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Marijuana - How to explain it to your children...

Updated on September 17, 2017

How marijuana was explained to me...

Well, I was raised much differently than most children. I spent a lot of my early years in my parent's well known head shop in Dallas, TX named Strawberry Fields. My parents were high contributors to NORML, and in 1979 they attended an art auction hosted by NORML at the Playboy mansion. Marijuana (and it's paraphernalia) was always around me. My parents would smoke marijuana in front of me on a regular basis.

In 7th grade, I remember saying I would never drink alcohol or do drugs. By 9th grade, I was drinking vodka in large amounts every weekend. I made so many careless, dangerous, stupid mistakes, but I did not try marijuana until I was 17, and I did not like it.

Now I am one of the Founders and the Executive Director for San Antonio NORML.


There are ways to talk to your kids to help them understand why you have the right to choose to smoke or ingest marijuana and they do not. There are some exceptions for teenagers and some children that need marijuana for medical purposes.

The simple ABC formula:

  • Adult - you are the adult. You are over the age of 18. You are the parent. You make the decisions. What makes you an adult? Your...
  • Brain - a child's brain is still growing. Adding ANY substance can hurt the development of their brains and bodies. I'm also talking about alcohol, caffeine, over the counter medications, and prescription drugs.
  • Cognitive Development - studies have shown that kids who start smoking marijuana at an early age show cognitive defects which are not shown in people who begin smoking when they are older. This is also an important time that teenagers and children are learning coping skills. You cannot learn appropriate coping skills by using substances to cover up your problems.


Have you talked to your kids about drugs?

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Is it really that simple? No... there are more drugs and things to talk to your children about than just marijuana. At least your children cannot overdose on marijuana unlike the chemicals under your sink, pills in your medicine cabinet, alcohol, and more harmful drugs. It is very important to also talk to your children about the effects of other drugs and the risks of having sex.

What I found useful is pictures.

This is what drugs can do...

Click thumbnail to view full-size
"meth mouth"drugs will make you look like this... and it doesn't take years, only monthsmmmkYou CAN die from drinking alcohol, and you WILL make very stupid, careless mistakes.These aren't just before and after pictures.... they are mugshots.  Drugs lead to jail.If you disrupt your brain growth at an early age you will remain ignorant and are less likely to succeed in your adult life.Alcohol and tobacco are the most dangerous drugs available.
"meth mouth"
"meth mouth"
drugs will make you look like this... and it doesn't take years, only months
drugs will make you look like this... and it doesn't take years, only months
mmmk
mmmk
You CAN die from drinking alcohol, and you WILL make very stupid, careless mistakes.
You CAN die from drinking alcohol, and you WILL make very stupid, careless mistakes.
These aren't just before and after pictures.... they are mugshots.  Drugs lead to jail.
These aren't just before and after pictures.... they are mugshots. Drugs lead to jail.
If you disrupt your brain growth at an early age you will remain ignorant and are less likely to succeed in your adult life.
If you disrupt your brain growth at an early age you will remain ignorant and are less likely to succeed in your adult life.
Alcohol and tobacco are the most dangerous drugs available.
Alcohol and tobacco are the most dangerous drugs available.

This is what sex can do...

Click thumbnail to view full-size
ChlamydiaStd's can spread to other parts of your body.STD's can spread easily, and condoms are not 100% affective.Scary statistic... count how many of YOUR friends might be infected
Chlamydia
Chlamydia
Std's can spread to other parts of your body.
Std's can spread to other parts of your body.
STD's can spread easily, and condoms are not 100% affective.
STD's can spread easily, and condoms are not 100% affective.
Scary statistic... count how many of YOUR friends might be infected
Scary statistic... count how many of YOUR friends might be infected

Is your child/teenager using drugs or having sex?

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    • profile image

      flamethrower 6 years ago

      My kids are 5, 3, and 1 (and we're pregnant). I recently watched a documentary about meth with my 5-year-old and we discussed the consequences of using hard drugs and alcohol. She knows the negatives of caffeine and is not allowed to consume it, as well as aspartame and many food additives and chemicals. She says "Drugs are gross and I'm never doing them!" We use herbs a lot in our home for medicinal purposes, and marijuana is simply another herb to her - not a drug. We use marijuana medicinally and recreationally (though not in the presence of our kids), and grow our own and allow the kids to help us in the growing process. We are honest about it and make sure they know that some people (mostly the ones who make and defend pharmaceutical drugs) disapprove of marijuana, and that they should not talk about it at school. (As a side note, they also know where babies come from - and not storks!) ;)

    • theseus profile image

      theseus 6 years ago from philippines

      Great hub!Yes,the parents should guide their children to the right path of life. One way to do so is to teach them and warn them of the evils in our society.

    • getitrite profile image

      getitrite 6 years ago

      My daughter knew what marijuana, alcohol, nicotine, crack, heroine and coke were when she was very young, and she abstained from all of it until she was old enough to make choices.

    • Froggy213 profile image

      Greg Boudonck 6 years ago from Will soon return to an Isla Del Sol - Puerto Rico Will Rise Strong

      Yes, we must teach our children, not expect someone else to. Very good hub.

    • hubby7 profile image

      hubby7 7 years ago from Chicago

      Interesting article. Gives you something to think about.

    • figment profile image
      Author

      Karli Duran 7 years ago from Texas

      Thank you for your comments

    • Paradise7 profile image

      Paradise7 7 years ago from Upstate New York

      Good hub. I always wondered how well parents today can relate to their kids, and successfully warn them of the pitfalls of a more relaxed lifestyle, without feeling like hypocrites.

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 7 years ago

      Great hub figment! The other drugs and specifically alcohol are very, very deadly. Thank you Ma'am!

    • Bilaras profile image

      Edward Harris MSc 7 years ago from Earth

      First of all the human flame thrower up there is awesome. Well ill share what worked for me and my brothers... My parents used to tell me that drugs even cigarettes are disgusting and uncool that's what worked for every one of us. We all just hate drugs its coded in our brains that drugs are disgusting, unhealthy and stupid.

      We should just stick to basics and be casual when educating our kids about drugs.

      Thanks for sharing this great hub.

    • profile image

      WildIris 7 years ago

      I've used similar pictures like the meth. photos you have on your Hub to bring awareness about drug use to my kids. They truly are the most effective way to show what happens to a meth user. I really like the ABC section of this Hub.

      Thanks for writing about this important topic all parents need to address with their kids.

    • Cagsil profile image

      Cagsil 7 years ago from USA or America

      Hey Figment, great hub. I'm not a parent, and I wasn't raised around it either, but when I entered my teenage years I was introduced to it and gave it a shot. Since I am here, I didn't die from it. I've tried other drugs and even for a great many years, used(and at times abused) alcohol. However, I have never become addicted to any of it at all. I like your approach and being honest with your child(as I would be if I had kids) about all the aspects of each, drugs and alcohol, and the effects is very important. Again, great hub. Thank you very much. :)

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 7 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Telling your kids the truth about pot is better than them thinking alcohol and other drugs are less harmful. Like you said, no one overdoses on pot! Good hub!