Hookah lounges: acceptable teen hangout?


#1

My son is 17 and just starting to go out and hang with his friends (we live 25 miles from town, so his social life has been a bit more limited than many teens). One of the places they hang out is a hookah lounge (for those not in the know, a hookah is a type of pipe used to smoke herbs… apparently legal for underage kids.)

The place sponsors a teen night for kids 13-17 and this is when my son goes and they do karaoke and have pizza, but no hookahs. A couple of my son’s friends go on that night and their parents keep an eye on things. But on weekends, the place admits the 18-20 crowd and that is when it becomes a “hookah lounge”. Granted, there is no alcohol and no (tobacco) smoking, but I’m concerned. I’m not sure I want my son experimenting with any kind of smoking or even being in an establishment that deems smoking–even non-tobacco–acceptable or encourages it. For now, he cannot attend “hookah” nights because he is under 18 and my husband and I have made it clear that we don’t want him smoking ANYTHING, even when he gets to be 18.

I guess I’m just curious as to how widespread this fad is. Anyone else have any info on this? Thanks.


#2

While the smoking is one thing, I wouldn't worry too much about the people at the lounges. Attending hookah bars is one of the more cultured things he could be doing, so maybe you could try to see if that has anything to do with it and foster that side of him. I've been to these places, really it's just people smoking flavored tobacco or herbs and playing acoustic guitars or fiddling with their laptops or chatting. Honestly, they're not grizzly chain-smoking bikers.


#3

#4

I know when I was in Georgia we had a hookah lounge that also sold Salvia ( a legal hallucinogen). It was a hot spot for sex, drugs, and general bad stuff. Kids under 18 were only suppose to be let in on weekdays, but there were no ID checks. In general it was a pretty bad enviroment.

On the opposite spectrum I know there is a Hookah lounge a few hours from where I'm at. The kids from the Christian college love to go there and do Bible studies, chill, and just hang out. It's a nice "hip" atmosphere that seems harmless for the most part. I don't know if I'd let my child go just because I know how easy it is to go from smoking hookah to cigarettes, but other than that there's nothing wrong with that place in general.

If where your son goes welcomes parental involvement its probably more like the second place and harmless for the most part.


#5

[quote="bluerose, post:1, topic:244934"]
For now, he cannot attend "hookah" nights because he is under 18 and my husband and I have made it clear that we don't want him smoking ANYTHING, even when he gets to be 18.

I guess I'm just curious as to how widespread this fad is. Anyone else have any info on this? Thanks.

[/quote]

Yes,:sad_yes: please, keep it that way. Won't want him dying, or with cancer and black lungs. :dts:


#6

My son just turned 18 in May (last month) and he "has" gone to hooka lounges (not that we wanted him to, but at 18 we are finding we don't have as much control). A number of his friends, as well as my son, have explained to us what they are. We are OLD parents (in our early 60's) and have four older children, 3 in their 40's & one who is 35. Our older children tell us "not to worry" and that these lounges are just part of this generations "culture" but still very tough to swallow for old parents like us. I empathize greatly & wish I could offer more support, but we are also struggling with this. I do know that they do not allow anyone in unless they have a picture ID showing they are 18 yrs old. From what we have learned from ALL of our children, this type of lounge is pretty widespread.


#7

Thanks for all the replies. So far, from what I have been able to ascertain, on teen nights (13-17) they won't let in anyone 18 or older... and on hookah nights, you can't get in unless you're 18 or older.

The business's website states that it is doing it's part to promote a safe place for teenagers to hang out... no drugs or alcohol, no wild parties. They also have a skateboard business and offer lessons to teens as well as sponsor Little League teams. I have to say, in a town the size of ours where there aren't many places for teens to hang out (we have one movie theatre and not much of a mall) it's a relief to know that the kids aren't driving out to the desert with their friends and having parties without adult supervision. I will keep a close eye on my son's behavior... right now, one of his friends is preparing to compete in a singing competition at the county fair in August and she is honing her skills performing at the teen night karaoke competitions...

sigh I don't think I'm ready for a teenager yet!:shrug:


#8

The herb smoking part would concern me. There have been several programs on tv about cloves and salvia smoked to get high.

