Mischanceful bonds and risk self-perception among young cannabis users – a preliminar exploratory study


Literature review suggest that parental death may impair the child’s ability to form an image of him/herself as both capable of helping him/herself and deserving of help from others (Bowlby, 1977, Baker, 2007; Huh, 2017).


There is evidence in literature that the experience of parental absense impacts well-being by increasing the likelihood of other stressors, as potential alcohol and drug use/abuse and could also amplify vulnerability factors to future adversity (Stoker & Swadi, 1990; Jeynes, 2001; Hayatbakhsh et al.2006; Hoffman, Cerbone & Su, 2000)

This exploratory and descriptive study wants to explore a potential association between the impact of parental death or absence by divorce and the possible association to risk self-perception about drugs related problems in cannabis regular and recreational users.

In this exploratory research we collected, at this moment 90 young cannabis users, non reincident nor drug dependent, collected since setember 2018 from instated processes with suspensive rulings according to the law nr.30/2000, 29th november.

The data were collected by a semi-estrutured interview that was conducted in the 1st phase of the dissuasion intervention model. The questions are about substance use (history, current frequency and context, problems related), family history, social functioning and scholar and work situation, clinical problems or complaints (physical and mental), readiness to change, risk self-perception, future goals.

“The value of interviewing is not only because it builds a holistic snapshot, analyses words, reports detailed views of informants; but also because it enables interviewees to speak in their own voice and express their own thoughts and feelings (Berg, 2007 cit. por Alshenqeeti, 2014).

The preliminar findings shows CDT setting as the first occasion they have acepted talk about their substance use and out the family cell. The results also show that youngers with biographic memories linked to a parental loss emphasize peer group importance as determinant to a first met with cannabis. The need to lead with negative emotions is the motive mostly assumed to insist in a regular use pattern. These young users are also less supported through childhood and adolescence by educational and health responses. Only 2% goes to their family doctor often and talk at least one time in their lives about their drug consumption pattern. About the readiness to change, less express their choice to stop or reduce cannabis comsumption and had a low counsciousness of being in risk of development associated problems. Alcohol and cigarette were in the large sample the beginning drugs in a earlier age until the later marijuana use, as expected.

We should consider put on the agenda the importance of build internal strategic responses integrating dissuasion intervention, directed to these vulnerable youngers with the aim to encourage them to communicate about their lifes in a less defensive manner, to reduce distortions under their life choices, and to cope with developmental challenges feeling more positive emotional self-regulation.



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