Video Series: Messages of Hope + Resources All Year Long

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    Video #19: Marijuana Use and Its Impact

    In our latest video, recovery advocate and mother Carleah Summers provides all the details parents and family members need to know about marijuana – what it is, how it works and the negative effects that could result from using it.

    “Problems with marijuana use can be prevented,” Summers says. “The longer teens delay use, the less likely they are to develop a marijuana use disorder or addiction. We can all play a part by supporting policies and programs that prevent or reduce marijuana use among teens and by not normalizing its use as a harmless way to have fun.”

    For more information on marijuana and cannabis products and their associated risks, visit these Partnership to End Addiction resources below:


    In 2022, Partnership launched a 26-video series with the help of YouTube. The original videos spotlight messages of hope and point to research-based information and resources for the millions of families struggling with substance use and addiction.  

    We’ll release new videos every two weeks, featuring a mix of families personally affected by substance use and experts and advocates who have dedicated their lives to helping others who are struggling with addiction. The topics covered will fall into four unique series:  

    • Talk About It: Lively panel discussions hosted by comedian GloZell Green, including experts and people with firsthand knowledge in the addiction and recovery space 
    • Experts Answer: The Partnership’s experts respond to frequently asked questions related to prevention, treatment and recovery
    • Fact Check: Advocates give parents quick, important information about topics related to substance use and recovery
    • Recovering Together: Powerful personal stories told by families who have supported a loved one with substance use disorder and later became parent coaches for the Partnership 

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    Video #18: The Link Between Social Media and Substances

    In our first video of the new year, author and advocate Ryan Hampton outlines the risks that social media presents while providing actionable guidance to parents on how they can work with their children so that they are aware of those risks and know what to consider when interacting with others online.

    “It’s important for kids to know that social media is a powerful way to present their unique personality and their interests to colleges, to coaches and to potential employers,” Hampton says. “But there are risks. Parents can help their kids understand that what they post on social media can come back to haunt them in the future. Let me give you something to think about: what does your teen’s social media presence say about them?”

    For more information on identifying and mitigating risks your children might face when it comes to substances, visit these Partnership to End Addiction resources below:


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    Video #17: Every Voice Matters – The big and small ways families can make a difference

    In the next episode of our year-long video series, our host GloZell chats with experts and advocates with lived experience about how to get involved in addressing the addiction crisis and how to make a big impact even in ways that might feel small.

    “There are those of us who’ve utilized social media or mass media or testifying in front of Congress or even going into community organizing to help craft that public narrative,” said Ryan Hampton, a nationally recognized author and advocate. “But when you really break it down, seismic change in this country comes in the form of small actions by a great number of people. If you consider that one in three people have been impacted by addiction, imagine if each of those people shared their story with just to other people. The change would be enormous.”

    The statistics and trends you see in the media about addiction and substance use can seem insurmountable. The well-resourced systems and institutions we’ve created to help families in their time of need don’t seem to be making a difference. How can a single person or family expect to reverse these trends or solve a challenge of this magnitude?

    For more information on advocacy and how to get involved in making critical change to help the millions of families impacted by substance use and addiction, visit these Partnership to End Addiction resources below:


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    Video #16: What is addiction advocacy? How to change the narrative and start making real progress

    In the next episode of our year-long video series, our host GloZell chats with experts and advocates with lived experience about how to change the narrative around addiction and substance use, and how we can erase the stigma that has prevented quality addiction treatment.

    Addiction impacts millions of families of all types. We know what quality treatment looks like, but for too many families, it’s out of reach. Families may be lured to low-quality treatment by false claims of success. They may lack money or enough insurance coverage to pay for treatment. And, they face a great deal of judgment and stigma when addiction is not treated as the health issue it is. Together, we can fix these problems.

    “When I got into recovery I didn’t even know that advocacy was a thing when it came to substance use disorder, addiction and overdose because of the prejudice and the stigma against people in recovery and families who are still struggling,” said Ryan Hampton, a nationally recognized author and advocate. “My advocacy journey didn’t start through my own nightmare journey in finding treatment but when I was watching my friends die. We could look at any other major health care issue in this country and know that progress doesn’t happen without people standing up, getting involved and speaking through to power.”

    For more information on advocacy and how to get involved in making critical change to help the millions of families impacted by substance use and addiction, visit these Partnership to End Addiction resources below:


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    Video #15: What is normal? Start talking with your family about substance use and addiction

    In the next episode of our year-long video series, our host GloZell chats with experts and advocates about what is normal teen behavior. They explore the pressures teens often face that may lead to substance use and addiction.

    We immunize. We require seat belts in the car and helmets while biking. We insist on sunscreen. We do just about everything we can to ensure that our kids are healthy, safe and primed for success. But when it comes to drinking alcohol or perhaps vaping and marijuana, why does it seem okay to shrug it off as “a rite of passage” or “just experimenting”?.