When you say a hookah lounge, it reminds me of old movies where people sat around on pillows in a smoky den, sucking on a water pipe, but they were smoking opium (yeah, that other herb that comes from poppies). Maybe cloves and salvia aren't addictive or carcinigous.


#9

I just looked up what a Hookah Lounge is ... hmmm... not certain what to think about it.

Wondering what about cities, counties that have banned smoking in public places. Would this affect the "hookah lounge"?

Bluerose, NO ONE is ever ready for teenagers. Been there, done that. As my sainted Mom said "I used to be an attractive woman, then I had teenagers." HA!

Prayers & hugs to you


#10

When you say a hookah lounge, it reminds me of old movies where people sat around on pillows in a smoky den, sucking on a water pipe, but they were smoking opium (yeah, that other herb

PattiDay, same visual I conjured up. YIKES!


#11

don't let some hookah-smoking caterpiller tell you what to do
(am I showing my age?)

no matter how badly you want to react to the news you kid is hanging out in hookah-land (bell bottoms came back, crop tops came back, it was only a matter of time) never let them see you sweat. Find out as much as you can, and consider being one of the chaperones on teen night. That should dampen your own kids' enthusiasm for the place.

herbs. right. yeah I believe that.


#12

[quote="puzzleannie, post:11, topic:244934"]
don't let some hookah-smoking caterpiller tell you what to do
(am I showing my age?)

no matter how badly you want to react to the news you kid is hanging out in hookah-land (bell bottoms came back, crop tops came back, it was only a matter of time) never let them see you sweat. Find out as much as you can, and consider being one of the chaperones on teen night. That should dampen your own kids' enthusiasm for the place.

herbs. right. yeah I believe that.

[/quote]

Yeah, my first thought was "Alice in Wonderland", too!

Funny enough, the "18 and over" night last week was a '70s themed party!

DH and I have done a few "drive bys" on teen night... and DH works for the city, knows some guys at DPS (which is a block away from the hookah lounge), has given them the heads up... Our son has made a few bone-headed decisions (what teenager hasn't???), but on the whole is pretty level, as are most of his friends... I guess I just have to trust and nag/not nag enough to remind him that smoking even harmless herbs is not a good thing. And I friended the owner of the establishment AND his wife on Facebook and made sure they knew I was a parent who'd be monitoring conditions... they were very happy to accept my friendship offer, assured me that they took good care of the teens, and insisted that I feel free to ask questions or drop by anytime (I am apprently one of about a dozen parents who've done the same... and our kids have not disowned us yet!)

@cradlecatholic5--apparently, hookah lounges are not considered to be in violation of non-smoking laws because they are neither smoking tobacco nor illegal drugs.

I have to remind myself that my generation was into break-dancing and spraying graffiti on overpasses (not that I did either, but I had friends who had friends who did :o)... now we have kids, mortgages and SUV's and jobs to pay for them, so I guess everyone has their phase to go through... and the parents survive as well!


#13

Because of how it works, hookah is nowhere near as physically harmful as any other type of smoking. The herbs being burned are natural, meaning they don't have any of the cancer-causing tar or adhesives that cigarettes do, and because the smoke is water-cooled, there is also no temperature damage to the lungs or throat.

Hookah is one of the most harmless things a teenager can do. I have friend's that go, though I don't because I have a psychological aversion of inhaling smoke or vapor (almost a phobia, to the point that showering is incredibly unnerving). However, hookah is only about as hard on the body as inhaling water vapor in the shower.


#14

I guess I have no real advice but want to say as the mom you have the right to say "Hey, I don't like this and think it's a bad idea"


#15

[quote="bluerose, post:1, topic:244934"]
My son is 17 and just starting to go out and hang with his friends (we live 25 miles from town, so his social life has been a bit more limited than many teens). One of the places they hang out is a hookah lounge (for those not in the know, a hookah is a type of pipe used to smoke herbs... apparently legal for underage kids.)

