Thursday, June 21, 2012

Is Your Teenage Daughter Binge Drinking?

English: Smiling teenage girls. Photo taken on...
English: Smiling teenage girls. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Do you have a teenage daughter?  Do you ever wonder where she really is when she says she is going out with friends?  Do you keep your cell phone close at hand, just in case she calls or texts you? Do you wait up until she is "safely" home and in bed?  Parenting is hard and no matter how devoted you are danger signs will slip past you for any number of reasons: your schedule, your health issues, parenting other children, financial concerns, caring for your parents or spouse. Pretty soon a teenager's behaviors just seem to become routine, you stop questioning why your teenager doesn't seem to feel good in the morning, you overlook curfew violations, start accepting marginal grades or school tardiness. Is your teenage daughter binge drinking?

Summer officially began yesterday at 7:09PM (EDT). For most teenagers this means they are taking a break from school, maybe securing a part-time job, relaxing at home, meeting up with friends throughout the day and evening, taking in a movie, catching up on their reading...or maybe experimenting with some risky behavior. Hopefully these risky behaviors will not include binge drinking.

There is a new documentary that officially premiered on March 15, 2012. Faded: A Film About Girls and Binge Drinking.  According to the film's website the synopsis reads:

"Girls are getting drunk more. FADED is a 60-minute documentary film profiling young girls as they battle varying degrees of binge drinking and alcoholism. By presenting girls from diverse socio-economic and cultural backgrounds, each story is unique. Some girls self-destruct, some rise from the ashes, and some remain in staunch denial. Raw and unflinching in its honesty, the film presents the heartbreak and struggles of young women growing up under the allure of a booze culture."
We would like you to meet Erin. Erin's story is not featured in FADED, but she and her mother were willing to be interviewed for ABC's Nightline report on FADED.


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If you are having trouble viewing the video, you can see it here.

Binge drinking  is dangerous for anyone, but for teenage girls it can have additional repercussions. According to the Nightline report:
"But beyond getting injured, a new study from Stanford University shows that teen girls are more likely than boys to physically damage their brains from binge drinking because they weigh less and their livers process alcohol differently. Brain scans conducted on intoxicated teenage girls have shown less activity in the areas of memory and spatial awareness."
This Summer take some time to talk with your teenagers. You might be surprised what they will teach you.

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