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Updated: 39 min 52 sec ago

Chatroom test

February 9, 2017 - 11:41am

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new DESK.Widget({ version: 1, site: '', port: '80', type: 'chat', displayMode: 1, //0 for popup, 1 for lightbox features: { offerAlways: true, offerAgentsOnline: false, offerRoutingAgentsAvailable: false, offerEmailIfChatUnavailable: false }, fields: { ticket: { // desc: '', // labels_new: '', // priority: '', // subject: '', // custom_case_status: '', // custom_first_name: '', // custom_last_name: '', // custom_email: '', // custom_phone: '', // custom_city_and_state: '', // custom_time_zone: '', // custom_psn_transfer_date: '', // custom_case_assignment_date: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_1: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_2: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_3: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_4: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_5: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_6: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_7: '', // custom_coaching_call_date_8: '', // custom_baseline_completed: '', // custom_icarol_case_url: '', // custom_refer_back_to_partnership: '', // custom_how_was_case_closed: '', // custom_gender: '', // custom_primary_drug: '', // custom_next_coaching_call: '', // custom_cmc_fu_date_1: '', // custom_cmc_fu_out_1: '', // custom_cmc_fu_comment_1: '', // custom_cmc_fu_surveyor_1: '', // custom_child_age: '', // custom_next_call_time: '' }, interaction: { // email: '', // name: '' }, chat: { //subject: '' }, customer: { // company: '', // desc: '', // first_name: '', // last_name: '', // locale_code: '', // title: '' } } }).render();

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Categories: Alcohol News Feed

Top 8 Reasons Why Teens Try Alcohol and Drugs

February 7, 2017 - 1:36pm

There is no single reason why teenagers use drugs or alcohol. But here are some of the core issues and influences behind the behavior of teenage drug and alcohol use.

It’s important that you, as a parent, understand these reasons and talk to your kids about the dangers of drinking and using drugs.

1. Other People. Teenagers see lots of people using various substances. They see their parents and other adults drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes and, sometimes, using other substances. Also, a teenager’s social scene often revolves around drinking and using marijuana. Sometimes friends urge one another to try a drink or smoke pot, but it’s just as common for teens to start using a substance because it’s readily available and they see all their friends enjoying it. In their minds, they see drug use as a part of the normal teenage experience.

2. Popular Media. Forty-five percent of teens agree with the statement: “The music that teens listen to makes marijuana seem cool.” And 45% of teens agree with the statement “Movies and TV shows make drugs seem like an ok thing to do.” (PATS 2012) So be aware of the media that your son or daughter is consuming and talk to them about it. In addition, 47 percent of teens agreed that movies and TV shows make drugs seem like an OK thing to do, according to a 2011 study.

3. Escape and Self-Medication. When teens are unhappy and can’t find a healthy outlet for their frustration or a trusted confidant, they may turn to chemicals for solace. Depending on what substance they’re using, they may feel blissfully oblivious, wonderfully happy or energized and confident. The often rough teenage years can take an emotional toll on children, sometimes even causing depression, so when teens are given a chance to take something to make them feel better, many can’t resist. For example, some teens abuse prescription medicine to manage stress or regulate their lives. Sometimes they abuse prescription stimulants (used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) to provide additional energy and the ability to focus when they’re studying or taking tests. Others are abusing prescription pain relievers and tranquilizers to cope with academic, social or emotional stress.

4. Boredom. Teens who can’t tolerate being alone, have trouble keeping themselves occupied or crave excitement are prime candidates for substance use. Not only do alcohol and marijuana give them something to do, but those substances help fill the internal void they feel. Further, they provide a common ground for interacting with like-minded teens, a way to instantly bond with a group of kids.

5. Rebellion. Different rebellious teens choose different substances to use based on their personalities. Alcohol is the drug of choice for the angry teenager because it frees him to behave aggressively. Methamphetamine, or meth, also encourages aggressive, violent behavior, and can be far more dangerous and potent than alcohol. Marijuana, on the other hand, often seems to reduce aggression and is more of an avoidance drug. Some teens abuse prescription medicine to party and get high. LSD and hallucinogens are also escape drugs, often used by young people who feel misunderstood and may long to escape to a more idealistic, kind world. Smoking cigarettes can be a form of rebellion to flaunt their independence and make their parents angry. The reasons for teenage drug-use are as complex as teenagers themselves.

