49: How to Protect Our Kids from Substance Abuse | Richard Capriola

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Richard Capriola has been an addictions and mental health counselor for over two decades. He shares the warning signs, treatment approaches, and avoidance strategies for adolescent substance abuse.

  • “Roughly 55% of seniors are probably drinking.” – Richard Capriola
  • “Probably 35% of seniors say that they’re using marijuana and maybe 28% of juniors. So marijuana is a substance that is very high on the list of things that adolescents are using.” – Richard Capriola
  • “In just the last few years, we have seen a surge in adolescents turn to vaping substances like nicotine and marijuana.” – Richard Capriola
  • “Kinds are staying at home longer. They’re isolated away from their friends. They’re isolated away from their activites. So I think that creates more stress. More stress for them, more stress for the parents. And anytime we see an increase in stress or anxiety, I think that leads to the likelihood that kids might turn to a substance.” – Richard Capriola
  • “Availability is one of the other things that drives the access because kids believe and have found that it’s easy to get these substances.” – Richard Capriola
  • “Any type of changes that you see in your child, pay attention to. Some of them may be just normal developmental changes, but some of them may be an indication of an underlying issue.” – Richard Capriola
  • “We’re very good at listening to people’s words, we’re not so good at listening to the feelings behind the words.” – Richard Capriola
  • “The goal is we always want our kids to feel comfortable coming to us.” – Emily Melious
  • “We are a parent. Sometimes we’re an advisor to them. Sometimes we are a disciplinarian to them. But we want to develop, as best we can, an environment where they feel safe, where they feel trusted, and where they can come to us and share what is troubling them.” – Richard Capriola
  • 1:29 – Common substances adolescents are using
  • 3:23 – Why vaping?
  • 4:13 – How COVID-19 has impacted drug use
  • 5:06 – Getting access to substances
  • 6:41 – Legalizing marijuana
  • 8:57 – Why teen substance abuse is so dangerous for adolescents
  • 10:33 – Warning signs of addiction or substance abuse
  • 11:40 – Tips for effectively dealing with a potential issue without wrecking our relationships with our kids
  • 24:49 – How frequently is drug use connected to an underlying psychological condition?
  • 27:56 – What can parents do to foster an environment that reduces the probability of their child using drugs?
  • 31:23 – Resources for Parents
View Full Transcript

Mothers of Misfits: Welcome to the Mothers of Misfits podcast. Join me for conversations about how to advocate for our kids in a one size fits all world. Be sure to subscribe, so you never miss an episode.

[00:00:14] Emily Melious: Hey everyone. Welcome back. I’m so glad that you are here with us again today. We are joined by Richard Capriola. He’s been an addictions and mental health counselor for over two decades, serving adolescents and adults diagnosed with mental health and substance abuse issues. He has been licensed in Illinois and Texas, and recently retired from The Menninger Clinic in Houston. Richard, welcome. Thanks so much for being on.

[00:00:42] Richard Capriola: Thank you, Emily. I really appreciate your taking the time to talk to me today about the subject of adolescent substance abuse. And I’ve been looking forward to it for some time.

[00:00:52] Emily Melious: Yes, me too. And I know this is a tough issue. A lot of the things we tackle on this podcast are tough issues, but they are necessary to talk about. I think when it comes to drug use and substance abuse, a lot of parents feel like, oh, that’s the other kid. That’s the other family. That could never happen in my family. And I know you’re going to share with us how close to home this really can get. And with COVID and all the pressures and mental health issues that we have going on in our worlds right now, this really is something that we do need to be talking about. So Richard, let’s just get right down to it. What substances are adolescents using these days?

[00:01:36] Richard Capriola: Well, they continue to use alcohol. It still is a very popular substance that adolescents are using . Roughly 55% of seniors are probably drinking. Now that sounds like a high percentage, and it is, but it’s really down from what they were doing in the 1970s and even the 80s. But alcohol still is a problem.

