Should You Snoop? If you are a parent and you suspect your child is using drugs, the first question is whether or not you should snoop. If you notice signs of addiction, investigating your teenager’s belongings is to keep them safe, not snoop. In fact, you may find that your child is suffering from anxiety or depression, something that also needs to be addressed through counseling and treatment. Now, remember that you don’t have to be secretive about your snooping. The River Source counselors agree that telling your child is just as effective as searching their rooms when they’re at school. Many parents find that they’re more willing to search their child’s stuff when they tell him or her ahead of time; it feels like less of a breach of privacy. Of course, you don’t want to prepare your child for a search; you must do it unexpectedly. For instance, when your teen comes home late from school, you can ask her to turn over her backpack, cell phone or laptop. However, some parents find it best to wait until their child is out of the home so that they can search in peace and solitude. It largely depends on the relationship you have with your child on whether you plan to tell them about searching their belongings. All parents and caregivers must do what’s right for their family, but you must always remember that you cannot put your child’s independence and right to privacy before their safety and health.
Being Prepared for a SearchThe best attitude to have when searching your child’s belongings is one of confidence and preparedness, so don’t go into a situation without knowing the consequences. If you firmly believe something is going on, be prepared to handle your emotions if you find what you’re looking for. The first step is to know where to look.
- Dresser and desk drawers
- Between folded clothes
- Inside prescription medicine bottles
- Inside empty candy wrappers
- CD and DVD cases
- Jewelry boxes and pencil cases
- Backpacks, duffle bags, athletic bags
- Underneath beds and furniture
- Buried in plant dirt
- In between books on a bookshelf
- Inside books, tubes of makeup or writing utensils
- Underneath loose planks in the floor
- Behind mirrors or picture frames