0:00:00 – Speaker 1
nextTalk, sponsored by nextTalk.org, contains content of a mature nature. Parental guidance is advised Music. Welcome to nextTalk Radio with Mandy and Kim every Saturday at 10 am on AM 630, the Word. Mandy is the author of Talk and I’m the director of nextTalk, a nonprofit organization helping parents’ cyberparent. Follow us on Facebook, twitter and Instagram, find videos and subscribe to our weekly podcast at NextTalkorg. Are you ready for the nextTalk?
0:00:37 – Speaker 2
Today we’re going to be talking about addictions drug and alcohol specifically. You know how do we start this conversation early and how can we prevent addictions from happening. Last week we were talking about stress and the week before that we were talking about cutting and suicide and bullying. So all this kind of fits together because a lot of times our kids are so stressed out that they look for ways to cope or escape the real world. And so we see that through cutting, self-harming and addictions, you know they want to escape.
0:01:11 – Speaker 1
They want a way to get away from the emotions because they don’t have a coping mechanism. That’s healthy.
0:01:17 – Speaker 2
Yeah, and we talked a lot about that on the last show just about modeling coping mechanisms for them, because we all have high stress Adults and teens. Now you know we heard from the APA who are saying it’s like an equal level here. We’re all stressed out the same amount, and so we want to find proactive, preventative ways to prevent our kids from getting to the point where they get to a drug or alcohol addiction or cutting, and so that’s really what this show is about. But if you have a teenager who is actively has a drug addiction problem or alcohol addiction, seek medical attention, get a counselor, psychiatrist, psychologist, love your child through it, fight for your child. But today we really want to focus on that preventative conversation.
0:02:10 – Speaker 1
It’s you know, one of those things, another one of those difficult topics that you think, well, when is the right time?
0:02:15 – Speaker 2
0:02:16 – Speaker 1
I start this. You know what kind of a talk is it. It’s going to look different for everyone, but I and you know, mandy, we always say use real stories.
0:02:24 – Speaker 2
0:02:24 – Speaker 1
Your family members, maybe celebrities that they know of or look up to, or at least they’re aware of, maybe athletes, and not in a shameful way, but in a factual way. You want to share the information what happened to these people and why you wouldn’t want that to happen to them.
0:02:43 – Speaker 2
Yeah, yeah, you know we talk real specific in our family about, you know, the lie of just try it one time, or one time won’t hurt you, or everyone doing it. You know I’ll tell my kids that’s complacency, that’s Satan trying to get you addicted to something that’s going to ruin your life, yeah, and so you have to have your guard up. Those things are. Trying it one time can make a difference Absolutely.
I know recently my daughter she’s in eighth grade they had a guest speaker at their school and he used to play in the NFL and he told them about a story about one of his friends who tried cocaine on his first time. He died and it was a makeup of how it interacted with his body. And she came home and she told my elementary aged kid about it and at first I was like ooh, that’s too much information. But then we had this great conversation about it and I was like this is a great story, this is something we need to share and I loved it. It was just a great thing seeing my teenager model for my younger son. Yes, and kind of, create this conversation for me.
0:03:51 – Speaker 1
I was just gonna say so many times, these great conversations come out of an organic situation yes, you know, in my mind I’m thinking this will be a good time to talk about this, but it usually doesn’t happen that way. On the go, as we already say Deuteronomy 6, 6 and 7. In the car, when you’re going to bed, when you’re waking up, those are the times when you’re gonna have these conversations. The first time we talked about addictions was my son. He is a late night kid, just like my husband. You know he wakes up about 8 pm when I’m like going to sleep.
0:04:25 – Speaker 2
Oh bless it. It’s so hard. He had blessed it, girl. Those late night children. Oh it’s hard Because I like my sleep, I like to go to bed.
0:04:34 – Speaker 1
Well, and I’m a morning girl Like if he woke me up at 5 am I’d be like yeah let’s have a talk, but you know he had class.
0:04:40 – Speaker 2
Yeah, I’m not morning girl either.
0:04:42 – Speaker 1
Yeah, you’re yeah, what kind of a girl are you? I’m like midday mama. I’m a midday mama. That’s how I am. I like to sleep late and go to bed early.
0:04:53 – Speaker 2
Like I got problems.
0:04:56 – Speaker 1
Well, at least you know, At least you know, I’m working on it, you’re working on it.
0:05:01 – Speaker 2
I’m looking in the mirror and working on it.
