Category: MADD

Happy St. Patrick’s Day

There were 276 drunk driving fatalities on St. Patrick’s Day from 2009-2013, making it one of the deadliest holidays on the road for drunk driving. – MADD.org

It’s Friday night and it’s St. Patrick’s Day. This combination makes me worry. Although I wish that you have a great time with your celebrations – I MUST take this time to simply remind you to not to depend on luck if your planning on drinking and driving. Your choices impact everyone around you. Have fun but please don’t drink and drive. Be sure to designated non-drinking driver.  

If your hosting your own St. Patrick’s Day party? Here are some safe party tips from MADD.org:

  • As guests RSVP, confirm that they have a plan for a safe way home via a non-drinking designated driver (rideshare service, public transportation, taxi, etc.).
  • Offer non-alcoholic beverages or mocktails for non-drinking designated drivers and others who prefer not to drink alcohol. Create a fun green mocktail to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day!
  • If, despite your efforts, some of your guests have had too much to drink, never let them drive home impaired.

More safe partytips can be found at madd.org/safeparty

Pledge to be Safe this St. Patrick’s Day

Pledge to be a designated driver, or pledge to drive drug and alcohol-free this St. Patrick’s Day. You could save your friends’ lives, or your own.

 

MichaelI will love you forever Michael, until we meet again.

Another Angel is called Home

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Another angel was called home. The very sad death of Baby Liam has hopefully brought some attention to result of drinking and driving. Baby Liam was in his stroller and was hit by a drunk driver. The parents came to terms with taking him off life support on Tuesday. Earlier today – one of my family members posted Baby Liams parnets interview on Facebook. I knew immediately that although I wanted to listen to these parents, it had to be done later in the day. At a time when I would be allowed some free time, a moment that I could be left alone to cry.

As a parent you never get over the loss your child. The hurt, the pain and the yearning that exists every single day never goes away. Every single memory brings both extreme joy and pain. I find myself constantly trying to keep the memory of my son very much alive. I never let those around me forget that I have a son in haven.

Watching this interview, made me cry and then I became upset. Upset that so many people feel it’s okay to drink and drive. In the interview the father of baby Liam said ” if you can afford to drink, you can afford to get an Uber. I couldn’t have said that better myself.

I get beyond upset when I hear of someone who is out drinking and wasn’t considerate enough to have a designated driver or to call a friend or Uber for a ride. It really isn’t any of my business if you don’t care about your life but it becomes my business when you put someone else’s life at risk. At that point, it’s everyone’s business.

I grieve for these parents; as they are sitting there being interviewed, sitting there being brave in an effort to reach someone…anyone that will listen. I knew what they were thinking before the father said it “if I can reach just one person”,

So here I go again – If you have children, take just one minute to imagine what it would feel like to be to told your child is gone. Not because they don’t want to talk to you or they are mad at you but because they are no longer alive. Their precious life, removed, gone because you selfishly decided that you having a drink and getting behind the wheel is more important than the well-being of anyone else’s life.

Michael

This blog was started as a way of me reaching out to people and to come out of the shell that I had built around myself. Why – because my son and his best friend (both just 17 years old) were killed – murdered by a drunk driver. It made me want to hide, It made me pull back out of life.

It’s been 11 years for my oldest Son and I lost Michael. We are still trying to pick up the pieces of our life. You see, like Baby Liam and most other victims of drunk drivers –  my son was healthy and strong. He wasn’t sick, there was absolutely nothing wrong. He had dreams, hopes and ambitions but someone decided none of those things mattered.

I am angry right now. I am angry for these parents who have been dealt a lifetime sentence of “what if’s. A lifetime of looking around at holidays and family gatherings and thinking “he’s not here”.

For these parents and the people around them, I pray. I pray for strength and the ability to be weak.  I pray that they don’t feel horrible when they smile or breakdown and cry because of a song. I pray that their family and friends remain close to them and the yet allow them space. I pray for forgiveness and grace not for the drunk driver but for each other. I pray for the friends and family of these parents. You see –  you will need to understand that there will be times when they get angry and that needs to be okay. There will times, days, hours that they will want to hide and not be around other people, that needs to be okay. Please give them grace and grant forgiveness and remember that breathing is hard most days.

