Quote of the Week

"If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way" ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

How to Talk with your Teen about Marijuana
Posted by:Jenn--Thursday, July 30, 2015

Developed by the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, the Marijuana Talk Kit helps parents have meaningful, productive conversations with their teens about marijuana use.  Click here to view the talk kit.  

Inside the Marijuana Talk Kit, you will find:
·      Facts about marijuana
·      Why weed is still risky for teens
·      Ways to talk with your teen about marijuana
·      What you should - and shouldn't say - when talking with your teen
·      How to respond to your teen’s questions and arguments
·      Resources to help

To be added to their email list, or to make a contribution to support similar community awareness aids, please visit the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids.

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K2 & your Teenager’s Heart
Posted by:Jenn--Friday, July 24, 2015

If synthetic marijuana is sold in stores, it can’t be all that dangerous, can it?

New research from Children’s National Health System Synthetic has shown that synthetic marijuana, known as K2 or Spice, decreases the flow of oxygen to the heart in teenagers and can cause serious heart complications. Decreased oxygen levels to the heart can have serious consequences in youth, from shortness of breath and chest pain to the pediatric equivalent of a heart attack.

Synthetic marijuana is unacceptably readily available for purchase by children and puts them at risk of serious health issues including cardiac damage,” says Dr. Berul, a nationally-recognized pediatric heart rhythm expert.

Click here for the full article.

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Miracles DO Happen
Posted by:Jenn--Sunday, July 12, 2015

Click here for an uplifting story posted recently in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette “Mission Mahi food truck serves up more than tacos”.   An alcoholic who also also became addicted to pain medication, his life spinning out of control, Jimmy Woods had a spiritual experience in rehab that gave him a clear focus on his own recovery.  In April, he opened a food truck business selling his signature fish tacos in the Pittsburgh, PA area.  In addition to serving tacos, Jimmy is also happy to share his recovery story.  His main goal is “to give others hope and a safe place to talk and not be judged.”

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No Enabling in this Family!
Posted by:Jenn--Thursday, July 09, 2015

Thanks to Lorraine for sharing the following story.  She has maintained clearly defined boundaries with her son, refusing to enable his (former) drug-related behavior, and continuing a healthy relationship by encouraging appropriate activities.

My son moved to Miami when he was first on his own. He was almost 21. Immediately before that, he was at First Step Half Way house. He was having some level of success with regard to drug use, in that he was functioning, but he was still using. He was not yet convinced to come completely clean. That sometimes takes awhile.

He was attending Allegheny Community college, transferred his credits to Miami Dade Community, and continued at Miami Dade when he arrived in Miami.

I did not give him any money for rent. I never co-signed anything. I did make the mistake of having a joint bank account with him since that saved him money in checking account charges, but after the issues with banking fees due to him using his debit card when he didn't have any money in his account, I removed my name off the account within 6 months.

When he finished Miami Dade within a year after arriving in Miami, he was accepted into University of Miami for a 4 year degree. At that point, I co-signed a school loan, because that was the only way he could continue to University of Miami. At this point, with his success at Miami Dade Community college, exercising a level of responsibility for himself in Miami, maintaining a full time job as a server in a restaurant, I felt that he deserved this chance to get a 4 year degree at University of Miami. However, even though he was functioning well, he was still using. I did co-sign that loan with some level of expectation that I would be paying off the loan myself. 

He still lives in the Miami area. He just turned 29 and has been completely clean for 3 years. No drugs, alcohol or tobacco. He works as a computer programmer and earns a fair salary. And he is in the process of paying back his school loans. 

And I still do not give him any money for anything. And I still would never co-sign anything. As he has his successes, I will buy him things, which is mainly related to his athletics. He participates in triathlons, which is an expensive sport. And I will indicate to him that the reason I buy him whatever it is I am buying him, is due to his success in staying clean. I make sure he understands the association between me buying him expensive things for his sport and him continuing to stay clean. 

When he first went to Miami, he had his issues with his drug use and we were at the point in our relationship that we could discuss such things. He once told me, "Mom, The only thing that works is having $100 in your pocket and having to choose between a bed to sleep in and drugs." I still keep reminding myself of this statement to this very day .... years later.

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