Thursday, September 18, 2008

Meth Project

Since living here in Idaho there are somethings that I have had to get used to that are quite different from my Santa Cruz, CA hometown. One of them has been billboards. In Santa Cruz county I believe there is just one, yes one in the whole county. Here however you see them every few feet, not even limited to the highway but they're on main city streets too. These lovely works of art *does my sarcasm show through?* have caused many conversations with my little one, but by far the most memorable was caused by this kindly informative series:I have always felt that honesty is the best policy when it comes to telling children things but I also believe that an honest answer to a three year old may be different (in how much is told) then an honest answer to a thirteen year old. Thrown completely off guard with Providence's questions when she had her first meeting with the girl-in-the-hospital billboard I unfortunately answered the questions to a thirteen year old. I pretty much I gave her my entire, albeit limited, knowledge of the drug.

Now I didn't wake up one day thinking that I would need to have a drug talk with my three year old, I had not planned a drug talk, so I spewed forth more information then I would have preferred had I actually had a chance to think about it beforehand.

Providence is strangely fascinated with the girl in the hospital, she hopes to see her every time we go out and will excitedly point out the "drug girl" as we drive by. After that fateful day of questioning every time she played doctor it was to take care of the drug girl. If she wanted me to be the doctor she would tell me that she has been doing crystal meth, um yes rather disturbing from a three year old but I was at a complete loss as to how to turn this into something redeeming.

One day my brother Aaron heard her new game and talked with me about it, after our conversation I asked him to talk with Providence. He told her that drugs are very serious and not something to joke about, and that we shouldn't "play" doing drugs. She stopped pretending to do crystal meth, though she still does get excited when we approach the billboard and talks about her (the drug-girl) often.

I learned a valuable lesson too, if I have not thought about a subject it's ok to keep silent and tell Providence I will think about her questions before answering.

To see or read more about the Meth Project visit Idaho Meth Project


Sarah September 18, 2008 at 1:39 PM  

Questions kids have today keep getting tougher and more complicated don't they? Providence sounds like such a smart little girl though, kudos to you for that!! I think you handled the situation great, I probably would have done something similar. I love that you are appropriately honest with Providence :)

Ivanna September 18, 2008 at 4:23 PM  

Yeah, "crystal meth" coming from a three year old is disturbing. Glad Aaron talked with her. I noticed the billboard when I was there. I felt I had to look at it every time I went by too.

Beth September 18, 2008 at 4:30 PM  

Madelyn is my question asked. Sometimes I think less is more with some of her questions. I give the most basic answers to things. That girl never forgets so it will come up later when she thinks she needs to know more.

The Scatterbrain September 19, 2008 at 3:16 AM  

oooh!!! thanks for the input! My husband and I are neck high in planning for our baby-to-be and keep tossing "what if?" situations to each other to see how we'd respond as parents! Your post today should give us enough to talk about!!!

Brittany Martin September 19, 2008 at 2:17 PM  

One of the stranger things about Idaho...they're conservative, but not always tactful. When I was in high school there they started an anti-teen pregnancy campaign with similar billboards and radio ads. They were along the lines of "What could be WORSE than having a baby?" Not exactly the wisest way to go about it!

Ray September 19, 2008 at 6:03 PM  

I really wouldnt know what to do if Cadence asked me something like that, It would upset me the my 3 year old had to see something like that, But i think you did a great job explaining to her, So did Aaron, sometimes kids need to hear things from other people they trust besides the parent.

Jenny September 24, 2008 at 9:02 AM  

Thanks for your comment on my blog! We don't have billboards like that around here in South Carolina, and while it is disturbing, maybe we need one. I work in a hospital and know for a fact that small children are sometimes endangered because their parents are raising them in or around a meth lab. It's sad and ridiculous. (As the icing on the cake, most of them get free health care paid for by the tax dollars of law-abiding citizens.)

boqpod October 1, 2008 at 11:50 PM  

Greetings Lis,

(I'm the "Our Bob" from JJ's "Gyre & Gimble" :) )

I'm grateful to read a mom who is candid about raising her daughter in a "PG-13" culture boorishly imposed in our faces who still have little ones; bright little ones full of questions about life & the world around them.

Our daughter is 3 yrs old & so will be checking back to hear how you're doing. Providence is just ahead of our Abigail so thanks again. It helps to know we're not alone!

Both of you will be in our prayers!

Lis October 2, 2008 at 8:45 AM  

Well "Our Bob" welcome and thanks always for prayers.

I was denied access to your blog, so I can't read about Abigail reading the poky puppy.

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