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Does discouraging kids from smoking help?

Discussion in 'Helping an Addicted Child' started by ryan0039, Jan 29, 2015.

  1. ryan0039

    ryan0039 Active Contributor

    A lot of the people I remember seeing at the anti-smoking assemblies, whether it was marijuana or tobacco, were very very dorky. I know they were trying to get a good message across but they were commonly extremely dweeby and it never really made us take it seriously because we just...really didn't want to be like any of them.

    Of course I have never smoked, but I don't think the way that teaching kids that smoking is bad is working very well. I think it should wait until middle school or high school, when we can show them the real truth and side effects. I'm just wondering if there's a better way.
    MrsJones likes this.
  2. MrsJones

    MrsJones Community Listener Community Listener

    Well ryan0039, I have to tell you that even those that were looking 'dorky' smoke too.

    I think that any effort made to send a good and beneficial message to the youth today is always the best way. Different people find different ways to get these messages across hoping they will make a difference in someones life. Maybe it's not your style of how it should be done but somewhere, sometime in your life to you will see a rally that you may want to be a part of. Good post.
  3. Janie

    Janie Active Contributor

    I think nothing you say to kids about drugs or alcohol is going to make any difference - they are going to learn by the example you set. If you are irresponsible, then more the chance that they will be too, and if you are responsible, the higher chance they'll be responsible as well. Thinking about the many families I have know, the people I partied with back in my day, I find this to be 90% true. I know a few alcoholics, and their parents are also way too loose with the alcohol. I know a lot of people that partied a lot, but pulled themselves together when it was time to grow up, and they cam from families without any alcohol addictions.
  4. Charli

    Charli Community Champion

    I think the best way is really to just keep them satisfied and knowledgable enough to find better means of stress release. Talking to them usually isn't enough especially when they have already grown into bad habits and traits passed on by living at home. Even if it weren't related to smoking cigarettes or taking substances, sometimes kids just take on small bad habits of parents that sometimes lead to worse things. For example if the parents are procrastinators, unprepared, irresponsible, etc., then even if they didn't smoke those bad a it's could instill a discontentment or insecurity that no amount of talking can correct, and even less so if they just depend on schools or PSA ads on tv to teach it. I think just keeping them feeling secure and fulfilled, as well as listened to, is usually already sufficient to give them the right compass to figure things out for themselves so even if they take a taste here and there of some bad habits, they will always be aware that they have a lot to lose.
  5. jeremy2

    jeremy2 Community Champion

    I totally agree that the right approach is vital in getting the message across.We should be sincere about our concerns and the audience should see or feel that we are genuine in our thoughts.That said,i think it's of great benefit if we communicate this message to young kids at a very tender age so that they can grow up with the full knowledge of the dangers of smoking.
  6. Nergaahl

    Nergaahl Community Champion

    Again, they shouldn't teach children not to smoke, they should teach children how to make the difference between what is good and what is bad, and to judge correctly. Either way they would think their parents won't let them do this because it's an "adult thing". And that's the most stupid argument ever.
  7. bluedressed

    bluedressed Community Champion

    Well, I remember also thinking that a lot of what teachers and other people came to preach to us was ridiculous, if only because the way they did it was laughable, in a not funny kind of way. Two things worked at making a different impact:

    1) The guy with AIDS who came to give a talk about it. He was funny in many ways, making jokes, but there was also a heaviness and an absolute sincerity to what he was saying. Two things I remember to this day of his speech: him saying that he had never heard something so heartbreaking as the cry of his mother when he told her he was going to die, and him stating he would not tell us how he got AIDs, because if he tripped on a needle we would commiserate, whereas if it was from unsafe sex, we would think he'd deserve it. "And nobody deserves this," he said.

    2) TV shows. I watched One Tree Hill when I was younger, and it always had a great impact on me. They did not preach. They did not have a "moral of the story", they just showed us people we could identify with struggling with different situations, choices, and consequences of their choices. To me, to let us see this in a dramatic way that got our emotions reaching out for these characters was much more efficient than telling us what we should do or not and why.