6. Instant Gratification. Drugs and alcohol work quickly. The initial effects feel really good. Teenagers turn to drug use because they see it as a short-term shortcut to happiness.

7. Lack of Confidence. Many shy teenagers who lack confidence report that they’ll do things under the influence of alcohol or drugs that they might not otherwise. This is part of the appeal of drugs and alcohol even for relatively self-confident teens; you have the courage to dance if you’re a bad dancer, or sing at the top of your lungs even if you have a terrible voice, or kiss the girl you’re attracted to. And alcohol and other drugs tend not only to loosen your inhibitions but to alleviate social anxiety. Not only do you have something in common with the other people around you, but there’s the mentality that if you do anything or say anything stupid, everyone will just think you had too many drinks or smoked too much weed.

8. Misinformation. Perhaps the most avoidable cause of substance use is inaccurate information about drugs and alcohol. Nearly every teenager has friends who claim to be experts on various recreational substances, and they’re happy to assure her that the risks are minimal. Educate your teenagers about drug use, so they get the real facts about the dangers of drug use.

Additional Resources:

  • Are you feeling overwhelmed or have a question about your child’s drug or alcohol use? Call our toll-free Helpline where you can speak with a trained and caring, master’s-level support specialist at 1-855-DRUGFREE (1-855-378-4373).

We are grateful to Dr. Neil I Bernstein for his help preparing this article and for sharing his insights from his book How to Keep Your Teenager Out of Trouble and What to Do if You Can’t.

The post Top 8 Reasons Why Teens Try Alcohol and Drugs appeared first on Partnership for Drug-Free Kids.

Categories: Alcohol News Feed

7 Ways to Show Love this Valentine’s Day

February 6, 2017 - 11:43am

It’s the season of love. Here are 7 easy ways you can show love and kindness, while also supporting families who need help for a loved one struggling with substance use or addiction.

1. Send a Loving and Supportive Message
Our eCards are a terrific expression of encouragement and can show how much you support a loved one in recovery.
Send an eCard >

2. Uncover a Unique Gift
Check out India Hicks, the destination to find unique bags, accessories, jewelry and fragrance to pamper the one you love. They are hosting a charity shopping online event from now through Wednesday, February 8, 2017. Ten percent of event sales will go toward our work to help families.
Shop India Hicks >

3. Give a Heart
Read one of our Stories of Hope and leave an encouraging comment to someone in recovery. “Heart” a story to share some love – just click on the heart.
Show some love >

4. Offer Empathy and Compassion
When talking with your teen or young adult – especially about difficult topics like drug and alcohol use – try to express your understanding of how he or she may be feeling. It’s not always easy but it will help you engage better with your child and promote open and positive communication.
Set the stage for positive change >

5. Take Care of You
As parents, we often find ourselves taking care of everyone else, before we take care of ourselves. Taking care of yourself is VITAL to helping your child and the rest of the family.
Make a self-care promise >

6. Find (Almost) Any Gift at Amazon
Shop AmazonSmile and we will receive 0.5% of your total purchases from Amazon. AmazonSmile is the same Amazon you know. Just use the URL instead of Then enter our name – Partnership for Drug-Free Kids – as your charitable organization.
Shop AmazonSmile this Valentine’s Day >

7. Donate $14 (or more!)
Did you know that $25 trains one local professional to deliver community education on substance use? Consider making a donation to the Partnership and your dollars will immediately make a difference in the lives of families looking for support and guidance for a child’s addiction. We are grateful for whatever you can give.
Make a donation today >

Thank you for your continued support of the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. Your generosity will help provide families with the tools they need to take effective action for their son or daughter’s substance use and addiction. We are grateful for your thoughtfulness and wish you and your family a healthy and happy Valentine’s Day.

The post 7 Ways to Show Love this Valentine’s Day appeared first on Partnership for Drug-Free Kids.

Categories: Alcohol News Feed

The Super Bowl Takes Courage, Perseverance and Teamwork. So Did Our Sons’ Recovery.

February 3, 2017 - 11:16am

My family lives in New England and we are huge Patriots fans – we have lots to be excited about.

I’m the father of two sons whom I love very much and am very proud of. I believe my sons work as hard as professional football players do. Every day they overcome adversity and accomplish the task at hand. The ultimate prize isn’t a Super bowl ring, though. The stakes are much higher. The opponent they faced was cunning and powerful enough to exert a deadly grip. What was the serious struggle they both tackled? Substance use.