[00:01:58] The other substance that they are using is marijuana. You know, marijuana, probably 35% of seniors say that they’re using marijuana, maybe 28% of juniors. So marijuana is a substance that is very high on the list of things that adolescents are using. The thing that is most surprising that we have found in the last few years is that there has been a significant increase in adolescents who are vaping substances. Vaping is basically a process where the substance is heated into a vapor and then inhaled. And what we have seen in the last few years is a surge in adolescent vaping. For example , marijuana vaping has increased from 9% to 22% of seniors just in the last three years.

[00:02:51] And when we look at nicotine vaping, that percentage has gone from 18% of seniors to 34% of seniors. So just in the last few years, we have seen a surge in adolescents turn to vaping substances like nicotine and marijuana. Now, the cigarette smoking is down substantially, but it seems that they have turned away from smoking cigarettes to inhaling and vaping the nicotine, as a way to get the substance into their system.

[00:03:23]Emily Melious: Is that the reason why vaping has increased? Is it a more efficient method for getting it into your system, or why the big surge in vaping?

[00:03:33] Richard Capriola: Well I think the big surge in vaping is first of all, when you vape nicotine, you’re getting a higher concentration of nicotine. The kids can now buy nicotine that comes in vaping at much higher percentages of nicotine than what they would get if they were smoking cigarettes. So the nicotine content is much higher. The other thing is with these vape pens, like the Juul, which almost looks like a USB drive, it’s very easy for adolescents to conceal their use. Very few people might even know that what looks like a USB is really a vaping instrument. So it’s very easy for them to conceal the use of the substance.

[00:04:13]Emily Melious: So how has COVID impacted drug use, particularly in adolescents?

[00:04:19] Richard Capriola: Well kids are staying at home longer. They’re isolated away from their friends. They’re isolated away from their activities. So I think that creates more stress. More stress for them, more stress for the parents. And anytime we see an increase in stress or anxiety, I think that leads to the likelihood that kids might turn to a substance. Now, being confined at home probably curtails their ability to get this substance and use it, but there’s no question that because of what everybody is going through at this particular time, the isolation that’s going through , I think it just creates an environment where substance use , or the frequency of substance use might be a little bit higher than otherwise.

[00:05:06] Emily Melious: How are they getting access to these substances, particularly at the younger ages?

[00:05:11] Richard Capriola: Well, that’s a good question because when we ask kids about the availability of substances, how easy is it for you to obtain a substance? 79% of seniors say it’s pretty easy for them to find marijuana if they want it, it’s almost 80%. About 30% of them will say it’s easy for them to find LSD if they wanted to find it.

[00:05:35] And over 80% of them will say, if they wanted to get alcohol, it would be very easy for them to do so. So, availability is one of the other things that drives the access because kids believe and have found that it’s easy to get these substances. The other issue, we look at availability, but the other key issue is harmfulness. Do these kids really think these substances, which are easy to get, are harmful? And what we’re finding is no, they don’t think it’s very harmful. For example, only about 30% of seniors will tell you that smoking marijuana is harmful. That’s a low percentage. And even more alarming is, only about 25% of seniors will say, well, if I have one or two drinks nearly every day, that’s not harmful either. So when you combine the easy availability of drugs and the low perception of harmfulness, that goes a long way to explaining the substance abuse that we’re seeing.

[00:06:41] Emily Melious: I’m curious to get your thoughts on how the larger national discussion, about the legalization of marijuana in particular, how that has impacted that perception of harmfulness, or maybe it hasn’t had any impact, but to me, because it’s been such a big conversation, it’s hard to imagine that it hasn’t had any impact on those generations and their thoughts around those substances.

