Teens & Marijuana. Let's Talk about it. About the Marijuana Videos.

Ventura County Behavioral Health

Fact: More than 40 percent of teens try marijuana before they graduate from high school.

Parents + Kids Together

"The trick is to find ways to encourage your kids to be the unique individuals they are, without exposing themselves to the dangers of experimenting with drugs, including marijuana. Talking openly about it is a good start.” - Nora D. Volkow, NIDA Director

We’ve created these Marijuana Videos, "I Need My Brain" and "You Choose" to watch with your kids and help start the conversation. It can be difficult to raise the subject of marijuana. The most recent scientific studies show that frequent use of marijuana by teens interferes with normal brain development and may lead to lasting decreases in IQ. As a parent, having a tool to talk about your concerns can help.

About the Videos

"Weed messes with my brain. I need my brain."

The first video focuses on the real impact of marijuana use on the developing teen brain. Discussing scientific research and the ways in which marijuana can be risky and impact intellectual development can be a springboard for discussion.
> Download "I Need My Brain" Video

"You choose what you do today. Every time you chose, you chose your future."

The second video focuses on the importance of choices. It can help to talk about the tough choices your child makes daily and the impact of their choices for their future. Emphasizing their strengths and the ability to make smart choices can empower a child to feel in control to make the right decisions about using marijuana.

> Download "You Choose" Video

Tips for Talking to Kids

When to Talk

  • Make it a regular discussion. Just like school, homework, and activities.
  • Tie it into everyday life and news. Have a family conversation.
  • Make it OKAY to talk about challenging subjects like alcohol and drugs.
  • Eventually, write down a plan together. How to stay safe. How to get help in a difficult situation.
  • Become their ally and assure them that you are available to listen. Just start now. Have the talk.

How to Talk
  • Ask open-ended questions. Statements can be a deal-breaker.
  • Share examples of pop culture stories and use this as a starting point.
  • Solicit their thoughts and opinions.
  • Let go of judgment and just listen. Make it easy.
Remember, Talking to our children about drug use is not always easy. Beginning the conversation is the hardest part. It’s important.

Learn More

Many references to drugs and alcohol are in the news media, movies, and advertisements. Using technology and media as examples can help in bridging the gap with your child. Take advantage of the opportunities to talk about the everyday realities and risks of drug use.

> See Marijuana Toolkit: Parents and Community Partners
TAGS: Youth, Parents
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