What Do You Think?: Pharming Parties
Sunday, May 5, 2013 at 11:54PM
Lynda Rae in alcohol, drugs, partying, peer pressure, pharming, pills, prescription drugs, substance abuse

What do you think about this scenario?

Steve just moved to a new school this year. He is meeting new friends and becoming more and more popular. One day at lunch, his friends are talking about Billy’s party on Friday. They invite him and tell him it is a “Pharm Party” (Pharmaceutical Party). Steve is a little confused on what that is so he asks his friends about it. They tell him just to grab some pills from his parent’s medicine cabinet and bring them with him on Friday.

Friday comes along and Steve has three containers of pills. He doesn’t know what they are. Steve gets picked up by his friend and his friend’s mom and they head to the party. She drops them off at Billy’s house with pockets full of pills. They go inside, are handed a beer, and then they all sit around in a circle with a bowl in the middle. Everyone starts dumping in all their pills into the bowl. Billy mixes the pills and then tells everyone to take a couple and swallow them with their beers. Steve looks down and stares at the bowl not sure what to do next.

Questions for Discussion:

1. What would you do if you were Steve?  What are the pros and cons of each path he could take?
   
2. What do you think are potential consequences of mixing different prescription drugs and alcohol?  Could Steve or his friends die from doing this type of partying?    

3. Considering how dangerous it is, why do you think the teens are participating in this type of partying?  What do they gain from it?

4. Is it worth it for Steve to take a risk just to be popular?  Could he turn down the pills without offending his new friends?  If so how?

5. How would his parents feel if they found out he not only stole their pills but then went to a party like this?  What if he or someone else was disabled or killed by taking their drugs?  Could his parents get in trouble with the law for that or would it be Steve’s fault?

Factoids:

What Mentors Can Do to Help

Give your reason and make it a joke to reduce tension and perceived rejection. “No thanks, I need all the brain cells I can get for this math test I have tomorrow.”   

Blame your parents (even if its not true). “I can’t, my parents randomly drug test me.”  Or “I have to check in with my parents every x hours so I have to be sober or they will know and I will get in big trouble.  Sorry it's just not worth it.”

Bad experience (yours or others). “A friend did that and he went blind for a week! (Or had to go to the hospital etc.)  I’m so freaked out about that I couldn’t enjoy it, no thanks.”

"I'd rather not spend the entire night on the toilet if it's a diuretic."

Article originally appeared on Fighting Back Mentor Program Resource Center (http://mentor-center.org/).
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