I am still working on “refining” my life. Every event, every moment, every trip, every healthy meal….it all comes down to getting through what has become a my lifetime project.  Please watch this video. See the hurt, feel their pain – don’t disconnect! It’s uncomfortable and painful and it should be. Take it in and feel it for a just a moment. Put yourself in someone else’s shoes and help save a life. Just one life! If you don’t drink and drive, my sincere “Thank You” but now if you can please stop someone else who does. Take a stand before another angel is called to haven.

Baby Liam
Interview with tha parents of baby Liam.

Be Safe this Weekend!

Please help keep families together and safe this weekend by designating a driver or call Uber for a ride. Wishing you and yours a very happy and safe 4th of July weekend.

Annette – ProjectRefinedLife

Michael

 

As the 4th of July  weekend approaches, the media will be entirely too busy reporting on drunk driving fatalities. This is one of the deadliest weekends throughout the year for alcohol-related crashes. During the four-day holiday in 2014, 164 people were killed in drunk driving crashes – a 50% increase over an average day.

MADD refuses to accept this as normal. And, this week, we are proud to announce an enhanced partnership we believe will save lives – begining this weekend!

MADD introduced the phrase designated driver to the American lexicon 30 years ago in 1986. This week, I am pleased to say that Uber has evolved the definition of “designated driver.” So, that in addition to your non-drinking driver or public transportation, Uber is standing by as well as MADD’s official designated driving app.

For almost a decade, MADD has put technology at the forefront of our Campaign to Eliminate Drunk Driving®.  Two years ago, this July 4th, we announced a partnership with Uber to keep drunk drivers off the road. As a team, we have spent the last two years raising awareness about the dangers of drunk driving by coordinating events with local and national leaders, participating in public service campaigns, and encouraging both riders and drivers to leave the keys at home and keep their communities safe.

Uber, like MADD,  cares about our cause of getting drunk drivers off the road. They care about rider and driver safety, and they are dedicated to research that helps reduce drunk driving.

This holiday weekend, like all weekends, we want Americas roads to be safe and rid them of drunk drivers. Please join our mission to end drunk driving by donating today. Uber will DOUBLE your donation.

Together, we will make a difference. Have a safe July 4th weekend. Thank you and God Bless America!

#Giveadamn

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It’s Super Bowl Sunday and it’s a great day to #giveadman about others. Please don’t  drink and drive today. If your hosting a party take the keys away at the door and call uber for your guest if they’ve had too much to drink.

Listen to the wise words of Helen Mirren, she knows how to #giveadman.

Happy New Year

new-year-eve-imageI would like to wish all of you a very Happy New Year. Along with my wishes for you to have a wonderful new year’s eve celebration with your family and friends comes my plead and prayer for everyone to be safe. Remember how precious life is and how it can change in the blink of an eye. If you’re attending a party of an event, please designate a non- drinking driver of call tipsy tow.

The Automobile Club of Southern California is offering its free Tipsy Tow service during the New Year’s Eve holiday for the 20th year.  The community service, which over two decades has taken thousands of drinking drivers off the road on New Year’s Eve, is available from 6 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 31, to 6 a.m. on Friday, Jan. 1, to help remove drinking drivers from the road.  Tipsy Tow is available in the 13 Southern California counties served by the Auto Club.

AAA-tipsy-tow-facebookIn Orange County, The Orange County Transportation Authority is offering free rides from 6:00 p.m. on Thursday to 2:30 a.m. on Friday.


 If you’re in the Los Angeles area Metro is your designated driver for New Year’s Eve. To help you ring in the New Year safely, Metro will operate 24-hour, overnight service on Metro Rail, plus Orange and Silver Lines. Free rides will be offered for all bus and rail service from 9pm on December 31, 2015, until 2am on the morning of January 1, 2016.

