One More Tool in a Parent’s Drug Awareness Arsenal

Reality Party_Simi Valey _march2015-2

Your teen son tells you he’s spending the night at a friend’s house. He doesn’t tell you the friend’s parents aren’t home. Or that there’s a big party planned there that night. Or, worst of all, that there will be a lot of alcohol–and probably drugs–circulating at this party. It’s possible he doesn’t even know all of this himself.

And because you trust your son (and this could just as easily be your teen daughter), off he goes.

As parents, do we really have a clear understanding of what today’s dangers are with teen drinking and drugging? We know the overall scenario–drugs are bad, teens aren’t allowed to drink, and more. But modern partying among teens has far more complicated aspects to it that in decades past.

On Saturday, March 7, Straight Up Ventura County will host its annual Reality Party for Parents in Simi Valley. Straight Up is a youth development organization that works with kids ages 12 to 25 to promote social change through improvisation and interaction with other youth and concerned adults.

Straight Up says this about the Reality Party for Parents: Many adults feel drinking and drug use is a rite of passage and think teen parties are the same as when they were young. Straight Up youth want parents to face the current realities and learn why and how we need adults to help change these dangerous social norms in Ventura County.

To do this, the Straight Up teens create a typical party and act out scenes commonly found at a teen party. Parents “tour” the home and watch scene after scene of what often plays out at a teen party involving drugs and alcohol. After, a panel of teens, educators and public health officials facilitate a question and answer session to offer information and foster greater communication.

Each tour and discussion lasts about an hour and is free, but reservations are required. The tours are staggered between 2 and 6 p.m. and there are seven tours altogether. To register, go to this LINK. Because the tours happen at a private home in Simi Valley, space is limited and the address will be released only after registration is complete. And for those who do attend this event, we’d love to hear your thoughts after. Please feel free to post comments on this blog about your experience.

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