Incarceration – vs – Prevention – By: Larry Lawton

I get asked the question of why is prevention better then incarceration? At first, I couldn’t believe someone would ask that question, but after some thought, I realized it is a valid question coming from a person who doesn’t understand the cost of incarceration. 

First, let me give you the latest statistics.  The United States is the most incarcerated country in the world.  It cost approximately $30,000 a year to house one inmate.  The cost to incarcerate a juvenile range from Read More »

Parenting Teenagers from 11 through 17 – By: Larry Lawton

Parenting a teenager can be one of the most frustrating times of a parents’ life.  You wait up at night worried about who your son or daughter is hanging around with, will they come home on time and an assortment of other worries.  You see changes in their appearance, attitude, and demeanor and wonder if this is my kid. 

Parenting a teenager can also be one of the most rewarding times as well.  You see your son or daughter growing into a mature responsible adult, form their own opinions, get their own identity and a number of other adult things.

Let’s start with your worries.  When your son or daughter starts Read More »

The Five Steps To Successfully Helping Someone With A Possible Drug Issue. By: Larry Lawton

In our last newsletter we explained the difference between having a “drug problem” and “self-medicating due to a mental illness.” We want to emphasize again; officials and society in general need to stop stigmatizing mental illness. Once that happens, the success rate with helping people with substance abuse issues will skyrocket.

We treat illnesses like heart failure, kidney failure, spinal issues, cancer, etc, without a second thought. We should treat mental illness no differently. It’s an illness, plain and simple.

There are a number of Read More »

The Opioid Crisis CAN NOT Be Fixed – By: Larry Lawton

The opioid crisis CAN NOT be fixed until we recognize how mental illness plays a roll in addiction.

The government and society need to address mental illness and understand how that plays a roll in the opioid crisis. Until that happens, funerals and family destruction will not stop.  

You might say, “Drugs are a choice, it’s the pharmaceutical companies to blame, he’s just making bad choices, the kid is spoiled, he should have just stopped, bad parenting, etc.”

For people with a drug “problem” the above is mostly true. A drug problem is totally different than a person using drugs to self-medicate for a mental illness.

Let me explain a drug problem compared to a person self-medicating for a mental illness.


When a person has a drug problem, you can get them physically clean, educate them, open their eyes to how they are hurting their family, kids, themselves, how their life will look in the future, etc, and with help from family and friends, the Read More »

Being A Good Influence. By: Larry Lawton

The Reality Check Foundation’s 3rd Annual Golf Outing was a huge success.We often get questions and requests from families with kids on ways to influence and help them through tough times.

Influence is the right word, because we all have influence over someone. A parent over a child, uncle over nephews and nieces, friend over friend, and so on. There is no doubt in my mind that all family members influence one another.

In the Reality Check Program we show a picture of a father and a son in prison together. What kind Read More »