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I need a little imput.... Not having grown up all of my time in the US, can someone give me an idea of the typical types of drugs (illegal) used by preteen and teens. I used glue for a specific reason, but I was thinking more in line of recreational drugs. My cutoff age would be around 14.

Thanks in advance.

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Even though I have no real experience in this, I can give a partial answer.

American kids (pre-teens and teens) do get into several things. Aside from alcohol or tobacco, many kids find access to marijuana. There are things like XTC and Rohypnol (spelling?) that kids need to avoid at clubs and raves and dating. Or they'll abuse prescription or over the counter medications. Inhalants (spray cans, glue, etc.) are problems. (Glue and other inhalants are severe problems in Latin American countries.) Kids can gain access to harder, more dangerous drugs too, especially in big cities.

Really, it is pretty much the same here in America and Canada as it is in any major city in France or in Latin American countries. The drug problem is mostly the same. The reasons the kids do them are pretty much the same, whether they are middle class suburban or city kids, or upper class with time and money and lack of supervision, or poor / working class and trying to get by however they can.

One of my best high school teachers was a former drug addict. One of my college roommates had been a teenage alcoholic, recovering. This didn't make them "bad" people. In fact, I think they were stronger because they had learned to overcome it.

Some kids experiment and don't like it. (I don't like the taste of alcohol and I really don't like the feeling of loss of control. ;) ) Drugs have never appealed to me. I was sick (cold, flu, etc.) a lot as a kid in winter, and so drugs never were something I wanted to get into.

But yes, some kids do more and some get hooked. -- I grew up on the edge of town, later in the suburbs. But even at my junior high (middle school) and in high school, some kids did drugs and came to school high.

This stuff does happen, and yes, a lot of other things besides. Not all of it is pretty. -- And I probably don't know the half of it, even around where I live. -- But yes, it is something kids today have to deal with, whether it's they themselves or a friend or family member or complete stranger. -- I still remember an article I read in college, about teen runaways here in my city. I live "inside the loop" in a major city. Go very far in any direction around where I live at night, and there are probably street kids and adults, as well as people not out on the streets, dealing with these things.

Gratuitous drug use or glorifying it won't meet story guidelines. However, dealing with it in a realistic way can. It is a judgment call, a decision, for whoever is story submissions editor. If you have questions on what would or would not be accepted for a story, you can always write and discuss it. You can also submit the story and ask for comments, feedback, from the story submissions editors. AwesomeDude and Codey's World and others do try to respond on things like that, and if one story is not accepted, another one might be, so don't be discouraged one way or another. (I used to be one of the submissions editors at CW. I still edit for people.)

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Here's what I see/hear with my students (mostly 8 to 14), in order of popularity:

-Marijuana. It's cheap, easily available, and it's not as scary as the harder stuff. Some of their parents smoke it around and/or with them.

-Alcohol. Actually more difficult for kids to get than pot, since stores check ID for booze, and nobody really bothers with a black market for it, since profit margins would be pretty low.

-Prescription drug abuse, especially Adderall and Ritalin. Kids diagnosed with conditions like ADHD will pocket or fake-swallow their pills, then sell them to other kids.

-DXM (Robitussin, Triple-C's) was big when I was that age, because kids could legally buy it. Now, stores tend to keep that stuff behind the counter. It's still possible to get hold of it, but it's usually just easier to find pot or Adderall/Ritalin.

Keep in mind, I work in a high poverty neighborhood - kids are mostly limited to what they can find, beg, borrow, or steal. Everybody knows that if you want REAL drugs, you leave the ghetto and go to the rich kids' neighborhoods - the private Catholic schools, especially. You get into those schools, it's still mostly pot/booze/prescription drugs, but you start seeing some LSD, X, coke, and among certain groups, performance enhancers like anabolic steroids and human growth hormone.

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Thank you, you are both gentlemen and scholars. It is sort of amazing over 20 views, but only two replies. I think weed and alcohol will be the drugs of choice. Glue is a possibility, but usually used to curb appetite, and so you do not care any longer... cheap too. The info was for a writing project in a summer class.

