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Substance abuse is not uncommon on college campuses

From the moment your child was born, you likely wanted to keep him or her protected forever. Of course, you knew that a day would come when he or she would go off to college to live without you for the first time. Though you likely experienced a great deal of happiness when Arizona State University accepted your child, you knew that the experience could have its ups and downs.

The first semester your child attended the university may have been a whirlwind for him or her while you awaited phone calls that only came occasionally. However, now those phone calls are coming even less often, and when they do come, your child does not sound like him or herself. Even worse, his or her grades are slipping, and you have serious concerns about possible substance abuse.

Could drugs be affecting your child?

Though you may worry endlessly about your child, you know not to jump to conclusions; a few missed phone calls do not warrant suspecting drug use. However, if your child came home to visit and you saw a complete personality change and noticed that his or her physical appearance also changed, such as weight loss and other concerns, you may believe your feelings are warranted.

Unfortunately, it is not unusual for young adults to come in contact with alcohol and drugs while away at college. Though college and university administration often do their best to limit such activities, it can still happen. In fact, your child could have gotten involved with any of the following common substances abused on college campuses:

  • Alcohol
  • Ecstasy
  • Prescription pills, especially study drugs
  • Marijuana
  • Cocaine

Though you may have anticipated some experimentation with alcohol, you may not have considered your child getting hooked on a more serious substance. Regrettably, your college-aged child may have ended up in a difficult situation.

Criminal charges

In addition to facing mental and physical concerns and putting his or her college career on the line, substance abuse could also lead to criminal charges. You certainly do not want to receive a phone call from your child telling you he or she is in jail, but if you do (or already have), remember that your child has legal rights and can create and present a criminal defense against any allegations police may bring against him or her.

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