07 November 2009

Holidays: Will They Be A Time of Joy - or Of Tragedy?

What do you want out of life? What do most people want out of life? Some kind of happiness --- whether that means finding the love of their life; having small attainable goals, or doing something meaningful in society - like working with the hungry and poor.

Throughout life there are a lessons learned and embedded into our psyche; Ones that leave a lasting impression and that shape us as individuals , dictating choices we make for the future.

These impressions come from a variety of sources - the neighborhood we lived in; people in our lives - from our parents, friends or teachers - to that stranger on a street corner. Each memory is a misshapen piece that indelibly will coincide and be interwoven with other pieces to complete the complex puzzle, of the self, in each of us.

Yet it isn't just impressions that shape us - it is more primal than that. Our makeup is derived by genes who are manipulated and tousled, surviving generations after generation. Where do these genes come from? From our descendants - passed down from our families.

For allot of us, even in the most dysfunctional of circumstances - family means allot. Having a need for family to gather around us in celebration is a need that is echoed across cities, states --- for that matter across the globe.

But it can be those same joyous occasions with the right conditions that can trigger a deadly domino effect. When you have a family, their safety is important. When tragedy strikes it can rock your world. No one wants to be affected by an intoxicated driver. Yet everyday in the United States 36 people die and 700 people are injured from alcohol related crashes1. Those statistics are sobering.

I have first hand experience of a loved one being injured by a drunk driver - It doesn't matter the extent of injuries or there severity. Once an unknowing car is struck - whether broadsided, T-boned ,clipped or Rear-ended ---their lives and their families lives are changed forever.

The scary thing about alcohol is that teen drivers are the most vulnerable. Teens push the envelope when it comes to vehicle safety, there is a tendency to underestimate and not recognize dangerous situations4. When any alcohol is involved , teens risk of crash /fatalities is far greater than any older age groups2. In 2005, 3 out of 4 teens who were killed in alcohol related crashes were not wearing their seatbelt3 . In 2005, male drivers aged 15-20 yrs old who were involved in fatal crashes %38 had been speeding and %24 had been drinking5,6.

Because of the importance of educating our teens, MADD - a non-profit organization aimed at giving needed support to DUI victims and preventing underage drinking, has stepped up to the plate this season, conveniently as this December is National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month to unveil their campaign entitled: The Power of Parents.

Did you know - %74 of teens turn to the parents for guidance on drinking? The Power of Parents campaign aims to give parents of teens tools, and access to resources which can help empower them when talking to teens about underage drinking.

You will find on The Power of Parents site: Expertly written videos, guides and pamphlets available via download. There is also "Ask an expert" section for all your questions, plus an online community where you can network with other parents and share experiences.

Right now as of the recent launch, there is a section specifically for parents of highschool aged teens. But check back soon because there are several sections planned for: Elementary parents , Middle School parents, and College parents.

The site is very user friendly and you can also participate in the conversation via Twitter: @maddparents, or Facebook: Power of Parents Fan Page .

If you have time, I have 2 pamphlets in pdf format, available for download from The Power of Parents campaign.

Download Page

Links for More Information:


National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).


The words and opinions expressed here are my own. The facts and statistics all have sources (see below). I wrote this post while participating in a blog campaign (about the launch of The Power of Parents site) by Mom Central on behalf of MADD. A donation was made to MADD in my name to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Hopefully the statistics, and links I provided will help educate you, your family or friends. Be safe this holiday season!

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; National Center for Injury Prevention and Control
2 Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Fatality facts: teenagers 2005. Arlington (VA): The Institute; 2006 [cited 2006 Dec 1].
3 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance—United States, 2005 [Online]. (2006b). National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion (producer). Available from: URL:
http://apps.nccd.cdc.gov/yrbss/CategoryQuestions.asp?cat=1&desc=Unintentional.* [Cited 2006 Nov 28]
4 Jonah BA, Dawson NE. Youth and risk: age differences in risky driving, risk perception, and risk utility. Alcohol, Drugs and Driving 1987;3:13–29.
5 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Dept. of Transportation (US). Traffic safety facts 2005: speeding. Washington (DC): NHTSA; 2006a [cited 2008 March 28]. Available from: URL: http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/pdf/nrd-30/NCSA/TSF2005/SpeedingTSF05.pdf.
6 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Dept. of Transportation (US). Traffic safety facts 2005: young drivers. Washington (DC): NHTSA; 2006b [cited 2008 March 28]. Available from: URL: http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.govf.



