing your child's worth, destroying your mirth.

Your child will run after that dealer,
Even if he turns him into a killer.
Your kid needs that supply,
Steal, cheat, live or die.

Your child will fade right before your eyes.
His mouth will utter only ugly lies.
He'll distort into someone you don't know,
Yelling, screaming, fighting blow by blow.

His teeth will rot and decay,
His mind will wither, go astray.
His eyes will sink into his skull.
His body will shrink and fall.

If you think this poem gives you insight into what lies ahead for any parent of a child doing drugs or alcohol, you're a badly mistaken. This poem is only a quick, transitory glimpse into what the future holds for families whose kids are doing drugs and alcohol. It is devastating, and destroys every shred of decency, severs any bonds of loves, pierces every beating heart, and eats the bodies of every user and abuser inside out.

The following poem was written by Melaina, Mike Talley's daughter, who became addicted to marijuana at the age of twelve and eventually was introduce to heroin by her "boyfriend". They say that marijuana is not a "gateway" drug but in reality it is! This shows the level of feeling and despair an addict feels.


"Where Do We Go Now"

A poem by
Melaina Talley

If I could be anything beside me
I would be a butterfly, beautiful and free
I'd spread my wings, fly through the sky
I wouldn't have to pick up a needle and get high
I remember the feeling of being numb inside
Friends dying all around me and I couldn't even cry
You would ask me how my day was
And I would say "fine"
Yeah screwed up, insecure, neurotic and emotionless
That was me all the time
But I would follow up with these words
In the back of my mind
For if you knew the real me
I'd be scared you might hide
I reminisce about the things I have seen'
Like the old lady pushing a cart
And washing in a public restroom
Just to get clean
How we lowered out standards, our morals, no freedom
And got shot at or stabbed, searched or beaten
And all for what?
For a euphoric feeling
But wait, it's not over yet
The game has just begun
This is hell
Welcome...
For you have entered the jungle
Need a ride down the way?
There's no turning back now
At least that's what I thought
On those hopeless, empty days
Think about my past?
No freaking way
I'm gonna kick tomorrow
Screw that, another opportunity
To run away for another day
But things have changed now
I'm gonna give this recovery thing a try
For once in my life, it's a good shot I'm taking
One to give me a different high
Cause if it doesn't work out
I can always go back to die.
And you might say,
"It could be your last high, Melaina
You just might die"
And I think to myself
As I ponder that thought
"For my fear is all the suffering
That goes along with getting high-
I wouldn't be one of the "lucky" ones
Who go out and die...

What's the solution? Prevention...that is not only the solution, that's the answer.

If you prevent the problem, you won't have to worry about your child ever starting the cycle of hell.


QUIZ

Are Your Children Substance Users?

Although this is not an exhaustive test offering you a definite diagnosis of the condition of your children and their potential for using and/or abusing substances, this quiz will give you a sense of what shape your child may be in and whether you need to get him or her help.

  1. Does your child's behavior seem different from their normal personality, such as displaying anger, showing irritability? ______
  2. Does your child seem to argue with you over little things, act disrespectful at times, or challenge you? _____
  3. Does your son or your daughter stay out beyond curfew? ______
  4. Does he or she seem to be in trouble with the law in some manner, even a warning or citation, when that type of behavior was not part of his or her character before? _____
  5. Have there been incidents at school that indicates your child may be having socialization problems? _______
  6. Are you or their teachers disciplining your child frequently? _____
  7. Does your child seem to be acting secretively? ____
  8. Has his or her friends changed, and he or she is hanging around peers who you question or negatively influence your child? ______
  9. Do you think you are missing some items in your home, perhaps something that your child can pawn to get money for drugs? _______
  10. Does your child seem to get ill more frequently? ______
  11. Does your son or daughter get into more accidents of recent? _______
  12. Has his or her appetite decreased? _______
  13. Does your child exhibit any of these symptoms: dilated or constricted, or red and glazed over eyes or pupils, running nose, have the shakes, smell of alcohol, have slurred speech, excess fatigue, lasting cough, in poor physical condition? _______
  14. Is he or she exhibiting irresponsible behavior or poor judgment? _____
  15. Does your son or daughter show a lack of interest in things he or she or the family used to do, and does he or she seem negative and break rules, thus changing the family dynamics? _____
  16. Have your child's grades dropped, or he or she is truant from school, has accumulating absences? ______
  17. Has he or she changed style of dress, from conventional to more radical or bizarre, or from his or her normal style to more expensive clothing? _____
  18. Is he or she reading books or magazines, or listening to music that deviates from his or her former personality _______?
  19. Does your child take uncharacteristic risks, or engage in sexually risky behavior? ______
  20. Answering yes to any of the above questions may indicate a problem. Watch your child closely. Any combination of questions that resulted in a "yes" answer strongly leans toward your child's likelihood of experimenting or using drugs.