LGBTQ+ youth are significantly more likely as their heterosexual peers to experiment with substances. Coming out, rejection, trauma, and isolation are just a few of the causes. Read on to learn more and how you can help.
Teen substance use and abuse go beyond alcohol consumption and marijuana use. It also includes both over-the-counter and prescription medications, hallucinogens, and vaping. In fact, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, by their senior year in high school, 75% of U.S. teens have experimented with alcohol, 50% have smoked marijuana, and 21% have abused prescription medications. Teens are more sophisticated in their use than they were even a decade ago, making it much more difficult to simply smell any substance on them. If you are concerned and they have passed the “smell” test, here is a basic list of signs that your teen may be using substances:
- Unusual clumsiness
- Repeatedly missing curfew
- Becoming secretive about their plans or vague plans
Wondering what to look for or where to look?
I have loved and admired you and your family for over 30 years now, but the honor I have always felt to call you friend truly quadrupled yesterday after listening to your podcasts. Every word was true and authentic, and real, and beautiful-even those that made me cry to the point where I had to pause for a bit before continuing.
I know the last few years have been pure hell. Yet somehow you, Steve, and your kids somehow managed to navigate it with grace, dignity, love, vulnerability, and acceptance. I am in awe of each of you. Messiness sucks, but you are showing the world how beautiful life can be if we find a way to embrace it and breathe. Thanks to all of you for sharing your story and resources-it WILL make a difference for so many others.
When I was Connor’s age, I don’t think Ellen DeGeneres was out yet. The world has changed so much since that time. I’m glad I’m alive to see it. I find myself cheering on parents like Heather who are willing to step out of their own comfort zone and reputations to stand by LGBTQ children and love us – out loud! This is such an important show [the podcast]. BIG LOVE for this courageous family in the Midwest! Yay YOU!
Powerful, profound, so needed… What a breath of fresh air this show [the podcast] is. So many LGBTQ people, especially youth, struggle with the devastating impact of faith-based family rejection. Parents are searching for a better way. A way to love their LGBTQ child without compromising their faith. It takes opening what box you have God in – thank you for helping people do that! What a gift this podcast is!
I love your raw, real vulnerability. I am brand new on this journey and stumbled accidentally across your podcast on a road trip. I listened for 8 hours of driving and didn’t want to get to my destination because I wanted more. Using your own journey to help and support other parents is so brave and I am grateful to you and your family. Connor is so fortunate to have you ❤️
Your centered, calming voice and demeanor help me to feel more peaceful. I experience you as therapeutic & your journey gives me more hope that we can love [our son] well. Thank you for giving your life away to me through sharing your story and the guests you interview.
Powerful, profound. So needed. Thank you!!!
What a breathe of fresh air this show is. So many LGBTQ people, especially youth, struggle with the devastating impact of faith-based family rejection. Parents are searching for a better way – a way to love their LGBTQ child without compromising their faith. It takes opening whatever box you have God in – thank you for helping people do that! What a gift this Podcast is!!
This podcast was unbelievably helpful. The frank discussion and honesty -completely helped me begin my journey with my son and I have shared this podcast with everyone in our family Truly look forward to more episodes.
Amazing!!! This is so incredibly well done and your thoughtful approach is undoubtedly helping tons of families. What you’re doing truly matters! Your son is lucky to have you and vice versa ;)! Thank you for sharing w us!
Thank you, thank you for this!! I learned so much!
Helped so much!!
I have learned so much and feel so much less alone after listening! Thank so much!!
This podcast is a must-listen for those wanting to learn how to best help the LGBTQ teen or young adult in their life. Heather is a thoughtful host who offers great information and support. Such a great podcast with great information!
Exactly what this momma needed.
Right on … so needed
Heather is real, relatable, thoughtful, educated, and inclusive of every teen parent scenario in her talks. I love being able to hear first hand from someone who has gone through the “Valley of Darkness” and come out the other side a better person, informed, and able to help others right where they are.
Thank you for providing this valuable information.
Listen, absorb, learn, and breathe thru this podcast. So helpful us (child and parents) as we go thru this journey together.