Heading off to college is an exciting time in a young person’s life.
It’s usually the first time they are off on their own, making their own rules and tasting adult freedom for the first time.
While many individuals experiment with alcohol and drugs, some of them are unable to leave it there.
The pressures of college appear alleviated with the use of alcohol or drugs, causing many students to slip into addiction.
Whether they enjoy the escape, these substances deliver or are doing it to fit in, and it’s easy to get addicted without realizing it.
Today, drugs and alcohol are relatively are readily available in every neighborhood and are relatively inexpensive due to synthetic variants.
Illicit pills are available to help you sleep, keep you awake or make you feel better.
Literally, there are multiple ways to drug your way to happiness!
As the college academic year winds down and your young adult comes home for the summer, it may be a good idea to be alert for signs of addiction.
Here are some things to look for:
Signs of Addiction
There may be some signs that are noticeable and some that are not so obvious.
These can be physical and emotional signs, and some noticeable differences can be a cause for concern.
Weight Loss or Gain: This can come from not eating enough, from a rapid change in their metabolism, overeating due to the effects of marijuana or alcohol.
Tremors: Hand tremors can be a sign that a person is experiencing withdrawal symptoms from their drug of choice.
Inappropriate clothing: Wearing long sleeves in summer is disconcerting because the person may be trying to hide marks on their arms that may give away their addiction.
Mood Swings: Drug abuse causes swings in mood. Happy one minute, angry and irritable the next.
Risk Taking: The process of obtaining drugs makes a person more willing to take risks.
Consequently, an increase in risky behaviors, such as frequent fender benders, is a cause for concern.
Chronic need for money: If they seem to always need money, and running out of money much faster than anticipated, you may want to delve into their spending.
Unkempt appearance: Deterioration in grooming habits happens when their priorities change. If they are more concerned about obtaining their next fix, they are less concerned about their appearance.
Loss of interest in hobbies: When a person becomes addicted to drugs or alcohol, pastimes they used to enjoy are no longer pleasurable, as they don’t deliver the kick that drugs do.
Change of Routine: Starting to miss classes or appointments or neglecting old friends and other family commitments can all be signs; there is something that they think is more important in their lives.
What to Do
As a parent or guardian of a college kid, you feel suffering from addiction; there are a few things you can do.
Ask your young adult if they are using drugs or alcohol. Mention you have noticed the changes in their appearance or behavior. All too often, the addict feels they are getting away with it, when in fact many people know.
Confronting them may well make them angry and deny such things are happening, but the person suffering from addiction may be relieved if they find support to get better. They feel they are not alone.
Don’t Blame Them
Don’t accuse them, chastise or blame them for their addiction. Addiction is a disease. They decide to take drugs or alcohol in the initial stages, but chemical dependence sets in when changes happen in the brain.
Helping is not enabling them. Offer support. This can mean helping find the right drug rehab treatment or drug treatment facility and, maybe, paying for it.
A bit of tough love will be called for here. If they want to move back into the house, you will need to set up guidelines and boundaries for them to follow. This is vital if they are to succeed.
Don’t Blame Yourself
You didn’t do this to them, and it did not happen because you neglected to do something for them. Don’t allow yourself to feel guilty. Love them, support them, but don’t let your guilt get in the way.
You can also search online for drug treatment in new jersey, or ask for referrals from friends and families who have been in a similar situation before.
If you need assistance, please your information below for consulting, referrals, and support: