Indicator 2: Core Relationships and
Introduction To Substance Abuse
Parents, siblings, school, peers, and friends are core relationships important
to the development of a child or adolescent. Throughout childhood and adolescence,
physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual development are critical while self-esteem
and identity are forming. Prevention activities are essential during each developmental
stage. It is helpful to review how core relationships influence introduction
to substance use. A recent article in USA Today (Leinwand, D., 2000, August
24) reports that neighbors or school friends provide introduction to drugs
65 percent of the time. Five percent of the youth surveyed indicated that they
were introduced to drugs by a parent. However, USA Today warns of an emerging
trend. Twenty percent of the children and parents interviewed provided anecdotal
accounts of parents and other extended family members sharing the child's drug
use experience. Future surveys should confirm whether or not this is also a
trend in Travis County.
Findings (Leinwand, D., 2000, August 24)
- The majority of youth report neighborhood (36%) and school friends (29%)
are the primary sources that introduced them to drugs.
- There is a growing trend of parents introducing their children to drugs
(5% or more).
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