Parents Beware: 10 Stupid Things Your Kid Might Try Over Summer Break

surfingx-largeJust compiling this list of stupid things your kid might do over summer break was enough to drive me, as a parent, into a massive anxiety attack.  After all, summer break should be about camps, swimming, going to the beach, parks, and hanging out with friends.  Unfortunately the combination of unsupervised kids, the internet and time to burn can be a deadly combination.

After the shock of my anxiety attack died down, this list is meant to frighten you as a parent and perhaps to wake you up to the possibilities of immature behavior that goes way beyond the fears of social media, bullying, internet pornography, and gambling.  Unfortunately each of these items is very easy to research on the internet and some even have YouTube videos explaining how it works.

  1. Choking Game, Pass-Out Game, Fainting Game, Space Monkey.  This is self-administered or friend-administered choking to the point of losing consciousness in order to achieving a high.  Every time your kid does this, they lose brain cells that can never be regenerated and some have even died from it.
  2. Huffing, Sniffing, Dusting, Bagging.  This is sniffing inhalants found in common household products such as bug spray, room deodorizers, and glue.  The poisonous chemicals are sprayed into a rag, inhaled directly from the container or sprayed into a bag placed over your kid’s head creating a high when inhaled.  Numerous cases of permanent brain damage have been reported.
  3. Drinking bleach.  There are many false rumors on the internet that drinking bleach will help your child to pass a drug test or that it is an effective way to commit suicide.   Rather, your kid is likely to end up in the emergency room with severe intestinal, stomach, and esophagus damage.
  4. Sexting, Rounds, Nude Pictures.  The idea of rounds is that you start small such as sending a picture of bare skin to another kid and they in return send another one back with each one escalating the previous picture.  Sexting and nude pictures are commonly done with iPods, iPads or cell phones.
  5. Boozy Bears, Drunken Gummies, Rummy Bears.  Gummy bears are soaked in rum or vodka and then eaten in order to get drunk.  The worst part is that the gummy bears look normal after they have absorbed the alcohol so it is difficult to detect.
  6. Eyeball Shots, Eyeballing.  Kids put vodka directly into their eyes in order to get drunk and avoid the alcohol smell on their breath.  Many kids have found that this leads to blindness instead.
  7. Butt Chugging, Vodka Tampons.  Frightening but true, another way kids get drunk is by soaking tampons in vodka and then inserting them into the rectum.
  8. Skittle Parties, Pill Parties.  Kids raid parents, grandparents, and friend’s parent’s medicine cabinets looking for prescription drugs.  Typically they only take a couple of pills as not to be noticed and then place all of the pills gathered into a bowl.  Then the kids roll some dice and take the number of pills which match the number on the dice.  The pills are taken randomly so no one knows what effect it will have after being ingested.
  9. Purple Drink, Purple Jelly, Texas Tea.  Made popular by several RAP songs, this is a drink combination of Jolly Ranchers, Sprite, and liquid codeine cough medicine.  The concoction produces hallucinations, unresponsiveness and lethargy.
  10. Car Surfing, Ghost Riding, Urban Surfing.  Kids stand in a surfing position on the top of a car, hood or trunk while the car is in motion with speeds as high as 55m.p.h.  The driver is usually a teenager who is inexperienced in handling vehicles.  Teens are two to three times more likely to be involved in a fatal car accident compared to experienced drivers.

It is truly shocking to learn the stupid things kids will do because someone told them it would be a good idea.  Lest you believe that these are just the older high school kids doing such acts, several articles indicate that kids as young as 10 are engaging in these behaviors.

Now that you are warned about the latest in stupid things kids do, it is your job to educate your child and remove dangerous items from your house.  Prescription medication, alcohol, and dangerous household chemicals should all be locked up not just for your kid’s safety but the safety of their friends who come over.  Talk to your kids about choking, car surfing, sexting and bagging; more than likely they already know of someone who has tried at least one of these items.

This is not the time to bury your head in the sand, naively believe that your child would never do one of these things, or minimize the risks by justifying your own poor choices as a kid.  Instead, be aware, communicate, and educate so your kid won’t become a negative statistic.