0:05:03 – Speaker 1
Well, I’m not a late night kid or a mom and my son, one of my sons is, and so we call it an L and D, which is a late night date. That’s when we like pop popcorn and we’ll read or talk about something.
0:05:18 – Speaker 2
You schedule this on your calendar.
0:05:19 – Speaker 1
I don’t, because I try to, but I have two other kids and sometimes they need something. You know what I?
0:05:27 – Speaker 2
mean, and then he’s looking forward to it. So, yeah, you don’t want to do that so.
0:05:30 – Speaker 1
I don’t schedule them. I try to. It didn’t work for us, but he’s big into it.
0:05:36 – Speaker 2
So it’s like a surprise thing.
0:05:38 – Speaker 1
Yes, and he’ll say mom, can we have an L and D? And I’m like okay, so one night we’re having this L and D and we’re talking and I mentioned to him could you pray for our nextTalk team? Cause we were which is a normal thing in our family Like we’re having an event tomorrow and the kids will pray. But this time he says well, what’s the topic? And I said oh, don’t you want to read Thomas the?
0:06:05 – Speaker 2
train. Let’s see how you did this. 100% honesty, mom. Oh it was.
0:06:10 – Speaker 1
And of course it was a team one of the ladies on our team and her husband talking about pornography addiction, and thankfully we had kind of already talked about pornography, good pictures and bad pictures. We read the book, and so, if that part of the conversation wasn’t so new, but I told him who it was and he was okay with that. I said you know, cause he knows our team. I said our team is talking about this, and then we started talking about addiction through that and how it comes in different forms. We talked about good pictures and bad pictures. Then we talked about food yeah. Then we talked about cigarettes yeah. Then we talked about drugs. And there we are snuggled up like eight o’clock at night talking about pornography addiction and then other types of substances that people can be harmed by, right. And so it was an organic, unexpected conversation with my seven year old, but he was ready for it and he totally understood Right, and we backed it up subsequently with other conversations and so it’s actually been a really good thing.
0:07:17 – Speaker 2
Okay, good, that’s great. Another thing that I, when I was writing this chapter for my book, I tried to kind of figure out how did I start this conversation so early with my kids, even before we talked about drug and alcohol? What did I really? I kind of had to dig deep, yeah, and I found myself. You know, with early elementary kids I’m talking kindergarten and first grade you can talk about developing habits, yes, and it’s a great conversation that kind of segues into this whole addiction thing, yes, so, for example, you know I would use I would use light hearted examples. You know I have a diet coke addiction and my whole family knows it, yeah, and so I would tell them this. This is why I don’t want you guys drinking soda.
Yeah, because I’m addicted to it and it’s hard to get off of it, like, I’ve gotten off of it and now I’m back on it again, and now, like it’s a struggle.
0:08:09 – Speaker 1
You know, I’m a coffee girl. So, that was an easy one for me to explain to my kid.
0:08:14 – Speaker 2
And the other thing is cussing. Yeah. You know, like my kids and I’m kind of weird like this, I know I know this is not a big deal in the grand scheme of things, but you know to say the word frick or freak, I just don’t like it. Yeah, I just I’m just like it’s an extra word. Why are you adding it into your language? You know these kindergartners and first graders.
When my kids were at that age and they came home and they were saying it, I was like wait a minute, why are we adding this? Yeah. And then I said to them because when you get in middle school, you’re going to replace that for a cuss word. Yeah, that starts with an F word, and then you’re going to have a habit of saying that word. And then when you get a job you’re going to have to break that habit. Or when you go on an interview, you can’t say the F bomb. Or when you’re in a, you know, situation where you’re giving a speech at your school, you can’t talk like that.
And so why even start the habit? Yeah, if it’s not a good habit. And so having and you can do this so early with your kids you can talk about screen addiction. Like you know and we’re going to talk about that next time because that’s a whole other topic that we now have to deal with we do Another type of addiction, first generation dealing with it. But I mean we can so simple, like when you, when your kids, wake up, let’s not check our screens first. Do we really want to start that habit of that’s the first thing that we do? Yeah, that’s a hard one for me to Well, if you have it on your nightstand yeah and you look to see the time.
0:09:42 – Speaker 1
Use it as your alarm.
0:09:44 – Speaker 2
Yeah, use it as your alarm. Yeah, my kids have real alarm clocks in their room, but I don’t. Oh, that’s bad right, I’m not modeling it. I’m not modeling it.
