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How to Talk to Your Children About Your Own Psychedelic Use

Bringing up the topic of psychedelic drug use can be challenging in any conversation setting, and it becomes especially complex when discussing it with children. When engaging in a conversation about psychedelic drug use, it is important to consider the child’s age and maturity level, and ensure that the conversation is honest, open, and responsible. This article provides guidelines and tips on how to approach this topic effectively.

Why have the conversation?

Firstly, why should we even discuss our own psychedelic drug use with children? There are several reasons for this.

One reason is that children are curious and want to understand the world around them. This curiosity extends to their parents’ actions as well. On the other hand, if children hear about psychedelic drug use from another source or misunderstand half-truths, it can lead to distorted perceptions and unnecessary concerns.

Furthermore, openness and honesty are important values in many families. Talking about psychedelic drug use can provide an opportunity to teach children how to handle difficult or complex topics openly and honestly.

Approaching the conversation

  1. Child’s age: The younger the child, the simpler and more concrete explanations usually suffice. Teenagers, on the other hand, may benefit from more in-depth discussions regarding motives, effects, and risks of drug use.
  2. Examine your own motives and feelings: Before starting the conversation, it is important to understand your own feelings and motives regarding psychedelic drug use. Why do you use them? Why do you want to discuss them with children? What kind of reactions do you fear or hope for?
  3. Be honest in your conversation: It is important to speak openly and honestly, while also considering the child’s age and maturity level. Simple explanations may be sufficient for younger children, while more complex discussions can be held with older children.
  4. Prepare for questions: Children may ask questions that you haven’t anticipated. Be prepared to explain things that may be obvious to you or that may be complex and difficult to explain.
  5. You cannot control reactions: Children may react in different ways. They may be bewildered, scared, curious, angry, worried, or even indifferent. Be prepared to encounter these reactions and be ready to discuss them.
  6. Discuss responsible use: It is important to emphasize that psychedelic drug use is an adult decision that carries significant risks and responsibilities. When discussing with your child, make it clear that psychedelic drug use is not recommended or safe for young people because it can be harmful to their developing brains.

Addressing questions and concerns

When discussing psychedelic drug use with children, they may have many questions and concerns. They may ask what psychedelics are, how they work, why some people use them, and what risks are associated with their use.

It is important to answer these questions openly and honestly. It is also a good idea to prepare some simple and understandable explanations in advance. For example, you can explain that psychedelics are substances that can alter a person’s state of consciousness and induce powerful emotional experiences.

Children may also be concerned about the dangers or legality of psychedelic drug use. It is important to emphasize that while some people use psychedelic substances for various reasons, their use carries risks and can be illegal in some countries. In this context, it may be a good idea to also discuss what to do if they encounter situations related to psychedelic drug use in their own lives.

Discuss the context

Psychedelics have been used in various cultures and historical contexts for different purposes, such as spiritual growth, healing, and rituals. If you use psychedelic substances for these purposes, it can be part of the conversation.

It is also important to highlight that psychedelics are not inherently “good” or “bad,” but their effects and meanings depend on the user, dosage, setting, purpose, and many other factors. This can help children understand why different people may experience psychedelics differently.

Building trust and understanding

Having a conversation about psychedelic drug use provides an opportunity to build trust and understanding. It is a chance to show that you are open and honest, and that you value your child’s thoughts and feelings. It is also an opportunity to teach your children important skills such as critical thinking, decision-making, and risk assessment.

This does not mean that you should encourage your children to use psychedelic substances – quite the opposite. It is important to make it clear that psychedelic drug use is not recommended for young people, and that they should always turn to a trusted adult if they have questions or concerns.

Like with any parenting challenge, the key is to keep communication channels open and be present for your children. This can help build trust and understanding within your family and guide your children towards safe and responsible decisions in their own lives.