    “As a teacher, I know those learning moments don’t always happen along our timeline or fit nicely within our agenda,” says Jessica Lahey, a bestselling author and teacher. “When I talk about prevention, I make sure to tell parents that they have to talk about these issues openly and often because if you don’t say much about it and then sit your teen down for ‘the talk,’ they immediately shut down.”

    For more information on what is normal for your teen and how to stay connected, visit these Partnership to End Addiction resources below:

    • WEB: What is normal? – Why do teens drink and use substances?
    • WEB: Connecting with your child – Staying involved and keeping tabs on teens’ activities can be another way of demonstrating that you care and can help develop a stronger parent-teen relationship.
    • NEW TOOL: Substance Use Risk Assessment– Use our new tool to help you better understand the risks your child may face related to mental health, well-being, personality, family history, and their environment.

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    Video #14: How can we remove some of the obstacles to recovery?

    In the next episode of our year-long video series, our host GloZell chats with experts and advocates with lived experience about attitudes and policies such as stigma, fraudulent treatment practices, and inadequate family support that make the path to recovery nearly impassable.

    Parents, families and their loved ones face numerous roadblocks on the way to and through recovery. These obstacles, however, don’t have to be there or at least don’t have to be insurmountable.

    “As a mother, my son started struggling when he was 15 and when I started looking for treatment options, every time I picked up the phone, it was an organization asking me to mortgage my house or telling me that I had to have good insurance,” said Tonia Ahern, a family advocate and parent coach at the Partnership. “If I didn’t have the cash to put him into treatment, they didn’t really want to have anything to do with him.”

    To learn more about removing obstacles to recovery, check out the links below:

    • WEB: Navigating the Addiction Treatment System – Realizing that your teen or young adult child needs help for their substance use or addiction can be scary and overwhelming, and you are not alone have no idea where to begin.
    • PODCAST: Obama Drug Czar Michael Botticelli – Former director of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy Michael Botticelli joins Elizabeth Vargas to discuss George Floyd, DMX and the Pervasiveness of Stigma
    • GET INVOLVED: Advocate for Change– With your help, we can erase the stigma that has prevented treating addiction as the health care issue it is. Discover all the ways you can take action now.

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    Video #13: Families are the solution, not the problem

    In the next episode of our year-long video series, our host GloZell chats with experts and advocates with lived experience about how families can be empowered and supported as they strive to help their children and loved ones overcome substance use disorder and addiction.

    The parents and family of anyone struggling with substance use play a critical and valuable role in the journey to and through recovery. However, the importance of what parents and family members can do to support their struggling loved ones is often minimized or, worse yet, framed as a contributing factor to their loved one’s ongoing problem.

    “While I was the one with a substance use disorder, I feel like my family was dragged right along with me,” said Carleah Summers, a recovery advocate. “I heard things like ‘They’re co-dependent, they’re enablers.’ Instead of telling families what they can do, we were telling them everything they weren’t doing or shouldn’t do.”

    To learn more about empowering families in their efforts to help loved ones overcome substance use disorder, check out the links below:


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    Video #11: Preparing to Take Action

    Parents and loved ones often feel that there isn’t much they can do beyond lecturing or punishing their family members if they catch them smoking, vaping, drinking or using other substances. But there are proven ways to motivate your child, friend or partner to dial back their substance use. Fred Muench, President at Partnership to End Addiction, on how to take that first step in addressing a loved one’s substance use.

    You can have a conversation about substance use without it imploding, and begin encouraging healthy behaviors you want to see and discouraging those that you don’t — especially those related to substance use.

    If you have reason to suspect your child, family member or loved one may be using substances, don’t be afraid to err on the side of caution. Prepare to take action and have a conversation during which you can ask direct questions like “Have you been drinking, vaping or using other drugs?” No parent, caregiver or friend wants to hear “yes,” but being prepared for how you would respond can be the starting point for a more positive outcome.

    For more information on taking that first action step with your loved one, check out the links below:


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    Video #10: Partnership to End Addiction’s Helpline

    Helpline Supervisor Cesar responds to some of the most frequently asked questions we hear from parents and family members about our helpline services and what they can expect if they schedule a call with one our specialists. There is no one-size-fits-all approach and each family is unique. Our helpline specialists will meet you wherever you are on your journey.

    Some parents may have a feeling or suspicion that their child is misusing substances and aren’t sure what to do next. Others may have a child who has struggled with substance use disorder for years and need more resources and advice on what treatment is best. Regardless of where you and your family are, our helpline specialists will listen, help you make an action plan and empower you to seek support and resources in your community. Support is available in English and Spanish, and all services are free of charge.

