Drive Carefully: The Life You Save Could Be Your Own or a Loved One’s

safe drivingAccording to the National Safety Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) the period between Christmas and New Year’s typically has one of the highest rates of impaired driving fatalities.

Fatalities related to drunk driving are 100 percent preventable and the spike in buzzed driving around the holidays is especially alarming.

Some stats:

  • In 2014, 9,967 people were killed in alcohol-impaired driving crashes. These alcohol-impaired fatalities accounted for more 31% of the total motor vehicle traffic facilities in the United States.
  • Alcohol-impaired drivers were involved in 37% of traffic fatalities during the Christmas holiday period and 44% of traffic fatalities over New Year’s – making the winter holiday seasons one of the deadliest times to be on the road.
  • Buzzed driving can cost around $10,000 in fines, legal fees and increased insurance rates.

Remind your readers to ring in the New Year safely and plan ahead and designating a sober driver before they go out this year. Here’s how you can help spread the word:

These new PSAs, which were created pro-bono, ask viewers to think about a different set of consequences than previous drunk driving ads: the actual financial cost of being pulled over for driving buzzed. These costs–between fines, rising insurance costs, lawyer fees and more–could total over $10,000.

  • Encourage your readers to visithttp://buzzeddriving.adcouncil.org/ to sign the pledge to not drive buzzed and learn more about buzzed driving and the dangers that can come with it.
  • Share the attached social graphic or infographic across your social channels and encourage your readers to do the same using the hashtag #BuzzedDriving.

Drunk Mom + What Works, What Doesn’t, and Why

Jowita Bydlowska, author of Drunk Mom.
Topic:
A brutally honest memoir of motherhood in the shadow of alcoholism.
Issues: The inward and outward struggles of someone battling addiction; the anxieties that characterize life with a new baby and saying goodbye to a childless lifestyle; concealing alcoholism–and relapse–from friends and family; lies, deceptions, and betrayals; finally, the transformative power of love and the triumph over debilitating dependence.

Deborah Gilboa, author of Get the Behavior You Want Without Being the Parent You Hate.
Topic:
A guild to what works and what doesn’t–and why not.
Issues: The three essential Rs of parenting: respect, responsibility, and responsibility; how to avoid being the parent you hate; learning to say No and not regretting it later; rights vs. privileges; the importance of consistency in parenting.

Another case of “I abandoned my kids so I could get drunk”

Sean and Courtney before their big night out

A Georgia couple wasn’t going to let their 6-day old baby and toddler get in the way of their party plans. Sean Grussing , 23, and his girlfriend, Courtney Tench, 18 (yes, 18) decided to get drunk with their friends and, I guess, couldn’t get a baby sitter. So they did what any self-respecting brain-dead parents would do and just left the kids alone.

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Drunken babysitters. I guess you don’t have to be a parent to do stupid things with kids

Apparently Monica Wellito, 27, didn’t think that the fact she was supposed to be babysitting her two nieces (ages 1 and 4) should get in the way of her drinking. And she didn’t. In fact, she drank so much that she passed out, leaving the two girls to wander around unsupervised.

Police in Farmington, New Mexico were called in when a neighbor spotted the 4-year old outside by herself. Her year-old sister was found a while later–fortunately in good health–in an unfenced irrigation ditch a few feet from the trailer where Wellito was supposed to have been watching the kids while their mother was at work.

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Wanna get drunk? Please pass the Purell.

As a kid, I remember sneaking occasional sips from my parents’ bottles of Crème De Menthe and Bailey’s Irish Crème. I’m sure that goes a long way towards explain why I’m a beer drinker.

But for today’s kids, there’s no need to break into mom and dad’s liquor cabinet—or pay some 21-year old (or an irresponsible adult) to buy booze for them. And there’s certainly no need to chug cough syrup. Why bother? If you want to get drunk, all you have to do is pick up a bottle of hand sanitizer, which has alcohol as its active ingredient–and is about the cheapest high available.
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Co-sleeping/bed sharing

Dear Mr. Dad: My wife and I are looking into “co-sleeping” with our new baby girl. When I told a neighbor of mine, she shook her head and said it was too risky and would “spoil” her, causing later behavior problems. What are the risks, the benefits, and what should we do?

A: Co-sleeping, or sleeping with an infant in your adult bed, is one of the many parenting ideas that has passionate advocates and just-as-passionate detractors. The two sides are usually framed in extremes, as if you’re evil if you do it – or evil if you don’t. Obviously, it’s not that simple. As you noted, it’s best to learn the risks and benefits so you can make an informed decision.

Although it has only recently re-entered the conversation in North America, co-sleeping is not some newfangled idea. Outside of the English-speaking world it’s the norm, and before the 20th century it was standard pretty much everywhere (although it’s worth mentioning that in many countries, people share a bed with their children because the entire family lives in a single room).
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