4:48 AM, November 10, 2009 Reply  

As I see it, the alcohol problem can be solved through education, both in schools and at home. Christmas is about joy and family and it shouldn't be any other way. Maybe this economic crisis will teach us to be more responsible and to redefine our values.

9:31 AM, November 10, 2009 Reply  

I think this campaign is great. Parents are the number one influence, good or bad, on children. When parents are involved kids tend to make better, more educated decisions. We don't stress the accountability of parents enough. Great post!

10:19 AM, November 10, 2009 Reply  

I have always enjoyed my holidays. But just one thing to say that I usually enjoy holidays only when I have my friends along with me otherwise the same holidays can prove boring to you.

12:40 PM, November 10, 2009 Reply  

How wonderful! I just LOVE your self motivation!

6:09 PM, November 10, 2009 Reply  

Loads thanks for the link!
A great information!

1:19 AM, November 11, 2009 Reply  

I am in the same boat as you when it comes to a very close friend being hit by a teen (who was driving under influence of alcohol), the driver was coming back from a graduation party and probably didn't know enough about implications of DUI.

5:41 AM, November 11, 2009 Reply  

Awesome tips !!! i like your work ! excellent work.

10:20 AM, November 12, 2009 Reply  

Good to see your post again :)

This is such vital information. The funny part is that we never think of our self as stats until it actually happens to us or someone close to us.


1:21 PM, November 12, 2009 Reply  

VERY good article. While I run a site that is dedicated to the art of beer we never lose sight of the fact that beer, or any alcohol, needs to be taken in strict moderation and that there are very severe consequences for drunk driving. Young people need to be taught these things from a very early age now. Keep up the good work.

10:42 PM, November 13, 2009 Reply  

I really liked your article, thanks for posting. I got lot of information from your article.

9:07 AM, November 15, 2009 Reply  

i liked your banner its really awesome ,but got me hungry..huh

11:48 PM, November 15, 2009 Reply  

Very nice and well detailed article. This will serve as an instrument to all people who loves alcohol to be careful. If already drunk don't drive.

8:22 AM, November 16, 2009 Reply  

nice share,my friend..thx for dat

2:55 AM, November 17, 2009 Reply  

i like your work ! excellent work. Thanks for the article.

4:11 AM, November 17, 2009 Reply  

I think it starts at home, and conversations when kids are little. Model what you preach.

10:56 AM, November 17, 2009 Reply  

You hit me on a very sensitive nerve with this post. A subject people might read about but never really let it sink in until something happens in the own family. My son, living in Germany with his Mom is just about getting his drivers license and I know some of his friends are not the most careful and most responsible ones. So maybe you can imagine my feelings about me knowing he might be driving his own car or motorbike before too long or him being on the road with any of his buddies. We have always tried to teach him the slogan "Don't drink and drive" but still I will always pray nothing bad to happen to him.

3:26 PM, November 17, 2009 Reply  

This is so true on the education of non drinking to our youth. BUT in that I think we should education the ones also that are already out there. GREAT post!

7:57 PM, November 17, 2009 Reply  

Great post, I totally agree with this article. IMHO, Alcohol + teen = Massive FAIL. Keep up the good work

11:41 AM, November 19, 2009 Reply  

These are some very good tips: nice blog anyways:

7:35 PM, November 19, 2009 Reply  

great recipes. i like new food and because you i get new experience cook.

10:32 PM, November 19, 2009 Reply  

I just love your self motivation ideas, you pointed out a very serious topic in very light mood, thanks man, i hope many people will learn a lot from this.