This has impacted our entire family. At times, my sons fought with all the strength and determination they could muster from their body, mind and spirit. They had treatment and support from friends and family. We stayed in their corner, believed in them and cheered for them.

Young people struggling with substance use and those early on their path to getting well need all the help they can get. As do their parents or primary caregivers.

Do you have a son or daughter who is struggling with substance use? I hope Super Bowl Sunday presents an opportunity for you to have empathy for your child. If you watch the game together, could you lead by example? Would you need to have alcohol there? Consider offering an alcohol-free beverage and have one, too.

Save any urges to argue with your son or daughter. Scream at the game on TV instead. You don’t need to get into a heavy discussion about drugs and alcohol (despite alcohol being advertised heavily during the game.) Call a time out if you need to remind yourself about what is most important to you and your family. (I know, sometimes, easier said than done.)

An opportunity might present itself to tell your son or daughter that they can always count on you and come to you for support, guidance or just to spend time together. Try to catch your child doing something good and let him or her know it. Share a fond memory, make his or her favorite appetizer or give a simple pat on the back – or whatever connection you both need to break the ice.

If you can’t be with your child, a brief phone call can remind him or her how much you care.

My wife and I chose to advocate for our sons when they could not advocate for themselves, especially concerning treatment. We helped them navigate what’s often a broken system of care. We helped to open doors to treatment, but once inside, they did all the heavy lifting. We remained engaged by trying to encourage and motivate them to get well and feel better about themselves. We chose to look at all the good inside them and to believe in them. We may have hated the drugs, but we never stopped loving our kids. Rather than detaching, I guess we attached with love. However, we did let them suffer the negative consequences of their actions. And I certainly cleaned up more messes than I should have based on what I know now.

Today they are fine young men with integrity and wisdom beyond their years. They are my heroes. I’m proud to say they have been on a good path for a very long time. For my youngest son, who is now 29, that means almost 10 years in recovery. And for my oldest son, almost six years. I have learned so much from them and my extremely supportive wife, who has been an amazing mother throughout it all.

This Super Bowl Sunday my family has a lot to be grateful for.

The more we encourage positive change in each other, the more lives can be saved. More families can heal. More young people can get well and go on to realize their tremendous potential.

GO, all you kids out there who are still struggling! We are here for you and believe in you!
GO, all you kids who are on a healthy path of recovery!
GO, all you wonderful, supportive parents!

Paul’s Recommended Reading and Resources:

* Learn strategies to help families deal with their child’s substance use.

* Read Beyond Addiction: How Science and Kindness Help People Change and The Parent’s 20-Minute Guide.

* If you are concerned about your child’s drug or alcohol use, visit Get Help and call the Partnership’s Toll-Free Helpline to speak with a trained and caring, master’s-level support specialist about your child’s at 1-855-DRUGFREE (1-855-378-4373).

The post The Super Bowl Takes Courage, Perseverance and Teamwork. So Did Our Sons’ Recovery. appeared first on Partnership for Drug-Free Kids.

Categories: Alcohol News Feed

An Open Letter to My Son or Anyone with a Drug Addiction

February 2, 2017 - 1:05am

In 2010, Ron Grover wrote an open letter to his son with a drug addiction, or anyone with a drug or alcohol addiction, that still moves us today. Writing a letter to your son or daughter who is struggling with dependence or addiction can be cathartic for both the parent and child.

It can also allow you to express the caring and emotion you feel that might be harder to communicate in person.

Read Ron’s letter below and ask yourself if letter writing might be a good option for you. Tell us: What you would write to your son or daughter?

Dear Son,

Life is not easy. It’s not easy if you have a drug addiction — or even if you don’t. It’s all about evolution. The strong survive. It’s not just about physical strength; it is more about mental strength. Do you have the will to survive? Do you have the strength to make it one more day?

As a person who has never had a drug addiction or alcoholism, I can only speak from that perspective. My insight into your world is only through observation. I do not wish to walk in your shoes. But I can tell you what it is like to walk in mine – if you are serious about recovery.

Every day I have unfulfilled wants and they are not centered on anyone else. It may seem selfish, but I believe that the center of one’s being can only revolve around oneself. I want things, I want different feelings, I want changes in others, I want, I want, I want. It really never ends. I believe that desire is no different for anyone – a person with a drug addiction and those without.