0:09:54 – Speaker 1
I actually got a real alarm clock for that reason and my husband despises it because it’s one of those old schools like Conair I got it from the bottom of a garage sale pile.
0:10:05 – Speaker 2
And it goes nice.
0:10:06 – Speaker 1
He’s like it is awful, but I’m trying, I’m trying.
0:10:12 – Speaker 2
Yeah, you know, the other conversation that’s come up a lot is I’m not a drinker, I don’t drink alcohol, and there’s a reason behind that. I drink a lot of alcohol in college and made some real stupid decisions. I’ll just be quite honest with you, and you know there’s addictions that run in my family and I struggled with how I was in college and I never want to be that person again, yeah, and so a lot of times, you know, we’ll go to parties with other families or whatever, and everybody’s having a beer or whatever, and I’m not, yeah, and my kids notice Mm, hmm, and they’re like mom, why don’t you drink? Yeah, and so we have this conversation, you know, and I’m like, and they’re like well, maybe everybody should be like that. And I’m like no, wait a minute. You know we can’t shame people.
A lot of people can do this in moderation and they can have one or two and it doesn’t affect them and they don’t have addiction, tend to tendencies like maybe I do, and so it’s perfectly fine. And so when you are 21, that’s a decision that you get to make on your own. You know, can I handle this a little bit at a time and not get to the point where I’m drunk. Yeah, you know where it’s out of control, where where I was in college, that’s what I remember when I was drinking. But just to have these frank conversations about when you’re, like you said, an organic experience, that it creates this conversation around it.
0:11:37 – Speaker 1
And I want to stop here for just a second and encourage you, because a lot of times I’ll hear from moms well, I don’t want to bring it up like what I did in my past. You know how I did this drug or I drank in college and I was a crazy mess because I don’t want them to think because I did it it’s okay for them. I just want to encourage you that that is a lie from Satan. Yep, to keep our mouths closed and keep things in the dark. The more you bring it into the light and you share true stories about how it affected you and why you live the way you do now, it actually creates change in a different legacy in your family. It is not presenting a new concept for your child that they’re going to take and run and do themselves.
0:12:19 – Speaker 2
Let me let me present the other side of this coin. I have talked to a lot of teenagers who think their parents are perfect and that they are messed up. And they can’t confide in their parents when they mess up because their parents have never explained big struggles that they’ve had in their past. So it is really important to be honest with our kids.
Now we don’t have to give them every little detail. Obviously, my husband knows a lot more of those details than my kids do, but in general I can be very honest with them and create a moment of teaching out of my past mistakes.
0:13:03 – Speaker 1
If you’re just now tuning in, this is nextTalk Radio with Mandy and Kim every Saturday at 10 am on AM 6 30. The word nextTalk Radio is listener supported. Everything we do at our nonprofit to keep kids safe online is accomplished through donations To support our organization. Go to nexttalkorg and click on give.
0:13:24 – Speaker 2
Okay, we got to dive into this a little deeper now, because I feel like there’s a conversation in our world that we kind of have to address here, and this is the marijuana debate, because it’s going to come up with your kids. I don’t know if y’all know it, but there’s actually National Weed Day. It’s April 20th of every year. It’s where Stoners unite in National Weed Day, and so your kids are going to see this trending on social media in April. They’re going to see all of this. They’re going to see the conversations about the legalization of marijuana.
I want to tell you I think there’s two different things going on here and I approach this in my book, just so everybody knows where we’re coming from. I think there’s the legalization of recreational use and then there’s the legalization of medical use. There’s two different things. What I want to point out here is we’re not really speaking into the medical part, correct? We’re not doctors, correct? We don’t know treatment. That is up to the medical community, and I don’t feel like I even have to say in that because I’m not educated in that realm, right? So we’re really talking about the recreational use, correct? So what is statistic show about recreational use? And when we start having this conversation with our kids. How do we talk about it?
0:14:41 – Speaker 1
Yeah, well, there’s a lot of information out there that can sway your kids and a lot of things that you might hear, but there are some really good information.
0:14:52 – Speaker 2
Yeah, the National Institute on Drug Abuse says. A recent survey highlighted continuing concerns over the softening of attitudes around some types of drug use, particularly a continued decrease in perceived harm of marijuana use. They use the word softening. I think that equates to complacency. Yep, remember those verses? Satan comes to seal, kill and destroy. The National Institute on Drug Abuse also notes regular use of marijuana by teens may have a negative and long lasting effect on their cognitive development. Absolutely Partnership for drug free kids, says. Quote marijuana, just like any other drug, can lead to addiction. It affects the brain’s reward system in the way, in the same way as all other drugs, of addiction.
