What would you do if you found out your teenage child was smoking?

Or drinking maybe?
Or smoking pot?
Or doing hard drugs?


Haul her ass to the nearest hospital and take a stroll on the cancer floor. Maybe let her meet some emphysema patients, let 'em tell her how great it is to struggle to breathe.

SnoopyFan She probably knows about the consequences so I don’t know if that’ll do much. But would you try to force her to quit or simply advise against it and let her keep smoking if she desires?

Well, I think the age of the teenager would be extremely relevant here - in terms of “forcing” them to quit. IANAParent, but I’d imagine that it you would have much more direct control over a 13 y.o.'s behavior than a 17-18 y.o.'s.

I don’t think you could “force” an older teen to do much - as much as you might like to. You could have serious discussions about the ramifications of smoking, not allow them to smoke in your house or when they’re near you, not give them any money that could be spent on cigarettes, etc. But when it comes down to it, they could smoke elsewhere without your knowledge.

By the time they’re nearly legal adults, the best you can hope for is that your influence when they were younger made a lasting impression, and that they won’t choose to smoke.

Lets see, if I found my 13 year old child smoking? I’d kick his/her ass. Like my pop-pop used to say, you smoke, you smoke in a wheelchair.

But if the child was older,`16/17, we might actually consider discussion before or after the initial ass kicking. My mom found a lighter in my pocket at the age of 12, swatted me so hard I cryed for an hour, and you know what? i dont smoke anymore.
Now, mind you I dont have children, and my theorys might change after I do

If you have any friends that are long term smokers, consider letting one of them talk to her. Most of them hate it but cannot stop.

Sometimes teenagers will take advice better from an adult who is not a parent. I’ve done this for some of my friends and it seems to help.

I made a deal with my 16 year old granddaughter to quit smoking July 15 if she would. I checked with her a week or so ago. She had smoked one around the 17th but that was all.

Grammy has smoked zilch!

I am not a parent, but I’d cut off every penny that was going to them: no more lunch money, going - out money, or “run to the grocery store for mom” money. No more being trusted with the credit card to do your own back-to-school shopping. These were all sources that I used to buy cigarettes, after all.

But I would tell them in advance that that was the result of smoking, and that if it happened, it wouldn’t be a punnishment, just the simple fact that while, realistically, I couldn’t stop my child from killing themselfes, I could sure as hell not pay for it.

Don’t let up on them. I started smoking as a teenager and kept it up for ten years, but no one in my family, including my husband, ever let me get the idea it was acceptable. I think that’s one reason I was able to quit in the end.

I’m a firm believer in knowledge is power. So a good fair discussion I should hope does the job. And plus let them know how it will kill them slowly. Cancer o the mouth, throat, larynx, esophagis, lungs., let them take their pic. Plus tell them how passé it’s becoming. How mush their clothes will stink, breath will stink. How difficult it’ll be to find a date with nasty stinky clothes/breath. I had a kid last semester who smoked all the time. He’d go out in the middle of the 90 minute class to smoke and I’d chastise him everytime he came back in because the classroom would stink to high heaven. I think he eventually stopped. I’ve heard some students saying that smoking is becoming the not-cool thing to do. Tell the teen that…

Knowing about it isn’t the same as KNOWING about it. Factual lessons in health class do not have the same visceral impact as speaking with a real live person dying in a hospital bed.

Of course, you can’t use cancer patients as zoo exhibits, you have to be careful about doing that sort of thing. But if you get the right chance, haul 'em down there.

My father caught me smoking as a freshman in high school. He forced me to sit down in front of him and smoke an entire pack of ciggerettes with no filter. One right after the other. I was soooo sick. Then we went to a restaurant called The Alamo and sat in the smoking section. I will never forget it.

It didn’t keep me from smoking though.

I watched my grandad die or lung cancer through smoking. A few months later I was smoking myself. So it doesn’t always work. However it only didn’t work for me as I was depressed and didn’t really care if I died anyway. However I don’t smoke now as I got my life back on track!

Let me start off by saying I love smoking. There’s nothing quite like having a cigarette when you’re sitting around. That being said, I know I should stop. I feel my health deteriorating and I plan on stopping…soon.

My parents kept me from smoking until I moved out pretty much by sticking on my ass non-stop. My mother told me she didn’t want me coming home chewing gum, she would smell my clothes, and my breath(same method to check for alcohol too), and check my pockets. Pretty much I got home and I got one shotted. Of course there are ways around this which I don’t believe my parents ever saw through. Be wary of peanut butter or tabasco sauce. They were always my favorite cover-ups.

I will visit my parents and still get yelled at for having a lighter in my pocket. One day I’ll make you proud mom!