Daily there are people out there telling you, “No” – a boss, friends, parents, spouses, and significant others – that is just a part of life. Disappointment and hurt is as much a part of living as joy, happiness and love. Hurt is the same for those with an addiction as it is for those without. The difference is how we react to and cope with our emotions, whether they are good or bad. I don’t know what drugs do for a person with an addiction to help cope with disappointment. I don’t know how drugs heighten the joy of happiness. But I do know that my life would be very monochromatic without the peaks and valleys.

I have no doubt from observing you that you hated every day that you were using drugs. I can see how your life was out of control, spiraling into a pit of hurt and despair. You became so lost that the helping hands of others could not even be grasped.

I see your struggles with being clean. More pain than joy. It’s a time in your life where the scales are not balanced. You are working so hard to survive but everyone is saying, no.  There are so many frustrations. What is the use, you may wonder?

There is one place where no one will say no. There is one life that will accept you. The life of drug use that you have known for the last several years. That is the easy path to take.

But, please know that the immediate pain you feel now will eventually fade.

Just as when my father died, there was terrible pain for me. I wanted to pick up the phone and call him, but I knew I couldn’t. I wanted one last time, for old times’ sake, but I couldn’t. I flashed back to all the good times, but they were not to be any more. I believe that feeling of loss is something similar to what you are experiencing in order to live on. Your old life must die – and there is tremendous pain with that death. Each day you will want to use just one more time. Time may heal all wounds but sometimes the scars are there forever.

In time, the scales will balance and you will experience more joy than pain. But for now you must travel the difficult path and find the will to survive. You will become stronger each time you choose to steer away from that dangerous and tempting path at the fork in the road. It may be hard to see because the path to recovery is difficult. But please know you are not walking alone – hands of help are reaching out to you with your every step.


The post An Open Letter to My Son or Anyone with a Drug Addiction appeared first on Partnership for Drug-Free Kids.

Categories: Alcohol News Feed

Si Encuentra A Su Hijo Adolescente Fumando Marihuana

January 24, 2017 - 12:17pm

Si encuentra a su hijo adolescente y a sus amigos fumando marihuana, primero que nada, no entre en pánico. Manejará la situación mejor si se mantiene calmado.

Luego, dice Phillippe Cunningham, un Ph.D. en psicología clínica y profesor asistente en el Departamento de Psiquiatría y Ciencias del Comportamiento de la Escuela de Medicina de la Universidad de South Carolina:

  • Sea bien específico y claro con su hijo al decirle que no quiere que use drogas o que se asocie con amigos que usen drogas.
  • Castigue a su hijo por asociarse con esos amigos que usan drogas quitándole sus privilegios (puede encontrar ejemplos a continuación) y recompénselo en forma positiva por asociarse con amigos que usted no crea que usen drogas u alcohol (ej., acceso a privilegios).
  • Contacte a los padres de los amigos y cuénteles que encontró a su hijo y a sus amigos (el hijo de ellos) fumando marihuana en su casa y como castigo, limitará el contacto de su hijo con el de ellos (por un mínimo de una semana, sin embargo, si los encuentra de nuevo, puede que tenga que eliminar todo contacto con ellos). El asociarse con amigos que usen drogas es el motivo principal del uso de drogas en adolescentes.
  • Contactar a los padres de los amigos de su hijo puede ayudar de varias formas: (1) le envía un mensaje claro sobre su hijo a los amigos y a sus padres de que usted habla en serio sobre no querer que su hijo use drogas, (2) a menudo, causa que otros padres castiguen a sus hijos, (3) proporciona un modelo útil para otros padres sobre qué hacer si se encontrasen en una situación parecida, (4) provoca ayuda de parte de otros al ayudar a vigilar a su hijo (en realidad “Se requiere a todo un pueblo para educar a un niño” [It Takes a Village to Raise a Child”]), y (5) puede avergonzar a su hijo, lo cual es un motivador poderoso para la mayoría de los adolescentes.
  • Si usted tiene una buena relación con su hijo adolescente, puede ser bastante poderoso el hacerle entender que él tiene que volverse a ganar su confianza a través de supervisión obligatoria. De esta manera, usted no le permitiría a su hijo estar solo en casa sin supervisión adulta (lo cual puede ser un gran inconveniente para él) y requerirle que esté siempre en casa a horas tempranas. Sin embargo, mientras su hijo le demuestre que está haciendo lo que debe de hacer de nuevo, desde tareas escolares hasta tareas en el hogar, usted puede comenzar por alargar las horas de llegada y por aumentar el tiempo en el que él esté bajo supervisión adulta (pero deberá continuar monitoreando sus andanzas y amistades).
  • Préstele atención a los esfuerzos que haga su hijo de actuar responsablemente. Ya que el uso de castigos tiene el mal efecto de debilitar la unión emocional (sin mencionar el aumento del enojo, del resentimiento y del “sigilo”) usted deberá establecer oportunidades para encontrar a su hijo portándose bien.