[00:07:07] Richard Capriola: I think it has. I agree. I think it has, because the impression out there is if we are making it more and more legal, it can’t be harmful. And that’s for the adult population. I mean, we’re not legalizing it for adolescents for good reasons, but alcohol is available and it’s legal, but it’s also potentially harmful, and so is cigarette smoking. That’s legal for adults, but it also carries risk and harmfulness. But I think the perception that more and more states are making it legal for adults, it can’t be that bad. And that’s how adolescents think sometimes.

[00:07:43] Emily Melious: And I’m curious because your stats are very eye-opening and helpful, but I’m assuming those are averages. Is there any difference between urban neighborhoods and more rural areas? Or high-income, or low-income, does that affect at all the patterns of drug use? Are there differences depending on where you’re located and other demographic qualifications?

[00:08:09] Richard Capriola: I think there can be. I think it relates also to the availability in the urban areas. It’s more likely to be available, more likely to have access. In terms of social economics , it used to be in the 60s and 70s that there was a strong relationship between income and cocaine use. The higher the income, the more likely the cocaine use. But with the advent of crack cocaine, which made it much more cheaper, that income disparity sort of went away. So I don’t think income is as big a factor today as it was 20, 30 years ago.

[00:08:47] Emily Melious: Well that’s very interesting. I still thought some of those associations were present. On some level, this is obvious, but I know you’re going to give us some more layers to this. Why is teen substance abuse so dangerous for adolescents?

[00:09:02] Richard Capriola: It’s dangerous, I think because the adolescent brain is still a process of developing. Our brains don’t get developed until around age 24 or 25. So when you begin to push an illicit substance into a developing brain, you risk the person becoming addicted, where they lose control over this substance, and you risk consequences to the use.

[00:09:30]I met with a lot of young men and women who were smoking a lot of marijuana for example. They would smoke multiple times a day. And when I asked them, well, why are you smoking so much marijuana? The number one answer that I got was, it helps me with my anxiety. But when the test results came back for those young men and women, I noticed a few things.

[00:09:51] Number one, their IQs were above average to superior. They were very bright young men and women. Their IQs were above average, but the processing speed of their brain was below average. Their short-term memory was impaired, and they would admit that their motivation was less than what it should be. They say something like, it sapped the motivation out of me. So, we can see those kinds of impact on the developing brain, which is very vulnerable when you start introducing a substance like marijuana or even alcohol into it. So that is one big difference between adolescents and adults, it’s brain develop.

[00:10:33] Emily Melious: What warning signs should parents be on the lookout for?

[00:10:38] Richard Capriola: I advise parents to pay attention to any changes that they see in their child. Notice anything that is different, anything that has changed. Some of these can be behavioral characteristics, some of them can be physical characteristics. For example, you might have a child who used to enjoy participating in sports. No longer wants to play sports. You may have a child who was very open about who their friends are. You knew who their friends are. You may have known who their parents were, and is now very secretive about who they’re hanging out with. You may have a child who took pride in their appearance, no longer cares about what their appearance looks like.

[00:11:21] So any type of changes that you see in your child, pay attention to. Some of them may be just normal developmental changes, but some of them may be an indication of an underlying issue. So you want to pay attention to them and you want to follow up on them and see if there’s something under the surface going on.

[00:11:40] Emily Melious: Let’s talk more about the following up piece because I’m thinking, oh my goodness, this is delicate and wrought with potential issues. And no parent wants to, of course, create tension or stress or worse, just ruin a relationship with their child. I’m sure children who are dabbling with or have an addiction to drugs are going to be extremely defensive about that. So, if we’re a parent and we see some of these warning signs, we may or may not know that it has anything to do with drug use. What do you do then? How do we actually effectively deal with the issue while not wrecking our relationship with our kids?

