Every day, our society becomes more perplexing to me. I question many of the values being promoted and espoused in America in 2015; however, I think there is one thing we can all agree on: the importance of family.
Family is something we hold dear. That hasn’t changed. We need the support system it provides. Even individuals from dysfunctional families appreciate the beauty of building a new paradigm of family for their own children.
Keeping loved ones safe is a role of the family. We want the best for the members of our family. We want to promote things that are healthy and not promote things that are harmful (researchers calls these “Risk and Protective Factors”).
It’s easy to get swept away by current societal trends and not see the potential harmful effects they have for our loved ones.
Everyone wants to feel good. What are some of the things we do to make ourselves feel better?
In a materialist society, we think a purchase a day keeps the blues away…that is until the credit card bill arrives.
Or checking Facebook, which some studies indicate can actually make us less happy due to our perception that others are leading happier lives.
Or eating so-called comfort food, which doesn’t often lead us to greater health.
Or having a glass of wine to whine, which is really popular with women today. I also enjoy a glass of wine, but I become a little apprehensive when it becomes a focal point for all social interactions among adults.
Or working obsessively to distract ourselves from ourselves.
Or taking a drug. Someone once told me, people like drugs because drugs are more dependable than your best friend…always there when you need them. That may be true, but I hope your best friend won’t impair, harm or ultimately kill you.
Seeing our environment is critical to making healthy choices and protecting the value we hold most dear.
How can we positively impact our environment? As adults, we have responsibility for creating healthy environments. I’m thankful that I grew up in a society that protected me and didn’t give me many harmful choices. That society cared about other people.
I salute each of the schools and people who joined Informed Families in creating safe, healthy, drug free environments for our children during Red Ribbon Week. I am thankful for the wonderful activities that took place across the State of Florida in schools and communities this October to tell everyone to “Love Yourself. Be Drug Free.” Red Ribbon educates, inspires, involves and creates interaction between generations. It counteracts unhealthy messages and it is truly a lot of fun. Check out some images here.
I want to thank all of our donors, staff, board of directors, Ambassadors, schools, friends and supporters like YOU for helping us save lives and help children grow up safe, healthy and drug free. We wish you a happy and meaningful Thanksgiving!
PS: People frequently ask me if I really think Red Ribbon makes a difference. Read this story and you be the judge.