The post Si Encuentra A Su Hijo Adolescente Fumando Marihuana appeared first on Partnership for Drug-Free Kids.

Categories: Alcohol News Feed

Self-Care in the New Year

January 5, 2017 - 1:33pm

Is your child struggling with substance use? Believe it or not, taking care of yourself is critically important to helping your son or daughter. This New Year, resolve to take better care of yourself so that you can be more relaxed, balanced and resilient – and be your best self and the most effective helper to your child.

If you have a son or daughter with a substance use problem, worry, frustration and feelings of helplessness probably consume large amounts of your time and energy. As you focus on your child, taking care of yourself probably falls to the bottom of the list, if it makes the list at all.

You might reason that you’ll feel better when your child gets better, so it makes sense to prioritize his/her needs at your (and perhaps the rest of the family’s) expense for now.

This impulse to suspend paying attention to your own health and happiness is understandable, but may contribute to more problems than you realize if it causes you to be reactive, anxious or easily frustrated. Your child is struggling with a variety of issues and she/he needs you to be strong, calm and optimistic. It helps if you are sleeping, eating well and finding some comfort and joy in your life. It helps if you don’t hang your well-being on his/hers. Having your health and outlook on life be dependent on the choices your child makes can be too much for a child – even an adult – to bear.

Taking care of yourself is vital to helping your child and the rest of the family. Try to resist putting your life on hold and living only in emergency/panic mode. How can you possibly go to the movies when you’re worried that your child is out getting high again?! Well, what if taking a break from worrying is the most helpful thing you could do right now?

Remember the safety announcement on planes before takeoff: secure your own oxygen mask first before helping someone else. This is for the benefit of the whole group. Helping works the same way on the ground. You need a certain amount of “oxygen” (sleep, nutrition, exercise, socializing and fun) to sustain you as you help your child. Without attention to your own needs, you risk collapsing before you manage to help. Even if you stay standing, you won’t be able to think, plan, act and troubleshoot as effectively as you can when you’re healthy, optimistic and resilient.

Helping your child change his/her relationship to substances will likely be a long-term project that’s better approached as a marathon, not a sprint. You’ll need to keep your energy reserves up and pace yourself for the long and sometimes bumpy road ahead. You’ll need to prepare for hills, weather and competition. Even if your situation improves fairly quickly – and we hope it does – you’ll be more helpful if you bring your best self to it.

We are not being touchy-feely psychologists when we say this. We are trying to help you be tactical in the midst of a difficult struggle, and it matters.

We recommend that you spend some time each week doing something that makes you feel good, relaxed, content, soothed…something that’s a WANT, not a SHOULD. We recommend that each week, you take a few minutes to review how your self-care is going and to set reasonable, SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely) for taking care of yourself in the week ahead.

You might find yourself wondering how in the world you can make this a priority when you have so many other, more urgent demands to attend to.  We ask you to try, because the oxygen mask metaphor is true: you won’t be any good to anyone else if you are not taking care of you.

So, what’s your self-care goal for this week?

Key Takeaway: Taking care of yourself is vital to helping your child and the rest of the family. Spend some time each week doing something that makes you feel good, relaxed, content and soothed.

Additional Resources:

  • Download The Parent’s 20 Minute Guide, CMC’s guide for parents about how to help their children change their substance use.
  • If you’re feeling overwhelmed or have a question about your child’s drug or alcohol use, call the Partnership’s toll-free Helpline where you can speak with a trained and caring, master’s-level support specialist at 1-855-DRUGFREE (1-855-378-4373).
  • Get tools and resources to help you better understand what may be going on with your child, make a plan and learn skills to effectively address his or her substance use. Visit Get Help >
  • Research suggests that families can set the stage for positive change with a more effective approach. Read an overview of Community Reinforcement and Family Training (CRAFT) which includes self-care.

We are grateful to Cindy Brody, Director of Intensive Services at Center for Motivation & Change (CMC), who contributed to The Parent’s 20 Minute Guide from which this post is adapted.

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Categories: Alcohol News Feed