DOES YOUR FAMILY AFFECT YOUR DECISION
TO ABUSE DRUGS AND ALCOHOL?
There is no single cause, no one reason why children, teenagers and adults use drugs… But there are certain factors that shape your attitudes about whether or not to be a user.
The single greatest influence in your life is your parents. This may be your biological parents, stepparents, foster parents, relatives or guardians. The examples they set and the values they communicate to you have a great impact on your decision to be a user.
You are more likely to abuse substances if your parents:
- Abuse alcohol or are alcoholics.
- Use alcohol or prescription medications to cope with stress.
- Tolerate or encourage heavy drinking or allow you to serve, pour, or purchase alcohol.
- Smoke tobacco.
- Use illegal drugs.
- Have a positive attitude about getting high or are not particularly upset by drugs or drug use.
- Your family has had a history of crime, alcoholism and other anti-social behavior.
- Your parents are too easy or too strict and really don’t know how to define and enforce rules with you.
And what about you?
Do you have your own set of risks?
CHECK OUT THESE DESCRIPTIONS: ARE YOU IN THIS LIST SOMEWHERE?
- You feel isolated and distanced from your family and friends.
- You feel there is little value for personal achievement.
- You feel little sense of personal or social responsibility: life is something that just happens.
- Your grades are poor and doing well in school is just not that important to you.
- You have a hard time getting along with others and really can’t figure out how to resolve problems with your friends.
- You just can’t deal positively with the stress in your life; you have a hard time making good decisions and you can’t figure out how to approach the problems that are influencing your life.
KEEP IN MIND
THE MORE RISK FACTORS YOU HAVE IN YOUR LIFE, THE MORE LIKELY YOU ARE TO BECOME AN ABUSER.
IN EARLY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL, YOU PROBABLY WILL NOT USE DRUGS. BUT AS YOU ENTER ADOLESCENCE (HIGH SCHOOL), THE MORE INFORMATION YOU WILL HAVE ABOUT DRUGS AND ALCOHOL AND THE MORE PRESSURE YOU WILL GET FROM FRIENDS TO “TRY IT OUT!”
THINK ABOUT IT
WILL YOU BE SOMEONE WHO TRIES EVERYTHING THAT FRIENDS SUGGEST, EVEN IF IT MIGHT HARM YOU?
OR WILL YOU BE SOMEONE WHO CAN MAKE YOUR OWN DECISIONS AND SAY “NO” WHEN YOU KNOW IT IS THE RIGHT ANSWER?
NO ONE IS SUGGESTING IT IS EASY, BUT THE DECISION YOU MAKE TO IGNORE THE PRESSURE FROM YOUR FRIENDS MAY SAVE YOUR LIFE.