TEEN THURSDAY: One too many

When I picked up my daughter and her friends from the local First Lights festival last weekend, they got in the car and I became privy to MAJOR SCANDALE. A classmate of theirs at the high school had been drunk. The kid could barely walk and was ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwvomiting publicly. The tone of their conversation was was appalled and disapproving.

I listened like a good invisible chauffeur should, thanking my lucky stars that my daughter seems to have her head screwed on so securely. But I couldn't help thinking back to myself at her age; how I was making different and considerably less wise choices.

*Enters the Wayback Machine*

It was a different time. I was in high school in the late 70's, before Nancy Reagan's "Just Say No!" campaign (check out this PSA from the 80's)



and before the advent of Drug Education programs like Project DARE.

I mean seriously. We were watching movies like this:



Can you imagine a trailer like that being shown at your local multiplex these days? I can't see it happening. Times have changed.

My daughter is in her first high school play next weekend. And that's another thing that's weirding me out. I was a drama geek in high school and I smoked my first joint ever at a cast party. The kid who handed it to me wasn't a total stoner loser who ended up doing heroin and spending time in the slammer. He went to Harvard and has had extremely successful career in the financial world.

My kids know I was no angel in high school. Maybe being honest with them has helped them to make better choices. It's certainly given them ammo in arguments: "Well, at least I'm not as bad as you were, Mom!"

So how how about you? Were you a good girl/boy? And if you're old enough to have kids, are you honest with them about it?

9 comments:

Micol Ostow said...

Oh, Sarah, not to make light of Serious Teen Issues, but I for one recall an ABC Afterschool Special called "One Too Many" starring a young Michelle Pfeiffer. Classic.

Thanks for the blast from the past!

Claire Dawn said...

There was How High back in 2001, with Method man and Red man. So it's still around.

What exactly do you mean by good? lol.

I was still a virgin when my friends weren't- although I somehow had a bad reputation. And alcohol doesn't ahve the same appeal for us. I grew up in a country where 3 year olds could eat rum cake. Never been a fan of drugs, since I'm bipolar and I get high without them. :)

Still, I found other ways to drive my parents crazy. Like going off the grid and getting home at midnight.

Don't we all?

Sarah Darer Littman said...

Claire it's interesting you say that about being bipolar. I suffered from depression in HS and did a lot of drugs/drinking. I wasn't diagnosed as bipolar II until my late 30's, when I had a breakdown. What I've talked about with my kids is that I actually think if I'd been properly medicated in HS, I might not have felt the need to medicate myself. But in those days a) they didn't seem to believe in medicating kids my age probably because b) they didn't have such a wide range of meds available. It took a long time and a lot of "experimentation" with the prescription meds (under doctor supervision, I hasten to add!) to get the right combination, but now that I'm on it, it's really amazing how taking a few pills every day really make the difference to living a happy and productive life. "Better living through chemistry" indeed. Although I don't want to ignore the many, MANY years of therapy that have also brought me to where I am today. It took a lot of hard work as well as the meds :-)

Lindsey Leavitt said...

I've never seen that trailer. I can't believe they showed all that in the TRAILER.

Sarah Darer Littman said...

What I can I say...it was the 70's ;-)

jenniferpickrell said...

I remember those anti-drug PSAs when I was a kid and we all sorta laughed about them, especially the "from you, alright, I learned it by watching you!" commercial.

But I stumbled across some of Montana's anti-meth commercials a few years ago on YouTube and they are scary.

Showing the effects of drugs =s much more frightening than catchphrases.

I got into some trouble here and there in high school, but we were a rowdy bunch. Our senior song was "Fight for Your Right to Party" by the Beastie Boys, if that's any indication of our priorities.

Lisa_Gibson said...

I cringe at the thought of being COMPLETELY honest with my son. I was hanging with the 'freaks' in the 80's. I have told him that yes, I've smoked pot and yes I drank when I was underage. I think being honest is a good thing, but it has its limits too. :)
Lisa ~ YA Literature Lover

Just Your Typical Book Blog said...

I wasn't an innocent kid back in school. I have no regrets by not being one, great stories and good times, but I'm glad a lot of that is out of my system now.

I don't have any kids, but my niece is a tween and one day she watched a bit of Dazed & Confused when it was on TV. She kept saying how weird everyone was, and when Slaterson swaggered on the screen she asked me, "Did you do drugs like him in school?" This was my face ---> o_O followed by, "Uhh uhh go downstairs and get ice cream!"

One day when she's older I'll be honest, but for now ice cream works for avoiding the subject.

Adeeva Afsheen said...

Banned complain !! Complaining only causes life and mind become more severe. Enjoy the rhythm of the problems faced. No matter ga life, not a problem not learn, so enjoy it :)

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