    For more information on our helpline and other support services, check out the links below:


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    Video #9: Addressing Early Substance Use as a Parent

    If you’ve just discovered or have reason to believe your child is using substances, the first thing to do is sit down and take a deep breath. We know this is scary, but you’re in the right place. The best way to find out what’s going on, and to begin helping, is to start talking and listening. Addressing an unhealthy behavior is less about imposing change than making changes together, and supporting goals.

    Cesar Bravo Wolfe, Helpline Supervisor at Partnership to End Addiction, responds to some of the most frequently asked questions we hear from parents and family members as they look to better communicate, create boundaries, and encourage behavior change.

    For resources on how you can address early substance use with your child, check out the links below:


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    Video #8: Family support for addiction treatment with Partnership to End Addiction's Karla Castro-Soto

    You’ve likely had many conversations with your child on the dangers of drinking, smoking or using other substances. But despite your best efforts, they continue to engage. Why can’t they see how harmful this behavior is? The short answer is that to them, substance use is solving a problem despite the risks or harm.

    Family support for a child or loved one struggling with substance use is essential to finding a positive path forward. Effective support reduces feelings of isolation, helps your loved one feel cared for, and positions you and your family as an accessible resource for guidance and assistance.

    For resources on how you and your family can best support your child or loved one on their road to and through recovery, check out the links below:


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    Video #7: Partnership to End Addiction's Marcus Daugherty on navigating the treatment system

    Realizing that your teen or young adult child needs help for their substance use or addiction can be overwhelming, and you are not alone if you have no idea where to begin. There is no one-size-fits-all approach so it can take a fair amount of research to figure out what type of help your loved one needs and how to get it.

    Getting the right treatment for your child is a process, and navigating the health care system requires careful examination, determination and some caution.

    For resources on finding treatment, motivating a loved one to go to treatment, payment options and more, check out the links below.


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    Video #6: Partnership’s Pat Aussem answers the most common questions about fentanyl

    In the first EXPERTS ANSWER video, Pat Aussem, Partnership to End Addiction’s Associate Vice President, Consumer Clinical Content Development, answers the most common questions about fentanyl: why it is so dangerous and why it is important to talk to your child about the risk of prescription medications laced with fentanyl.

    Today, on National Fentanyl Awareness Day, Partnership to End Addiction is launching the next group of videos in our year-long YouTube video series: EXPERTS ANSWER. This latest group of short videos provides perspectives on some of the most common questions regarding addiction prevention, treatment and recovery that we’re hearing from families.

    For more resources on fentanyl, the substances where fentanyl is often found, and the risks posed by the dangerous synthetic opioid, check out the links below.


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    Video #5: Monica talks about her son, Bobby, got started with opioids and how he and his family found a path toward recovery

    Opioid pain relievers are most often prescribed following surgery or to treat cancer pain, and these situations certainly come with risk. “It started, innocently enough, when he had his wisdom extracted,” says Monica. “I never thought that prescription pills would be where it would start.”

    For resources on the risks of prescription medications and parenting toward recovery, check out the links below.


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    Video #4: Tonia, a peer parent coach at the Partnership, describes the interconnected nature of her son’s mental health and substance use

    It’s difficult enough if your loved one is struggling with a substance use disorder, but what if they are struggling with a mental health disorder at the same time? Like Tonia’s son Rory, 30 to 45% of adolescents and young adults with mental health disorders have a co-occurring substance use disorder.

    For resources on finding effective treatment for co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders, check out the links below.


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    Video #3: Tony and Pattie discuss how scared they were when their son’s substance use first became a problem, and the different approaches they took to find a treatment program

    Pattie’s and Tony’s son struggled with substance abuse disorder, and passed away in 2017. Here they discuss the difficulties they encountered finding help through their healthcare network, and the vital role played in recovery by communities of care like Partnership to End Addiction.

    To find more resources on helping your child or family member find and engage in treatment, check out the links below.


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    Video #2: After a variety of treatment centers and methods, Kathleen and her family tried medication to treat her daughter’s addiction

    In some treatment programs, families may not be told about all the potential options for their loved one struggling with addiction, especially medications to treat withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Watch as Kathleen and her family discuss how a reframing of their approach to support and access to medication changed the trajectory of their family member’s recovery.

    Want to learn more? Check out these additional resources on medication-assisted treatment and harm reduction.


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    Video #1: Heidi, a Partnership Parent Coach, talks about the value of self-care

    It’s common and understandable for parents to focus exclusively on their child or loved one when they are struggling with substance use, even to the detriment of their own health and well-being. Watch as Heidi describes how her efforts to take care of herself made her a better problem-solver and a positive example for her daughter in how to manage stress and anxiety.

    Want to dive deeper in Partnership’s resources on self-care? Check out the following.

    Published

    March 2022