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Showing posts from October, 2015

Three simple tips: How to host a 'safe as possible' teenage party

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I've had a couple of emails from parents recently that have asked for my advice on how to host a safe teenage party. What are some simple things that they can do to make sure the kids are as safe as possible, their house doesn't get wrecked and the police don't get called and the party gets shut down? I've written about this many times before and I get it - holding a party for teenagers, whether it be at your home or somewhere you have hired for the evening, is a huge responsibility and must be terrifying for those parents who want to try to do 'the right thing' but it is important to remember that parties and gatherings are held every weekend, right across the country, many of which run without major problems.

Things can go wrong though and, as such, you need to think about all the possible risks and put things into place to make sure that the party is as safe as possible – for the invitees, your neighbours and of course, you and your family. Of course there a…

Parental peer pressure and alcohol: What if your child says "You're the only one who does that"?

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'Peer pressure' is an interesting concept and a term that gets bandied around regularly when it comes to young people and alcohol and other drugs. My thoughts on whether or not this is the major influence on whether or not a teen chooses to drink alcohol or experiment with other drugs are contained in another blog entry ... What truly fascinates me about this area is the inability of some parents to see that it is often they and not their child who are likely to buckle to peer pressure. Time and time again I meet parents who are heavily influenced (or pressured) in this area by what they believe other parents are (or may be) doing (usually because of what their child is telling them). Without a doubt, 'parental peer pressure' is mighty powerful and many people have no idea how to deal with it effectively!

I've been through some emails from parents I've received over the last 12 months and here are just a few quotes that clearly show that some families are exper…

Alcohol permission slips and teenage parties: What are some parents thinking?

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'Secondary supply' legislation now exists in almost every state and territory across the country, with SA now the only jurisdiction not to have laws that protect a parent's right to say whether or not another adult provides alcohol to their child. As the ADF states in their factsheet on the subject - "There have been a number of cases in Australia where a person has suffered injuries or died as a result of drinking too much alcohol after being supplied with it by an adult who was not their parent. Regulating private supply of alcohol aims to stop that happening by deterring adults from supplying alcohol to young people without the approval from their parent."

Across Australia a person who is under the age of 18 is not breaking the law if they drink alcohol on private property. However, now, in almost all states and territories, the person who supplied them with the alcohol could be breaking the law—unless they are the child’s parent or guardian and act in a resp…

Endone, Stillnox and other medications: Are Australian teens likely to be using prescription drugs in an attempt to get 'high'?

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Two NRL players were recently rushed to hospital after being found unconscious at home after reportedly taking oxycodone, a painkiller prescribed following post-season surgeries. Four days later they left hospital and faced the media, with one of them quoted as saying - "We would like to say we've learnt from our mistakes and we hope everyone can learn from our lessons ... take prescription medication as it is (prescribed) on the prescription box."

As always with sportspeople who get caught out, what was said was well-scripted. We really didn't find out too much more about what had actually happened and there were lots of apologies and regrets. Since then a number of other footballers have talked about their issues with prescription drugs (particularly painkillers, but also antidepressants and antipsychotics) and the NRL have been at great pains to stress that this is not a rugby league problem only - the misuse of prescription drugs was a wider issue.
Most will reme…