All Metro Rail Line Stations with latched gates will be unlatched during this time. Regular fares are in effect at 2am on New Year’s Day.

A One-way fare is $1.75 and includes transfers to other Metro lines for up to two hours to complete a one-way trip. A $7 Day Pass covers unlimited travel starting on date of purchase until 3am the next morning.

Note: All Metro Rail lines and the Metro Orange Line will operate all night every 20 minutes on New Year’s Eve. The Metro Silver Line will operate every 60 minutes during this time.

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Remember, you could safe someone’s life by calling UBER or using one of the services to help you get home safely. AAA estimates a first time misdemeanor DUI conviction can cost about $15,688.

Don’t Be Scary This Halloween

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When Halloween falls on an on the weekend I always become more than concerned. Please designate a driver for tonight celebrations. If you’re hosting a party tonight, collect the keys at the beginning of the party, have a phone number of a local cab company, Uber or LYFT handy for your guests. Even if you’re only driving down the street, there is no excuse – don’t drink and drive!

There are going to be a lot of people out there this Halloween. Children are going to be walking around later this Halloween, families will be heading home from Halloween celebrations. Please take appropriate measures to assure that you don’t hurt someone.

Every year we hear the stories of Halloween celebrations turned tragic for innocent people, like Jean Dyess or Jessica Fraire, enjoying the holiday.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, almost half (48%) of all motor vehicle traffic fatalities on Halloween night in 2012 involved a drunk driver. These numbers usually are even higher when the holiday falls on a weekend like it does this year.

This Halloween, MADD urges both partygoers and trick-or-treaters to plan ahead to help keep everyone safe.

Going trick-or-treating:

  • Be extra alert when crossing the street.
  • Wear bright, reflective clothing or add reflective tape to costumes and treat buckets.
  • Bring a flashlight (with extra batteries) so you can see and be seen at night.

Attending a party:

  • Designate a non-drinking driver before you head out to make sure you and your loved ones arrive home safely.
  • Save the number of a local cab service in your phone or download a ride-share app prior to heading out.
  • Consider hiring a shuttle or limousine service to transport you and your friends to and from your event.
  • Arrange a hotel stay for you and your friends on the evening of the event so no one drives home impaired.

Hosting a Halloween party:

  • Never serve alcohol to those under the age of 21.
  • Plan safe parties, including providing non-alcoholic drink options to guests.
  • Provide plenty of food to keep your guests from drinking on an empty stomach.
  • Be prepared to get everyone home safe by having the number of a taxi service on hand for those who need a ride.
  • Be ready with some clean linens so you can turn your sofa into a hotel for guests who need to stay the night.

Click here to get the pattern to carve your own MADD Jack-O-Lantern!

Falling apart

Everything-Is-Falling-Apart
image from lovethispic.com

Falling apart is how I feel today. Today is 10 years since I’ve seen his face, heard his laugh or him playing his guitar. I can recall every single moment of our last days together. What we ate, where we went, what we did and how it all ended.

Tomorrow marks 10 years that my handsome 17 year old son was taken from me at the hands of a drunk driver.  I’ve been keeping busy lately, trying occupying my mind but today I feel like I’ve hit a wall. I can’t even wash the dishes without crying. People say that time heals all wounds but they’re wrong.

You see today hurts more than it did 10 years ago. You see 10 years ago, I kept telling myself he would come home. I kept waiting to see him, to hear him. I kept saying that it was a mistake and he would come through the door. I kept pleading with God to bring my son back to me. The hard truth is that’s never going to happen.

This is my reality. My son has two little sisters now and nephew (and they all would’ve loved him). As little as they are, they know that from time to time, I break down. No one around understands how or what brings on these strong emotions. A song, a young man dressed similar to my son, a memory.

