When tragic events transpire, such as the overdose death of a teenager, it is an arduous journey to find any light and positivity from what has occurred.
Tears are shed and heads are being scratched – anger is most certainly expelled all over social media.
Often, there is initial shock to such events that stirs a cultural conversation for a day or two. Another headline may become the next topic of outrage or we get busy, we move on without extracting a lasting moral or memory from the fleeting news that rocked us days before.
But the silver living of an overdose death, as painful as that truth may be to acknowledge, is that we need to talk to each other about drugs. Illegal – and legal – substances are accessed and abused much more frequently than one might think.
For kids, it is far too awkward to propose any question to a parent on what these drugs can do and if they, themselves, have taken any before.
As adults, it is far too easy to assume your child would never, ever, be the type to experiment.
Many put too much faith in the one brief talk they may have had to test the waters on where their kids’ psychotropic interests lie. Others assume schools have effectively done the job, so no further discussion is necessary.
But we need to get past the fear of having a conversation laced with edgy content.
Openly, honestly, and frequently is the most effective way to communicate about drugs with loved ones.
The event that has rocked this community, as grim and incomprehensible as it may seem, is an opportunity to speak so we don’t let our children die in vain.
The only thing more dangerous than drug use itself is remaining silent on the subject.