NIDA for Teens: The Science Behind Drug Abuse
Find NIDA for Teens on: NIDAnews on Twitter NIDANIH on YouTube Facebook NIDA-NIH on Flickr Sara Bellum Blog RSS
Drugs & Health Blog

Real Teens Ask: How Can I Help?

Sara Bellum

During NIDA’s 2013 Drug Facts Chat Day, several teens shared touching stories about friends who are struggling with drug abuse and asked how they can help.

Real Teen Stories

A teen from Croatan High School in North Carolina submitted:

Someone I'm close to has been smoking the past year. I haven't told anyone because I don't want it to affect him at home. I'm glad he hasn't done anything around me but I'm not sure what to do about it.

A teen from C.H.Yoe High School in Texas submitted:

I have a friend who is…just out of control. If he finds a pill…no matter what it is he will take it. I am trying to get him to alter his foolish ways. What do you suggest I do to help him?

Another teen from Croatan High School in North Carolina submitted:

My best friend of 7 years has smoked cigarettes, smoked marijuana, and tried other drugs since she was 11. She has dealt with social services, law enforcement, and was sent to a foster home for 3 months. She has been back home for a month and says she's going to change. I love her and don't want her to go back down the same road again, but she doesn't want to hear it when I talk to her about drugs. How can I help her?

Tips for Helping a Friend

It can be really upsetting and scary to have friends who are struggling with drug abuse and addiction. Here are some tips for helping them:

  1. Start by being a good friend, which you likely already are because you’re concerned. As a good friend, you’re someone who can be trusted to provide good advice and listen when your friend needs to talk.
  2. Educate yourself about drugs and alcohol and the problems they can cause. Then, you can give your friend the facts and refer your friend to resources to help him or her learn more. A good place to start is on the NIDA for Teens Web site. This site includes fact sheets about many different drugs and their effects.
  3. Next, encourage your friend to talk to an adult who he or she can trust—maybe a teacher, coach, or a parent of another friend. If your friend doesn't feel comfortable talking to a trusted adult but is ready to seek help, then you can check out treatment resources in your community (some are available just for teens). If your friend feels like he or she is in crisis, then he or she (or you) can call 1-800-273-TALK to talk confidentially to a professional who can help.

Has a friend ever leaned on you for help staying away from drugs or other problems? Tell us in comments what you did to help them, and let us know if you have other questions about dealing with tough stuff.

Comments

This is some good advice
god bless you
I agree: Start by being a good friend, which you likely already are because you’re concerned. As a good friend, you’re someone who can be trusted to provide good advice and listen when your friend needs to talk.
I agree: Become a good friend, if you already are then be better then a good friend. Help them by being someone that they can trust, talk to and share things with. In the end you'll probably help them stop.
If you can quit every thing you do because drugs are not life they will distroy you if you don't quit so if you are cleaver stop every thing you do from now on and god will alway help you though your broblems just give your self to almigt god.
i quit within 6 weeks , just sit and talk to your friend , take her or him out to eat or shopping or even cruising just something that will get their mind off of the drug ... thats what help me , although there is rehabs that might be around your area , might try and find help there if you cant help them out ..
What kind of drugs were you using? How are things going for you now?
Plzz try to stop these all drug addiction in this country because it's harmful for now days
Young generation is going to destroy themselves ,, We should save them.
we should cerate the awareness for them who have the habit of drug addiction

Add new comment