In the middle of life happening all around me, I fear that I hurt people who honestly have no clue as to how or why I feel this way. Actually, I do a pretty good job of carrying on in my daily routine and no one knows what I may be feeling. Then all of sudden, like a wave, emotion hits and I can’t stop from crying and I can’t function. This has not been an easy ride for me and I can’t imagine what it’s like for those around me, watching me fall apart all of a sudden.

All of this is the result of someone else’s choice to drink and drive. Their choice has affected my entire life. From time to time I google the name of man who is responsible for this. It is overwhelming to me to find out he’s still alive, in prison but alive and still fighting for his rights. I found a public record of a new court case today. A case is which he is suing someone else to protect his rights while in prison. So the man who killed my 17 year old son and his 17 year old best friend, is alive and fighting to protect his quality of life. It just isn’t right and so I am a mess.

Some people might say, why is she putting all of this out there for the world to read. It’s certainly not going to help me through the next few days or Christmas, or the years to come….but maybe if one person can see this, read this, feel this hurt. Maybe, they will decide to make a different choice, call über or designate a driver. I’m not saying stop celebrating with your family and friends, I’m just asking for you to make a different choice when it comes to getting behind the wheel after drinking.

I don’t know, maybe I am wishing for too much. So much has been lost, I’ve tried hard to pick up all of the pieces of my life, to carry on in this new life, a refined life, a life with purpose. I know deep in my heart, despite of the way I feel today that I can not give up. I must hope and pray that through my ongoing actions, I can make a difference. If I can affect just one person to make a different choice, it’s worth laying it all out on table.

Take the Pledge!

Every year, nearly 200 people are killed in drunk driving crashes during the Fourth of July holiday. That’s why this Fourth of July weekend, MADD has partnered with Uber to keep drunk drivers off the road. As part of this nationwide public service campaign, MADD is asking everyone to help us support this important mission by taking the pledge to designate a non-drinking driver this holiday weekend.

In addition, Uber will match all donations made through this campaign during the holiday weekend – July 1 through July 5 – up to $25,000!

Take the Pledge  to help keep my loved ones, and everyone on the road safe. PLEASE, pledge not to drive if you’ve been drinking this 4th of July.

When You Drink & Drive, Luck is Not on Your Side

I can’t let a St. Patrick’s Day go by without reminding everyone how your choices can have a life long impact on others. Please, I encourage you to have some fun with your family and friends BUT above all else, be responsible – be sure to have a designated non-drinking driver.  


There were 276 drunk driving fatalities on St. Patrick’s Day from 2009-2013, making it one of the deadliest holidays on the road for drunk driving. – MADD.org

Hosting your own St. Patrick’s Day party? Here are some safe party tips from MADD.org:

  • As guests RSVP, confirm that they have a plan for a safe way home via a non-drinking designated driver (rideshare service, public transportation, taxi, etc.).
  • Offer non-alcoholic beverages or mocktails for non-drinking designated drivers and others who prefer not to drink alcohol. Create a fun green mocktail to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day!
  • If, despite your efforts, some of your guests have had too much to drink, never let them drive home impaired.

More safe partytips can be found at madd.org/safeparty

Pledge to be Safe this St. Patrick’s Day

Pledge to be a designated driver, or pledge to drive drug and alcohol-free this St. Patrick’s Day. You could save your friends’ lives, or your own.

 

MichaelI will love you forever Michael, until we meet again.

My New Year’s Wish

Happy New Year!!! I want to by saying “Thank you”. I appreciate that you have come to my blog and are reading my posts. I hope that you are finding the family-fun activities that encourage family time, nature and STEAM related events helpful.

I started this blog to refine my life, my purpose and place. As our pastor Rick Warren says “Our deepest life message often comes out of our deepest pain. For me that would be the loss of my son due to a drunk driver. So, naturally the holidays are concerning to me.

I pray that each and every one of you and your families have a fun and safe New Year’s. Next, let’s be realistic, it’s New Year’s, people will drink and that’s fine – just please don’t drink and drive. So, with this mind – I have a request….actually, I am pleading with you.