[00:12:21] Richard Capriola: Well I think it would begin with having a conversation with your child, to see how that goes. Depending upon the relationship that you have with the child, it may go very well, it may not. When we ask kids, what is it that keeps you from talking to your family about issues that are bothering you? What keeps you from opening up to them? The number one answer that we get back from them is a fear of being judged. They fear being judged by their parents. So I think you start with having that type of conversation. It may or may not go well. If it does, good, you’re off to a good start. It may not. Most of the kids that I dealt with were brought into a psychiatric hospital because their parents insisted it had gotten to be that serious a situation. But regardless of the response that you get, the next step is to get a comprehensive assessment done so that you know what’s going on.

[00:13:15]Emily Melious: Can you give us some language that we might use in that initial conversation with our kids?

[00:13:21]Richard Capriola: I would start by expressing concern. You know we’re very good at listening to people’s words, we’re not so good at listening to the feelings behind the words. So every parent , and all of us really, can learn some skills on how we listen to more than just the words, we listen to the feelings, so that when you’re talking to your child, you’re not just hearing the words that they’re saying. You’re able to understand the feelings that come behind those words. Because when you can do that, the child is going to begin to understand that you really know what they’re feeling, you understand them. And that takes a lot of practice. And there are some exercises in my workbook to help parents with this.

[00:14:05] But when you have that conversation with your child, it’s very important that you don’t just listen to the words, you listen to the feelings behind the words, because then you’ll have more effective communication with your child, a stronger connection. And if they feel that you understand them and that you’re not judging them, then they’re more likely to open up to you and talk about the real issues. You may have a child, for example, who, if you just focus on their marijuana use and you come down on them and you tell them it’s illegal and they’re not going to graduate, and they’re never going to get a job, they’re going to shut you down. But if you can get them to share with you that the reason they’re using marijuana is that they feel anxious all the time, then you’ve made some real progress because you’re getting at the core issue. And that is reached by really having a conversation with your child. Not a lecture, not something where you’re just listening to their words, but where you’re really sitting down and you’re trying to listen to the feelings behind those words, because they’re there.

[00:15:09]The kids are just not able to sit down and say, you know mom, you know dad, I smoke marijuana because I feel anxious. No, they’re most likely not going to do that. You’re going to have to dig under the surface to find it, or you’re going to have to get some professional help to uncover it.

[00:15:27] Emily Melious: How do we let them know that they’re safe and there is no judgment? Do we say, I want this conversation to be one in which you feel safe. I’m not here to judge you. I want to help you. I love you. I mean, do we just, do we state that? Is that how we help them to feel that? I mean, flush out for us what non-judgment looks like and feels like.

[00:15:50]Richard Capriola: I think it includes many of the things that you just said, reassuring them that you are there not to judge them, that you’re there to try and understand how they’re feeling and why they’re doing what they’re doing. That there no punishment involved in this, that what you’re really interested in is getting their perspective.

[00:16:10] You can share with them, you know, your perspective, but I think what you need to do is, perhaps communicate to them that the whole purpose of this discussion is for you to better understand where they’re coming from, and see how that goes. Now that may not work out well in the first conversation, they may not trust it, they may not believe it, but the more that you make that attempt, the more they will begin to see that maybe that’s true. Maybe you really are interested in what’s going on. You’re not just interested in their behavior, you’re interested in the reasons for their behavior. That may be a conversation that evolves over several sessions.

[00:16:48] Emily Melious: And I’m thinking, this is a pattern that we should be starting when they’re very young. You know, when they break curfew, and we can have a conversation about, hey I just, I want to understand where you’re coming from, what your decisions were. Or maybe they have a tantrum as a young child, right? And of course these conversations evolve with the child’s understanding and cognitive abilities, but it seems to me that this kind of conversation is much more easily had if you have that trust. If you have a pattern of no judgment. If the child has a history of course feeling safe. And , you know, every parent wants that, and we all work hard towards that, but I’m thinking if we can do that with more intention all along the way, so when we have to have these really, really tough, sometimes life saving conversations, that we don’t have to do all that leg work upfront to create the soil, if you will, to grow that garden.