    I guess for the same reason that propaganda works better this day -- because people now get that to sway people, you have to talk to their feelings rather than to their brain.
  8. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    I think that discouraging kids from smoking could help them about getting into it. Specially if they have good models at home (parents and relatives not smoking). Better to make kids aware of its bad effects for them, to everyone and to the environment.
  9. Thestoryteller1

    Thestoryteller1 Active Contributor

    See, I think when you are growing honesty, fairness and role-models play big role in what you decide to do (well, of course there are things like peer pressure, but you can't control everything). My father is a huge smoker, so if they had forbidden me to smoke, I would have thought that it's hyppocritical and therefore trying smoking might have been the next thing I do.
    Instead my parents explained the bad sides of smoking, explained why my father would probably never quit and it good not to start. They even offered us to try one cigarette to see that we won't like the taste:). So I never actually got into serious smoking and I think that had a huge role in it.
  10. davidj96

    davidj96 Member

    I honestly believe that its the sole choice of the child themselves. I see a ton of children with parents who discouarge their child from smoking,but as soon as the parents are not around, the child is smoking. I think there should be a course given in schools solely on drug use and how it can affect your life.
  11. karmaskeeper

    karmaskeeper Community Champion

    I think that really depends on the kid, and also if the parent is a smoker. I'm a smoker grrrrr!!!!! and none of my kids smoke. Grant it my youngest son did try, and smoked for awhile but, he just decided he didn't want too anymore. That has been a few years ago. My other kids hate smoking with a passion thank god.
  12. Charli

    Charli Community Champion

    I agree. I think the most you could do is to make them aware of the disadvantages in as honest of a way as possible and some discouragement could be helpful as well but ultimately the only way you would be able to ensure it is if you set a good enough example not only by not smoking but just being more responsible and smart in general.
  13. hellonamesdana

    hellonamesdana Senior Contributor

    I think you need to teach them that smoking is wrong, but you can't forbid it. Once you forbid a kid to do something, they'll want to do it so much more, and they're going to end up getting themselves into a whole lot of trouble because of it. I've seen it so many times that these strict parents end up pushing their kids over the edge.
  14. zaerine

    zaerine Community Champion

    Right that being too strict will not be good and could result to rebellion. Better to develop an open communication between kids in where they will say what they really feel and think to their parents/guardians so that they will be guided well.
  15. Spiegel

    Spiegel Member

    Like someone mentioned before, I too think that it comes down to the child itself... I remember when my parents warned me about smoking and I understood the dangers of smoking, but there is always that sort of... pull I guess. The reason I decided not to smoke was that I found it disgusting, I tried it and I didn't like it which lead me to believe that most kids become smokers because smoking is considering cool and forbidden, some might even say taboo.
  16. KNH

    KNH Active Contributor

    I think it depends on the child and who is influencing them. If they are the rebellious kind, telling them not to smoke is probably only going to make them want to smoke. However, if they aren't like that, they may understand the dangers of it and decide not to do it. I also think the parents must set a good example and not smoke themselves. Another huge factor in a child's behavior is the kind of kids his or her friends are. Hanging out with "bad" friends won't be good for a child because they may encourage him or her to partake in smoking and other harmful activities.
  17. goldenmaine

    goldenmaine Active Contributor

    I think small kids cannot understand yet but eventually when they grow a little older they may understand ads and anti-smoking campaigns. There are some print ads that show parts of the body which are affected negatively by smoking and I think this is helpful in teaching children. School children are already aware of the parts of the body and if they see pictures of lungs, mouth and the like which are affected by diseases which are caused by smoking, and then they might realize how deadly it is. I think this is more effective than those ads that state words only without the graphic pictures. Kids are more visual and some graphic images can teach them a lesson.
  18. Rainman

    Rainman Community Champion

    You can't afford to wait too long before you start teaching kids about drugs because by then it might be too late. If some of the teaching methods don't work then they should be dropped. But that shouldn't be the end of it all. Schools should find more effective ways to "reach" the kids.

    Don't wait. The time will never be just right.

    Napoleon Hill
  19. wahmed

    wahmed Active Contributor

    I think the need to try and impress us overwhelming for kids. I think if a child understands and I mean really understands its full dangers they will try their level best to stay away. The best way to do this is show examples, and give lectures. It is and always will be the best way because when kids see this damage its likely they will stay awat.
  20. pwarbi

    pwarbi Community Champion

    A few years ago smoking was probably regarded as cool. I dont think thats the case these days to be honest. I think children nw just smoke to fit in, if their friends start to smoke then they will aswell. If they dont have friends that smoke the chances of them starting are a lot lower.
    Peer pressure is something thant we cant educate children against I dont think.