I have put together a list of options for planning a safe ride to and from your destination on New Years Eve, there are even options that will help get their car home, safely.

I am asking that you please pass this information along, repost this entire post, like it and/or share it on facebook, email it to someone, share it on any social media outlet you use. If we can help just one person, save one life – it’s worth it.

Again, thank you for going along with me on this journey, I wish you and yours a very Happy New Year’s.

Annette – Project Refined Life


Tipsy Tow

Statistics show that traffic-related fatalities increase significantly around the holidays. As such, the Auto Club sponsors a complimentary Tipsy Tow service on New Year’s Eve and the Fourth of July, which offers free rides to drivers who have been drinking. Avoid becoming a statistic and help guests stay safe by following these tips:

  • Ensure all guests have a ride to and from their destination in a car driven by a non-drinking designated driver
  • Plan activities that take the focus away from drinking, and make non-alcoholic beverages readily available
  • Serve high-protein snacks to slow down alcohol absorption
  • Stop serving alcohol at least 90 minutes before a party ends, and serve guests coffee or dessert
  • Take car keys from intoxicated guests who plan to drive home

Tipsy Tow service provides a complimentary ride and vehicle tow up to seven miles from the point of pickup to drivers who have consumed alcohol on New Year’s Eve and the Fourth of July. Tipsy Tow service is available to members and non-members. Ask for a Tipsy Tow by calling 1-800-400-4222.

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$10.00 Rides with Flywheel

Nothing’s worse than waking up New Year’s Day with regrets. So while we can’t do anything about that champagne hangover, we can make sure you have a #SurgeFreeNYE.

Seriously! We’re celebrating the launch of two brand new Flywheel cities, Sacramento and San Diego, and the end of 2014 with a night full of $10 rides.

From 8pm Wednesday (12/31/14) til 3am Thursday (1/1/15) all Flywheel rides in San Francisco, Seattle, Sacramento and San Diego will be charged a flat rate of $10. Rides exceeding $50 will be charged the metered balance.

And to help make sure you get a ride on such a crazy night, Flywheel is incentivizing our drivers with a generous tip. Pretty sweet.

Last New Year’s Eve people were charged up to seven times the normal rate by other services – not cool! This New Year’s Eve is all about the Benjamins (staying in your wallet).

If you don’t have it yet, get the app: iOS | Android  – Questions? Shoot us an e-mail or drop us a tweet.

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Get a Ride with Lyft and Uber

To keep everyone safe on the roads, MADD has joined forces with Lyft and UBER. Together, we urge all adults that if your plans include alcohol then plan ahead and designate a non-drinking driver before the celebrations begin.

Both services will be donating to MADD’s mission – Every ride can save a life.

UBER: Enter promo code MADDNYE from 6:00 p.m. local time New Year’s Eve to 6:00 a.m. local time New Year’s Day and UBER will donate $1 to MADD for every ride nationwide. Lyft: Starting 6:00 a.m. local time December 29 through 6:00 a.m. local time New Year’s Day, pledge to get home safe at Lyft.com/NYE and $1 per pledge nationwide will benefit MADD.

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Designated Driver Services

DrinkingAndDriving.Org (DADO) 501c3 is a great website that teaches and Inspires the Prevention of Drunk Driving has a National Directory of Designated Driver Services,

The services offered in this site include Designated Driver service that will drive you home in your own car or pick up services.

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Free Bus Rides on New Years Eve 

Celebrate the New Year, by letting OCTA do the driving!

To promote safe travels, OCTA is continuing its tradition of offering free bus rides on New Year’s Eve. From 6:00 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 31, 2014 until 2:30 a.m., Thursday, January 1, 2015, ride any fixed-route bus, and your ride is free!

Nearly 100,000 people have taken advantage of this special, free bus service over the past 12 years. With 600 buses travelling on 77 designated routes and stopping at over 6,500 bus stops in Orange County, taking the bus is the safest way to celebrate the New Year!