The place sponsors a teen night for kids 13-17 and this is when my son goes and they do karaoke and have pizza, but no hookahs. A couple of my son's friends go on that night and their parents keep an eye on things. But on weekends, the place admits the 18-20 crowd and that is when it becomes a "hookah lounge". Granted, there is no alcohol and no (tobacco) smoking, but I'm concerned. I'm not sure I want my son experimenting with any kind of smoking or even being in an establishment that deems smoking--even non-tobacco--acceptable or encourages it. For now, he cannot attend "hookah" nights because he is under 18 and my husband and I have made it clear that we don't want him smoking ANYTHING, even when he gets to be 18.

I guess I'm just curious as to how widespread this fad is. Anyone else have any info on this? Thanks.

[/quote]

If you said no would he stop going?


#16

[quote="dprewett, post:15, topic:244934"]
If you said no would he stop going?

[/quote]

Oh, yes... he wouldn't like it, but he'd agree and he wouldn't make a big fuss over it. He went last night and had a blast singing karaoke with his friends (teen night, so no hookahs). So far he hasn't given me a reason not to trust him. We're taking it one day at a time and keeping the lines of communication open with him, his friends and his friends' parents.


#17

[quote="bluerose, post:12, topic:244934"]

@cradlecatholic5--apparently, hookah lounges are not considered to be in violation of non-smoking laws because they are neither smoking tobacco nor illegal drugs.

[/quote]

I'm confused. I thought that shisha was tobacco. Do they smoke something else? I thought that smoking hookah was generally considered about as dangerous as smoking cigarettes and people tend to do it longer since it's a more social activity. It is much more pleasant though and the tobacco is usually flavored. :)

The place your son is going sounds nice and it seems like the owners are watching after the teenagers visiting. I think it wouldn't be any worse than if he was going out to the mall to visit friends and he seems to really enjoy going


#18

[quote="ConsciousCoward, post:13, topic:244934"]
Because of how it works, hookah is nowhere near as physically harmful as any other type of smoking. The herbs being burned are natural, meaning they don't have any of the cancer-causing tar or adhesives that cigarettes do, and because the smoke is water-cooled, there is also no temperature damage to the lungs or throat.

Hookah is one of the most harmless things a teenager can do. I have friend's that go, though I don't because I have a psychological aversion of inhaling smoke or vapor (almost a phobia, to the point that showering is incredibly unnerving). However, hookah is only about as hard on the body as inhaling water vapor in the shower.

[/quote]

Tobacco is a "natural" herb, so it is a fallacy that natural things are not harmful. Many hookah "herbs" are really tobacco.

Smoking cigarettes is falling out of favor so now the big tobacco companies must find a new way to hook kids.


#19

It’s as dangerous as smoking cigarettes.

From Richard D. Hurt, M.D.

Hookah smoking is not safer than cigarette smoking. Also known as narghile, shisha and goza, a hookah is a water pipe with a smoke chamber, a bowl, a pipe and a hose. Specially made tobacco is heated, and the smoke passes through water and is then drawn through a rubber hose to a mouthpiece. The tobacco is no less toxic in a hookah pipe, and the water in the hookah does not filter out the toxic ingredients in the tobacco smoke. Hookah smokers may actually inhale more tobacco smoke than cigarette smokers do because of the large volume of smoke they inhale in one smoking session, which can last as long as 60 minutes.

mayoclinic.com/health/hookah/AN01265

I personally have no problem with people smoking cigarettes (though I would never touch the stuff myself), but know what your children are doing.


#20

Our town has a “supervised” teen hangout where many parents drop off their kids for the evening.

Well it’s only supervised inside. Outside, all kinds of bad things happen: fights, drugs, alcohol. And the kids can leave anytime they want w/o their parents knowledge or permission and go anywhere and do anything, returning in time for their clueless parents to pick them up again.

Just something to think about regarding “teen nights” at ANY kind of business.


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