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How to tell if your son or daughter is using marijuana

Updated on February 28, 2010

What to look for

So you suspect that your little bundle of joy is experimenting with marijuana. What are some things that you can look for before full on confronting them.

This is a very touchy time because if you are wrong they might think you dont trust them, and children need trust to grow into responsible adults. Here are some behaviors and actions that might suggest marijuana usage.

1. Behavior changes

This is perhaps the broadest of all the suggestions but regardless of reason, marijuana or not you as a parent should be keen you your child's behavioral changes anyways. But users of marijuana particularly, new users act very accordingly. If you notice that they simply do not enjoy the activities that they used to no particular reason then that is an indication that something is wrong. Marijuana allows the user to experience life through a different perspective. Often times through this new perspective things that once seemed important no longer seem to matter.

2. Physical changesĀ 

Alone these characteristics are not grounds for investigation but bundled with the other examples it can be a very good indicator. Marijuana numbs your stomach and in turns slows down your body and metabolism. Marijuana also makes the user hungry after a session (theres even a term coined for this event, the munchies) and often times that food is turned directly into fat because the nutrients are not absorbed due to the slow metabolism.

3. Musical Preference

It seems that most stoners have something in common when they begin puffing the ganja and that is their choice in music. If your son or daughter is suddenly into bands/artists that promote the usage of marijuana there is a good chance that he or she is using marijuana. Here are some artists to look out for:

- Bob Marley

- Sublime

- 311

- Muse

- Pink Floyd

- Led Zeppelin

- Jimi Hendrix

4. Lost of motivation

Although I will say that the lost of motivation is 100% the users fault not the marijuana, young people are still developing and have not learned how to use marijuana responsibly. This reason causes the younger crowd to lose motivation and sometimes sit around all day. Not only does this contribute to weight gain but also to unproductive behavior.

5. Sudden decline in grades at school

If there was a sudden emergency or big event in your child's life or schooling thats a different thing altogether, however if it is mid-semester and your child's grades just start plummeting out of nowhere then theres a good chance that marijuana is involved. Like stated before, young people just do not understand how to use marijuana responsibly and it often shows in their schooling. This is when you must step in as the parent and find out the origins of unsatisfactory academics.

6. Friends

This one is a big one, because needless to say humans have the need to belong to certain groups. We are after all social creatures, and as such we long for the approval of the social elite. Whether it be at home, work or school people take on the traits of people they are around. If you notice that more then 80% of your child's friends display traits of marijuana usage chances are your child is also. Since marijuana is ostracized so much in today's society, users often stick together to form non-threatening groups.

7. Smell

Marijuana has a very distinct smell that have gotten stronger and stronger throughout the years. If every time you walk by your child's door you notice a strong herbal burning smell then it is time to consider it a possibility that your little ray of sunshine is not as innocent as you would like. The smell of marijuana also lingers around for awhile, especially of fingernails and clothes so that is also a good indicator.

8. Vocabulary

People like to sound and act smart at whatever they do, at a young age people want to be "cool" so they start taking on vocabulary that their peers use. Specifically, users of marijuana have a very distinct structure of communication with each other. Below are some of the common terms used and what they mean.

gram - One gram of marijuana roughly worth 20$

eighth - 1/8 of an ounce of marijuana or 3.5 grams roughly worth 40 - 60$

hit - a puff or usage or marijuana similar to a sip of alcohol

dime - 10$ worth of marijuana

bowl - The amount of weed used to fill the pipe used to smoking marijuana

mary jane, weed, bud - marijuana

blunt - marijuana rolled into a small cigar

There are many more terms but these are the basic terminologies of the marijuana world, there are also different types and strains of marijuana that your child might be talking about.

So my son or daughter smokes weed what can I do now?

If your son or daughter fits most of the above criteria then it is an extremely likely indication that your child has used or is currently using marijuana. The best thing that you as a parent can do at this point is to just talk to your child from a neutral standpoint. Dont be too aggressive or passive but rather stern and neutral. Explain to them that marijuana should not be used by young people and if used at all should be used responsibly. Explain to them that marijuana can be used legally and responsibly when they reach a certain level of maturity. Most importantly you must show love and support through your child's time of uncertainty (as they are probably conflicted one way or another if they are using marijuana at such a young age).


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      Erin Holladay 7 years ago

      Great hub. You can also get drug testing kits from places like The only problem is breaking the trust with you kid by enforcing a drug test. You don't want to break the trust as it might just make them want to rebel even more so be careful how you proceed.

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      sonbaty 7 years ago

      Please visit for help quitting marijuana. It includes a powerful true story about how one guy was finally able to quit pot for good.