0:15:49 – Speaker 1
According to the American College of Pediatrics, marijuana is a risk for both cardio respiratory disease and to stick your cancer, and is associated with both psychiatric illness and negative social outcomes.
0:16:04 – Speaker 2
It’s crazy, you know, and the normalization of it is creating this kind of complacency that I almost feel like marijuana is our generation of cigarettes, like that’s how kids think of it. They do, everybody, does it Everybody, and it’s some people don’t even realize it’s illegal in our state or in Texas.
0:16:23 – Speaker 1
Yeah, I mean, some kids are like what it’s legal, yeah, because we got National Weekday on April 20th. That’s easy to access. Their friends are doing it, parents, some parents are doing it or allowing it. And so the more that it becomes normal, quote unquote we become complacent, like, well, maybe it’s not that big of a deal, yeah, and maybe we need to direct our thoughts to other things. And that’s when it takes a hold with our kids.
0:16:50 – Speaker 2
Yeah, yeah. So another thing. You know, we kind of are tackling the marijuana thing.
0:16:55 – Speaker 1
Let’s talk about another thing, kim yeah yeah, over the counter drug abuse and use.
0:17:01 – Speaker 2
Prescription, I mean prescription drugs. It’s a big deal. The opiate epidemic, you know this is painkillers being used for our kids to get high and they mix it with other things to be a cocktail and we need to, you know. Look deep within too, that this prescription pain addiction thing doesn’t just happen with kids.
0:17:27 – Speaker 1
I recall when I had a major health concern and issue and the medicine that they gave me for pain relief. I was looking it up online just to find out like drug interactions and stuff like that, and I was reading these statistics about it being the number one addictive substance for young stay at home moms. Yeah, and that just struck me because it’s such a transitional time for moms and here’s-.
0:18:00 – Speaker 2
And it’s stressful, and it’s stressful, you’re not sleeping you need energy.
0:18:05 – Speaker 1
Yes, and that stuck with me and I remember the moment when I was taking this medicine, for that was prescribed and that I was supposed to be taking. I remember the moment, thinking I’m looking forward to this next dose because it’s relaxing and it’s like an escape and it takes away the pain, but it also makes my mind feel calm and that was that turning point.
0:18:28 – Speaker 2
Like I, was like oh, my goodness, oh my goodness, it’s real.
0:18:30 – Speaker 1
Like it’s real. I see it and I feel it, yeah, scary. Yeah, it’s real scary and it is so prevalent. I don’t think people realize.
0:18:43 – Speaker 2
I don’t think so either, and so many kids think well, they’re prescription drugs, they can’t be bad, they’re fine. Doctors prescribe them, and so this is another conversation that you need to enter into. When they’re little Like I’m talking elementary school you can say only take medicine prescribed by a doctor and you need to make sure that you’re not relying on that medication in painkillers and that kind of thing. We talk about it. We talk about how you can get addicted to painkillers and it can be an issue. It can lead to other things. I mean, it’s a start of a spiral. You know, I say in my book it’s like a knitted sweater it pull, you, pull it and then eventually you don’t realize it, and then there’s a big gaping hole and something major is happening in your life and you’re addicted and you don’t know what to do, and so we really need to have these conversations to prevent that from happening.
0:19:39 – Speaker 1
And, you know, starting that conversation, like we said, organically about tendencies and addictions and all of that, that’s a good way to start it and, as they get older, talking about real life experiences, either with yourself or their friends, and letting them know of the possibility that they’re going to be approached. That was something that you know. We have sweet friends with young kids and I remember the first time they’re sixth grader, a friend was like just take this. Yeah, like just real casually at school lunch, just take this. He had it rolled in his sock, yeah, you know. And they were just shocked Like how could this happen?
Yeah, what do you mean? And it was just eyeopening that you’ve got to prepare your kids by talking to them about what it looks like and how it can happen to?