11:07 PM, November 19, 2009 Reply  

I think it's our responsibility as parents to instil a solid foundation of right and wrong in our kids. Drinking and driving (drinking in general actually too), like sex, is an essential topic parents need to talk to their kids about, and not just once but on a regular basis. Real discussions about situations, what would you dos and that kind of thing. I have always talked openly with my son and now he's almost 14 and pretty open, it's great.

12:43 AM, November 20, 2009 Reply  

Great post, this is really what we all need to know, thanks for sharing.

2:28 AM, November 20, 2009 Reply  

I always wants love and happiness from my life, money is important for every one but not that much as love, thanks for pointing out this issue.

7:12 AM, November 20, 2009 Reply  

Thanks for the insightful post. It's a problem my wife and I struggle with especially given my choice of career being alcohol related. I don't think there is any substitute for education, some sort of public transportation in this country would also be helpful in at least controlling the negative affects of drunk drivers-but the easiest thing to do is to teach your kids not to drink and drive!

3:35 AM, November 21, 2009 Reply  

I was Download that, it's great. I am very like your motivation Tips, Thanks For Share.

Best Regard,


4:06 AM, November 22, 2009 Reply  

Thanks for the article i just read. Keep up the good work.
Cheers Sophia!

7:00 AM, November 23, 2009 Reply  

Actually, I'm more concerned with the drinking adults. All the parents killed by drunk drivers around the holidays, that I know of, were killed by adult drunk drivers.

10:56 AM, November 23, 2009 Reply  

read this post gratifies the soul, really beautiful.

12:15 AM, November 24, 2009 Reply  

Great post.

2:40 AM, November 24, 2009 Reply  

The question asked in the title is somewhat tough to answer in today's world.I think you are doing good work by giving information and awaking about such events to parents for saving the children from the path of drugs.

2:44 PM, November 24, 2009 Reply  

Wow, I had no idea that 700+ people are injured due to drunk driving every single day. That is an astronomical statistic. It's great to raise awareness about this issue, and I feel like awareness efforts have been ongoing for many many years. I know during my high school we weer constantly being reminded about the dangers of drunk driving and kids still did it. What more can be done besides for education?

7:53 PM, November 24, 2009 Reply  

This is a very informative site i think as i was unaware of many things.Thanks to this authority.

9:01 PM, November 25, 2009 Reply  

It is so wonderful to see you promoting sobriety. This is the most important time of year too, with all the holiday parties etc.

Thank you for adding on more piece of anti-alcohol content to the internet, you may just save a life.

9:34 PM, November 25, 2009 Reply  

Well, we will find joy in our hearts if we can also brought out joy in others. Let's find goodness in everyone though some really can't. I like your post even if it's too long. It's overwhelming to know such events in the lives of people. I just hope everybody will have a merry day!

1:06 AM, November 26, 2009 Reply  

This is a very good Article.It is very tips for children as well as parents for coming holidays.

3:17 AM, November 26, 2009 Reply  

Parents are vital part in our life ....

12:44 PM, November 26, 2009 Reply  

yes , i completely agree with you , we have to act responsibly , to not turn this time of joy into tragedy

1:04 AM, November 27, 2009 Reply  

yes, most accidents are caused by careless decisions. The road is the best place to find accidents. I myself would feel more secure driving my kids to school rather than ride public vehicles. As some of them are in the influence of alcohol and drugs.

2:28 AM, November 27, 2009 Reply  

Alcoholics...they forget that somebody is waiting for them and also they are destroyi8ng their hopes

11:02 PM, November 27, 2009 Reply  

nice article and great motivation, thanks for your sharing

11:11 PM, November 27, 2009 Reply  

its a flawless article .
Thanks for the posting..

4:54 AM, November 28, 2009 Reply  

Family means a lot to us and this is what no one is trying to understand....Going in wrong way after wards regretting is what that is happening now...

1:49 PM, November 28, 2009 Reply  

Alcohol is a very serious theme. I am mother of a two year old child, and I know that I cant forbite her as teen to drink. But I will do everything for teaching her how much to drink and not to drive drunken or with someone drunken.

4:27 AM, November 29, 2009 Reply  

Good to see your post again :)

This is such vital information. The funny part is that we never think of our self as stats until it actually happens to us or someone close to us.