 

There is hope for your exhaustion.  Repairing, restoring, and rebuilding relationships takes time, energy and effort.  If you find yourself needing more help during this process, please call our offices at 407-647-7005 to schedule an appointment.  Or you can send me a quick email at chammond@lifeworksgroup.org.

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Article about Similarities Between Fructose and Alcohol

This is a frightening article about the similarities between fructose and alcohol. Not only are the health issues troubling but the addictive implications are equally troubling. A person can be addicted to sugar and fructose just like other substances.

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Repairing, restoring, and rebuilding relationships takes time, energy and effort.  If you find yourself needing more help during this process, please call our offices at 407-647-7005 to schedule an appointment.  Or you can send me a quick email at chammond@lifeworksgroup.org.

What if Church was more like an AA Meeting?

Imagine for a moment what church would be like if the Pastor or Announcer began church with, “Hello my name is ___ (fill in with name) and I’m a recovering sinner of ____ (fill in the sin)”.  Would he or she be so bold to admit to their church not the mildest of sins such as a white lie but the grander sins of adultery, stealing, or a pornography addiction? Or perhaps he or she would admit to a personality disorder such as narcissism, borderline, or dependant.  How different would church be if everyone was expected to be honest about their past and present and not pretend to have it all together?

Record numbers of youth are leaving the church for precisely this reason with some estimates as high as 70% of America’s youth who was brought up in church does not return as an adult.  For the youth, they know that they do not have it all together and they do not want to go to a place that expects everyone to act as if they do have it all together.  This trend can be changed but it requires honesty at very deep levels with friends, acquaintances and even complete strangers.  Here are four things spelling CARE which AA does well in their meetings and could improve the atmosphere of any church.

Confessing sin.  One of the essential elements of AA meetings is for an addict to admit their addiction and also admit if they have been tempted recently or given into temptation.  Admitting your sin in front of others is hard but by doing so it holds you accountable to everyone in the room.  This would be quite a moment in the church if everyone knew of your personal struggles with a particular sin.  Just imagine a person struggled with gossip who admits it to the whole congregation, now the whole congregation can work on not gossiping with this person, talk about accountability!

Admitting sin is a life-long battle.  Another essential element of AA is admitting that once you are an addict you will continue to be an addict.  Yes God can and often does remove the desire for an addiction but He sometimes allows it to continue as a reminder that His grace is sufficient.  We are all born with a sinful nature so trying to pretend that we don’t continue to struggle with sin is futile.  Instead if everyone in church openly admitted to their sinful struggles, those struggling with the same sin could feel empathy instead of judgment.

Recognizing God’s grace.  “I have been sober for 1203 days” is a standard statement at an AA meeting.  This statement is designed as a continual reminder that each day is to be lived one day at a time and a reminder of the day they made a decision to do something different with their life.  What if every believer said, “I have been saved by God’s grace for 2678 days”?  How inspiring it would be for those just starting on their journey.

Exemplifying God’s love and forgiveness.  Even when someone falls back into addiction, they are always welcomed back with open arms at an AA meeting.  There are no new expectations, no turning away from a person who has fallen, or refusing to forgive someone who has hurt you.  At an AA meeting, all is forgiven and asking for forgiveness is the only expectation.  After all, we are all sinners and who among us does not need to be forgiven?  What a difference it would be in church if everyone forgave one another.

What if church was more like an AA meeting?  Most would respond by saying what makes AA works so well and for so long is that the people are anonymous, just first names are used.  But as believers of the same God in the same church, should we not desire to show the world a different standard?  A standard that welcomes sinners of all kinds, cares for the needs of it’s’ members, and unites even the strangest members.  Then and only then will we have a church that embraces honesty, rejects falsehood and truly brings glory to God.

Repairing, restoring, and rebuilding relationships takes time, energy and effort.  If you find yourself needing more help during this process, please call our offices at 407-647-7005 to schedule an appointment.  Or you can send me a quick email at chammond@lifeworksgroup.org.