[00:17:53]Richard Capriola: You are absolutely right. I had one question from a parent that went like, well, my child is a preteen. You know, they’re not in that teenage years, you know, they may be, seven, eight, nine years old. So what can I do now? And what I said to them was exactly what you just said. Begin now to set the groundwork, begin now to have the conversations, begin now to develop that trust. And I think you will find that down the road, it pays off big dividends. So there is no point at which we say, okay, you should start this now. Actually, you should start it as soon as you can as you’re raising your child.

[00:18:28] Emily Melious: I’m thinking the goal is we always want our kids to feel comfortable coming to us.

[00:18:34]Richard Capriola: We want them to feel comfortable and safe coming to us. We want them to believe that they’re not being judged no matter what they do. That’s not to say there aren’t consequences to their behavior because there will be, but we want them to understand that we are here for them. We are a parent. Sometimes we’re an advisor to them. Sometimes we are a disciplinarian to them. But we want to develop, as best we can , an environment where they feel safe, where they feel trusted, and where they can come to us and share what is troubling them.

[00:19:07]Emily Melious: So I’m going to go back to the process of once we see these warning signs, the first thing we do is have a conversation or a series of conversations, hopefully in a safe, trusting, non-judgemental environment, where they can open up about the why behind the decisions and the behavior. So we can start addressing the root cause, not so much the symptoms. And then you mentioned this comprehensive evaluation. What is that? Where do we get it? What does that look like? And tacking on one extra question, what if our kids are not interested? I’m guessing for those kids that are less responsive or open to this, and I would assume that those are the ones that are probably needing help the most and actually have a serious problem, what do we do then?

[00:19:53]Richard Capriola: Well in my book, I say that you need to get the assessment done, regardless of whether the child wants it or not. And quite honestly, most are not going to want to have an assessment done. They’re going to object to it. Okay. You’re the parent. You’re the one makes the call. So you need to get the assessment done, because you need to know what’s going on. So there are a series of assessments that I go through in the book. You need, for example, to have a good physical examination done. You want to rule out anything physically that might be contributing to the child’s behavior or what’s going on. You need an addictions assessment.

[00:20:32]You need to know what substances the child’s using, the frequency that they’re using and how long they’ve been using. And you need the diagnosis, because substance abuse disorder can either be mild, moderate, or severe. You need to know which category your child fits in and why they fit in that category. And then you need a psychological or a neuropsychological examination that gets to personality issues, that gets to anxiety or depression issues, that gets you an overall view of psychologically what’s going on with your child. Then you put it all together and you get a comprehensive diagnosis, and more importantly, you get a treatment plan, which says these are the next steps that you need to consider for your child.

[00:21:20] Emily Melious: How do we get these things? Do you start with your pediatrician and go from there? They can connect us up with resources or do we need to go find a specialist? You know, who are the professionals that we need to be in touch with?

[00:21:32] Richard Capriola: I would start with my pediatrician, because they’re more likely to get the physical exam part of it with their pediatrician, but, they also have referral sources. So that if you need, for example, to have a psychologist or a neuropsychologist, they usually can recommend those to you as well. If you need an addictions assessment, and many physicians can do a quick assessment right there in their office, and that will confirm whether or not you might need a referral to an addiction specialist like myself, that can do a more extensive assessment for you. But yes, I would first start with my family physician. If you don’t have a family physician, you might talk to the school counselor to see what recommendations they might have.

[00:22:14] You might make a call to your local mental health organization to see what they would recommend. So there are sources out there that you can turn to to get referrals for the assessments that you need.

