This article was originally published on Psychedelic Spotlight and appears here with permission.

The underbelly that likely exists in many picture-perfect communities like ours is the subversive drug rings run by none other than our  kids. I kidd you not.  

Hi there! I’m a suburban street-wise mother of two and I would love to share how I talk to teens about psychedelics and other drugs. It’s real, it’s open, and you might be surprised.   Let me paint a picture for you, if you’ll allow me the pleasure.  

We live in a quiet suburban setting tucked away in the hills of North Vancouver. From the outside, it looks like any other picture-perfect neighborhood replete with homes on large tree lots, a school every ten blocks, a strange abundance of kids ( especially these days ) and local businesses. Our hood also has a buzzing soccer parent scene, where on any given weekend, you'll see Arcteryx sporting moms and dads with Starbucks, strollers, and yelling from behind a fence at a bunch of 9-year-olds. 

I can already smell lemonade stands and pumpkin spice lattes’. But when you have open dialogues with teenagers, you quickly discover the honest ‘tea' about what's happening in any hood. 

The underbelly that likely exists in many picture-perfect communities like ours is the subversive drug rings run by none other than our  kids. I kidd you not.  

I asked my daughter how many kids she knows that sell drugs in the area.  She said 6! These kids are covert and intelligent! One of her closest friends is a supplier of means, and his mother has no idea he's even puffed on a joint! She's completely clueless. 

Last month, just around the corner beside our beautiful neighborhood park, a 17-year-old boy was arrested and charged with possessing over a pound of weed and MDMA, shrooms, cocaine and other substances. My daughter said at the time, “I like him; he's the most excellent dude; I hope they go easy on him. “

He probably is nice. That's not my point here. My point is that no matter where you live or how safe you think your community is, teens are curious. Most teens like to party, and many are experimenting with alcohol, drugs and psychedelics. No surprise, right? Regardless, here are some refreshing statistics in case you forgot just how much they like to try this stuff.  

According to the University of Michigan, which conducted a National Survey in 2021, 32% of 12th graders, 19% of 10th graders, and 10% of 8th graders said they used illicit drugs in the past year.

6% of 12th-grade students use marijuana every day. Data from the National Survey on Drug Use also shows that 3.4% of 10th-graders use marijuana daily.

28% of 12th-grade students feel it would be easy to obtain Cocaine, according to the same study above. 

2.2% of 12th graders report that they've used the MDMA in the past year, according to NIDA.

3.2% of 12th-grade students reported using LSD in the past year according to that same study

1.5% of 12th Graders would regularly use Ketamine, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

So, how do we talk to our teens about psychedelics and other drugs? For the record, I am beyond the question of whether we should or shouldn't be talking openly to our teens about psychedelics and other psychedelics because education is not the same as condoning. We must overcome the fear that …

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