0:20:24 – Speaker 2
Well, you know, there have even been national stories about kids coming to school that with things that look like candy but it’s actually drugs In the candy and um, you know, I have conversations with my, my middle schooler, about how you don’t take even candy from somebody you don’t know. You know, now in middle school they have a little bit more. I give her a little bit more discretion because they share food. They share whatever. You know, elementary school is kind of more structured. Nobody shares food. Yeah, he’s allowed to do the whatever. But in middle school, you know, I say you have to use your discretion. But if it sounds weird, if it’s, you don’t take it. Or if it’s somebody that you know does drugs and they offer you something, don’t take it. Yeah, you know, I mean just these conversations, um, and I think that can go a long way in creating this safe place for them to come tell you when they are approached, um, tell them to like. How to say no, like, no, thank you, in a non-judgmental way. You know, I know so many of our kids.
They’re afraid to be confrontational or they’re afraid, oh my gosh, they’re going to think I’m, I’m, I’m such a goody two shoes, and they’re an awful person. And so how do you phrase it? In a way that it’s like oh man, no, that’s not for me, thanks, you know. Whatever, yeah, um, but being able to role play with them on how to say no.
0:21:48 – Speaker 1
Our thing is it’s just not my thing, it’s just not my thing. And we talk about that now, about all kinds of different things that our kids come in, come into contact with at a young age. So I’m hoping that that seed is planted, so when it becomes these bigger issues like drug and alcohol, um, being offered to them, that they’ll know, hey, it’s just not my thing. And then that’s okay, that they have practiced it enough that it is a normal thing to say yeah.
0:22:14 – Speaker 2
I would say don’t avoid conversations because you’re afraid you’re going to plant something in their heads. You know we talk about this all the time, but it it’s really about being preventative, and they’ve heard these things. Yeah, I mean, they’ve heard these things. My kid is in fourth grade and you know they have um, what is it called? Red ribbon reek, where they’re already saying no to drugs in elementary schools. So they’re already kind of hearing these things, but they don’t really quite understand what it means, and so it’s a great opportunity for you to talk through it.
0:22:48 – Speaker 1
Your kids are going to be offered drugs. You just need to know that your kids are going to want to escape reality At some point because, guess what, so do you and so do I, and they are going to have those same feelings. You’ve got to talk them through that role play. How to say no? Talk them through different coping mechanisms so that they don’t turn to an addictive substance. We have to have these conversations to present the bad cycle from even starting parents, I want to speak to you for a moment.
0:23:15 – Speaker 2
If you are addicted to prescription drugs or any other drugs, god still loves you. You’re not a horrible person. What we are saying is get help so that you don’t pass this on to your kids, that they see this and they don’t all of a sudden think that’s the way to cope, because I can see how this can so easily happen, especially in this stay at home mom group that I’m telling you about. You know so many people think oh, stay at home mom sitting on the couch eating bonbons. I think all men think that maybe, yeah, I don’t know.
Anybody who’s actually been a stay at home mom. It is the hardest job I have ever had and I thought it was going to be so easy, but there’s no paid vacation, there’s no downtime, there’s no like vacation hours that you can take. It is a constant 24 seven, and I can so see why somebody would want to no-transcript.
0:24:11 – Speaker 1
Like I said, in that moment I knew like I’ve got to make a choice because this would be very easy, and so I’m with you in it. I understand it and it’s okay. There’s help to be had.
0:24:26 – Speaker 2
0:24:26 – Speaker 1
And if you can’t do it for yourself, do it for your kids. Yes, you know.
0:24:29 – Speaker 2
I feel like I have made a lot of changes in my life just to turn around our family legacy, like I’ve had to look in the mirror and admit some really hard things to myself about bad things that I, that I need to change, just because I love my kids that much. I love my kids more than myself, so I’m not willing to change for myself, but I’m willing to change for my kids, whatever it takes to turn it around.
0:24:52 – Speaker 1
For our wrap up segment today. Let’s go over three good points. Number one if you have a child currently addicted to drugs, please seek medical attention. It’s important you need help. Number two be proactive in talking to your kids about addictions. Talk about developing good habits at an early age and if they’re older, it’s not too late. It’s never too late to start these conversations. And number three role play with your kids on how to say no to drugs and resist peer pressure in a way that makes sense for them. Explain why it’s important to say no.
0:25:26 – Speaker 2
Thanks for joining us on nextTalk Radio with Mandy and Kim every Saturday at 10 am on am 6 30 the word. You are not alone trying to figure out how to parent in this digital world. We are here with hope and practical solutions to help you. Follow us on Facebook at nextTalk, or Instagram and Twitter at nextTalk, or subscribe to our weekly podcast at NextTalkorg. Are you ready for the nextTalk?
Transcribed by https://podium.page