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There are some who theorize that it's best to be honest at all times with your kids. They learn to trust you and it results in bonding that has great benefit while they're growing up under your roof. But asked or not, should a parent be honest and admit to past drug use? Most you smoked a joint or two in your younger years. Maybe you even did something stronger. Besides the bonding, you hope your honesty will drive home the anti-drug message. Should you? There's a new study out.
This one says that strategy may be misguided and that a parent should keep mum about what they did in their younger days. Jennifer Kamm is an assistant professor of communications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She's the lead author of the study. She says they found a lot of parents felt that the honesty could be used as a teachable moment. But she says even when parents say they regretted using drugs, the fact that they used them undermines the negative point they're trying to make.
Nearly 600 kids of European and Latino descent in the 6th, 7th, and 8th grades were surveyed. The study did find that parents who took the time to talk to their kids had a big impact on their attitudes. But it also showed that telling your kids about past drug use can be a big mistake.
Researchers say they heard things like, my parents used drugs and they turned out okay. Obviously the message is they can use them too. There are other studies out there that indicate parents shouldn't lie to their kids about their past. It's being very careful about what you say that's important.
They do say parental values are very influential so driving home an anti-drug message is important. Sending the message of "Do what I say, not what I do" may not end in the results you're looking for.
Conclusion: (According to this study) Fiction