Extended bus service in Fullerton – Heading to Fullerton’s annual First Night in Fullerton event, then be sure to take the bus and avoid the parking hassle? OCTA is providing extended service on Routes 24, 26, 43, 143 make riding the bus and easy and convenient way to enjoy this special event.

Taking the bus is easy – Even if you’ve never ridden the bus before, it’s easy to ride the bus. Use our simple onlinetrip planner to find out where to catch the bus, and the time it leaves. It’s a good idea to plan your return trip at the same time as not all buses travel past midnight. Remember to arrive at your bus stop 10 minutes before your bus is expected to arrive. If you’re traveling before 6:00 p.m., be sure to have your $2 bus fare ready; exact change is required. Riding after 6:00 p.m. on New Year’s Eve? Your ride is free! Don’t forget to plan your trip home as well, not all buses run past midnight.

New Year’s Planning

 Originally posted in www.madd.org/blog – December 29, 2014

A lot goes in to planning the perfect New Year’s Eve celebration, and Mothers Against Drunk Driving wants to help you with your checklist:

√ Reservations for two at that fancy restaurant you’ve always wanted to try – check.

√ The perfect outfit for that night on the town – check.

√ Your favorite bottle of bubbly for that midnight toast – check.

• A designated non-drinking driver – check?

After the ball drops and rings in the New Year, sadly it also rings in the deadliest day on the roads due to drunk driving. In 2013, 70 people died on New Year’s Day alone.

To keep everyone safe on the roads, MADD is joining forces with Lyft and UBER. Together, we urge all adults that if your plans include alcohol then plan ahead and designate a non-drinking driver before the celebrations begin.

Both services will be donating to MADD’s mission – Every ride can save a life.

UBER: Enter promo code MADDNYE from 6:00 p.m. local time New Year’s Eve to 6:00 a.m. local time New Year’s Day and UBER will donate $1 to MADD for every ride nationwide. Lyft: Starting 6:00 a.m. local time December 29 through 6:00 a.m. local time New Year’s Day, pledge to get home safe at Lyft.com/NYE and $1 per pledge nationwide will benefit MADD.

Uber_Lyft

Don’t start the New Year in tragedy. Make a resolution to designate a non-drinking driver 100% of the time to make sure you, your loved ones and everyone on the roads gets home safely.

– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/2014/december/madd-is-joining-forces-with-uber-lyft.html#sthash.jV7Or3h0.dpuf

December is National Impaired Driving Prevention Month

originally posted in By madd.org/blog

madd.org/blog/

The month of December is one of the busiest on the nation’s roadways, and also one of the most dangerous. With the holidays coming up, there will be an increase in social events that involve alcohol, and data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that this results in an increase in DUIs and fatal drunk-driving crashes around the holidays.

During December 2012, 830 people lost their lives in crashes involving a drunk driver.

That’s why December has been designated National Impaired Driving Prevention Month, a time to raise awareness about the consequences of driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. In issuing his proclamation, President Obama urges every American to “dedicate ourselves to driving safely and responsibly, and to promoting these behaviors among our family and friends.” Click here to read the proclamation.

No one thinks that their holiday celebration will end in tragedy. But for those who include alcohol in their celebrations and then get behind the wheel, this is too often the case.

MADD has these tips to help ensure everyone’s safety this holiday season:

  • Make sure to always plan ahead for a safe way home, especially if your plans involve alcohol. Even one too many drinks increases the risk of a crash—it’s just not worth it. If you’ve been drinking use a taxi, call a sober friend or family member or use public transportation.
  • If someone you know is drinking, do not let that person get behind the wheel. Your actions may save someone’s life. Click here to review our tips on how to prevent someone from driving drunk.
  • Just because you made the right decision to drive sober, others on the road may not have. Always buckle up, drive with caution, and don’t hesitate to call 911 to report a suspected drunk driver. It is your business. Getting drunk drivers off the roads saves lives.

And don’t forget… you can also do your part to remind others to designate a non-drinking driver by displaying one of our Tie One on for Safety ribbons. Contact your local office to find out how to get a red ribbon for your car.

– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/2014/december/national-impaired-driving.html#sthash.9WYZjMLV.dpuf

Black Wednesday

In the bar industry and law enforcement, tonight is know as  “Black Wednesday . The Wednesday night or Thanksgiving Eve has emerged as one of the biggest alcohol drinking nights of the year, second only to New Year’s Eve.

Please take some time to talk to your with your kids and young adults about alcohol. As always remember to plan ahead for a safe way home before you start drinking.

MADD_wednesday_b4_thanksgiving

 

Dealing with Grief during the Holidays

originally posted in madd.org/blog on November 28, 2012

Holiday-GriefFor many people, this is a season of celebrations.  However, the holidays are often a difficult time for those of us who are bereaved and coping with loss.  Many bereaved and injured people face this season with apprehension often in fear of their emotional reactions to what are supposed to be happy, memorable events.

A common question asked by those mourning a loved one or struggling to make sense of other losses is, “How can I get through the holidays?”  There is no single answer of what we should or should not do, but it is important that we consider what activities are comfortable for us to participate in during the holidays.

Here are some suggestions for people experiencing bereavement and/or injury for coping during the holidays:

  • Plan ahead for the approaching holidays.  Accept that this might be a difficult time for you.  The additional stress this season brings may impact you emotionally, physically and spiritually.  These are normal reactions.  Be prepared for rushes of emotions that may occur.

  • Recognize that the holidays might not be the same as they were in the past.  Expecting everything to seem the same might lead to disappointment.  Modify or make new traditions if it feels right. Just remember to include others who are grieving, especially children, in decisions.

  • Don’t overwhelm or over commit yourself. Give yourself a reprieve. Take time for yourself and take care of yourself. Take it slow and easy, one step at a time.

  • Be careful not to isolate yourself. It is all right to take time for yourself, but try not to cut yourself off from the support of family and friends.

  • The holidays may affect other family members. Talk to others as you make plans and share your feelings. Respect other’s choices and needs, and compromise if necessary.

  • Expect to experience some feelings of emotional pain. When the feelings come, let them.

  • Accept a few invitations to be with close family or friends. Choose the ones that sound most appealing at the time and decline the ones that feel more like an obligation.

  • Talk about your feelings. Let people know if you are having a tough day.

  • Share your favorite stories with others and make a toast or light a candle in honor and remembrance.

When everyone else appears so happy and cheerful, it is easy to feel alone.  You may feel out of sorts with the holiday season.  Recognizing that the holidays can be painful often helps ease that sense of isolation. If you need any additional assistance, please call 1-877-MADD-HELP (877-623-3435).  MADD is just one call away. 

It’s Red Ribbon Week

 

redribbonToday, I’m joining teens, parents, teachers, and other citizens across America in celebrating Red Ribbon Week (October 23-31), the oldest and largest drug prevention program in the nation. #RedRibbonWeek

Encourage your Teens to Lead Drug and Alcohol Free this Red Ribbon Week

Originally postted madd.org/blog

Every October during Red Ribbon Week – just in time for homecoming and the holidays – schools and communities across the country encourage young people to live a drug-free life. This year for Red Ribbon Week, MADD is launching new resources to help teens, educators and community members empower teens to take a stand against underage drinking.

One important resource for teens is The 411 on Teen Drinking. This booklet, sponsored by State Farm®, contains useful information to help teens resist peer pressure, influence other teens to not drink before age 21 and never get in the car with someone who’s been drinking.

Every person who downloads our teen booklet, The 411 on Teen Drinking, in the month of October will be entered to win a new Apple Watch in 2015!

Help us reduce the deaths and injuries that come from underage drinking by visiting www.madd.org/redribbonweek to download all of our free Red Ribbon Week resources and learn how you can get involved in your community.

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– See more at: http://www.madd.org/blog/2014/october/Red-Ribbon-Week.html#sthash.sGxKm88Y.dpuf