Dear Carolyn: So my 16-year-old son opted to smoke a joint at home this week late at night. I smelled it (because, duh) and confronted him and we took away his driving privileges for two weeks and also limited his screen time. It’s been a week from hell and our son is upset and so are we.
I knew raising teenagers would not be super easy but I had no idea it would be this lonely. I have a couple friends I knew would commiserate and offer support, but mostly we have kept this to ourselves. It feels like all we hear about from parent friends is the highlight reel and ACT scores, and sport achievements and cute girlfriends and maybe, “Oh he overslept for 10 minutes and it was total chaos.” It feels dangerous to walk up to them at the soccer field and say, “So we busted our kiddo smoking pot this week and we are freaked out and worried and, oh, how are you?” How do parents manage through this? — Lonely
Lonely: A few things: