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Ask Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH Your Ow...
Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 251
Experience:  Over 15 years of experience as a substance abuse therapist. I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker
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I need a suggestion on how to help my 16 year-old son. He is

Resolved Question:

I need a suggestion on how to help my 16 year-old son. He is making bad choices, having run ins with the law and has trouble with authority. He does use pot and I have tried to get him to quit to no avail. He is a very bright kid but does very poorly in school. I have tried counseling, a phychiatrist and many things here at home. He has one 13 year-old brother and we lost his father to cancer 1.5 years ago. What can I do to get him on a better path?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH replied 7 years ago.
Thank you for using I'm so sorry to hear your family is going through this. First, I would recommend checking out alanon or families anonymous meetings in your area. They can give you a lot of support around these issues and suggestions on how to cope with the day to day issues. Also, you can read this book. Lastly, and an extreme suggestion is looking into the CHINS process. I say extreme because it does require getting the law involved and may make him have legal consequences if he doesn't follow the rules. The benefits are he is being held accountable and they can require him to not smoke pot and to go to treatment if he continues to smoke pot.

Lastly, it's important to remember that he has to want to stop these problems on his own. Begging and pleading do not generally help with these situations. Tough love, i.e. very strict loving boundaries and sticking to the boundaries will help best.

I hope this answer helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions or if you need further clarification regarding this answer.

Take care,
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I will try this. I have been pondering sending him to a youth facility that aids young people in dealing with issues such as his. Not sure I can afford very much and it makes me sick saying that as a parent. Thank you.
Expert:  Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH replied 7 years ago.
You're welcome. It might be useful to know that sometimes the when a CHINS is used the state will help with funding if facilities are needed.

I wish you all the best,
Kym Tolson, LCSW, CSAC, NBCCH and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you