Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Call It My Pre-Intervention

I did something the other night that probably won’t earn me any Mother of the Year awards.

One kid was in his room, the other was downstairs. I was in my room, folding laundry and watching
Intervention on A&E.

This isn’t a show I watch often. I find it depressing. Somewhat like

But, because I like the other A&E shows like
Criminal Minds & CSI, more often than not, when you turn on the TV, it’s already on A&E.

Such was the case that night, and how I happened to be sucked into Intervention.

A few minutes into the show, Adam walks into the room.

I immediately reached for the remote, as Intervention isn’t something I make a habit of watching with my almost 10 yr old.

I wasn’t quick enough.

Just as I’m about to change the channel, Adam hops up on the bed, looks at the young guy on the TV and asks, ‘What’s that, Mom?’

It was again one of those moments where
my brain split in two.

One side said, ‘Tell him, 'nevermind what it is', he’s too young to know, and change the channel’

The other said, ‘Take this opportunity and use this show as a learning tool!’

We've already had the drugs and alcohol discussion.

You know, the basics.

Drugs are bad for you. They can slowly kill your mind and body, completely destroy families, and once you start, it's one of the hardest things in the world to stop.

And of course, they can kill you.

Suddenly, my mind flashed back to that 80's commercial. The first one to really draw the worlds attention to the fact recreational drugs were no longer socially acceptable.

Surely you remember it.

That one commercial won numerous awards and honours, and made an impact.

Today, we have kids (and adults of course) on a little show called Intervention.

Would he make an impact?

I've learned that you can talk, lecture and preach to some kids, and they just get it.

Others, like Adam, are more visual learners, and need to see it to believe it, to really understand the impact of the point you're trying to make.

I can only hope neither of my boys ever end up as drug users.

But in the end, all I can do is warn them, and teach them, and hope they get it.

I slowly turned my head away from the TV, looked Adam in the eye and said, 'that my dear, is heroine, a type of drug.'

At the same time, the junkie was trying to find a vein in his arm. That brought about the next obvious question from my boy's curious mind.

"UGH! WHY is he trying to put that needle in his arm?'

I simply said there were different ways to 'take' drugs, and this was one of them. I also made sure to point out how horrible and sore his arms looked.

A few minutes later, it showed the young addict almost passed out, mumbling incoherently.

Adam asked, 'Why's he acting like that? He's not making sense!'

Alright, Mom, time to make your point ... 'Because, THAT'S what happens to your brain when you use drugs!'

'Is he dead?'

OK, time to drive it home ... 'Not yet. Not THIS time. Next time, he may not be so lucky.'

And then, the Mom in me just HAD to throw out, 'Don't you EVER get into that crap, Adam!'

Thankfully, he came back with the words I've committed to memory, and will hold him to forever, 'NO WAY, Mom! I'm never doing drugs!'

And so goes my drug conversation with my soon to be 10 yr old.

I understand some may think ten is too young for this type of visual introduction to the drug world. That I shouldn't have let my kid watch the 15 min or so of Intervention with me, that he did.

Hence, the Mother of the Year comment at the beginning of this post.

The way I see it, he's already aware that drugs exist, he's heard about the older kids 'smoking drugs' down at the skate park.

The scary part is, 'older' isn't really all that much older!

From something as simple as a news report on the radio, he knows 'grown ups' partake in the illegal activity too, even though they shouldn't.

I can't hide him from it.

So, if I can turn him off the whole idea early, remove the mystery and maybe even scare the crap out of him when it comes to just saying NO ... then I'm going to do it.

I'd rather discuss it now, than end up with Candy Finnigan on A&E later.

Call it my pre-intervention.



~Melody @ 6 Feet Over~ said...

Personally, I think you should get the Mother of the Year award for spending time with your son to watch and explain all of this. It is very sad that these days you HAVE to have these talks with your kids earlier. Ten, though as crazy as it sounds, isn't that 'young' least not in Vegas where I am.


RainSplats said...

I like your style, K.

gamommy2two said...

I'm with Melody. This is Mom of th Year material. The fact that you talk about it and he understands what can happen is a major.

Sherri @ Luv a Bargain said...

I think it is great that you took that opportunity to talk about it :) Unfortunately we can't shelter them from all that they will see and hear.

Dalia (Generation X Mom) said...

If there is such a thing as perfect, that was it. If all of these shows are going to be on we might as well use them as an education tool, right? I am one of those 'tell them like it is' moms. At 10 (I have a 10 and 12 year old myself) it is time for them to know the reality of what life's dangers are. It is sad that at this young age they must know, but unfortunately it is happening at these young ages. I really liked this post and am loving your blog. Found you on SITS and will be back!

panamamama said...

We have to. There are some junkies that live (on the street) around the corner from my kids school. They asked me why the guy was dancing all crazy in the street the other day and it opened up the same topic of conversation. "Wow. That's dumb" they said. Yep.

Kristin @ Meanbean said...

I agree with other've got to do it. It's important to see that it's not all glamourous (sp?!) and awesome rockstar to be a druggie...that it really screws up your whole life.

I think you did a good job. And all that learned in just 15 minutes? Even better :)

Aleta said...

Almost 10 is NOT too young. My Mom is a teacher, to 5th graders... and the things that the kids talk about... It's good that you had the conversation about it. Some of the students at my Mom's school brought their "parents' drugs" to school to "sell to other kids' parents"! Children grow up too quickly and if they aren't given guidance from the parents quickly... it can be too late.

Betsy ( said...

Drugs are everywhere in High School. You need to have many conversations and even then it's sometimes not enough... said...

I work at a's sad to say that young kids are expose to drugs, they use the drugs and then sell the drugs. I think your approach hit home w/your youngster. Bravo...