[00:22:27] Emily Melious: That’s fantastic. It’s great to know that there’s a lot of resources, and I know in those resources, there’s no judgment there. Because, I mean, our kids are afraid of judgment. Let’s face it. We as parents, we’re afraid of judgment. I mean, this can be hard to ask for help because it’s scary to say you need help with these kinds of things. And please know, you are not failing as a parent if this is something your child is struggling with,

[00:22:49] Richard Capriola: That’s an excellent point because I think, parents go through their own emotions when they discover that their child is using a substance, usually they’re caught off guard. They’re surprised by it. They had no idea this was coming or if they did, they didn’t know how bad it really was. And also, if you have a child who has an underlying psychological issue, they are caught off by that too. So now you have a child who is using a substance, and they’re using it to medicate, say depression, or maybe anxiety. So now you’ve uncovered that too. And parents go through a whole range  of emotions from how did I miss the warning signs? What did I do wrong? Am I a bad parent? So they go through their own set of intense emotions at the same time. They may go from stages of anger, to feeling very anxious, to feeling very guilty. And I’ve seen that a lot in parents, and that’s why I wrote the companion parent workbook to accompany this. I really wrote the parent workbook to help parents. To help them work through the emotions that they’re having, and to give them a few simple exercises that might help them, for example, with anxiety. But there’s no question that parents need support, and they need help too as they’re going through this process. And oftentimes they’re neglected, you know, cause the focus gets on the kid. So, people don’t realize that many times the parents are suffering too, and they need help.

[00:24:15] Emily Melious: Yeah, and when you’re a support person, just like the caregiver effect, right? Oftentimes it’s the caregivers that get sick too, because there’s so much that you have to give in that supporting role that it can take you down as well. So that’s such an important reminder that parents need support too. And this might be a good time for you to seek out a therapist or, you know, or important allies that can come around you and that you can feel safe talking to and you can vent to. You’ve mentioned this underlying psychological condition multiple times. How frequently is drug use connected to an underlying psychological condition?

[00:24:58] Richard Capriola: In terms of my practice, almost every case. But remember, I was working in a psychiatric hospital. You know, parents were sending their kids because it had become an intolerable situation. And there almost always was a underlying psychiatric or psychological issue. Probably 70% of the patients that I saw at Menninger had a substance abuse issue on top of a mental health issue.

[00:25:22]But, it’s very frequent because kids are like adults. If we have an intolerable feeling, or an intolerable thought, or an intolerable memory, we’re going to medicate it one way or the other, because we can’t stand to have that intolerable feeling.  Many of the kids that I worked with, like I said earlier, who were smoking marijuana, when I asked them to help me understand why they were smoking so much marijuana, they said it helps with my anxiety.

[00:25:51]Some of them, it helps with depression. Some of them are children who have had traumatic experiences in the past, or maybe been bullied in the past. And these create feelings that are intolerable. So somewhere along the line, that child has been introduced to a substance, maybe by a friend who might be suffering from the same anxiety, and they found out that the marijuana or the alcohol helps. And once they latch on to that solution, they’re going to continue to return to it until we’ve helped them with the underlying issue. It’s not enough just to address the marijuana use or the alcohol use. That’s important, that needs to be treated, but if we don’t find out and treat the underlying issue, the chances of them abstaining over a long period of time are significantly less.

[00:26:40] Emily Melious: Right, well we need to equip them with coping mechanisms, healthy ones. And I do think it’s critically important that we all recognize this connection to the psychological disorders, because I derive from that, that we as parents can be more empathetic to what’s going on, because I’m hearing you say that it’s not kids being deviant for the sake of being deviant. They didn’t set out to do something illegal. They didn’t set out to go against our teachings. They were solving a very painful problem and they chose to solve it in the wrong way. But it came from, like you said, intolerable pain. And I think that’s a good place for us as parents to start, particularly reminding ourselves when we go into that conversation, when we confront them, because we can be kinder. We can be gentler. We can be more empathetic, rather than the, I can’t believe you did. How could you, or what were you thinking? Or, you know, what I’m sure we feel like we want to say. But coming at it from a place of empathy and understanding that it is often rooted in pain. And to your point, let’s help them address that pain in healthy ways, but recognize that there is a pain at the base of this. Richard, what can parents do to foster an environment that reduces the probability of their child abusing drugs?

