Over the past few decades, drug experimentation among teens is actually down. Enough negative findings have come out to dissuade the average teen from using hard drugs, drugs that were more popular in past decades. Despite this reduction, I believe the reason for drug use is changing for a lot of kids. Earlier, people tried things out for fun, at the expense of their social image. It was a harder decision to make, and therefore required more thought. Today, in a society a little more open about drug use, there is less of a stigma. more and more, kids party not for fun, or out of curiosity, but for attention. They do it to look cool. Now, I am not going to argue that the lifting of that stigma was a bad thing. However, the attitude it has created is.
Take alcohol for example. High school and college kids have always been known to drink, and society has been pretty accepting of it for a long time. More than ever though, there is a stigma on not drinking. Because of this, kids who aren’t ready, don’t know their limits, or drink in the wrong circumstances are becoming a bigger demographic. This behavior often results in humiliation, drunk driving, risky sex, sexual harassment, and alcohol poisoning. As a generation, we may not be partying more, but we are doing so with half the contemplation and twice the confidence.
Photo by “Caveman Chuck” Coker