Family

Alcohol, cannabis, depression ... What can parents do?

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Front With the withdrawal of a young person, suicide attempts and risky behavior, it is inefficient, according to psychiatrist David Gurion, to moralize and resort to authoritarianism. His advices.

Hélène Fresnel

Do not trivialize the suffering

"Sometimes we all tend to ostrich to try to reassure ourselves, but parents must not trivialize the mental suffering of their young, nor The second difficulty is to be able to enter the dialogue The parents tell me: "I do not know how to approach my son or my daughter to talk to him about his psychological problems, his reaction terrifies me. "I tell them to dare to do it with simple questions:" You do not look well, I think you look sad, what's going on? " If there are disturbing and morbid words in the course of the conversation, it is important to ask: "Have you ever thought about death?" If this is the case and he has suicidal thoughts, talking about it will relieve him enormously. Then we have to find out why he thinks of death, how much his ideas are They are concrete and, if necessary, offer him to see a psychiatrist very quickly. "

Consult a psychiatrist or a doctor

" If he absolutely does not want to see a psychiatrist, I recommend to parents to go consult themselves, explain the symptoms of their child. This will not be a remote diagnosis, but the psychiatrist can give them concrete advice: what to say, do, how it is possible to make him accept a care by causing him to recognize his difficulties and his suffering. It's better when the parents come together: they will be more convincing with their child if they are both convinced of the merits of the approach - which is not always the case, far from it! To lead the young person to a first contact with the care, it is possible from the moment when his parents really want it, are firm and hold good. They have to say, "It's the same issue as if he had diabetes or leukemia. He would not be left with the choice of not treating himself. ""

Evaluating Dependency

"We must distinguish between what is commonplace and what is not. Rather than making judgments about their child's use of cannabis or alcohol, parents should say, "We are not specialists. There are addictologist experts who can give you an opinion. Maybe they will tell you that your consumption is not problematic or dangerous, and that will reassure us. You will do whatever you want with the evaluation. "To measure this consumption, doctors use simple tests [presented in the book referenced below, note].It is clear that if the young person needs his drink or his daily joint, if he smokes cannabis or that he drinks alone to relieve anxieties or to sleep, if he tried to stop without succeeding, if he has bad results in school, etc. these are tell-tale symptoms of addiction. "

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