By Abdellatif Sharaa
- Where was your son last night? Did you ask him?
- Did you wonder why your son spends so much time in his room alone?
- Did you wonder why your son is not joining you at the dinner table, has lost his appetite, lost weight and is looking pale?
- Did you, by any chance, enter his room and see strange objects that are not supposed to be there, such as foil paper and burnt spoons, etc?
- Did you notice that he is spending more money but nothing to show for it?
Many questions come to mind when we see dramatic changes in our children’s behavior, often all of a sudden. Then parents start looking for reasons and answers while attempting to help their beloved children.
The problem is that we have a social stigma that keeps us from admitting to having a problem related to drug use by a family member, regardless who it may be. Drugs is a very scary word and we all must be aware of and be vigilant, so that such poisons and highly destructive weapons remain out of our homes and pockets of our loved ones.
Studies have shown that drugs, the deadly lesion of today, have started to spread in all societies at an unprecedented scale, to the point that it is threatening families and even entire societies. Drugs actually kill a man’s will. The most dangerous part of the problem is that more youth in their prime are using drugs and it is no longer an individual case that can be easily dealt with, and this gives concerned authorities – be they in law enforcement or health professions – a hard time in fighting the phenomenon and cleaning up after users and abusers.
A drug addict is actually a dead person among the living, and it is only his soul hanging on his body and fighting for survival. Most often he is at the lowest level. An addict’s health gradually deteriorates and he becomes an unproductive member of his society. There will be a time when the addict stops working and may become a criminal to get money to finance his habit, while ignoring his family and caring about their wellbeing.
The good thing is that there is always hope and cure if all concerned elements cooperate to eliminate this pandemic. Families and authorities must cooperate to keep children from using drugs while security authorities fight drugs pushers and traders, and all must have the courage and consider it a disease. There should not be any stigma.
Parents, please keep a close eye on your children – male and female – and make sure about those they get in touch with. You should bear in mind that not all friends are good, as friends have great influence on each other. May Allah protect our youth and spare them from all evil.