In the next few weeks millions of college kids will return home for the holiday break. Excited families will embrace them after their absence and encourage them to share their college experiences – everything from academics to athletics to new friendships. But for many students returning home, they will do their best to keep one part of their college life private – their alcohol and drug use.

According to the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA), in 2012, 60.3 percent of college student’s ages 18–22 drank alcohol in the past month. The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse reports that since the early 1990s, the number of students using marijuana daily has more than doubled and use of drugs like cocaine and heroin is up 52%.

Pat Owens, a lead therapist at the Greenhouse, a leading provider of substance abuse treatment services for individuals with drug and/or alcohol addiction, offers these warning signs that your college-aged child may be abusing drugs or alcohol: 

  • Changes in sleeping patterns or significant weight gain or loss
  • Acting withdrawn or secretive
  • Significant change in academic performance
  • Unexplained personality or behavior changes
  • Uncharacteristic behavior including depression, irritability of mood swings 

If you suspect your student is abusing drugs or alcohol, the best way you can help them is by letting them know you are concerned about them and want to help them. Educate them about the dangers and consequences of drug abuse and help them identify reasons like peer pressure or academic pressure that have led them to start using drugs. If you believe your student has gone past abuse to addiction, seek help from an in-patient or outpatient addiction treatment facility.

Author Bio:

Ms. Owens is currently a lead therapist with the Greenhouse. Prior to joining the Greenhouse, Ms. Owens’ experience with addictions includes working with adolescents, young adults, and adults in residential, hospital, intensive outpatient and community based programs in New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. She has developed and directed numerous specialized and innovative programs that have been featured on NBC News, Good Morning America and the Oprah Winfrey show to name a few. 



The holiday season is upon us. The five weeks from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day are filled with holiday parties, shopping and family time, but for many people this time of year is the most stressful.


Stress from family conflicts, stress from maxing out the credit card on gifts, stress from feeling guilty for over-eating, stress from over commitments. Holiday stress can be especially rough on the millions of people in recovery for drug or alcohol addiction.


Audrey Crouch, an Intake Supervisor at the Greenhouse, a leading provider of substance abuse treatment services for individuals with drug and/or alcohol addiction, offers these three tips for staying clean and sober this holiday season. 


Have a Support System in Place. Look at the calendar and see what events might cause you stress; for example, a holiday party at your boss’ house or Thanksgiving with your mother-in-law. Consider going to a Twelve Step meeting or calling your sponsor or a friend in recovery before the event. Make sure you can leave at any time and are not reliant on someone else for transportation. That way, if temptation hits, you can make a beeline for the door.


Avoid Stressful Situations. If you know your friend Fred is going to bring drugs to a party, avoid him. If you know your sister is going to get crazy drunk at Thanksgiving dinner, sit at the other end of the table. If you know going to the mall on Black Friday will push all your buttons, stay home and shop online. If you can’t avoid a stressful situation then always have an exit plan so you can hightail it out of there before you risk falling back into the spiral of addiction.


Be on Offense, Not Defense. For most of us, the holidays are an emotional roller coaster. There is pressure and expectations every way you turn. Instead of feeling continuous joy, we are on a cycle of joy followed by stress, frustration, exhaustion or even depression. At the beginning of each holiday season, sit down with your sponsor, a friend or a counselor and discuss your expectations for the holidays. Identify people, events and situations that might push you back into addiction and create an action plan for how to ensure they don’t derail your recovery.  


By following the tips above, you can help yourself or someone you know in recovery start 2015 clean and sober.


Author Bio:

Audrey Crouch is an Intake Supervisor at the Greenhouse Treatment Center. She has a degree in Chemical Dependency Counseling from the University of North Texas and is a Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselor. Along with her education in the field of addiction she has sustained 10 years of personal recovery in Alcoholics Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous. 

Pin on Pinterest

Coleman Brown, Mark Plunkett, Blake Rowling and Jeff Staubach host breakfast
at Old Parkland for Morgan Meyer, candidate for House District 108.

November 25, 2013 (Dallas, TX) Business leaders, real estate executives and civic leaders turned out on Friday morning to support Morgan Meyer in his campaign to replace Dan Branch.

"We are here to support Morgan because he is about three things, family values, conservative values and a strong work ethic." said Jeff Staubach as he introduced Morgan to the attendees.

Morgan highlighted his life experiences and his commitment to the district, and the families and businesses in it, as he spoke to the crowd.

"As a husband and father of three small children, I am committed to protecting our schools and our economy" said Morgan. "I will be an honest, hardworking representative that will spend taxpayer dollars wisely and put families first."

In addition to the hosts, notable Dallas names including Jon Altschuler, Travis Goff, Marshall Hunt, Kathryn Lake, Fred Perpall, Hill Perot, Michael Prentiss and Robert Rowling, Jr. were among those attending the breakfast.

For more information, please visit