[00:28:04]Richard Capriola: Begin as early as you can to develop a trusting relationship and open communication with your child. It’s never too late, no matter what the age of your child. It’s never too late to reach out to them. It’s never too late to begin to help them understand that you are there for them, that you are there to try and understand what they’re going through. It’s never too late to learn some skills on how you can listen to more than just words, but feelings. And once your child begins to understand that you really are listening to what they feel , they may start to open up more and you’ll have a more trusting, productive relationship with them. But start as early as you can, but it is never too late to start that process of building that kind of relationship. And even if your child is 17, 18 or 19, it may become frustrating, it may become angry. But if you continue to work at it, you can still develop that relationship.

[00:28:59]Emily Melious: And your answer is going to scare me, I know it’s coming. What age should we really start getting serious about looking out for this as a danger in our children’s lives?

[00:29:10] Richard Capriola: It can be any age. It can be any age.

[00:29:13]Emily Melious: Like seven, eight, nine? Ten, eleven, twelve? At what age do you kind of see as a turning point where kids on the early end, start to get involved with substance abuse?

[00:29:25] Richard Capriola: Well, what we notice is that the early ages, the sevens, the eights and the nines, they tend to gravitate more towards inhalant use. Things like nitrous oxide, glue, paint, things like that. Many of these objects are readily available around the house. And maybe they’ve learned it from I’m another kid, and they start sniffing glue. They start sniffing, you know, paint, or any substance really that has a volatile odor to it. We tend to see that at the very young ages, the problem is their brain is extremely young at that age. And these substances, have a very rapid, but very short term life. So what that means is the child is more likely to rapidly continue to use it and produce more damage.

[00:30:14] Now, as they get older, and they get past that seven, eight, nine, age bracket. They tend to move away from inhalants and gravitate more towards the marijuana and the other drugs. So we don’t see very much inhalant use in the older adolescents, we see it in the younger adolescents. By the time they transition into middle school or high school , they more likely move to alcohol or marijuana.

[00:30:41] So, you need to be aware that these substances can be abused at very young ages. And that’s why I recommend to parents, if you have any of these substances around the house, make sure they’re secure. If you have any prescription drugs around the house, make sure they’re secure. Because kids, particularly older adolescents, are very good at raiding the liquor cabinet and raiding the medicine cabinet as well. If they’re not using it for themselves, many of them are selling it. Even their own prescription drugs like Adderall or Ritalin. They’ll sell it to other kids.

[00:31:16]Emily Melious: We can’t fool ourselves into thinking that my child’s not old enough for that. This really could be , gosh, an elementary school thing. Ugh! Well Richard, as you’ve referenced so many times, the book that you’ve written called The Addicted Child, A Parent’s Guide to Adolescent Substance Abuse, you have that companion workbook. How can we get our hands on that?

[00:31:35]Richard Capriola: The best way and the easiest way is to go to the book’s website, which is www.helptheaddictedchild.com. And on that website, you can see endorsements, you can read book reviews, you can order the book. You can order the parent workbook, or you can just go to Amazon and type in the title too. There’s a link  on the website where, if people have a question or they want to contact me, they’re able to do that. But the easiest way is just to go to www.helptheaddictedchild.com.

[00:32:07]Emily Melious: Well, Richard, this has been, again, an eye opening conversation, a tough one, but an important one. So thanks again.

[00:32:14]Richard Capriola: Thank you for having me and thank you for your contributions.

[00:32:18] Mothers of Misfits: Thanks for joining us for this episode of the Mothers of Misfits podcast. Make sure to subscribe, so you never miss an episode. We also invite you to visit us at MothersOfMisfits.com.



Emily Melious

Emily Melious

Talent Management Consultant | Career Coach | Podcast Host

Richard Capriola Headshot

Richard Capriola

Former Addictions and Mental Health Counselor


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