7:14 PM, November 29, 2009 Reply  

drunking is horrible, i hate it. mother has left as the result of drunker driver. thank you for your sharing.

5:44 AM, November 30, 2009 Reply  

Thanks for links!

6:36 AM, November 30, 2009 Reply  

i think everyone its tired of hearing the same thing over and over on the news.. most accidents are cause by drunk drivers .. this should stop .. we all should think on the consequence..

9:54 PM, November 30, 2009 Reply  

very good and informative post.thanks for this.

7:21 AM, December 01, 2009 Reply  

This is definitely a touchy subject for me as I have an understanding of how alcohol has negatively affected so many people's lives. As an owner of a wine club it introduces some interesting ethical dilemmas for me, I do wish we could do a better job as far as education goes in regards to alcohol. One drink is one too many if you're driving.

7:42 AM, December 01, 2009 Reply  

Great article. Some people tend to get out of control during the holidays. Hopefully they take your advice and the holidays are not a tragic one for them and their family.

6:34 PM, December 01, 2009 Reply  

I lost one of my closest in a caraccident caused by a teen that was DUI. There needs to be more talking about theese things, more education about it.

1:42 AM, December 02, 2009 Reply  

Christmas should be a time of joy and festive spirit spent with family and good friends, its such a tradegy that alcohol related incidents can tarnish such a time. Every one indulges in a tipple or two around xmas even grandma, but it should always like most things be taken in moderation and never when even remotely thinking of driving anywhere

6:36 AM, December 02, 2009 Reply  

Holidays are coming each day, we just have to look at the brighter side and make these holidays worthwhile.

8:47 AM, December 03, 2009 Reply  

Thanks for the nice article

7:05 PM, December 03, 2009 Reply  

Very good article. I love your posts.



11:51 PM, December 03, 2009 Reply  

I agree heartily with your introduction. Indeed, even seeming trivialities like food can have a subtle hold on how we live our lives, let alone things like drink driving. Lets hope everyone has a safe christmas!

3:54 AM, December 04, 2009 Reply  

I love the way you have represented your post.. thanks for sharing with us.

3:55 AM, December 04, 2009 Reply  

Holidays are always pleasureful..So I always try to enjoy the Holidays..

5:43 AM, December 04, 2009 Reply  

Great Post. With all the merriment around festive periods, it is easy to get carried away. The stats though are very humbling.

8:43 AM, December 04, 2009 Reply  

This is a great blog! I would really like to keep reading your blogs. Cant wait for the next post. Good blogs are hard to find!

11:16 AM, December 04, 2009 Reply  

Holidays are those occasions, which everyone wants to enjoy their time with their loved one

3:17 PM, December 04, 2009 Reply  

i really appreciate this your good article
from there i get something that i want to know
thanks for this usefull informations

8:59 AM, December 08, 2009 Reply  

Thanks a lot for a bunch of good tips. I look forward to reading more on the topic in the future.

Keep up the good work! This blog is going to be great resource. Love reading it.

7:53 PM, December 10, 2009 Reply  

I recently came accross your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my second comment. I dont know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading.

Nice blog.
I will keep visiting this blog very often.

12:54 PM, December 29, 2009 Reply  

nice blog, and good post, merry christmas and happy new year.

5:53 PM, January 18, 2010 Reply  

This is a very great information. I become knowledgeable about the subject. Thank you for posting this kind of information.

12:16 PM, January 25, 2010 Reply  

Incredible source of the information.

11:57 PM, February 02, 2010 Reply  

As muslim I never drink alcohol because it is forbidden.

10:59 PM, February 08, 2010 Reply  

Hmm Well I was just searching on Google for some Tarot readings of some Tarot reader
and just came across your blog, generally I just only visit blogs and retrieve my required
information but this time the useful information that you posted in this post compelled me
to reply here and appreciate your good work. I just bookmarked your blog

1:25 AM, February 11, 2010 Reply  

I lost my brother because of a drunken truck driver and I still haven't got over it...Drunken driving has to be banned.

6:18 PM, February 18, 2010 Reply  

For our family the holidays are awesome! Nice blog though, I like it when they are frequently updated.

