It’s the week of Halloween…and it’s also Red Ribbon Week for school kids across Oklahoma, who will be inundated with the message that all drugs ruin all lives, period. Talk about scary! I’ve written about coming out as a MMJ user, but coming out to your kids is a whole other beast — especially during Red Ribbon Week.
While no one wants their kids to use drugs, I’m not super comfortable with medical marijuana being lumped into the same discussion with heroin. Surely, these Red Ribbon do-gooders are presenting a fact-based program…now that would put my mind at ease!
From the Red Ribbon Week website, a fact:
“Children of parents who talk to their teens regularly about drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs than those who don’t, yet only a quarter of teens report having these conversations.”
That’s a solid fact. Education and knowledge are power. Strangely, I could not find any other facts from the Red Ribbon folks to justify this campaign to make sure our children know that all drugs destroy all lives, period. I prefer to educate my children with facts — scary facts that will help them “Just Say No.”
When I tried to pull up a fact sheet from the Red Ribbon website, I was asked to submit a contact form for access. Why?
Thankfully, National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) and other science-based groups have drug awareness info that does lean hard on facts. Here are a few, to help you un-brainwash your children after Red Ribbon Week.
1. The NIDA agrees that…
“Research shows that drinking [alcohol] during the teen years could interfere with normal brain development…”
As a recovering alcoholic, I appreciate NIDA calling it like it is. Despite being normalized by society, the reality is alcohol can be much more harmful than marijuana.
2. That time President Obama told The New Yorker,
“As has been well documented, I smoked pot as a kid…I don’t think it is more dangerous than alcohol.”
Worst case scenario, your kid slips into a hotbox sesh in the school parking lot and grows up to find her options are limited, as a result, to becoming the leader of the free world.
3. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has admitted that…
The number of CANNABIS OVERDOSEs now equal the number of people gored to death by unicorns.
That number, for the kid in the back wearing the MAGA hat, is zero. Every other drug known to man, including alcohol, has a lethal dosage.
4. According to the Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics,
Studies show that marijuana can actually prevent epileptic seizures.
Helping kids to see the medicinal value goes a long way to normalizing marijuana use. This particular benefit hits home for my kids, who have seen firsthand the horrors of seizure disorder and know that mommy’s green medicine helps her brain to control the seizures. If you really want to hammer home the medicinal value, Harvard Medical School can help.
5. This Clinical Psychology Review, which concludes that…
marijuana may help people with alcohol or opioid dependencies to fight their addictions.
A harmless green plant can help adults fight addiction to drugs that actually destroy lives? This is a mic-drop moment in your child’s re-education that even David Holt would envy.
If you’re still feeling sheepish and unprepared to battle the myths and stigmas your kids might absorb at school during Red Ribbon’s ‘Just Say No’ Week, here is another good, no-nonsense, no-Reefer-Madness resource from Kids Health, which seems well-suited for discussions with younger kids.
No doubt it’s tough to be a cannabis-using parent during Red Ribbon Week! The good news is this: In my experience, younger kids don’t ask too many questions and just aren’t that curious about marijuana. A little information and personal candor with your kids will go a long way to help them understand that smoking cannabis on the patio before dinner is not the same as shooting up heroin.
If you don’t educate them, the Reefer Madness zealots will.