It’s Not a Vaping Problem– It’s a Parenting Problem!
by Nancy Kislin, LCSW, MFT, Parenting Navigator
I work with parents just like you every day.
I’ve worked with kids just like yours for over 30 years.
I am Nancy Kislin, an adolescent and family psychotherapist, and in the last year, I have seen the latest epidemic of vaping spreading throughout our community.
But I’m going to be honest with you–
Your kids are not at fault.
YOU are the problem.
I know you don’t want to hear it, and many families quit working with me when I tell them they are part of the problem, but I hope you can listen.
The problem is that you don’t want to hear the truth.
You are funding your kid’s vaping habit. Vaping is the act of inhaling and exhaling the vapor produced by an electronic cigarette or similar device.
If your kid is using a dab pen, then you are funding their drug use.
A Juul vaping starter kit costs $49.99 and up.
The nicotine cartridge costs $15.99 for a 4 pack, but since your kids are underage, they are buying it from someone else who is charging them $20 and up.
Dab pens cost anywhere from $100 and up– they aren’t cheap.
And the cost of weed? Well, ask your kids.
Parents, you are the problem. How are your kids paying for their vaping supplies? Where are they getting all this money?
Birthday cash from Grandma, your credit card, or perhaps cash is missing from your wallet?
And don’t forget, a kid that vapes most likely has a dealer. And we know that vaping can be a gateway to other drugs.
So let’s get back to the parenting problem:
It isn’t that kids today have gone wild, it’s that parents have gotten scared and lazy.
Parents come to see me and I help them navigate the world of parenting. I help them find their courage and give them permission to set rules and enforce consequences. And as a result, they build healthy relationships with their kids. Your kids don’t want you to be cool or be their “friend” when they’re in middle/high school.
Now, I want you to do some snooping:
And most importantly, talk to your kids.
Explain your family’s expectations and values, remind them that these things are illegal because they are under 21.
The last time I gave a program on vaping, I asked the parents to go home and snoop and then text me or email me what they found. You cannot believe how many kids hide their devices under the bed. Many, many kids like hiding their vaping supplies under their bed.
Remember, kids feel safer when there are rules and consequences.
It makes them feel like you are paying attention and care (even if they don’t show that appreciation at first).
It is not your job to be the cool parent, it is your job to raise healthy, well-adjusted children that help make the world a better place.
You can see more of my ideas on my Facebook page, “Nancy Kislin, Parenting Navigator” or follow me on Instagram @nancykislin.
Talk to your kids. And even if you think they aren’t vaping today, they sure know who is. It is better to prevent a drug problem than to treat a drug problem.