Again, thank you.

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I'm not in the US, but I believe it's quite similar here. Marijuana is by far the most used and most easily obtained recreational drug. Alcohol would be second. Ecstasy and OTC stimulants and depressants would be third, as well as the trading of the ADD kid's Ritalin and similar. Harder drugs such as cocaine, LSD, meth, etc, are much less common in that age group unless you narrow down the demographics to the seriously abused/deprived.

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I think sniffing glue was more common back in the fifties and sixties when other things weren't available or as available.Felice Picano writes an interesting account of a first sexual experience for a twelve year-old boy sniffing glue in his book Ambidextrous. It was more common because boys built plastic model airplanes and cars back then. I doubt seriously if a kid today could be dragged away from his PS3 or Xbox to even look at a model airplane.

I have read that prescription drugs are more commonly abused now. Kids have parties where they raid their parents' medicine cabinets and bring whatever they find and then dump the pills and capsules into bowls from which they reach in and eat like candy. How depressing.

I assume this is research for a story. I hope. :wacko:

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OMG I had forgotten all about Duco cement and the model airplane high. That was back in the day when every young boy's room had a model plane or car laid out on the desk (in lieu of a computer screen). Some of us purists curled our lips at plastic models and had balsa sticks pinned to a pattern. Duco model cement was the fast-drying glue of choice and few savvy mothers made us work on our models with the window open and the fan blowing, but kids being kids we knew the thrill of a little sniff now and then. Some kids, unfortunately, went on to a little more than a little sniff, but at age eleven or twelve who knew what dangers the world held in store? We melted lead fishing sinkers with casual ease to make "pirate coins" and played with mercury blobs from broken house thermometers. I'm surprised any of us survived the forties and fifties.

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Guys, sniffing (huffing) glue and inhalants like spray cans still happens. It's cheap and available, so poorer kids can get it. This happens in the US, in Mexico and other Latin American countries, Europe, Asia, anywhere.

Even somebody as straight-laced as I am is aware of things like that. I grew up in a major city. Travel outside my home within the nearest five zip codes (yes, multiple zip codes and school districts in my city) and, day or night, I am sure if you look, you'd find street kids and adults doing all the things they do to survive. Where I live is about halfway between one of the wealthiest and one of the poorest parts of town. Mostly, I don't see it directly, but it's there. -- I'm more aware of it because of friends who've been through things, or from a couple of times volunteering for a local food pantry, or because I go by cab most of the time, and cabbies always have stories. -- Also because of this, I care. I've known more than one friend recovering from drug or alcohol use, and like most people in the city, I've seen friends and known they were high, drunk, or using something. I'm probably not qualified to really talk about it.

But my two points would be, it does happen, right now, somewhere around any of us; and yes, we need to care a lot.

I'd also, gently, point out that some of our forum members and visitors may have been through things like that or may deal with that in some way now. These are also our community and friends, brothers and sisters too.

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OMG I had forgotten all about Duco cement and the model airplane high. That was back in the day when every young boy's room had a model plane or car laid out on the desk (in lieu of a computer screen). Some of us purists curled our lips at plastic models and had balsa sticks pinned to a pattern. Duco model cement was the fast-drying glue of choice and few savvy mothers made us work on our models with the window open and the fan blowing, but kids being kids we knew the thrill of a little sniff now and then. Some kids, unfortunately, went on to a little more than a little sniff, but at age eleven or twelve who knew what dangers the world held in store? We melted lead fishing sinkers with casual ease to make "pirate coins" and played with mercury blobs from broken house thermometers. I'm surprised any of us survived the forties and fifties.

I think what it tells us, James, is that the dangers were overblown. Lead and mercury are certainly dangerous, but today, they'd dress someone out in a full-dress HazMat suit to scrape a few flakes of lead paint from a windowsill. Or to sweep up a broken thermometer.

I too, back the '50s, handled both those things, and so did everyone else. The fact is, they both are dangerous because the body has no way of getting rid of them. But occasional contact for the great majority of kids wouldn't even be noticed.

