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Ever taken drugs? Whatever you do, don't tell the kids

TIME

The 'drugs talk' is supposed to be a mainstay of contemporary parenting, but parents who tell children of their own experience with drugs - even if meant as a warning - risk encouraging more drug-taking in the young, according to a new study.

Young people are likely to take mixed messages from a lecture that centrally features bad personal experiences with drugs, reasoning that its giver survived the drug-use sufficiently in tact to tell the tale.

“The more often the parents talked about regret over their own use, the bad things that happened, and that they’d never use it again, the students were more likely to report pro-substance-use beliefs,” said study author Jennifer Kam, from the the University of Illinois.

The study does not advise lying on the part of parents, but warns against volunteering information without being prompted. Do you think it's best to keep schtum altogether? Take our poll.


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