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Effective Drug Refusal Skills for Teenagers and Adults

Effective Drug Refusal Skills for Teenagers and Adults

Every person has their own unique quirks and fancies. Even though, you are getting over your addiction or still under the process of doing so, you can't shun your social group out of your life. Chances are, you may bump into them someday. One of the tools that is taught in most addiction programs is learning to refuse drugs. This Buzzle article will shed some light on effective refusal skills for drugs.
Ashmeet Bagga
No Means No!
Many addicts tend to beg, and beg for what they want! They do not take "No" for an answer. Therefore, it is extremely important that the enabler has a clear understanding of the word "No" and when they use it, they need to stick to it.
Addiction is an extreme form of habit wherein a person cannot function without it, and will go to any extent to obtain it or use it, even if it means harming himself/herself, or others. They know they are wrong but still can't hold it together.
About 1/3rd of substance abusers relapse into their old habit. This is due to social pressure from their friends or family. Imagine the number of people you drank with, or smoked pot with, you will still end up running into them at some point in your life. Some of them might ask you to go for a drink, or do drugs, and the case at such times is:
1. You may want to say yes.
2. Your eyes will light up when they mention that particular drug's name; and you might even feel tempted to say yes.
But, hold your thoughts there, this Is not why you gave up on drugs, just to get back to your old, stinking habit.
Many people start taking drugs or alcohol because of peer pressure, or to be accepted by that particular group. But honestly, think about it, do we need such friends in our life who will accept us because we are doing the same things as they are? Of course not, your life is more important than a bunch of people who are indulging in wrong things.
Let's take a look at this scenario:
Jordan is going through an addiction program, and she is almost out of her addiction. She meets Daniel who was her drug buddy, but Daniel still smokes weed and marijuana. The conversation goes like this:
Daniel: Hey Jordan, it's been long. Come let's smoke some weed.
Jordan: It's really been long. But if I smoke again, I will never be able to recover from that addiction.
Daniel: Oh! Come on, just take one puff. That won't harm you. Besides, you still want to be my friend, right?
Jordan: Yes, yes!! I still want to be friends with you. I don't think there is any harm in doing it just one time.
 
In the above scenario, Daniel indirectly threatens her that if she won't do drugs, he may justl stop talking to her. Jordan was scared to lose out on her friendship, and that's why gave in. You may think you don't need to practice saying No, but you do. It's not easy to stand your ground when people force you to do drugs, but it's not difficult either. You need to learn to firmly say no so that it does not open up doors for further discussion. Let's learn some more on drug or alcohol refusal skills for both adults and teenagers.
Refusal Skills for Drugs
1. Humor
Humor and sarcasm can lighten a serious mood and divert attention. It is known to deflect pressure. If you simply don't want to turn down their offer by a simple no, you might as well use humor to get out of the situation.
Example: "No thanks, this stuff will weaken my immune system. I want to be healthy to play basketball."
"Crack makes you look ugly, and I want to impress that girl over there, so I will pass."

Using humor won't spoil your relationship with your friends, but will help you to get out of the situation. Chances are, they may have second thoughts as to why they are indulging in drugs.
2. Say No
The most easiest and safest way is to say "NO", but you need to remember a few things―sound convincing and stay firm in your decision.
Use a strong and assertive tone while saying no; however, be polite. You don't want to sound offending and way too abrasive that might land you in trouble, especially, if you are dealing with drug dealers.Your body language is enough to give them the idea, that you are confident about your decision. Maintain good eye contact and an upright body position. If a person pesters you to take drugs, you need to get out of the situation and make it clear to them that you are not comfortable with them.
Example: I want to be friends with you, but if you can't respect my decision of not taking drugs, then I am afraid, I may have to stop talking to you."
3. Change the Subject
To divert their attention from that topic, try changing the subject by suggesting alternatives like:
You want to go watch a movie?
Do you want to go check out that new mall?
Maybe they will pass, or tag along with you. Either way, they won't pressurize you to do anything.
4. Turn the Tables
Be upfront and ask them what difference does it make to them, if you do drugs or don't. They may stop bothering you, or think 10 times at least, before offering drugs to you again.
5. State a Reason, Excuse, or a Fact
You can say that you have given up on drugs and alcohol for good, or these things shorten your life. But, keep in mind, the excuse should be strong enough to get you away from the person, or out of the situation. Practice it in front of a mirror to get that confidence. Similarly, you can use code words with your friends or your family to call you when you signal them. Text them that code word, and the call will interrupt the conversation.
Example: My father just called, and he has some urgent work. Sorry, I gotta go. I don't want to be grounded for the rest of my life.
6. Ignore
If you know that person will bother you, simply ignore them and talk to somebody else. They will understand, and won't bother you anymore.
7. Unity in Numbers
Sometimes, one person can't handle this situation all alone, that's where unity comes in as a savior. It is true, if you surround yourself with friends who refrain from doing drugs, they will help you overcome this vice. You can always go in a group and confront these people when they offer you substance.
8. Avoid the Place
If a friend is throwing a party where you know people are going to drink or smoke, just avoid going there. Let's be honest, there will be peer pressure, and people are definitely going to force you to try it at least once, for old times' sake.
9. Reject their Behavior
If the person is constantly forcing you to try drugs, tell them you respect their decision to use it, but ask them to respect your decision too.
10. Walk Away
When nothing else seems to work, it's better to just walk away and avoid further chaos. You may feel obligated to give excuses, but sometimes, it is better to turn your back and walk away.
11. Confide
You can always talk to a trusted friend or a family member if somebody is pressurizing you, they will help you out. You don't have to be scared or give yourself a hard time over this.
Each person is different. What works for you may not work for some other person. You have the liberty to review and choose those from the list that you are comfortable with. There are many drug refusal activities and roleplay which one can undertake to learn better on how to refuse taking drugs offered to you, effectively. Staying clean, healthy and completely off drugs can be a tad difficult with all the promotions and advertisements on alcohol and intense peer pressure. It certainly can be a challenge to think of excuses besides saying No, which sounds concrete and strong. Young people want to stay cool and healthy, yet want to continue substance abuse. Always remember a determined mind and right support will get you through anything in life!!