As for harder drugs, threaten to drug test! That would always scare the bejeezus out of me. The worst part about doing drugs is letting your parents down. Tell em it would break your heart to hear that they are on drugs, that you thought you raised them better(this is an experience that made me feel like shit and changed my life).

Thanks mom! You’re a lifesaver!

It’s very easy to say, but if the kid went to school with anyone like the people I went to school with, the smokers will have no trouble getting a date because they’ve already gota way to start up a conversation. It’s only difficult getting a date with non smokers who care that you’re a smoker.

About 6 months ago I caught one of the Kunilou twins (age 17) with a pack of cigarettes. Since by now he’s heard all the health-related stuff, I simply reminded him that it makes his clothes stink, his hair (he has dreadlocks), his breath, etc. I reminded him that it would divide his friends into two groups – smokers and non, and some of the non-smokers wouldn’t much care to be around him while he was smoking. Then I told him it was a lousy way to spend his money.

Finally, I asked him if he wanted to wind up like me, standing outside in the cold and the rain trying to get enough of a buzz so he could stay inside for awhile.

I know he’s still smoking now and then (a couple of weeks ago Mrs. Kunilou found cigarettes in the car and left a note reminding the kids that smoking also stinks up the car), but he’s not smoking much.

And anyway, my lecture must have done someone some good, because I quit smoking three months ago.

In real estate its: Location Location Location

With teenagers its: Friends Friends Friends

She(?) got it from somewhere and if its not from you it is likely from her friends. If you want to be serious, you do a Natzi style interogation and find out which of her friends smoke/do drugs. If you have to you call her friends and ask them. (Threatening to call friends usually yields answers). When you find out who the offenders are you call their parents. You tell them your kids are doing these things together and you don’t think they should see eachother and you enforce that. You can’t watch them 24/7, but it gets the point across.

Thats if you’re serious. If you are not serious then do something less stringent.

friends friends friends

Wisely spake. I caught my daughter smoking when she was 16. She quit when she was 21 or so. I caught my oldest son drinking at age 17, which was actually legal in Germany, as I recall. I told my daughter that she was not to do it where her younger brothers could see her. Anything above that would have resulted in resentment, anger and alienation, given her hormonal condition at that age.

I warned my son in the same fashion. After he ignored it for the second time and came home drunk, I put him up against the wall and told him that it was his last warning; next time would be an ass-kicking in the front yard (not that I would have followed through, but the threat was enough to make him stop).

I agree it depends on the age. Cigarettes I think the best thing to do is just make fun of them every chance you get about it. Drinking is another story. Take car keys and priviledges. Smoking pot also would force more serious reaction. Again remove priviledges. Express your feelings and make it clear it is not acceptable. Call their school. Tell their friends parents. Stop flow of money. If they are working they would have to quit.

Hard drugs would probably require serious intervention. I would probably find a nice rehab facility.

Make life absolutely miserable for them.

Some ideas:

  1. Not allowed to get a job.

  2. Not allowed to participate in extracurricular activities.

  3. Must come straight home after school.

  4. No car.

  5. No allowance or lunch money.

  6. No free periods or study halls allowed in class schedule.

  7. No new clothes or personal items except for absolute essentials, to be purchased at WalMart.

  8. A roster of chores as long as their arm to do every day.

  9. Confiscation of anything they owned that I considered a “luxury item,” like a TV, a CD player, a stereo, video games, any particularly nice clothing, etc.

  10. Forced “volunteer” work for local charities.

  11. Send them to work with their aunt Dr. Katie, the forensic pathologist, to see what deaths from smoking and/or alcohol and/or illegal drugs look like, inside and out. Maybe she will need an unpaid assistant on a regular basis.

  12. If it were illegal drugs, I would let them know that I would turn them in to the cops if I ever found them. I would also toss their room regularly and, if necessary, take them to my sister the doctor for regular urinalysis.

  13. I’d notify the parents of any friends they were caught smoking, doing drugs, or drinking with.

  14. Take them to family therapy once or twice a week.

You know, basically House Arrest and turning them into Social Pariahs. And I would catch them, because I, like my parents, will have strict rules for my kids and will watch them like a hawk.

And my kids would know from a very young age about these consequences. All my parents had to do was to tell us about how our lives would turn into a nightmare if they caught us smoking, drinking, doing drugs, or having sex. They also talked a lot about the responsibilities that go along with the drinking and having sex at an appropriate age. They ended up raising four straight A daughters who never did any of the above before college, still don’t smoke or do illegal drugs, and who are always extremely responsible re: alcohol and sex.

Every once in awhile there will be a bad apple that no amount of good parenting can change, but for the most part, it’s possible to manipulate teenagers if you’re willing to work hard enough at it.