12:33 AM, February 19, 2010 Reply  

It is really an effective way to gain valuable information and to do what you wish and desire regarding your knowledge and sharing views.Thanks.

1:19 AM, February 19, 2010 Reply  

Lots of good information and useful tips with great experience.Highly recommended.

10:26 AM, February 20, 2010 Reply  

Thanks for the posting, Its more interesting than most posts I read lol.

6:21 AM, February 24, 2010 Reply  

Really wonderful and informative post,can be very helpful but if a person becomes pro-active about their diet and health can easily return back to a normal lifestyle.Thanks for the recommendation.

3:36 PM, March 09, 2010 Reply  

I have a friend who's experiencing this right now. Sometimes family can cause the hardest circumstances. And it's often so difficult to rise above them.

10:37 AM, March 10, 2010 Reply  

To much alcohol can give you nothing.
Safety is one of the best way to prevent it.

6:01 AM, March 12, 2010 Reply  

This is very resourceful and impressive article indeed. As mention here, drinking involve most of the road side accidents and most of them involved people from teen age. I think MADD is doing a great job in bring together the children and parents, motivate them to talk with each other in order to resolve drinking issues.

5:25 AM, March 27, 2010 Reply  

Well that's really a very informative post. Its full of information and I have got a lot of information through your post about bad effects of alcohol. My cousin drinks a lot. Now I am going to forward this to my cousin so that he can know about bad aspects of alcohol. Thanks for sharing such a nice tutorial post.

10:53 PM, April 09, 2010 Reply  

Children are under supervision of parents. Education starts at home, as it should. So, parents must educate their children about the effects of alcohol.

2:40 AM, April 23, 2010 Reply  

As a father I agree that something needs to be done. I am glad this is finally becoming a larger issue.

8:57 AM, April 26, 2010 Reply  

Really its time to buckle up and enjoyment,eat healthy and always be active to your habits.Good luck.

12:47 AM, May 16, 2010 Reply  

I promised my wife not to drink at the Christmas party and I worry so much about my kids drinking at this time of year. I hope nothing happens to them. Thanks for sharing.

9:22 AM, July 23, 2010 Reply  

Very nice post, I’ll just subscribe to the feed.

12:20 AM, September 29, 2010 Reply  

Think when you drive! This is a simple quote but it has a vital function if we apply this one.. Well I really impressed your article.. It serves as a guidelines to all of us.. Nice work.

7:00 AM, September 29, 2010 Reply  

I like your article! Excellent work.

11:02 PM, November 03, 2010 Reply  

Great article. I enjoyed reading. One of the best articles I have read online so far! Thanks for sharing.

10:27 PM, November 25, 2010 Reply  

Accidents due to alcohol are increasing day by day. This is due to a large number of teens addicted to liquor. Driving rules should be made more strict more avoid this.

1:28 AM, December 03, 2010 Reply  

I found this blog very useful and essential. Thanks for your informative post.

2:46 AM, December 08, 2010 Reply  

Good Job! Nice article. Parents are after all parents and will be always remain.

9:53 AM, December 17, 2010 Reply  

I love the way you have represented your post.. thanks for sharing with us.

9:41 AM, March 10, 2011 Reply  

Holidays have been a nightmare for me, since I always end up at the police station or I get in a fight in Greece after drinking too much :)) silly me :D

1:29 PM, August 07, 2011 Reply  

I lost one of my closest in a caraccident caused by a teen that was DUI.

4:41 AM, October 10, 2011 Reply  

Wonderful story this is! I really love it.....

11:34 AM, November 23, 2011 Reply  

Actually, I'm more concerned with the drinking adults. All the parents killed by drunk drivers around the holidays, that I know of, were killed by adult drunk drivers.

10:49 PM, November 29, 2011 Reply  

you have a great blog here! would you like to make some invite posts on my blog?

5:32 PM, December 03, 2011 Reply  

My wife and I were driving home from a restaurant when we were struck by a drunk driver. fortunately, no one was injured.

12:42 AM, January 21, 2012 Reply  

my closest in a caraccident caused by a teen that was DUI.

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