Help family members and friends get off drugs and regain their lives. It will never be easier than it is now. There are marvelous professionals to assist along the way, but you must take the first step. Step beyond your personal discouragement, your personal skills and your personal embarrassment. Reach out to those who need you. Accept assistance from those who can help.
If you are the one with a substance abuse problem (or the friend or family member), realize; Those who promote and sell drugs will tell you that drugs expand your mind. What happened to your grades, education and success after the alleged mind expansion? Drug promoters tell kids to get out from under the control of their parents and be free from control, but after the drugs, kids are in the control of their supplier. Dealers praise the intelligence of those they can manipulate. Those who think for themselves, they call stupid. Ironically many forfeit their natural intelligence for flattery. They forfeit their freedom for acceptance and friendship, while their own inner wisdom knows that no true friend would ask such a sacrifice.
The dealer is fishing. The user is hooked. The dealer was never a friend. The user is a commodity the dealer makes money on. The user is dispensable, without value beyond the money. If he had a greater value the dealer never would have led him into the drugs. The dealer has little personal value for anyone. His thinking is messed up. He has no use for people he cannot use. There are two kinds of highs in life, those we experience through the challenges of personal achievement and those we experience through flirting with destruction. They take us in opposite directions.
When we have no personal motivation we seek fulfillment through someone or something outside our selves, outside of our capacity, ability or effort. The low road is easy but easy soon becomes self defeating because it caters to our weaknesses and they increase. The high road requires that we face our challenges. It draws upon our strengths and they increase. Life is a challenge, not a threat. The sooner we realize that the easier it will be. It takes courage to quite being a pawn in someone's drug mill. It takes courage to take on your personal challenges and save yourself. It takes personal strength to live your life for your own talent, your own dreams and the things you really want to do, create and learn, because it is your life, not some one else's. Embrace who you really are. You are worth it.
Family and friends, give guidance, not services. Build confidence in recognizing better qualities, don't cater to weaknesses. Share your real feelings with those you assist. Tell them how it hurts to see them self destruct, forfeit their dreams their future and their health. Tell them about your pain in loosing what they are to you and the joy that they used to be in your life. Lift them up with your love. Uphold them in your emotion of caring. Don,t judge them, condemn them or push them down further. That will not help.
Love is caring about his independence, not his laundry. Love is getting him in control of his own life, not leaning on drugs, not leaning on you, and not leaning at all. Self control is not manipulation of others. Care, don't carry. Uplift, don't excuse. Intervention as a family is powerful. Do it now. The further it goes the harder it gets. If you can do it while he's still in school, while the school councilors assist you, you could prevent it from escalating. If you can keep him out of the legal system it will be much easier.
Don't pretend the problem will solve itself while you wait. On his eighteenth birthday you could discover that you have no right to choose his care, insist on council or over ride his decisions. If he's lost control of his life and direction and he's still in your home, the problem can become a crisis. The best odds of turning a life around are through intervention, early or late.