Continual use, like eating the stuff regularly as some kids who weren't getting enough to eat would do of old paint flakes, or working daily with liquid mercury like hatmakers did back in the 20s, would of course be bad. Overall, though, I've always felt the dangers were blown way out of proportion by the PC crowd.

C

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You guys, especialy EleCivil, nailed it. However, there are other things being sniffed like canned air (shake the can hard to disperse the propellant, then use a paper cone, let out your breath and spray into the small end as you breathe in. This can be dangerous. AlcoPops are cheap and easy to get in some liquor stores where they don't bother carding AlcoPop purchasers. One reason is that they are very profitable. Boxed wine is an alcohol drink of choice. Cheap, easy to buy in a grocery store that has self-checkout. I've seen underage teens (they looked 14 or 15) in Berkeley buy it in a line with a checker and they didn't get carded. There's no downside if they do get carded; they just can't buy the wine. Helium balloons. Super cheap and easy to buy in party stores. Breathe it in and hold your breath. Too long and you pass out, maybe permanently. Prescription drugs are awful. You never know what's in the mix. The latest is to bake them into cookies that have a lot of sugar and chocolate to cover up the bad taste of the drugs. Kids call them Prescription Chip Cookies. Truly stupid. Mary Jane's Brownies are very popular. One package of brownie mix, follow the directions adding one baggie (or, if you're rich, two baggies) of MJ, bake as per package. Get high and fat at the same time.

Colin :icon_geek:

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The brownies work better if you let the leafy green stuff soak in melted butter overnight in the fridge, then strain the butter after the THC is absorbed into the butter. Oh, um, oops. I guess I'm, uh, revealing more about my misspent twenties and thirties than I should.... :confused::blush:

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Free Thinker, we didn't know you were an organic chemist! Or a nutritionist. Or a botanist. Or you read a lot of alternative publications. Or whatever. :closet:

Colin :icon_geek:

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Free Thinker, we didn't know you were an organic chemist! Or a nutritionist. Or a botanist. Or you read a lot of alternative publications. Or whatever. :closet:

Colin :icon_geek:

There was a movie about Sonny Von Bulow and the trial of her husband Klaus, staring Glenn Close and the wonderful Jeremy Irons. I can't remember the title, but at the end a store clerk says to Jeremy Irons, "You're a very strange man," to which he replies in that wonderful voice and accent.... "You've no idea." :sneaky:

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There was a movie about Sonny Von Bulow and the trial of her husband Klaus, staring Glenn Close and the wonderful Jeremy Irons. I can't remember the title, but at the end a store clerk says to Jeremy Irons, "You're a very strange man," to which he replies in that wonderful voice and accent.... "You've no idea." :sneaky:

LOL!

Colin :icon_geek:

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Some kids in my neighborhood died a few years ago when they had bought a tank of Nitrous Oxide for a party. Unfortunately, after they picked up the tank, they stopped at a traffic light and the bottle rolled forward and opened up. Within five minutes, the teenagers started getting overcome with the fumes, then they pulled over to the side of the street, parked the car, and died. This was about six blocks from my house, so I remember it pretty vividly.

Though I'm not a drug or alcohol user by any means, I'm a big, big fan of Nitrous at the dentist. *ahem* Good in small doses -- not so good when you inhale a lot of it.

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Some kids in my neighborhood died a few years ago when they had bought a tank of Nitrous Oxide for a party.

Around here, Whip-Its (nitrous cartridges) have a reputation as a "white trash drug" - it was all over the place in the trailer park where I grew up. Its popularity seems to have faded out, lately - the rise of meth as the trailer park drug of choice has edged out a lot of the competitors. Too many kids I grew up with are beat-as-all-hell meth-heads, these days.

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Whip-Its are still huge. Just in the last six months, tabloids reported that noted celebrity Demi Moore had to be rushed to the hospital after she was overcome by fumes from inhaling spray cans. And this is a woman with about $50 million in the bank (but a cheating husband, now ex).

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