Making the decision to test your teen for drugs
use is a difficult step that involves much thought and careful consideration for all parents. It also means having a discussion with your child that is likely to be one of the hardest of both your lives. Take your time when going over the things that have you concerned that drug use could be involved. Compare what you know about your child; what they say on the matter and the signs you’ve seen to come to the right decision. Below are a few pros and cons to be considered before you begin.Pro
: You’ll know whether or not your teenager has been using drugs.Con
: You’ll risk damaging your relationship with your child.
These are some of the biggest points in this decision. While you may have an answer to your concerns but you may also have caused your child to feel invaded upon, mistrusted and bullied. You will need to seriously evaluate the signs
you feel are there and decipher if they are the normal behavior of a teenager or those of a person with a hidden drug problem. Talking about the risks of drugs is also a great way to gauge where your child stands on their use. Explain to your child why you feel the test is necessary and talk through your feelings on the matter to better convey your concern and intentions.Pro
: Quicker resolution of drug issues in the event of a positive result.Con
: The trust between you needs careful rebuilding.
In this case, the trust that needs rebuilding is your own. Until a definitive positive result is noted there is still an element of trust on your part. If your fears are proven you may take a long time to trust your child again.Pros
: Consistent testing can prevent drug use from occurring.Cons
: There are many ways to “beat” a drug test.
Regular testing means that your child can say no with a positive voice and reasoning that other teenagers can understand. However, while asking your child to submit to drug screenings on a regular basis may help prevent them from using them at all it‘s not foolproof. There are many different ways to fool these drug tests
, especially if you’re not careful enough in planning irregular testing patterns.Pros
: Home drug testing kits
can give you a quick answer.Cons
: You may have to have a lab evaluate the test to alleviate any concerns about the results.
You’ll have to consider these things when you consider home testing your teen. Most home drug tests can only check for a few types of use and can only test so far before the test date. This is problematic because there are several drugs that can pass through the system very quickly, evading a more basic drug test.Pros
: Home drug tests are generally inexpensive, private, easy to use and easy to get on a regular basis.
While you can save money and stress by using home testing kits you also might find yourself wondering if you did the test right and how accurate the results truly are. Privacy can be helpful but it can also mean feeling overwhelmed.